Cars that made the 90s: Part 2 – Sports & Performance


The 90s defined a new era of sports and performance cars, with a vast array of models taking the culture by storm. The iconic boxes of the 80s evolved into elegant curves and tapered into aerodynamic masterpieces, improving their efficiency and tapping into the undeniable charm of the past. Emphasis was placed on the innovation of new technologies, and an effort was made to create comfort where it was possible – vanity where it was essential. And, with all of this granted, the motors were made affordable for commuters and enthusiasts alike.

“I bought it when it was cheap,” David Fuller laughs, reminiscing about his 160,000 mile Porsche 964, “Back in the day when I bought it, it was the cheapest 911 you could buy. To me, the shape of it is the iconic 911 shape, where the back goes down, the headlights are at the right angle.”

However, with the cycle of nostalgia continuing its ever-present rhythm, these cars have only become more lucrative and expensive, despite their performance struggling to compete against today’s standards. So what is it, exactly, that makes these machines so special?

The short answer? They take what was done best, and iterate upon that, instead of changing it. Evolution takes time. Steve Flatt, owner of a Lotus Elise 111S, says: “The guy that designed it had a Ferrari Dino, so the scoops are from a Dino and so are the rear lights. And it was also a totally new concept; because believe it or not, it’s stuck together with glue. It’s not welded together. It was that different.”

Individuality, a clear theme in Cars That Made The 90s: Part 1 – Daily Drivers, clearly applied to the world of sports engines. The Lotus Elise, often described as a ‘go-kart’ often catches the eye of regulars and enthusiasts alike, just as it did back in the 90s. Driving around in the vehicle and filming, the crew couldn’t help but notice the attention it gathered. Even if the Lotus garnered a glance from passersby, it still did so without trying. The car is effortlessly eye-catching.

The same can be said for the VW Corrado G60 seen in the piece. During filming, the crew were approached by an enthusiast who couldn’t help but talk about how striking the car was, especially in its superb red finish against the lush green backdrop of Norfolk. It really goes to show that it’s what catches the eye that matters, and what resonates with the heart.

“There was no other car that was like it,” Steve drew his conclusion, sitting fondly in his Elise, “With the bare aluminium, with no power steering, with no ABS, certainly no air con and no electric windows. But that was the love of it. That was why people wanted one.

It’s just like that leather jacket or that pair of jeans, and that was the joy of it.”