American or German: How Many Cars Can You Identify?

By: Robin Tyler

The dream of John DeLorean, the DMC-12 had its five minutes of fame thanks to the "Back to the Future" movies. It remained a terrible car with sluggish performance and was only produced for a year before the company went bankrupt.

A hybrid sports car first seen in 2014, the i8 is not only good for the environment, but it is possibly one of the best-looking cars on the road today. It's incredibly quick for a hybrid, going from 0-60 mph in just 4.4. seconds.

Over 335,000 Willys MB's were made for military use during World War II. They not only served with the US Army, but with its allies.

A four-door luxury sedan, the Porsche Panamera was introduced in 2009. Don’t worry; the German sports car maker wasn’t selling out. The Panamera still has that German power commonly associated with the brand. In fact, the S model includes a 4.8-liter turbo engine.

Launched in 2012, the Opel Adam competes in the city car class. This three-door hatchback has three powerplant options from 1.0-liter to 1.4-liter. Although the name may seem a little strange, the Adam is named after the founder of the company, Adam Opel.

The Power Wagon uses some excellent ideas from its bigger brother, the heavy Duty Ram truck, including solid front and rear axles and a coil link suspension. It also uses a device called an Articulink to ensure tires are kept on the ground at all times in rough terrain while both the front and rear differential can be locked.

The Mercedes W07 Hybrid dominated Formula 1 in 2016, winning 19 out of 21 races and seeing Nico Rosberg become world champion. This the most dominant Formula 1 car ever in terms of the ratio of wins to races entered.

This midsize luxury crossover SUV based on the BMW 6 series platform was first produced in 2007. Now in its second generation, around 7,000 are sold in the United States each year.

One of America's lesser-known vehicle producers, VIA makes a range of electric vehicles including a hybrid pickup truck with a battery range of 40 miles, enough to cover the distance most of us travel each day. It is charged at a normal plug point.

Perhaps one of the lesser-known muscle cars, the Rogue had unique credentials. Not only was it a lightweight two-door coupe, but it had all the power it needed thanks to its 280-horsepower-producing V8. Sadly, it was up against Mustangs, Camaros and GTO's, and never really stood a chance in that company.

Produced between 1937 and 1939, the Studebaker Coupe Express J5 looks like a moving piece of Art Deco. Over 3500 of this beauty were built, but in reality, it could never compete with the Ford and Chevrolet equivalents which were priced well below the Express.

A popular car in the sub-compact segment, the Sonic from Chevrolet not only possesses excellent handling but is spacious and has ample cargo space. And of course, it is light on fuel, offering around 28 mpg in city driving and up to 37 mpg on the open road.

Introduced in 2000 by BMW, the Mini One had a similar shape to the old Mini, but was much bigger. It proved popular especially in America, where over 270,000 had been sold in the last half-decade alone.

Produced between 2002 and 2012, the Maybach Landaulet was named after, and also revived, a body style that was popular in the 1920s. Interestingly, the front and rear seats are divided by a window which can be raised and lowered. Projected sales figures for these Maybach models were never reached and the brand disappeared in 2013.

General Motors introduced the Saturn brand in 1990 as a way of introducing a smaller car to compete with the range of Japanese brands in the United States. The Sky was a convertible produced by Saturn 2006 to 2009. Sadly, GM discontinued the Saturn brand in 2010.

As part of the supermini class, the Corsa was first introduced into Europe in 1982. Marketed under the Vauxhall badge in the United Kingdom, this model has remained very popular and is currently in its fifth generation.

A big American car with rear-wheel drive and V8 power, the Roadmaster was one of the family cars of the 1990s, with the wagon a firm favorite and perfect for taking the family on vacation.

The Cayenne, a luxury crossover SUV, certainly raised eyebrows when it was released in 2002. It produced a number of firsts for the company in that it was the first four-door vehicle ever produced and the first off-road machine designed and built by Porsche.

The Q2 is another SUV offering from Audi, although much smaller than the Q3, Q5 and Q7. This 5-door wagon was introduced in 2016. It includes 1.0, 1.4 and 2.0 gasoline models, as well as two diesel options. The Q2 was designed by Marc Lichte.

A full-sized four-door sedan, the Concorde was produced from 1994 to 2004. Based on the Chrysler LH platform, two generations were created during its production run. Second generation Concordes included a range of engine options, with the largest being a 3.5-liter V6. The Concorde was eventually replaced by the Chrysler 300.

Has there ever been a car more iconic than the Volkswagen Beetle? It's rare that a car is produced for a period of over 65 years like the Beetle was. (The last rolled off the production line in 2003 in Mexico.) It's a true classic!

Introduced in 1998, the Smart ForTwo is a niche microcar that weighs a mere 1940 pounds. It is also only 106 inches long and 65 inches wide. Now, in its third generation, it is available as a three-door hatchback or two-door cabriolet.

Designed by Erwin Komenda, the 356 coupe was produced between 1948 and 1963. This was the first vehicle offered by the company and grew from the rear-engine, rear-wheel-drive design philosophy. Over 76,000 were built and it is estimated that half still survive.

This full-sized station wagon was produced by Chevrolet over two periods: 1958 to 1961 and again from 1969 to 1972. It was an entry-level station wagon offered by the company during both its production runs.

This compact car, first introduced by BMW in 2014, has a number of body styles including a coupe, active tourer and grand tourer. The two-door coupe is also available as a convertible and was designed by Christopher Weil.

The iconic Mercedes Benz company came about in 1925 with the merger of Benz & Cie and the Daimler-Motoren-Gesellschaft (DMG) companies. The company has produced many models over the years, but the B Class is one of their newer models, first introduced in 2005, and is marketed by the company as a sports tourer.

For Caddy lovers, the CT6 hits the mark. It has three engine options to choose from, decent gas mileage figures, a spacious interior and parking assist. It is let down by the fact that its trunk is fairly small.

A supermini 5-door hatchback, the A2 formed part of the Audi fleet between 1999 and 2005. It offered two gasoline and two diesel engines, the largest of which was a 1.6-liter gasoline engine. The A2 was constructed out of aluminum and based on the Audi Al2 concept car.

The Chevrolet GMT 400 featured a sleek body, designed with the help of a wind tunnel. The ride was also significantly improved thanks to an independent front suspension with torsion bars.

Essentially a modified Dodge Charger, the Daytona was first released in 1969. The first Daytona was intended as a NASCAR racer and won its first race.

Currently in its third generation, the Opel Zafira is the German automaker's entry into the MPV market. The Zafira was introduced in 1999. It is also produced in the United Kingdom under the Vauxhall badge.

One of the most expensive luxury cars in the world, the S63 AMG is powered by a Mercedes-Benz M156 V8 engine which produces 518 brake horsepower. Of course, the interior of this vehicle is as luxurious as you would expect from a Mercedes.

Competing in the compact car segment, the S Series was first released in 1991. There were three models, the SW, SL and SC. Two further generations followed during the decade.

Produced by Dodge between 1955 and 1956, this two-door hardtop was specifically marketed toward women. Only 2,500 were sold in a two-year period, though evidence suggests it was sufficiently marketed.

What happens when you combine a pickup with a 4.3-liter turbocharged V-6? A Syclone, that's what. With its all-wheel drive, the Syclone was faster than many sports cars of the time and easily raced to 60 mph from a standing start in under five seconds.

A two-seat rear-wheel drive sports car from Porsche, the Cayman was introduced in 2006. It is named after the Caiman, a reptile similar to an alligator. Porsche, however, chose a different spelling.

The H3 model of the Hummer was introduced in 2005 and is the smallest of the Hummer models. Three engine options were available for the H3, the most powerful being a 5.3 liter V8, which produced 300 brake horsepower. The Hummer brand was discontinued in 2010 by General Motors.

Created as a high-speed racing machine, especially for NASCAR, the Superbird was also for sale to the general public. The first models appeared in 1970 and were instantly recognizable thanks to the massive spoiler on the back.

The i3 is an electric vehicle from BMW. Obviously, people buy cars such as these to have as little impact on the environment as possible, but as you would expect from a BMW model, the i3 offers so much more. The performance and handling are both impressive and the interior is top class. This is the perfect car for the environmentally conscious.

This full-size luxury four-door sedan has been in production since 1992. During that time, Audi has launched four generations, with the latest, the A8 (D5), hitting the market in 2017 where it appeared as a product placement in the movie, "Spiderman: Homecoming." Top-of-the-range models are powered by a monstrous 6.0-liter TFSI W12 engine.

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Image: Wiki Commons by Franco Atirador

About This Quiz

No doubt about it: Both the United States and Germany know a thing or two about making cars.

It was the Germans (well, Karl Benz), who invented the car. His Benz Patent Autowagen is considered the world's first true car. Invented in 1886, it was the benchmark to which others would aspire. And in America, a few people were not far behind, soon producing vehicles of their own. 

Charles and Frank Duryea set up the Duryea Motor Wagon Company in 1893, Henry Ford built the Ford Quadricycle in 1896, and Ransom E. Olds formed Olds Motor Vehicle Company (later Oldsmobile) in 1897. It was the Olds Motor Vehicle Company that dominated the early car scene in America with their model, the Curved Dash. In fact, by 1901, the company was making use of production lines when making their cars. 

Today, both Germany and America continue to produce motor vehicles that are not only nice to look at, but that have incredible performance as well. The question is ... Will you be able to tell if a vehicle is American or German by just looking at it?


 

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