Will You Miss the Cars and SUVs That Died in 2021?

Discontinued cars and SUVs of 2021 article highlights:

  • A variety of cars, SUVs, and crossovers are being discontinued after 2021
  • Low sales figures undoubtedly contributed to many of these cars’ and SUVs’ deaths
  • Other factors contributed to some cancellations, though

Don’t worry, Mazda isn’t discontinuing the MX-5 Miata. But not all cars—or SUVs—were so lucky this year. Whether due to poor sales or shifting strategies, automakers discontinued several of their cars and SUVs this year. But while killing off cars isn’t a new phenomenon, that doesn’t make it easier for those cars’ fans. Though even if you didn’t like the vehicles that died this year, you’ll at least know why dealers won’t be stocking them in 2022.

Whether you want them to rest in peace or pieces, these cars are discontinued after 2021

A red 2020 Lotus Evora GT amongst the California hills
The Lotus Evora GT: one of several cars discontinued in 2021 | Lotus

If you’ve been thinking of getting your hands on one of the cars listed below, do it now, because they’re officially discontinued after 2021:

  • BMW 2 Series Convertible, i3, M2
  • Fiat 500L
  • Honda Clarity
  • Hyundai Ioniq Electric, Veloster
  • Kia Cadenza, K900, Sedona
  • Lotus Evora GT
  • Mazda6
  • Mercedes-AMG A35, CLS35, GT (Coupe, Roadster, R)
  • Polestar 1
  • Rolls-Royce Dawn, Wraith
  • Volkswagen Golf, Passat
  • Volvo V60 and V90 wagons

It’s worth noting that things aren’t all doom and gloom for all these discontinued cars’ fans. For example, the Polestar 1 was a limited-production vehicle from the start. Its death was therefore always a given. In the Evora’s case, Lotus is about to revamp its entire lineup, so it had to go. It’s a similar situation with the Dawn and Wraith, which ride on a 7 Series-based platform that’s about to leave production.

Speaking of replacements, some of the cars listed above already have them, Car and Driver reports. Instead of the Sedona, for example, Kia now has the Carnival minivan. And Hyundai is in the middle of launching a full Ioniq 5 EV lineup. Rolls-Royce doesn’t have Wraith or Dawn replacements yet, but will likely introduce them soon. Same thing with BMW and the M2, though while the 2 Series just got redesigned, the Convertible isn’t returning.

Fans of the other discontinued cars listed above, though, aren’t so lucky.

Are sales figures to blame for these discontinued cars?

The front 3/4 view of a gray 2022 Mercedes-AMG SL 55 Roadster next to a tree-surrounded white building
2022 Mercedes-AMG SL 55 Roadster front 3/4 | Mercedes-Benz

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So, why are these cars getting axed? In most cases, slow sales, especially for the sedans and wagons, The Drive notes. Admittedly, Volvo is keeping the lifted V90 and V60 Cross Country around, as well as the hybrid V60. But the growth in SUV and crossover sales has pushed both them and the Passat out.

That, along with plant closure, likely contributed to the Clarity’s death, too. And while the BMW i3 didn’t sell horribly, the automaker couldn’t recoup its development costs. Meanwhile, Fiat’s barely limping along in the US—and it’s now down to one model. But it has to cut losses somewhere.

Some of 2021’s other discontinued cars didn’t die purely because of sales figures, though. At least a few got booted because of, for lack of a better term, overlap.

In AMG’s case, it’s going increasingly electric and culling unnecessary models. With its upcoming hybrid SL, it doesn’t need the GT coupe anymore, Car and Driver says. Thus, the Black Series is the latter’s swan song. And while the Mazda6 is stylish and fun to drive, it didn’t fully gel with Mazda’s upmarket move, The Drive reports. Its rumored RWD, inline-six replacement, though, might bring the nameplate back.

You can still get the performance versions of some of these dead cars

A gray 2021 Hyundai Veloster 2.0 drives through a city
The Hyundai Veloster is discontinued after 2021 | Hyundai

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Overlap, or rather lack of it, also explains why some of 2021’s discontinued cars are only ‘mostly’ dead. Although the Golf and Veloster are gone after 2021, their performance variants are sticking around.

While the base Golf is an excellent car, it suffered from not-an-SUV status and less performance than the GTI and Golf R. That lead to worse sales than the hot hatch versions, hence why VW is axing it, The Drive explains. Unfortunately, while the Golf isn’t totally dead in the US, this means its cheapest variant is.

These factors also played into Hyundai’s decision to discontinue the base Veloster. The Veloster N is a solid hot hatch, but in comparison, the base car feels a bit too milquetoast, The Drive muses. Hence, poor sales in comparison to its crossover siblings, and thus, the boot.

2021 saw some SUVs and crossovers get discontinued, too

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SUVs and crossovers might be driving passenger car sales down, but they’re not immune to being discontinued. And 2021 saw the end of several nameplates for the same kind of reasons as the previously-discussed cars.

Overlap, for example, spelled the end for the Macan Turbo, CX-3, and Grand Cherokees. You get the same equipment in the new Macan GTS, Car and Driver notes, but with even more power. In the CX-3’s case, once Mazda introduced the more spacious, better-equipped, and more powerful CX-30, the smaller crossover became redundant. Same thing with the Grand Cherokee SRT and Trackhawk, albeit combined with the fact that both are based on the outgoing model’s Durango-based platform.

As for the Durango, the SRT Hellcat model was a one-year wonder from the start. Emissions regulations meant Dodge couldn’t make it after the 2021 model year.

In addition, poor sales directly impacted at least two of 2021’s discontinued SUVs. The Ford EcoSport, for example, was neither economic nor sporty, The Drive notes. Few will likely miss its presence.

It’s a different story with the Toyota Land Cruiser, though. Luckily, although the iconic SUV nameplate is discontinued in the US, we’re still getting a version of the new 300-Series Land Cruiser. It’s just that Toyota sells more of and makes more money off the Lexus-badged version, The Drive says.

RIP, then, discontinued cars and SUVs of 2021. At least some of you will be missed.

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