I ask this, because I was astonished to find that the first generation of the Mercedes-Benz Sprinter is still on sale brand new in Russia, as the Sprinter Classic. It’s built in Russia, and that’s the only place they’re sold, looking pretty much the exact same a 2001 model. Further investigations reveal that Mercedes started making them in 2013, 7 years after they were originally killed off! I couldn’t find much on why they’re building them again, and why only in Russia, but it got me wondering.
What’s the worst joke I could come up with involving a rusty Mercedes Sprinter and Putin? What other cars were killed off, than brought back?
(What do you mean the Sprinter’s not a car?)
Now I’m not talking (typing?) about a company killing a model, than reviving it with a new generation several years later, à la Dodge Challenger. I’m talking when they kill a model off, than bring the same generation car back on sale. Nor am I referring to that amazing new trend that Jaguar and Aston Martin are doing of building new old supercars. So I scoured the Internet looking for examples. And I found one!
Putin and a Sprinter walk into a Bar. He orders a-wait this joke is garbage.
That would be the Proton Putra, a Malaysian car that was the coupé version of the Proton Wira, a heavily modified fourth generation Mitsubishi Lancer, made from 1996 to 2001. However in 2004, it was put on sale once again in limited numbers due to remaining stock from the factory. Why didn’t they just sell the remaining stock when discontinued like every other car company is a mystery.
However there is also one more case, but it’s a grey area, but too interesting to leave out. In 2014, Toyota was celebrating 30 years of the Land Cruiser J70. But instead of doing what every other manufacture does and slap some anniversary badges on their new model, call it a limited edition and charge 5k extra, Toyota brought back the J70 for sale for a year only in Japan. How bonkers is that!
Now it’s worth mentioning that the J70 has been in continuous production since 1984 as the Land Cruiser 70 (with no J). Suited for harsh environments such as deserts, you can still buy them brand new in countries like Australia. It just hasn’t been sold in Japan since 2004. So it was less of a case of bringing back an old model, but importing a new model to Japan, right? Except the Japanese J70s weren’t imported like the regular ones, but built in a limited production line in Japan! Turns out the whole 30 year anniversary thing worked out pretty well for them, as vehicles without Anti Skid Control were banned in Japan the following year.
So Oppo, are they’re any other examples out there? It’s kinda hard to google this sort of stuff. Edit: Like I said, i’m talking about reviving the same model car, not a reviving an old nameplate for a new model (eg. Supra)