10 Forgotten TV Cars
Remember Jon Voight’s LeBaron?
The Monkeemobile still holds cachet among boomers but other generations won’t have the same connection to The Monkees. Dean Jeffries, a famed car designer, fabricator and pinstriper, created the Monkeemobile from a 1966 Pontiac GTO 389 four-barrel. There were two cars built at the time and each had a 6-71 supercharged engine. The second car never appeared on television. Instead it appeared at trade shows and events. After the show ended the car that appeared on television ended up in Australia and Puerto Rico. It served as a hotel courtesy car. Later it sold at a government auction to the Norris family, which lives in New Jersey.
Are you a classic car expert? Could you guess all the old makes and models?
Step by Step Ford Explorer
The early ’90s television show Step by Step became a staple of ABC’s TGIF lineup and helped revive the careers of Patrick Duffy and Suzanne Somers. The show was similar to The Brady Bunch in that it brought together blended families. The opening credits featured the combined family spilling out of a Ford Explorer to run around an amusement park. But it also gave us Cody, one of the most annoying characters on television.
If you’ve got an annoying car issue out, we’ve got the solution to 100 annoying car problems.
Speaking of annoying television characters, Cody and Steve Urkel remain in a dead heat for the title of most annoying. Urkel gave us years of nasally incantations of “Did I do that?” He also introduced the BMW Isetta to a wider audience when he introduced it as his vehicle. It became known as the Urkelmobile.
The Isetta debuted in 1953 and reportedly got around 50 miles per gallon but it took around 30 seconds to get up to 30 miles an hour. The Isetta isn’t real iconic and neither is Urkel but these cars that appeared in films are iconic.
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Miami Vice 1986 Ferrari Testarossa
It might be hard to believe but if some uttered Crockett and Tubbs, not everyone would get the reference but maybe the original Miami Vice and the reboot captured enough imaginations. The cars of Miami Vice added to the popularity, especially the 1986 Ferrari Testarossa.
Ferrari loaned the vehicle to the television show but had to be painted white so it appeared better in night shots.
The A-Team Van
Perhaps people recall the van from the film, The A-Team, but it first appeared in the television series that aired on NBC for four years. The van the team of mercenaries rode around in became a character in itself. A 1983 GMC Vandura served as the original vehicle but the red stripe, rooftop spoiler, along with the black and red turbine mag wheels made it stand out. The van held a number of surprises throughout the years. Your car likely has a few functions you don’t know about. Check out the 13 weird car features you didn’t know you had.
Boy, the ’80s were a supercharged decade because here’s another Ferrari that appeared in a TV show where Tom Selleck played a private investigator, which seems like a hop and a skip away from Miami Vice. Instead of an east coast seaside setting, Magnum PI used Hawaii. The two shows also had a similar car, except Selleck drove around in a Ferrari 308 GTSi. We should probably note that Magnum PI appeared on the air first. Take a break and check out some of the whackiest cars ever built.
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That ’70S Show — 1969 Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser
The 1969 Oldsmobile Vista Cruiser became the place for many conversations on That ’70s Show after Red handed Eric the keys to green machine. The car was part of the opening credits and plenty of other great scenes. You probably wouldn’t want to drive the Vista Cruiser around but you might want to drive one of these famous cars that appeared in movies.
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1965 Sunbeam Tiger Alpine 260 — Get Smart
Mel Brooks have given us many great comedy vehicles and he gave us the 1965 Sunbeam Tiger Alpine 260 that appeared on his television series Get Smart. Max Smart drove around in the car that had crazy features like a machine gun, smoke screen, radar tracking and an ejection seat. These 20 really cool car tech add-ons will make you feel a little like Max Smart.
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1989 Chrysler LeBaron — Seinfeld
Maybe we should call this one Le George. Even when George Costanza could feel proud about something it never really quite worked out. George thought he’d purchased a 1989 Chrysler LeBaron once owned by the actor Jon Voight and found a pencil left behind by Voight in the glovebox. No problem, except Jon was spelled John and John Voight was a periodontist.
Some cars, like the LeBaron, haven’t aged well and neither have these car ads.
Mazda Miata — Saved By the Bell
Who would’ve thought Mr. Belding would have a cool convertible but he did. Lisa and Eric, Jessie’s stepbrother, crashed the car. The gang had to scramble to fix it before Mr. Belding found out. The boys couldn’t take the car to the shop to get fixed but Eric figured out how to fix it, just like one of these 100 car fixes you don’t have to go to the shop for.