10 vehicles sold by US companies that aren't sold in the US
While the US may be a land of seemingly infinite opportunities, our consumers are very set in their ways and know what they want: a raised, plastic covered, "SUV" that has all the glitz and glamour of a luxury car, all of the power of a sports sedan, and the reliability of a 90s Toyota Hilux.
Because of this, US manufacturers have to cater to these buyers, and make their more interesting and quirky vehicles abroad. This is a massive shame, because there are several vehicles that I think would do rather well here in the US, but aren't sold here. Let's dive in.
1. Chevrolet Orlando
I'll never forget the day I saw a Chevy Orlando for the first time in the metal. It was in the parking lot of Dorney Park in Pennsylvania, and it was wearing Quebec plates.
I was over the moon about this dark gray MPV, because it was such a rare vehicle to see outside of its native country. The Orlando is essentially an HHR that grew up and traded in its retro wagon looks for a more professional look.
Power is far from impressive, with the 1.3-liter turbo three-cylinder producing 160 horsepower and 156 horsepower and 170 lb-ft of torque, but its capable of seating seven and it doesn't look like every other SUV on the road. I think it wears Chevy's design language really well, and I think it could be a great family car.
2. Ford Falcon
Ford is the lone company of The Big Three that didn't sell a large rear-wheel-drive sedan with V8 power in the US. Yes, the Crown Vic and Grand Marquis exist, but no one was cross-shopping them with the Dodge Charger or Pontiac G8. This led to Ford sedans became really boring in the mid-2000s, and by the time the Taurus SHO came back in 2010, the Taurus was nothing more than the new Police Interceptor.
The Falcon however has seen some incredible success in Australia where it became a staple of Australian car culture alongside its fellow Aussie-built rival, the Holden Commodore. It would've been interesting to see these two duke it out on American soil, but alas, we won't get that chance until we can legally import the Falcon here.
3. Dodge Neon
I know what you're thinking, that we did get the Dodge Neon. But Dodge recently unveiled a new Neon that is destined for Mexico instead of the US, and that is a great mistake. See, with no American automakers competing in the small car market, Dodge would be able to grab the sales of the now discontinued Ford Focus and Chevrolet Cruze, which amounts to roughly 200,000 sales per year.
I'm not saying that all of those customers would go and buy a Neon, but I imagine that a decent portion of them would. The Neon looked good, and would be a no-nonsense commuter car, which would be a great way to boost FCA sales in the US.
4. Buick Park Avenue
After the Buick Park Avenue was discontinued in 2005, GM's mid-grade luxury brand was left without a proper flagship. While Pontiac was selling the Australian built GTO, Buick was left with the LaCrosse, and a handful of aging SUVs.
In 2008, Pontiac got the G8, a rebadged version of the Holden Commodore. GM sold a Buick variant of the big sedan as the Park Avenue in China, but the US never received it. I think this was a big mistake in GMs part, because the Park Avenue would've been a great way to turn Buick into a sportier, more luxurious brand, especially given the cult following of the Buick LaCrosse Super, a Park Avenue Super/Ultra would've been an incredible addition to the lineup.
5. RAM 1000
While we wait for RAM to unveil the new Dakota, the brand has nothing to compete in the smaller truck market, but if you ask me, RAM should get out in front of all of the manufacturers and bring the 1000 over.
The RAM 1000 is essentially a Fiat Toro with a RAM badge, but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. Jeep has seen success with the Jeep Renegade which shares a lot of its components with the 500X, and Dodge saw initial success with the Journey, which was essentially a Fiat Freemont.
If RAM made the front fascia look more conservative, then they'd have a real winner on their hands for small businesses that don't need a mid-size truck.
6. Jeep Grand Commander
While we are expected to get a version of the Grand Commander relatively soon, potentially badged as a Dodge, the Grand Commander will remain forbidden fruit until we see it in the metal on the auto show floor.
The Grand Commander will also likely incorporate FCA's eTorque system to improve fuel economy, while other variants will likely include an SRT version. I'm particularly excited about this because the Commander was a brilliant vehicle that was just too early to the party, nowadays these seven-passenger SUVs are bought in droves, and Jeep has been missing out on that market ever since the Commander was discontinued back in 2010.
7. Cadillac BLS
GM's Epsilon platform did really well in the US. The Chevy Malibu and Pontiac G6 sold very well over the run of both vehicles, each with high-performance versions in the form of the Malibu SS and Pontiac G6 GXP. That said, I think Cadillac could have benefited from the BLS in their lineup, because it would've given them a solid entry level vehicle to add to their existing lineup.
Americans would've been lining up to get their hands on this baby Caddy, and it would've given Cadillac a proper compact sedan to go up against the likes of the BMW 3-Series and Mercedes-Benz C-Class.
8. Ford Mondeo Estate
When Ford was discussing bringing the next generation Mondeo over here as a Subaru Outback competitor, I was genuinely excited. I loved the style of the current Mondeo, and the thought of having a proper Ford wagon in the US was more than enticing to me, especially considering how highly I hold the Flex EcoBoost in my mind.
The lack of sedan sales from Ford has effectively ended Mondeo production, which is a massive shame, because I think it would do rather well over here, especially in Vignale trim, which would give the Mondeo interior amenities on par with Lincoln.
9. Ford Ranger Raptor
There was a considerable amount of confusion when Ford announced that there was only going to be one engine option in the new Ford Ranger for the US, and while I’m sure no one is complaining about the 310 horsepower in the new Ranger, people are complaining we haven’t gotten the Ranger Raptor yet.
My thoughts on this change by the day. On the one hand, we have the real Raptor, and the Ranger Raptor makes sense in markets where they don’t sell the F-150 like England. That being said, I would love to see Ford dominate the Toyota Tacoma TRD Pro and Chevrolet Colorado ZR2 with some sort of US-Spec Ranger Raptor, like a twin-turbo version of the 2.3-liter engine that puts out like 350 horsepower and has all the goodies from the F-150 Raptor, but what would that cost, and would it steal sales from the real Raptor?
10. Chrysler 300 SRT
The Chrysler 300 SRT would be one of my favorite vehicles, if Chrysler actually sold it here. In terms of the first generation Charger and 300, I have seen more 300 SRT8s than Charger SRT8s.
Maybe it’s just this pocket of New Jersey where people think they have more money than God, but I feel like a decent chunk of current Charger owners would buy a 300 SRT if given the chance.
After 2014, Chrysler stopped selling the 300 SRT in the US due to declining sales, and because Dodge was positioning itself as the sole performance brand of the FCA lineup. The 300 SRT is the sleeper to end all sleepers. Nearly 500 horsepower in a vehicle with all of the exterior qualities of an airport limo, if Chrysler brought the 300 SRT back to the States, and gave some new styling and that massive 12-inch touchscreen, people would be lining up, myself included.
There's plenty of other incredible vehicles that aren't on this list. but they shouldn't be on this list, instead they should be cruising our streets and turning heads.
I think that if these vehicles had been sold in the US, we wouldn't have seen the demise of American sedans, and other slow-selling models, because these companies would have hit after hit on their hands.
What do you think of this list? Did I miss your favorite vehicle? Comment Below!