What is the single most technologically advanced/futuristic/innovative vehicle of its decade?

Discussion in 'Cars in General' started by GranTurNismo, Sep 16, 2019.


In your opinion, which decade of the auto industry had the most advancements/innovation?

  1. 1940s or earlier (please specify)

  2. 1950s

  3. 1960s

  4. 1970s

  5. 1980s

  6. 1990s

  7. 2000s

  8. 2010s

Results are only viewable after voting.
  1. GranTurNismo

    GranTurNismo Premium

    United States
    Just an idea that I thought of. Each decade that passes, a handful of new innovations shape the industry, and there are many vehicles which could be described as "ahead of their time" or "advanced" for the decade. Is there a definite answer to this question? Definitely not, but I am interested in seeing what cars the GTP community think are the most advanced for their decade. It can be anywhere from an economy car for the masses all the way to an exotic supercar.

    A few examples of innovations for each decade:

    1950s: monocoque construction rather than body-on-frame, more streamlined designs, OHV V8 engine, microcars, automatic transmissions, independent suspension, power-steering, and radial tires.
    1960s: Introduction of many new classes of cars like the supercar, lightweight sports car, pony car, and muscle car. Normalization of disc brakes, front-wheel drive, seat belts, and active aerodynamics.
    1970s: Introduction of the wedge-shaped car, hatchback, cars/parts specifically designed for maximum fuel efficiency, diesel engines, catalytic converter, and digital dashboard displays.
    1980s: Normalization of 4WD in non-off road oriented vehicles, traction control, ABS, airbags, introduction of the minivan, cars breaking the 200mph barrier, refined turbocharged engines, fuel injection, and four-wheel steering.
    1990s: Normalization of curvy, aerodynamic car designs, introduction of the hybrid car and family SUV, electronic stability control, active yaw control, and onboard diagnostics.
    2000s: Normalization of touch screen displays and navigation systems, popularization of the CUV, dual-clutch and CVT transmissions, radar cruise control, and rear backup cameras.
    2010s: Normalization of electric cars, semi-autonomous technology, driver assist features, WiFi connectivity, windscreen displays, 360-degree cameras.

    • Only production cars can be posted. Race cars, tuning cars, or concepts are not allowed.
    • This is not a "my favorite car" or "the coolest car" thread.
    • Thoughtfully explain your choice(s).
    I'll start off with the 1950s for example. IMO, the most technologically advanced/futuristic/innovative car of the '50s was the Citroen DS. It was mid-engined, front-wheel drive, had a hydraulic clutch, suspension, and transmission, and independent suspension in the front and rear (hydropneumatic suspension), "magic carpet" ride quality, four disc brakes, fiberglass roof, automatic transmission, adjustable ride height, and directional headlights. These technologies were either unheard of or not at all popular in the 1950s. Furthermore, it was exceptionally curvy and had the styling/road presence of no other car during the time period.


    Let's get the ball rolling!
    Volksauto likes this.
  2. Volksauto


    1880's: Benz Motorwagen 1886

    Although it was patented as the first automobile, there were cars before the Benz. However, unlike the ones that proceeded it, the Benz was termed as the first practical car. It was the first to feature an internal combustion engine with a crankshaft, carburetor, and a water cooling system.

    1890's: La Jamais Contente 1899[​IMG]

    An electric car created for the world's first land speed record and was built in Belgium. The car was a pioneer of streamlined design with it's torpedo-like bodywork which was made out of partinium which consisted of a mixture of aluminum, tungsten, and magnesium.
    The car featured two electric motors with direct drive creating 68HP. It also was one of the first cars to use pneumatic tires which were supplied by Michelin.
    On May 1, 1899, the La Jamais Contente driven by Camille Jenatzy set a land speed record of 65.8 MPH which made it the world's first car to go 100 KPH.

    1900's: Lohner-Porsche 1900[​IMG]
    This was the world's first hybrid electric car. Designed by Ferdinand Porsche himself, he used the idea of an ICE to power the two electric hubs driving the front wheels so the vehicle would never have to be charged. Hybrid cars wouldn't become mainstream for another 100 years.

    1910's: Cadillac Type 53 1916[​IMG][​IMG]
    The first car to feature the modern layout we all see in cars to this day. Clutch, brake, and gas pedal in that order. An electronic key ignition, gear shifter and a handbrake.

    1920's: Lancia Lambda 1922[​IMG][​IMG]

    This car was the first to ever feature a unitbody chassis as well as independent suspension in the front and rear.

    1930's: Ford Model 18 1932

    Ford was falling behind in terms of technology and styling of their cars. The Model A was more of a refined Model T. Chevrolet as well as other lower priced competitors had much better performing straight-6s compared to Ford's aging 4-cylinder. Ford finally developed the flathead-V8 for the Model 18 of 1932. It changed the world. It was the first affordable V8 engine car. Combining it's higher performance and the car's handsome styling, it soon became the pioneer of hot rodding and street racing and started America's love for the V8.

    1940's: Oldsmobile 1940[​IMG]
    The first automatic transmission using hydraulic fluid was developed in 1932 by two Brazilian engineers, José Braz Araripe and Fernando Lehly Lemos. Later, the prototype and the project were sold to General Motors, who introduced the technology in the 1940 Oldsmobile model as a "Hydra-Matic" transmission. This was the first mass produced car to have an automatic transmission. Something that is found in almost every car today.

    1950's: Citroen DS 1955[​IMG]

    No explanation needed... Probably the most innovative car ever.

    Yes, he's driving on 3 wheels thanks to the Pneumatic Suspension.

    1960's: Mini 1959-1960s[​IMG][​IMG]
    I'm counting the Mini as '60s because the DS already has that spot.
    The Mini created by Alec Issigonis and first produced by Austin and Morris introduced the idea that smaller is better. The Mini, had a transverse mounted engine with front wheel drive making interior space plentiful. Transverse engines are now used in many cars today. The ingenious design of the Mini made the car very comfortable, economical, practical, and fun with it's F1 like handling. It's tight handling characteristics made it a very successful rally machine.

    1970's: Volkswagen Golf GTI 1976
    The Golf was introduced in 1974 to replace the aging Beetle. The car was an instant success so VW decided to make a performance model dubbed the GTI and launched it in 1976. Unlike other hatchbacks, the GTI was a true sports car with excellent handling and acceleration but it was still a practical commuter car.

    1980's: Ferrari F40 1987[​IMG]
    The last car approved by Enzo Ferrari, the F40 is well known for being the worlds first production car to reach 200 MPH thanks to it's 2.9L Twin Turbocharged V8.

    1990's: Toyota Prius 1997[​IMG]
    The 1990's gave birth to many automotive innovations. But the one car that would go on to change the world the most would have to be the Toyota Prius. Beginning production in 1997, the Prius is the world's first mass produced hybrid car. It offered futuristic tech, top economy, and a quiet ride. The Prius' influence would spread and is responsible for the electric car society we live in today.

    2000's: Mazda RX8 2002[​IMG]

    Mazda's last rotary engined car. Truely unique from other offerings of the decade.

    2010's: Bugatti Chiron Super Sport 300+ Prototype 2019[​IMG][​IMG]

    This is the world's first factory built street legal car to reach 300 MPH with the help of it's 8.0L W16 engine making over 1,500 horsepower.
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2019
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  3. GranTurNismo

    GranTurNismo Premium

    United States
    Nice post :tup:

    I guess for the sake of clarity, I will change the thread's title, as I don't want members to think they need to post the "best" car for each decade of automotive history. Just one or more decade per post will suffice.
  4. Volksauto


    Well I wanted to spend the time to have them all in one post. :lol:
    But this doesn't mean I won't post honorable mentions or equally innovative cars.
    GranTurNismo likes this.
  5. AudiMan2011

    AudiMan2011 Contributing Writer

    One of the most advanced cars for the 2010s has to be the Porsche 918 Spyder. 2015-porsche-918-spyder-front.jpg

    It kicked off the era of new-age hybrid hypercars, wiring a race-bred V8 to a complex set of electric motors. Unlike some hyper-hybrids working with a more simple race-derived energy-recovery system, the 918 used a more sophisticated plug-in hybrid setup, allowing it to go further on electric power than its rivals.

    The front electric motor helps give advanced torque vectoring, whilst the rear motor working in parallel with the engine helps to improve throttle response.

    Couple the electric and petrol power together with insane computing power and Porsche effectively set a new template for ensuring the very survival of the hypercar.
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2019
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  6. Danoff

    Danoff Premium

    United States

    Huge electric range, ludicrous power, autopilot, OTA software updates. It changed the game, completely.
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  7. CLowndes888


    No praise for the Nissan GT-R R32?
    This was one of the first cars I thought of when I saw this thread. Nissan was already known for producing good sports cars but the R32 thrust them straight into the spotlight, putting the Euro performance icons such as the BMW M3, Mercedes 190 E and the Ford Sierra Cosworth to shame. Twin Scroll turbos, a trick 4WD Drive system and Rear-Wheel steering was unheard of back in the early 90's. And in Australia, it killed off the Group A Touring era because the Holdens, Fords and BMW's simply couldn't keep up with them. The GT-R's being run by Gibson Motorsport were like spaceships compared to the archaic Holden V8's which still had pushrods. The GT-R's legendary RB26 had dual overhead cams and 4 valves per cylinder from the 2.6 litre inline 6 which was highly advanced for it's time. This technological powerhouse set the tone for the future of Nissan's performance models and made them a key player in the segment, which is true to this day. The R32 raised the bar for sports cars all over the world and it's huge influence cannot be understated.
    Ddkklop and Volksauto like this.
  8. Naveek Darkroom

    Naveek Darkroom

    Surprised nobody's mentioned the Porsche 959, being one of the first sports cars with all wheel drive, and a pretty advanced AWD system too. Also sequential turbos.
    Volksauto likes this.
  9. Gotbeefboy564


    United States
    Damn seems like other people like that wrap too there’s one like that in Detroit 77B6C625-7BFA-4960-9790-133A85B08E17.jpeg This has bronze rims though.
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  10. GTV0819



    The Matra Djet (first known as the René Bonne Djet) from 1962 was the world's first production car with the MR layout. Also worth mentioning for its class during its time was that it already had disc brakes in its four wheels, something which weren't common in cars back then and that it had a fully independent suspension as well.
    Volksauto likes this.
  11. Ddkklop


    For 2000s, at least for performance cars, I think this is one of the most technically advanced, If not the most advanced car - R35 GTR. Being able to keep up, sometimes even beat cars that were lighter with similar or even more power, it truly was a car ahead of it's time. I also think it looks very modern, considering it's basically a design from 2005 ( GTR Proto concept ).

    I personally could never get a taste for this car, mainly because I found it boring compared to other cars, but also because of it's sometimes annoying fanbase. But lately, after almost 11 years, I'm finally starting to like it and realizing how great it really is.
  12. Gogga


    South Africa
    I voted for the 80's because of the Audi Quattro.
    The accomplishments of Audi and Michele Mouton taming those Group B Monsters is simply mind boggling.

  13. Populuxe Cowboy

    Populuxe Cowboy Premium

    United States
    A very good list and I like almost all your choices, but I disagree with the RX-8. I don't have a different choice to offer (yet, I need to think about this) but the RX-8 represents the end of the line. Its technology is looking backwards, not forwards. Don't get me wrong, it's a fantastic car. It just isn't the car to represent the bleeding edge of technology in the 2000s.
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  14. GranTurNismo

    GranTurNismo Premium

    United States
    I've got to agree, I was also a little perplexed to see the RX-8 mentioned. Compared to the RX-7, it was definitely more evolutionary than revolutionary, and AFAIK, it didn't have new technology or innovations that most cars of it's decade didn't have.
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