1990s Cars – Supercars, Sports Cars & the Icons of the Golden Era of Performance Cars
After the extraordinary supercars of the eighties, many supercar manufacturers entering the nineties asked “how on earth do we follow that?” At the same time, manufacturers of everyday cars said “how do we go after the enthusiast market?”. Both groups said “let’s go racing”. The result was the golden era of the performance and sports car markets globally.
It all started with design, with car design improving a lot in the 1990s. Flashy futurism actually gave way to practicality. The boxy designs, poor fit and finish and horribly ergonomic interiors disappeared. From a technology perspective the 1990s led to a lot of advancements that made cars more efficient, faster and more fun to drive. It was also an era before advanced electronic chassis controls and electric steering meaning many of the great 90s sports cars had wonderful feel on the road and a great mechanical connection between your hands and wheels.
Absolute performance also took a huge leap forward in the 1990s. At the top end you had McLaren F1, easily the greatest car of the 90s and probably the best supercar ever made. Perhaps the second most important car of the decade was the Honda NSX, a car that showed that supercars could be tremendous performers and not break down. It single handedly drove Ferrari, Porsche and Lamborghini to improve quality and make cars that weren’t shit. It is impossible to mention the iconic 90s cars and not mention homologation specials. Racing homologation rules inspired automakers to produce some of the wildest street cars of the 90s (and maybe ever). These included the Porsche GT1, Mercedes-Benz CLK GTR and the insane Dauer 962 LM.
The 1990s are also the decade that Japanese car manufacturers decided to build sports cars for everyday drivers and bring an entirely new generation into the world of performance cars. We talked about the NSX, but the 1990s also gave the GT-R (R32, R33 and R34), the Twin Turbo Supra and Nissan 300ZX. The Japanese also developed the WRX and EVO, cars that battled for supremacy in rally racing and on the street amongst enthusiasts. Speaking of rivalries, the 1990s also gave us Holden and Ford wars in the Australian muscle car market, each trying to outdo each other every year for the benefit of car buyers in the local market.
This page is designed to help you get to all our content about 1990s cars. We have our in depth, no nonsense 1990s car lists, curated by experts, these are our favorite 90s cars. Given we host hundreds of thousands of visitors a month, our popular 1990s cars are the posts that get the most traffic and give you a sense of what is trending in the world of 90s cars.
Finally, if you really want to dig under the hood, you can find every iconic car made in the 1990s by simply scrolling to the bottom of the page where we have our full list of 90s cars. Remember the site is called supercars.net so don’t expect to see a Toyota Camry in our list.