Each model year offers the opportunity for automakers to update their lineups. These changes are usually thought of and planned years ahead of the actual change taking place but for those of us who are looking to buy a particular vehicle finding out the one you were looking for is no longer being made can be a bit of a shock. The fact is most automakers change their lineup because of sluggish sales or an updated model that is meant to replace the outgoing one. This ensures we have fresh new vehicles to buy and be excited about each and every year, but there is a slight feeling of loss when a model is gone. Here are six that are scheduled for deletion after the 2015 model year.
Dodge Grand Caravan – A the longest running minivan nameplate and from the company that invented the passenger minivan you would think this model would be around forever, but it’s time to see it sent off to pasture. As of now FCA reports the only sell about one-third of the minivans as they did in 2000 which just does not pay to keep this vehicle going, all efforts from FCA for their minivan will now go into the Chrysler Town & Country giving you the same minivan with more features.
Honda Fit EV – You would think in the market we live in now an EV would make it, especially if its fully marketed in California, but it seems the Fit EV already needs to go by the wayside. The Fit EV was so sluggish in sales the total built was only 1,100 and a majority of those were to satisfy the California zero-emission mandate for vehicles, showing that an EV is not necessarily the right answer for this particular vehicle.
Toyota Venza – As much as a Toyota Venza wanted to be sold it was a difficult venture for most dealers. The Venza offered a built that was based upon the Camry platform but was made to be a crossover. Unfortunately the Venza was never really a crossover, never really a minivan an certainly not a sedan at all, making one of those in between vehicles that didn’t fit. In comparison the Venza sold at a rate of 2,100 per month, but that doesn’t even touch the 20,000 RAV4s or the 11,000 Highlanders that are sold on a typical month making the Venza one that is costing more than its worth for Toyota.
Ram Cargo Van – This one really is no surprise once you know the Grand Caravan is being deleted. The Ram Cargo Van is basically the same thing but made for fleet needs. With no seats in the back the Ram Cargo Van is ok for hauling some items needed for your business, but most of us are not going to miss this van at all. This will be replaced by a more modern fleet van to give businesses a better vehicle with more features that are needed to get the job done.
Toyota Prius Plug-In – The plug-in version of the Prius will be gone as expected. The expectation is there will be a new plug-in Prius offered in 2017 or 2018 showing that some vehicles do come back around but for at least the 2016 model year it won’t be available. The plug-in is a big part of the Prius lineup, but with many EV models showing less than lackluster sales Toyota may hold off on offering this vehicle again for several years because of the market. Whether it comes back around or not will certainly be a response to how the entire market is performing.
Mazda 5 – There is no reason for this minivan to continue at all. This vehicle is too small to compete well in the minivan market where it belongs and offers the minivan looks that make many buyers turn and run in the other direction. As a comparison, the Mazda 5 is only sold at a rate of 1,200 per month compared to the 120,000 Toyota and Honda vans that are sold each month. This van was a good idea in concept, but never had the size needed for a growing family for which minivans are meant.
While these six will not continue to be offered from dealerships you certainly will find a wide array of excellent vehicles for sale in the coming months and years. Feel sad for a minute if you want to over the loss of these vehicles, but you certainly will be able to find the vehicle you need being sold at a dealer near you.