Cheap cars

13 expensive cars with cheap car parts

Jaguar XJ220 – tail lights and mirrors

In 1990, Jaguar held the record for the fastest production car, even for a short period. They did it with the XJ220. The company promised all-wheel drive and a V-12, but as we all know, it ultimately only drove half the wheels and only half the cylinders.. The car still looked beautiful and ran great. However, she had a little secret, which immediately became apparent once you took a close look at the rear of the car. The partially obscured black trimmed taillights came straight out of the Rover 200, which was a low-cost passenger vehicle. Not only that, the mirrors were from the Citroën CX.

Read our full review on the Jaguar XJ220

Noble M400 – rear lights

British automaker Noble is best known for its high-performance analog cars – the M600 and the smaller M400, both rear-wheel drive and mid-engined. The M400 used a 3.0-liter Ford Duratec V-6, which, with the help of two turbos, produced 425 horsepower and 390 pound-feet (529 Nm). So far we have established that there is a major connection to Ford in the form of the engine. But there is another one. The M400’s taillights are from a mid-90s Ford Mondeo, which was a rather run-of-the-mill midsize sedan – essentially, the European equivalent of the USDM Ford Contour.

Lotus Europa – bumper

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The Lotus brand didn’t start out as an expensive automaker, but performance has nonetheless always been part of its portfolio. The lightweight sports car maker introduced the first Lotus Europa in 1966. Initially using a Renault engine, by 1971 the small coupe had moved on to a co-developed Lotus-Ford engine. The British automaker used to borrow parts from more mass-produced vehicles, and the Europa was no exception. The thin chrome bumpers, while perfectly suited to the overall design, were from a Ford Anglia, which was a small family car.

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As well as being one of the most obscure ’90s supercars ever made, the Mega Track is also the only production supercar with off-road capability. Although he had a Mercedes M120 V-12, which was one of the go-to engines for boutique supercars in the 1990s and 2000s, it was built on a bespoke chassis and was unique in itself. One of its exterior features, however, was not unique. The taillights of the original French vehicle came directly from the Audi 80 – a German mid-size family sedan. Although from a design standpoint the Audi 80 was quite revolutionary for the time, its price was eclipsed by that of the low-production French Mega Track.

Read our full review on the Aixam Mega Track

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We have to thank Chrysler for the Lamborghini Diablo, as the successor to the Countach was ordered by the American brand at the time owning the Italian car manufacturer. However, by the late 1990s, Audi had taken over and they wanted to focus on developing the Diablo replacement. For this reason, they decided to cut some corners when refreshing the Diablo. If the headlights look familiar to you, it’s because they come straight out of a Nissan 300ZX, which although being a great car on its own, was much cheaper than the Raging Bull. Indeed, the carbon eyelids above the headlights are there to hide the Nissan emblems.

Aston Martin DB-7 – tail lights, door handles and mirrors

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When it comes to auto links, Aston Martin has always been associated with Ford and Jaguar. The DB7 is a great example of this, as it was built on a budget. For this reason, many parts were borrowed from other manufacturers. In addition to having Ford mirror switches and a Jaguar key fob, a lot of exterior parts were also borrowed from other cheaper cars. Like the XJ220, the DB7 borrowed the side mirrors from the Citroën CX. Not only that, the door handles were from a Mazda 323 and the taillights – straight from the sleeker Mazda 323 F.

Read our full test on the Aston Martin DB-7

Lister Storm – rear lights

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The Storm is best known from the GT Endurance series where it competed. There were also around 5 street versions built for homologation purposes. Another little-known fact about this car is that at one point it was the fastest four-seater, with a top speed of 208 mph (335 km / h). The engine was a Jaguar 7.0-liter V-12 with 546 horsepower and 580 pound-feet (786 Nm). Just like the XJ220, everything was unique to the car. An exception were the taillights, however. Like the Mega Track, they came straight out of an Audi 80. While they undoubtedly match the design of the ’90s, the two cars couldn’t be further from each other in terms of price and performance.

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Whether it’s engines, transmissions, interior or exterior parts, Lotus has always borrowed something from here and there. A tradition that they have kept even in the 1990s. During all the generations of the Esprit, Lotus has used gearboxes from the French manufacturers Renault and Citroën. Specifically, Citroën’s C35 five-speed manual and Renault’s UN-1 manual with the same number of gears. The X180 and the 4 series Esprit also used Citroën side mirrors. Just like the XJ220, DB7 and other high performance cars, they are from the CX model.

Read our full review on the Lotus Esprit

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Nowadays, the name Invicta is mainly associated with high quality wristwatches. Some may recall that they also have a sketchy car-making history, although the name actually dates back to the 1920s. The sleek Aston Martin-looking GT was the company’s last attempt at building a vehicle. high performance. It was powered by a 4.6 or 5.0-liter Ford V-8. Typically for a small, low-production UK carmaker, some exterior elements were also borrowed. It might not be so obvious, but the taillights are straight from a VW Passat B5.5.

Read our full Invicta S1 review

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TVR is a brand known for its cars with an original design and basic approach to the driving experience – no safety systems and no airbags. Just the car and a driver with a pair of steel at the wheel. Either way, one of the brand’s most successful models was Griffith. Like most TVRs, it was a basic, lightweight two-seater. It also had powerful V-8 engines with a power output of up to 340 horsepower, which went to the rear wheels. The tail lights came from an unexpected place. They were Vauxhall Cavalier also known as Opel Vectra and were knocked down.

Read our full TVR Griffith review

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The X Power was essentially MG’s attempt at the Muscle Car formula. It was a mix of parts, many of which came from the Ford Mustang SN95. This includes the modular 4.6-liter V8, which produces 320 horsepower. A rare 5.0-liter SVR version was also introduced, of which only 22 were made, each of them a little different from the others. What remained the same, however, were the headlights. These came straight from a second generation Fiat Punto of all cars.

Read our full MG X Power SV review

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The V-8 was produced from 1969 to 1989. After 20 years of production, the first generation Virage replaced it. It was produced until the year 2000. The two cars were similar, in that they were both front-engined, four-seater, gran-tourers with powerful engines. They had another similarity. They both shared taillights with cars that were much cheaper than them. In the case of the V-8, it borrowed the taillights from a Hillman Hunter. Unlike its predecessor, the Virage borrowed the taillights not from another British car, but from a German one. This time it wasn’t the Audi 80, but the second-generation Volkswagen Scirocco.

Read our full test on the Aston Martin Virage

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There is no denying that the McLaren F1 is an engineering masterpiece. Produced in 1992, it still holds the record for the fastest normally aspirated production car. Additionally, before the introduction of the McLaren Speedtail and Gordon Murray T50, it was also the only production three-seater car. With that in mind, it seems a little odd that a vintage car like this borrows exterior features from much cheaper models. Again, the side mirrors are from the Citroën CX – a revolutionary car in its own right, but far from the achievements of the McLaren F1, and certainly far from its price tag..

Read our full McLaren F1 review


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