Cars that Moved Brands
Some car names are just too good to stay within one brand. While it is impossible to consider the Mustang ever belonging to a carmaker other than Ford or a Corvette not being a Chevy, there are a few car models that have switched to other makers. Most of the name switches did not take place overnight, but many involved the defunct AMC along with cars in the Mopar lineup. Here are some of the notable switches:
Dodge Matador: In 1960, the Dodge Matador was a one-hit wonder for the automaker. The large V8-powered car fit the look of the Space Race lineup with tail lights that resembled jet pods and shorted tail fins. The car had plenty of chrome, since it was designed during the hey-day of the 1950s. After that one year, the Dodge Matador was finished, only to have the Matador name resurrected by AMC in 1971 as a sedan that was considered to be so ugly, even fashion designer Oleg Cassini could not make it attractive.
Nash Rambler: This car actually changed brands several times. Interestingly, the Rambler was first a bicycle made in 1897, but was quickly switched to an automobile made by Thomas B. Jeffrey company. Nash bought the carmaker and eventually turned the Rambler into a small compact car due to the limited amount of steel after World War II. After several changes in the middle of the 20th century, the Rambler became part of the Hudson lineup and eventually a part of the AMC lineup.
Hudson Hornet: Again, this was another maker change due to the AMC purchase of Hudson. The original Hudson Hornet was a speedy contender in the NASCAR circuit in the 1950s. The car name reappeared in the AMC lineup after the Rambler line was finished.
AMC Cavalier: In 1965, AMC was a trend-setting company and they designed a car called the Cavalier that was designed with interchangeable parts. The car was a symmetrical prototype that was never sold, but just as AMC was planning on building a muscle car, General Motors stole the name, which they eventually gave to a Chevy compact in the 1980s.