New research from Admiral Car Insurance has revealed the once common cars on UK roads that are now endangered and close to extinction.

Working with a car sales expert Admiral analysed 1500 previously popular cars that are now rarely seen on UK roads to reveal the list.

Looking at makes and models mass produced in the last 35 years (between 1984 to 20011) that have since been discontinued, Admiral has revealed the 10 popular cars at risk of disappearing from our roads completely2.

Top 10 ‘endangered’ cars – Expert picks

Bangernomics Endangered Bangers

Taking the top spot as the most endangered is the Ford Granada, with fewer than 800 working models still registered in the UK.

The Ford Granada was in production from 1974 to 1994 with more than 1.4 million3 made throughout its lifetime, meaning fewer than 0.1% of those produced (and registered between 1984 and 2001) are still on UK roads today.

The Vauxhall Nova, with just over 1,000 left and Peugeot 405 complete the car expert’s top 3 most endangered old favourites.

Whist the formerly widespread cars picked by the expert have far fewer left than in their heyday, others are even less likely to be spotted on UK roads. As part of the investigation, Admiral examined the makes and models of car produced between 1984 and 2001 with fewer than 50 still registered, to reveal those closest to the point of extinction 4.

Top 25 cars at risk of extinction

With just 10 vehicles still registered on UK roads, the Vauxhall Chevette faces the greatest risk of complete ‘extinction’.

Meanwhile, the Talbot Horizon, Saab 90, Rover Coupe, MG Montego and Hyundai Pony all have fewer than 15 cars still registered, meaning other road users will be lucky to spot one on the 245,000 miles of roads in the UK.

Car fund

Despite old motors offering a bargain – with a Peugeot 405 available for just £7505 – research from Admiral Car Finance6 found that almost half (48%) of Brits have bought a car using car finance.

Whereas new drivers in the 80s and 90s would usually have bought an ‘old banger’ when they passed their test, younger drivers today are more reliant on credit to get the car they want. 64% of Millennials said they took out car finance to buy their last car, compared to 38% of Generation X drivers, suggesting that the days of new drivers starting off with an ‘old banger’ are long gone. Whilst the most common monthly budget for car finance is between £300-£399 for both Millennials and Gen X drivers, it seems that Millennials are happy to push their budget further when it comes to car ownership. Almost a third (31%) of millennials say they would be prepared to spend over £500 a month on car finance, but just over one in 10 Gen X drivers are willing to spend the same.

Admiral Car Finance also revealed that the average car finance loan for drivers aged 17 to 25 is currently £10,847 and that the average car they purchased was 3 and a half years old, underlining the trend for newer rather than older models as a first car purchase.

Although budget played a significant role in the car buying process, practicality (48%), reliability (46%) and technology (17%) were also ranked highly by Brits when choosing their current car, perhaps another nail in the coffin for the once popular ‘old bangers’.

For those who are happy to drive an older car, analysis of Admiral’s insurance database shows which models 7 are most likely to still be seen on the roads.

Ford Mondeo, Subaru Impreza and Skoda Fabia topped the list of Admiral insured cars with a B to Y registration plate, with 999, 933 and 931 cars respectively still on the books.

Commenting on the research, Sabine Williams Head of Motoring at Admiral said:

“Getting an old banger as a first car was once considered a rite of passage, and a cheap way to get on the road. But with young people more willing to push their budget further, and relying more on car finance, some former family favourites may soon become extinct.

“For many, having a car is closely linked to their independence and sense of freedom, so reliability and practicality are huge factors when choosing what to drive. While these timeless cars can stir nostalgia and fond memories with many of us, they might not always be the most dependable and with many no longer in production, replacing parts and mechanical bills could soon start to mount up. Perhaps it will be left to classic car enthusiasts to keep these cars in existence.”

Classic Bangernomics is obviously the only way to save these cars please see Bangernomics Diet.

Notes…for Bangernomics anoraks.

1 Cars manufactured between 1984 and 2001 (old B to Y registration) considered only – older cars fall into ‘classic’ category for insurance purposes, whilst cars built post 2001 would not yet be considered ‘old bangers’.

2 Based on DFT data: series VEH0126, years of manufacture 1984 to 2001 only, grouped into sub-category level. Latest data correct as at December 2017. Cars selected by industry expert with c 20 years sales experience.


4 Based on DFT data: series VEH0126, years of manufacture 1984 to 2001 only, grouped into sub-category level. Latest data correct as at December 2017. Ranked by volumes still registered, only those makes/models with fewer than 50 considered. Imports, vans, hearses and specialist sports cares excluded.


6Investigation based on Admiral own customer base and survey of 1000 drivers conducted July 2018.

7Based on analysis of Admiral own insured cars with B to Y registration (from 1984 to 2001) where fewer than 1000 cars still insured