Last week, Japanese automaker Honda announced it is discontinuing production of its Element, a compact SUV that enticed some drivers with its roomy and washable interior — but put off many more with its lack of visual appeal. During its nine years, the Element hardly had any upgrades and comprised only 2.5% of compact SUV sales, according to car information website Edmunds.com. That alone was a large factor leading to its demise: after all, automakers are in the business of making cars that bring in big sales and profits.
The Honda Element is, of course, not the first car to be discontinued — nor will it be the last. And while automakers’ decisions to send a car to the graveyard vary widely, they are almost universally based on one underlying factor: lack of profits, be it from disinterested drivers or high production costs. In this slideshow, we feature a dozen cars that are no longer produced today.