Today, the elliptical profile of the Audi TT almost blends into the background of automotive shapes we see on the road, it's become so commonplace. But when the TT concept appeared in 1995, its oval geometry was revolutionary in an industry still enamored with rectangles, straight lines, and -- when designers got really adventurous -- wedges.
If the Audi bears a vague resemblance to another ovoid-shaped car on our list, the Volkswagen New Beetle, well, that's no coincidence. The Audi TT was also designed by J Mays and Freeman Thomas at VW's California design center. Its first public appearance was as a concept at the 1995 Frankfurt Motor Show.
The "TT" in Audi TT is a reference to the Tourist Trophy race on the Isle of Man, in which Audi's corporate forbear enjoyed many years of success.
The TT would get a second-generation redesign in 2006 (and would be known as the TT Mk2), becoming less bulbous, flatter, and more modern-looking. But as with other remakes, the designers appear to have left the soul of the reference vehicle intact when creating the replacement.
The next car on our list is a classic American comeback story. Find out the details on the next page.