Was the Yugo the worst car of the 80s?
Well, many people seem to think so, and Yugo cars certainly got a bad press during the 80s, at least. Reviewers often referred to the poor quality build and the use of cheap materials and outdated technology. But that didn't stop the Yugo from becoming popular. During the late 80s, Zastava were producing up to 230,000 cars per year and selling to 70 different countries.
As you will see in the video clip above, Zastava started to improve their cars somewhat during the 90s, and the Yugo Sana featured in the clip was starting to look like a half decent car.
The Yugo 45 was developed as the Zastava 102 during the latter half of the 80s, but released as the Yugo 45 in 1981, featuring elements of the Fiat 127 and 128. The car was produced by the Serbian-based, Italian manufacturer Zastava Automobiles, a subsidiary of Fiat Group. The styling was similar to that of the Autobiancha A112, although much squarer at the front.
A new model called the Zastava Florida (also known as the Yugo Sana and Sana Miami) was launched in 1988 and this had a similar body style to the Fiat Tipo.
This model was produced between 1971 and 2008 and was a very affordable and popular car. Known as the Skala in many countries, this was the most popular model and has become something of an icon in Serbia.
Public Domain image of the 1116cc Zastava 101, the 5 door version of the Skala (Yugo 311) which was almost half the price of a Ford Escort in the 80s. This model was popular with Yugoslavians due to its low price and simple mechanics. Spare parts could also be bought cheaply.