There have been some truly terrible cars but these are some of the worst cars of all time. To be considered for this list you have to not only be ugly but slow and no fun to drive. I was going to consider the uninspired 5th generation Pontiac GTO, but it had an LS1 and LS2 with a six-speed and rear-wheel drive. Some other honorable mentions would be the entire Saturn corporation. I left them off because they did produce the Saturn Sky which you could get in Red Line trim with a manual and upgraded turbos that made nearly 300 hp. I also left off the Prius because even though it is ugly and horrible to drive it is a substantial car in history.
I imagine this car will make the list even a hundred years from now. The Pontiac Aztek is probably the ugliest car ever produced. It’s everything wrong with design by committee. What’s surprising is that I still see these on the road. Maybe Walter White made them cool in Breaking Bad. This car was released about the same time that Survivor started at was suppose to appeal to Gen X’ers at the time but was too expensive. Several magazines have ranked this as the ugliest car of all-time and one even tied the downfall of Pontiac to this particular car. Hard to get worse than that! Imagine that your car is so terrible it led to the downfall of the entire company.
The Ferrari Mondial is the worst Ferrari. Now there are worse things to be than the worst Ferrari. You could be a Pontiac Aztek for example. These Ferraris are so terrible you can pick one up on eBay in the 30’s. Not that you’d want to. They’re slow and the design is uninspiring. Some critics laud the design but I think it’s a misstep between the excellent 308 and the iconic Testarossa. You know what else came out during this time? The BMW M1. It’s much better looking and is a full two seconds faster to sixty miles per hour. Hell, a two year old 1979 Corvette was faster. I guess in an automaker as illustrious as Ferrari they all can’t be hits.
Speaking of luxury automakers making terrible cars, enter the Lamborghini Espada. I feel like people were sitting around the Lamborghini factory and someone spoke up “you know what we need? A Lamborghini hearse!” Now some of you more astute car people may be thinking “What about the Lamborghini LM002?” but I actually like the Lambo truck. The Espada is so bad it makes the Porsche Panamera look like a masterpiece comparatively. There are some redeeming features. It does have a Lambo V12. The steering wheel is a work of art. The Campagnolo magnesium alloy wheels are incredible. With a new, and not all that bad, Lambo SUV out maybe they will revisit the hearse idea. Not even NACA ducts could save this car.
Chevrolet Impala (FWD-versions)
Where oh where did Chevy go wrong? Oh that’s right, with the 8th generation Impala. The move to front-wheel drive killed anything cool about the Impala. They also only had a V6 engine producing barely 240hp, or you know, less than a Focus ST. They did bring the V8 back for the 9th generation but they were still FWD and automatic only. The V8 went away for the tenth generation as the Impala continues to ruin a good legacy. The 1st through 4th and 7th generation of the 90’s were some of the coolest cars of all-time. If they want to bring this car back to greatness they should put it on the SS platform with a big V8, a manual transmission, and rear-wheel drive. Of course it could be worse, they could be making a Mustang SUV. Looking at you Ford. Speaking of which…
Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross
Yet another example of automakers ruining a good name. You could argue the Eclipse name was tarnished with the 3rd and 4th generation and you’d also be correct. They lacked the powerful turbo-charged four cylinders of the 1st and 2nd generation but at least they were cars you could get with a manual. The Eclipse Cross is a car designed by the finance department that is trying to bank on name recognition. You can get an Eclipse Cross with a manual and AWD just like the GSX, except not at the same time and in an SUV with less power than the 2nd gen Eclipse base model. Now if you could get this SUV with a manual and AWD and it made 300 hp, it would shoot up my list of the best SUVs. Shame on you Mitsubishi. At least they are bringing back the Evo as a car. So they say.
All Buicks After the Grand National and Before the Redesign
All Buicks after the sublime Grand National are utter dumpster fires. If I had to choose one word to describe these decades at Buick it would be malaise. They were just boring, uninspired cars that someone would buy if they needed a car and had no feelings whatsoever about them. Every once in a while we would hear grumblings about the return of the Grand National but it was never meant to be. The new redesigned Buicks have captured some of the old goodness with the Buick Regal GS available with Brembo brakes, a manual, 300 hp, and AWD. Good recovery Buick! Now slap some turbos on that 3.6 liter V6 and bring back the Grand National! Cadillac might have a turbo V6 you can borrow (ATS-V).
All Oldsmobiles After the Cutlass Supreme
The Cutlass Supreme was arguable the last cool Oldsmobile. My mom had a 442, also pretty cool. Every Oldsmobile afterwards, terrible. Much like their owners, Oldsmobile began their slow and painful march to death in the 1980’s. Oldsmobiles were almost exclusively driven by old people. I’m not sure if this is where the term Oldsmobile comes from but I hope so. My grandparents, not surprisingly, had several Oldsmobiles including the Olds 88. I remember a blue one and a red one. There was velour as well and a digital dash. I don’t think there were designers at Oldsmobile. There couldn’t have been. They were just boxes and completely uninspired. It’s almost as if the body was an afterthought. “I guess we better but a shell on this boring car, can’t send it out naked.”
A Smart Car was supposed to be a small, fuel-efficient car for the masses. Unfortunately, despite its size, it actually got worse gas mileage than a Ford Fusion, Prius, Mirage, and others. They also weren’t very safe either. While some claim three and four star safety ratings, the IIHS rated the Smart Fortwo poor. So not economical, no space, and it’s not safe. At least it’s cheap. At $12,000 there aren’t many new cars that are this cheap. You can also fit two in one parking space. If you’re going to get one, which I suggest you don’t, at least put a Hayabusa motor in it! Sinister Sand Sports can hook you up!