From as far back as the Model T Ford, the automobile industry has had its share of “lemons.” Those cars that should never have left the drawing board, let alone the production line. What is really amazing, is that the vast majority of these cars came from automakers who otherwise have enjoyed a stellar reputation. In no particular order, here are 10 cars that no matter how you look at it, should never have been built.
After being a dominant player in the muscle car market, the oil embargo led to the creation of this monstrosity. Arguably one of the worst cars to ever bear the Ford nameplate. The Mustang II sat on the same chassis as one of the other failures from Ford, the Pinto. Read more about the Mustang II here.
If you thought the Pinto was bad and the Pacer worse, then the Yugo takes both of these and makes them look like royalty. At just under $4, 000, you truly got what paid for, these were literally disposable, in fact, the running joke was a full tank of gas doubled their value. Read more about the Yugo GV here.
Oddly enough, the Chevette was a big seller for Chevrolet in the mid-seventies. It was the third attempt by Chevrolet to create a small car designed to meet the demand for better fuel efficiency. By the time Chevy debuted this car, it was already out of date from a mechanical point of view, and from a driver's point of view, painfully slow. Read more about the Chevrolet Chevette here.
Cadillac has long been the ultimate American made luxury car, but when they introduced the Cimarron, this four-cylinder car missed on all four. Underpowered, poor styling, typical 1980s construction quality and a complete financial disaster for the manufacturer. Read more about the Cadillac Cimarron here.
While the Pacer might have sold 145,000 units the first year, it didn’t take long for the problems to start. The 232-cu. in. in-line six-cylinder engine was incredibly underpowered, taking a full 14 seconds to go from 0 to 60 mph. But this was only the beginning of the problems that were to come. Read more about the AMC Pacer here.
More than just another ugly car, the Pontiac Aztec has been blamed for the final downfall of the Pontiac brand. It came with a tailgate tent and an inflatable air mattress, so if you broke down (a frequent problem), you had somewhere to sleep waiting for the tow truck. The Aztec even had a removable cooler to keep your drinks cold while you walked home after being stranded on the side of the highway. Read more about the Pontiac Aztec here.
Ford spent over $250 million in research and development before the Edsel hit the showrooms. Unfortunately, cars with huge fins and room for several people inside were already on the way out by 1958 as consumers were becoming interested in smaller cars that got better gas mileage. The Edsel was plagued with a wide range of mechanical and electrical problems that when combined with terrible fuel economy, signed the brand's death warrant. Read more about the Edsel here.
53 years ago, Ralph Nader published the book that made him famous. "Unsafe at Any Speed" in which he described the 1960 to 1963 Chevrolet Corvair as one of the most unsafe vehicles on American roads. From the swing-axle design that could lead to a spin under cornering to the lack of safety features. Read more about the Chevrolet Corvair here.
According to historical records, there has never been another car that could cut your legs completely from your body than the BMW Isetta. Undoubtedly one of the weirdest looking economy cars to ever come from an automaker. This "Bubble" car had seating for two, a door that doubled for the front of the car and started out as a three-wheeler. Read more about this strange little car from BMW here.
What started out as a two-seater sporty commuter car was supposed to offer "Corvette-like" performance at an "everyman" price. Given a European sports car look, and a rear-mounted engine produce a stylish car that quickly gained popularity. But after a number of fires, (at least 135 known to have been reported to the NHTSA), the Fiero couldn't rise from the ashes. Read more about the Fiero here.
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