We love cars. They are beautiful, efficient & reflect our personalities in the best possible way. And every automotive giant out there tries their best to one-up their rivals by innovating something groundbreaking. But over the years we have seen some abominations which made us wonder, “what were they smoking ?”. Today we look at the weirdos, outcasts and some simply useless vehicles.
Chevrolet has given us some true icons over the years. The Chevette, unfortunately, wasn’t one of them. It was launched back in 1976 & was a hybrid of Pinto and a Gremlin, both really questionable donors. Looks wise, it was a weird hatchback with an even weirder nose. It had two variants, the three-door and the five-door. And was powered by a loud and small engine, churning out just 51 horsepowers.
Maybe the most ironical name in the list, this work of art was anything but reliable. 3 wheels, 2 at the back and one up front. And this made the car incredibly unstable, especially whilst cruising over 30 mph. Despite all the impracticality, it had a solid cult following and also appeared in Forza’s famous Horizon series.
Lincoln Continental Mark IV
The Continental Mark IV had nothing going for it. It looked boring, felt boring and even drove like a person on life support. In the 70s it was considered a luxury vehicle but its gas-hogging tendencies meant you’d be spending more time on the station than the road.
“As useful as a chocolate teapot”, Top gear named Pluriel in their 13 worst cars over the last two decades list. Looking like a cheap toy in the supermarket you didn’t want to get, it turned heads but for all the wrong reasons. It had an exhaustively time-consuming manual roof. And the brilliant part was the roof pieces didn’t even fit in the car after you’ve disassembled it. Brilliant design, Citroen.
BMW went a little overboard with this one. BMW’s ‘SAV’, or “sports activity vehicle,” tried to combine the elegance of a sedan with the robustness of an SUV. The outcome, however, wasn’t what they had hoped. It drove like a sedan but its tall boy features made it uncomfortable around corners. Not a fine example of German engineering, eh?
The Yugo was imported into the States from Yugoslavia for the cost conscious. And it showed, probably the most unreliable car ever built, its engine was prone to all kinds of failures & often exploded. Parts fell randomly & regularly and some of the insurance companies didn’t even cover the car. Truly, a catastrophe on wheels.
We saved the worst for the last. The originator of the infamous “Pinto memo” takes the top/bottom spot. The car had a knack for catching fire even in low-speed rear-end collisions. So the geniuses of the company did a cost-benefit analysis & concluded that it was more feasible to pay victim settlements than to recall and fix all the units. The “memo” got leaked and Pinto made history, although, for the wrong reasons.
Sources: thestreet.com, goliath.com, wikipedia.com.