By on November 13, 2006

x07ct_up006222.jpgThe polls are closed. We’ve tallied and rank-ordered the votes. You, TTAC’s ever faithful and always vocal readers, have selected the Ten Worst Automobiles Today (TWAT) from all the vehicles for sale in the US during calendar year 2006. Some of the votes were pretty close (only 35 votes separated the 10th place winner from the first runner-up at number 11), while others ran away from the pack from the very beginning. Here they are, starting with 10th place and counting down to number one, the winners of the 2006 TTAC Ten Worst Automobiles Today awards:

10.  Chevrolet Aveo  Chevy likes to tout the Aveo as the “lowest-priced [new] car in America." In spite of their warning “content may vary,” it’s easy to see how they achieved that goal. From the hollow-sounding doors, bargain-basement plastics and skinny tires to the coarse-sounding engine that strains when faced with even the slightest incline, it exudes “cheap” from every ounce of its being. The Aveo also refutes the smart shopper’s mantra “you get what you pay for.” In the case of this captive Korean import, you pay little and get even less.  – FW

9.  Lincoln Mark LT  Lincoln’s badge engineered Ford F-150 is an unholy degradation of the world-famous Lincoln Mark nomenclature. While Brother Navigator sets the luxo-truck standard for wikkid beat boxes, wood-trimmed tillers, ventilated seats and power running boards, the LT went the adhesive-backed bling route, hit the showers and called it a day. From the richly textured but rock-hard interior plastics to the exterior’s mega-dose of bottom-dollar spizzarkle, the Mark LT is a rolling testament to Dearborn’s short-term, suicidal reliance on bean-counted engineering.  – SM

8.  Saab 9-7x  The Saab 9-7X is a Chevy Trailblazer with the ignition key between the seats. Moreover, the Saab 9-7X is a Chevy Trailblazer with the ignition key between the seats. I can't stand the fact that the Saab 9-7X is nothing more than a Chevy Trailblazer with the ignition key between the seats. And when you stop and think about it, the Saab 9-7X is little more than a Chevy Trailblazer with the ignition key between the seats. Who did GM think they were fooling when they released the Saab 9-7X, which is nothing more than a Chevy Trailblazer with the ignition key between the seats? You know what I hate most about the Saab 9-7X? It’s a Chevy Trailblazer with the ignition key between the seats.  – JL

7.  Subaru B9 Tribeca  Subaru execs may have been stony-faced when TTAC described the front end of their new SUV as a “flying vagina," but at least they didn’t turn to stone. Given the unrelenting hideousness of the Tribeca’s design– from its genital front end to its fallopian dash to its alien eyes rear end — they should count themselves lucky. The fact that the B9 is also slow, thirsty and cramped proves that repulsiveness can be more than skin deep. Why Subaru felt the need to enter the SUV segment when it offers such a wide range of superb four wheel-drive sedans and wagons is anybody’s guess. Clearly, they shouldn’t have bothered. - RF

6.  Chevrolet Monte Carlo  The Chevrolet Monte Carlo is a wrong wheel-drive engineering joke from the late ‘80’s. But it's main claim to shame is its merciless butchering of Chevy's once decadent “personal luxury” lines.  In one fell swoop, the baroque fenders went from tacky-posh to adolescently unrefined. From the front, the Asian-inspired headlights assault the muscle car values once associated with this famous coupe. At the rear, sacrilege takes the form of taillights that look like a two-way bookshelf speaker that met the business end of a heat gun. Factor in various grades of interior panel gapping, Wal-Mart spec’d polymers and parts bin swapping with zero integration and you’re done.  – SM

5.  Hummer H2  The Hummer H2 is a rebodied Yukotahoburbelade that’s so damn heavy the IRS will give you a tax break because you just bought a piece of commercial farm equipment. It looks like a school bus from behind and a morbidly obese Cherokee from every other angle. It doesn't handle. Braking distances are straight from 1956. It gets less than 10mpg and takes longer than 10 seconds to reach 60. The chances that its owners will take it off-road are slimmer than the odds of Nicole Ritchie eating. Even the name sucks (literally): the H2 is a sad simulacrum of the first Gulf War winning off-road champ HUMVEE. While the H2 doesn’t come with hair plugs, it tells the world that the man behind the wheel has a small penis, or brain, or both.  – JL

4.  Chrysler Aspen  Chrysler is trying to flog this monstrosity as a blingmobile– which is like trying to sell cocaine as a sleep aid. Chrysler's barely badge-engineered Dodge Durango is ugly. It’s thirsty. It’s slow. It’s badly built. It’s cramped. It’s expensive. Although the Aspen was an inexpensive cheap way for the Dark Lords of DCX to expand the Chrysler brand portfolio, it’s a perfect example of the old adage “Just because you can do something doesn’t mean you should.” – RF

3.  Buick Rendezvous  Based on a 1997 minivan and introduced in 2002, the Rendezvous is a platform partner to the Chevrolet Venture, Pontiac Montana and Oldsmobile Silhouette, and a fraternal twin to the gruesome Pontiac Aztek. It’s outlasted them all, creaking along with nothing more than a few trim changes and corporate-wide mechanical updates. The ungainly Rendezvous’ ride, handling and performance are on par with… a 10-year-old minivan. In fact, the Rendezvous embodies everything that’s brought GM to the brink: penny pinching, brand dilution and chronic neglect. It’s set to be replaced by the Enclave, and not a moment too soon. – FW

2.  Jeep Compass  Props to DCX for trying to introduce an economical model for fans of the storied Jeep brand. A pox on their house for building the Compass. In this horror story, Dr. Frankenstein (played by the mustache-twirling Doktor Z) grafts round headlights and a seven-slot grill onto the face of a mediocre high-riding sedan (a.k.a. the Dodge Caliber). He throws the switch and an ugly, gangly, underpowered, mud-aversive half-breed staggers into the light, turning all who see it– or God forbid buy it– into grotesque, bobble-headed morons. The Compass stomps all over Jeep’s reputation as America’s purveyor of authentic off-road vehicles. It’s time to get out your pitchforks.  – WCM

1.  GM Minivans  Talk about retro-design. Rather than simply cop styling cues from bygone classics, GM built the Chevrolet Uplander, Saturn Relay, Buick Terraza and Pontiac SV6 using 25-year-old engineering. (Though not literally true, it’s true enough.) In terms of dreadful driving dynamics, contemptible aesthetics and torturous ergonomics, no other vehicles sold in America can compete with these ridiculously-named “Crossover Sport Vans.” For their antique engineering, woeful looks, cancerous effect on not one but four GM brands and their abject inability to hold a candle to their foreign-owned competition, GM’s minivans earn The Truth About Cars’ accolade as the worst vehicles currently for sale in America.  – WCM

Get the latest TTAC e-Newsletter!

131 Comments on “The Truth About Cars 2006 Ten Worst Automobiles Today (TWAT) Awards: The Winners...”


  • avatar
    Claude Dickson

    In case anyone was wondering why we are closing in on the 100th chapter of the GM death watch, the TWAT awards make it very clear. 6 of the 10 winners are GM products and this is without taking into account that No. 1 on the TWAT list is actually 3 vehicles, not one. These results should be expressed to Rick Waggoner as a much needed wake up call.

    Given that 9 of the 10 winners hail from Detroit, I think we should have another contest: just how many cars does Detroit make that TTAC readers think are actually good cars.

  • avatar
    Ed S.

    ^^I second.

    I bet the list would be less than 10…

  • avatar
    jazbo123

    I consider the Rendevous is a platform partner only to the Aztec.

    The Ventures, Montanas and Silhouettes were larger vehicles developed earlier, although they shared some mechanicals they had different bodies.

  • avatar

    Jazbo –

    Different bodies, yes, but same platforms.

    From Wikipedia:

    Like the Pontiac Aztek, the Buick Rendezvous is based on a shortened version of GM’s 2nd generation U platform minivans.

  • avatar
    jaje

    I saw the Press Release and noted you did not abbreviate the award names “TWAT”.

  • avatar

    Your point being?

  • avatar
    starlightmica

    I’ll counter that the Rendezvous is merely a CSV with swing-out doors. It previously had the option of a DOHC engine, but in anticipation of being euthanized, GM dropped it.

    And just in time for its inauguration as a TWAT, the Jeep Compass now has a rebate! Speaking of which, I think just all TWATs have cash back on the hood.

    A special award to Bob Lutz for GM’s domination of this year’s TWATs, as he had a hand in many of his company’s winners. He’s trying to do what he can, but his spin is nauseating.

  • avatar
    nmcheese

    I think the more important commonality between the vehicles selected is that 8 of 10 are weak or diluted trucks and or SUVs – things made to appeal to a perceived image, rather than a defined function/purpose.

    Vehicles made for a clearly defined purpose, wether they be the original H1, or a Lotus Elise, tend to have their priorities in order, and are better off for it.

    As far as my list of good vehicles from the Detroit 2.5:

    1. Ford Focus – the materials it is built with are awful, but it is a good car to drive.
    2. GM/Ford Full Size pickups, rwd, vinyl interior, base models. They work.
    3. Cadillac CTS – same story as the Focus.

    um… that may be it.

  • avatar
    lambo

    The “first Gulf War winning off-road champ” wasn’t HUMVEE, that is just how joe pronounced the acronym HMMWV, High Mobility Multipurpose Wheeled Vehicle.

    I’m not sure how HUMVEE came to be accepted as the proper acronym for the military spec HMMWV, but I guess folks just spelled out the way folks phonetically pronounced the real acronym HMMWV.

    But I do agree that it is well deserving of a TWAT Top 10 award.

  • avatar
    TexasAg03

    The Hummer H2 is a rebodied last-generation Yukon…

    There are many modifications. It is not just a rebodied Tahoe/Yukon. I wouldn’t dare try to take a Tahoe down the trails an H2 could traverse.

  • avatar
    nweaver

    nmcheese, the problem I have with the Focus is that Ford’s penny pinching has killed it.

    5 years ago, I’d agree. In Europe, I agree that the Focus is brilliant.

    But in the US today? Its not a TWAT, but its pretty damn close.

    The Mazda3, aka the Euro Focus, lists for $1k less, handles better, drives better, is more comfortable, doesn’t have a lot of the ford penny pinching etc etc etc…

    Ford was too cheap to upgrade the tooling on the US Focus plant to bring it up to spec to the Mazda3/Euro Focus platform. Hiss-booo….

    Come on, just imagine if Ford didn’t bother with the penny pinching when it came time to update the design and plant, they could have a Focus ST/SVT with a 220+hp turbo 4 in it with AWD. (The platform supports AWD, but the Mazdaspeed3 doesn’t use AWD mostly for differentiation between the Speed3 and Speed6).

  • avatar

    Oddly, I find I cannot disagree with any of these selections. Looks like the process worked most excellently.

    I am a bit surprised that the Kia Amanti didn’t make the cut, though I personally found its interior richly appointed for a car in its price range, and the car thus a decent cut-rate alternative to a Lincoln Town Car.

    Other decent domestic products:
    Corvette
    Mustang
    Viper
    Solstice / SKY (yes, they have weaknesses)
    Aura / G6
    Lucerne / DTS (for intended mission)
    Fusion
    Freestyle
    Wrangler
    Expedition (if you need a ton of interior room)
    All the big pickups

    I also have a soft spot for the Malibu Maxx, but admit that’s probably just me.

  • avatar
    ash78

    nweaver
    Don’t forget the Volvo S40/V50. Ford was the only one of the three that decided it would be best to keep the old platform. I’ve said it before, but that is one of the worst ideas they could have had during this current period of small-car resurgence.

  • avatar

    Detroit had better wake up.

    This list should be faxed to the heads of every department in all of the big 3′s offices.

    Anyone up for the task?

  • avatar

    nweaver,

    You can buy a Focus for far less money than a Mazda3.

    Comparing the ZX4 SES to the Mazda3i Touring sedan (to get comparable equipment levels), the Ford is about $1,000 less. And then there’s the $2,500 rebate, vs. 0 on the Mazda.

    $3,500 is a serious price difference.

    Similarly, the ZX4 ST stickers close to the Mazda3s, but then there’s that $2,500 rebate again.

    Make all the comparisons you want here:

    http://www.truedelta.com/prices.php

    The ST always happens to be less money than the much weaker, worse handling, less fun to drive Honda Fit Sport.

    At actual transaction prices, the Focus is a great driver’s car.

    They shouldn’t have trashed the interior like they did. If they’d done a decent job redoing the interior, it wouldn’t much matter that they kept the old platform. The old platform rides and handles very well, and the packaging is better than that of the new platform. Compare the rear seats of the Focus and Mazda3 some time.

    Anyway, I hear all the time when I criticize an interior that interior materials and design aren’t that big a deal.

    At least the Focus doesn’t have bi-level instruments.

    And for an even better deal, find a nearly new Focus.

    My runner up for great driving cars that should be cheap used: Mitsubishi Lancer Ralliart.

  • avatar

    And does anyone else find it funny that there are ads at the top of the screen touting Mark LT’s and Asspen’s for sale?

  • avatar

    The magic of Goooooogle. Apparently there aren’t many other sites that mention their existence.

  • avatar
    jerseydevil

    Absolutely hysterical, especially since its true on many levels.
    i am so sick and tired of all the “10 best” and “100 best” and “car of the year”. This is a perfect rebuttal.

    Also interesting that u chose to release it around election day!

    Thanks so much. It’s nice to laugh!

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    Texas:

    No one takes the H2 off-road.

  • avatar

    Texas:

    The Comp-ass will see more off road duty than an H2 ever would.

  • avatar
    GasGuzzler

    Texas: “There are many modifications. It is not just a rebodied Tahoe/Yukon. I wouldn’t dare try to take a Tahoe down the trails an H2 could traverse.”

    Do these trails that the H2 could traverse include parking lots and the local fast food drive-through, where the H2 front wheel has a bad habit of scurrying away from the car?

  • avatar
    HEATHROI

    Ford could make the bog standard Focus much better by install a 65 0r 70 mm throttle body from Ford Racing rather than the 57mm plastic piece of junk that lurks under the bonnet now. The SVT shocks and springs work improve things and a decent exhaust manifold help considerable in making a sows ear into miss piggys ear.

  • avatar
    Zarba

    I have to agree with the list.

    The GM minivans should be a case study in How Detroit Went To Hell.

    My only regret is that the factory that makes them is here in Atlanta, and is now scheduled to close. Another couple of thousand workers lose their jobs because GM can’t design a freakin’ BOX.

  • avatar
    BimmerHead

    I was pulling for the Compass to win top honors… Otherwise looks like a great list of crap.

    GM minivans as a winner just doesn’t have much zing to it… I mean it’s like calling the ugly kid who already knows they are ugly “ugly”… Noone, including the ugly kid, really cares. The GM minivans have been crap for years and everyone pretty much knows it.

    The compass is a brand new ugly kid… much more fun to be had poking sticks at the new kid than the one that has been around forever.

    Just my 2 cents.

  • avatar
    Hutton

    I’m kind of with BimmerHead on this… the minivans are obviosly terrible… but I kind of feel like the Compass deserves it more… diluting the Jeep badge is a bigger sin than diluting the already meaningless Saturn/Buick/Pontiac brands.

    But they are all TWATs for sure.

  • avatar
    nweaver

    Michael. List price on a comparable focus is equal to or $1k more than the comparable Mazda3. Remember, the 3 comes with a hotter engine and more standard features, better handling, etc etc etc.

    That Ford has to then knock off $2.5k+ off the sticker price of a $15k car (and we’re talking the 07s here) to move them is more a statement on how much worse the car really is!

    How much is Mazda kicking back on an 06 Mazda3? El Zippo. And there is a reason why Ford Japan is able to do this: they have a better car!

    We are in the time when “Small cars are HOT”. I’ve seen Honda dealers putting $2k markups on a Fit, and $2k worth of random blingage for a nice additional $4k profit margin! The Starfighter Civic is all over the roads. The Yaris is becoming a plague on the land.

    That Ford has such a good small car design (Mazda3/Euro Focus), but was too cheap to JUST PAY FOR THE TOOLING, just clearly demonstrates how short sighted Ford can be.

    Lets assume that it would have cost $100M for new tooling, and ford sells 100k focuses/year. That $1k/car cost for retooling would have paid for itself in ONE YEAR in reduced incentives, as we have evidence that people will spend $2k more for the better car!

  • avatar
    Doogs

    There are many modifications. It is not just a rebodied Tahoe/Yukon. I wouldn’t dare try to take a Tahoe down the trails an H2 could traverse.

    You are correct. The H2 has a beefier rear axle, a rear differential lock, and I believe some beefier suspesnion components. Oh, and some bigger tires to boost the ground clearance.

    None of this changes the fact that it has independent front suspension and all the limited wheel travel inherent therein, or the fact that it weighs approximately as much as the Lusitania, or the fact that its bloated body makes it a nightmare on most trails.

    If I were buying an off-the-lot offroader, I’d go for an H3 over an H2, an FJ Cruiser or Xterra over an H3, and a Wrangler Rubicon over any of the others.

  • avatar
    Luther

    RE: Lets assume that it would have cost $100M for new tooling, and ford sells 100k focuses/year. That $1k/car cost for retooling would have paid for itself in ONE YEAR in reduced incentives, as we have evidence that people will spend $2k more for the better car!

    Dear nweaver,

    That is just the stupidest idea I ever heard. Your Fired.

    Bob Bean
    FoMoCo

  • avatar
    Claude Dickson

    My list for good cars coming out of Detroit would be pretty short, especially when if you leave out SUVs/pickup trucks

    DCX: Chrysler 300

    GM: corvette, caddy CTS, maybe Saturn sky

    Ford: maybe some version of the Mustang

    My off the cuff list as well as the others highlight one thing: cutting costs will not save your company if you continue to build cars no one wants to buy. Right now, Detroit just doesn’t build enough cars that anyone wants.

  • avatar
    wsn

    When talking about good cars from Detroit, I don’t want to add cars like Ford GT or even Corvette. They are out of the reach of most people and thus they are economically insignificant. IMO, these cars (not interested in trucks) are nice:

    1) compact: Mazda 3. If stake ownership counts.
    2) midsize: Fusion. Looks nice, at least.
    3) luxury: CTS. Well balanced in style, quality and price.

  • avatar
    Tiger Commanche

    My bad. When I saw that the discussion today was on “TWATs”, Hummers, and flying vaginas, I thought we would be talking about Britney Spears breaking up with K-Fed, but turns out the discussion is just on some car stuff…

  • avatar

    I wonder if I’m the only TTAC reader who will own up to having a TWAT in the driveway.

    My wife loves her 2004 Rendezvous CX AWD. It literally was the absolute least expensive AWD Rendezvous made that year, having no options whatsoever.

    For the price we paid after supplier discount, rebate & finance incentive I really can’t find fault with its value proposal.

    It is big, roomy and dead quiet inside and though I loathe driving it, I begrudgingly admit that it has an acceptable ride quality and nice comfortable seats.

    But for two stripped-at-the-factory wheel studs it has performed absolutely flawlessly over its first 40,000 miles.

    Does it dilute Buick’s brand? Maybe, but who gives a crap. We’ve never owned another Buick and likely never will. But for my GTI following on the heels of a Jetta TDI neither my wife nor I has ever owned more than one car from any single brand.

    I wonder if that says more about us, or about the general brand dilution out in the market today?

    (I’d consider another VW if VWNA would import a 5-door R32, but I’ve given up hoping for that.)

  • avatar

    I’m glad to see the Mazda pickup didn’t make it into the final 10. While out of date it is a low cost hauler with a decent size bed. If it wasn’t reviewed right before the TWAT award nominations it probably wouldn’t have ended up on the list.

  • avatar
    BimmerHead

    You are right Kurt… on two counts:

    1. The Mazda pickup/ford ranger is an out of date low cost hauler.
    2. If it hadn’t been recently reviewed here, it’s existence would likely have been forgotten altogether.

  • avatar
    radimus

    There are many modifications. It is not just a rebodied Tahoe/Yukon. I wouldn’t dare try to take a Tahoe down the trails an H2 could traverse.

    Apparently, in all the modifications they forgot about re-inforced tie rods.

    Help me out here, but I can’t quite see what an H2 can do that a late-model used Tahoe with a lift kit, bigger wheels and tires, and other suspension upgrades can’t do for a lot less money.

  • avatar
    Hutton

    ^ It can look baller, son.

  • avatar
    qfrog

    Horay, GM is the WINNAR!

    I want to see this in a GM advert….

    “GM has earned more twat awards than ALL other auto makers combined”

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    The Comedian

    Hey man, if you can walk up behind the Rendezvous and not puke all over your driveway, more power to you.

    Worst looking rear end of any production vehicle ever. I cringe when I pull up behind one.

  • avatar
    dolo54

    A girl asked me for a hummer once. I didn’t know what the hell she was talking about…

  • avatar
    Hutton

    The front’s not much better. Ugly ovoid grille intersecting nasty rectangular headlights with misaligned bezels, and topped off with some gross orange blinker/eyelid things. Just isn’t working on any concievable level.

  • avatar
    taxman100

    Second vote for a possible Rendezvous owner. The wife and I are looking at one as a replacement for her vehicle. I think it’s a great vehicle for the price.

    Alas – we’ll probably go minivan to get the sliding doors on the side. There is no way I’m spending $25k on a minivan, and I won’t own another Chrysler, so I may end up with either some Korean made crap-van, or a Freestar.

  • avatar
    Hutton

    Oh god, and look at the interior

    The horror.

  • avatar
    starlightmica

    Ouch. I think the dash could take out an eye or two, with that sharp corner. TWAT-worthy, yes.

  • avatar

    (Cribbed from a bounced email I tried to send to Jonny Lieberman.)

    True, the back end of that thing is horrible. I don’t know if I saw this in writing somewhere, or if it just occurred to me a few weeks ago, but that gaping hole in the back around the license plate holder combined with the alignment of the taillights puts me in the mind of the web-famous “goatse” image.

    Try to get that out of your head next time you’re behind one of these things. The taillights as forearms leading up to a …

    Oh well, you get the idea.

    _______________

    Less funny responses,

    1) That’s why I back down the driveway.
    2) That’s why I stay at work until it’s dark out. (Easy to do in CT.)
    3) You are all correct about the looks of the ‘Vous, but it was my wife’s money, her car and her call. She deemed me good looking enough to marry, so if the ‘Vous makes her cut, I guess I’m even uglier than I thought!

  • avatar
    topfrog

    I think I understand jaje‘s point.
    Take a look at http://www.effingpot.com/slang.shtml and look up the word twat. An unfortunate coincidence ;-)

  • avatar
    dolo54

    so fitting that there’s a hummer on this list.

  • avatar

    I can’t think of 10 good domestic cars (excluding “foreign” brands like Volvo and Mazda): Corvette definitely. Chrysler 300 is actually good for what it is. That is really it…

    There are a lot of mediocre cars that could have been better. The Mustang has great styling, but still not a very good car otherwise. The Sky and Solstice again are better at styling than performance or feel. Perhaps these new Fords or Saturns will at least be competent, but I would really be tempted by a Hyundai.

    Frankly I would almost buy a used German or Japanese luxury car over a mid-level sedan anyway, but maybe that is just me.

  • avatar
    Austin Greene

    I’ve said it before, the General Motors CSV minivan frankensteins are really the low-hanging fruit of GM’s brain trust. Giving them a TWAT is like picking on the neighborhood kid who was the product of two cousins.

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    Great list. Congrats to TTAC on a job well done.

  • avatar

    Please remember: the final ten vehicles were chosen via electronic poll.

  • avatar
    carguy

    Well done TTAC – a finely crafted list of automotive dross. A list of specimens noteworthy not so much for merely existing but for the sick corporate culture and process that gave birth to them. This really is the distilled essence of the GM/Chrysler death watch.

  • avatar
    olddavid

    While I may agree with you on a majority of your list, it disheartens me to see the basis so slanted toward subjective criteria. This is where you say that’s what it’s all about, but I cannot help but feeling this was styling, not driving judgment. The sad fact is perception is 99% of the battle right now. For evidence, I give you the Echo, Yaris, any Scion save the Coupe, Corolla, Camry and Honda Element. I do not need to tell you what would be said if any of them had a blue oval or the letters GM on the grille. I am willing to bet I could put the Toyletta badge on a Malibu Maxx and the commercial auto writers would have to invent new words to praise it with. Too bad for us.

  • avatar
    Hutton

    10 good domestics… let me try:

    Mustang
    Wrangler
    Corvette
    300

    That’s about it. Unless you can count Mazda, Volvo, Aston Martin, etc.

  • avatar
    TexasAg03

    Jonny Lieberman:
    November 8th, 2006 at 11:18 am

    Texas:

    No one takes the H2 off-road.

    That has nothing to do with the difference between it and a Tahoe/Yukon. I don’t know anyone who owns a Corvette that takes it to the track either.

    None of this changes the fact that it has independent front suspension and all the limited wheel travel inherent therein, or the fact that it weighs approximately as much as the Lusitania, or the fact that its bloated body makes it a nightmare on most trails.

    If I were buying an off-the-lot offroader, I’d go for an H3 over an H2, an FJ Cruiser or Xterra over an H3, and a Wrangler Rubicon over any of the others.

    I agree that independent suspensions ON AVERAGE have more limited travel than solid axles. Locking differentials and traction control can offset that disadvantage.

    I agree with you about taking an H3 over an H2. I would also take the FJ or the Xterra as well. If I didn’t drive very far, I would LOVE a Rubicon.

    I doubt I would spend $50k on an H2 (LR3 maybe??).

    However, none of that changes the fact that the H2 is NOT a mere re-badge of a Tahoe/Yukon. To say so indicates one is ignorant of the differences or is simply dishonest and biased against the product.

  • avatar
    gunnarheinrich

    Ah democracy in action.

  • avatar
    TexasAg03

    10 good domestics… let me try:

    Mustang
    Wrangler
    Corvette
    300

    That’s about it. Unless you can count Mazda, Volvo, Aston Martin, etc.

    F150
    Silverado
    Explorer
    Wrangler
    Corvette
    Mustang
    Colorado/Canyon
    STS
    CTS

    I would also throw in the Buick Lucerne for being a good highway cruiser…

  • avatar
    David Yip

    Re: RendezvousWorst looking rear end of any production vehicle ever. I cringe when I pull up behind one.

    As do I. I wish I could say it was just hyperbole, but I really do cringe whenever I come up behind one.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    Explorer?

    ick!

  • avatar
    SS3

    Colorado/Canyon ?!?!?!?!

    God awful looks, terrible reliability, no V-6, overdue for re-design, weak sales.

    And I’m a GM fan.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    Hey Texas — we were limited to 150 words or so

    What I really wanted to say was that unlike the awe-inspiring H1, which has 16 inches of ground clearance, inboard brakes, half-shafts geared into the tops of the wheels and then geared down from there, a working tire inflation/deflation system, etc, the H2 is a big fat poseur.

    i.e. for all intents and purposes a Yukon dressed up as a Village Person.

    Plus, it weighs THREE TONS!!!

  • avatar
    confused1096

    Good Domestic brands:

    1. Ford Fusion
    2. Mustang
    3. GMC Pickups
    4. F-series Pickups
    5. Jeep Wrangler/Liberty
    6. Chevy Impala (people flame it for many reasons, but it is a reliable and safe car. Who cares if it does not live up to nostalgia?)
    7. Ford Freestar
    8. Chrysler 300
    9. Chyrsler Town and Country
    10. Chrysler PT Cruiser (I don’t like the looks, but everyone I know who owns one has had great luck out of it.)
    11. Buick LaCrosse

  • avatar
    confused1096

    I’ve seen several Focus comments so maybe someone more familar with them can enlighten me. A relative has a 2000 Focus that has been a very reliable car and fun to drive for short distances.
    My company uses, among other things, Ford Focuses as company cars. The insides of our 2005 Focuses look cheap and very shoddy compared to a 5 year old model. Was there some sort of cost cutting performed?
    The interior of an old Focus is cheap, but looks about standard for that price point. It also looked kinda modern though, you could see yourself upgrading to a nicer Ford. The current Focus…shudder. I keep looking for the ‘Matchbox’ label when I get stuck driving one of these. It was like some demonic bean counter sucked the soul out of the car.

  • avatar
    dolo54

    I understand that the Euro-Focus is quite different than the American version. Over there it gets rave reviews. Not sure why they wouldn’t try to sell that here.

  • avatar
    ash78

    dolo54:
    I understand that the Euro-Focus is quite different than the American version. Over there it gets rave reviews. Not sure why they wouldn’t try to sell that here.

    Dolo, several of us have brought this up numerous times in various discussion. When you have a chance, go visit ford.co.uk and see what our fellow English-speaking brethren get to choose from. Ford is actually a decent competitor over there, in several different segments. The excellent Focus (and RS model….yum!) and a Mondeo that can do nearly 50mpgUK on the small gas engine, plus diesel options. A rebadged VW minivan, the Galaxie, with a 1.9TDI and captains chairs for SEVEN people–comfortably.

    That last one I drove over 1,000 miles this summer. Never returned lower than 30mpgUK, even with mixed city driving, a full load, and the A/C blowing. It has as much room inside as a Windstar, but is about 20% smaller outside. Genius.

  • avatar
    MegaDea21

    This list is interesting.. I definitely saw some cars at the SEMA show that I might lump into this category–

    http://sema.carcrazycentral.com/Photo/771

  • avatar
    Doogs

    However, none of that changes the fact that the H2 is NOT a mere re-badge of a Tahoe/Yukon. To say so indicates one is ignorant of the differences or is simply dishonest and biased against the product.

    No, it Tahoe/Yukon with some bits borrowed from the Suburban 2500 and a big shoebox of a body kit.

    Not a rebadge. More like…a costume.

    Of course…the same could be said for the FJ Cruiser vis-a-vis the Toyota Tacoma…

  • avatar
    starlightmica

    dolo54-

    The Euro Focus is a completely different beast than the Amero Focus. The former is built on the same C1 platform as the Mazda3, Mazda5, Volvo C30/S40/V50/C70, and is an up to date and more expensive vehicle. The Amero Focus is a cost-cut variant of the original Focus which was introduced in Europe about 8 years ago, and a couple of years later in North America.

    Given the problems that Ford’s NA operation had trying to build the original Focus, Ford NA passed on participating with C1 and it was not designed down to the price points Ford NA has in mind for the small car market. Now, Ford has an old product they have to put lots of cash down on the hood to move, Consumer Reports’ recommendation notwithstanding.

    Mazda has the opposite problem with the 3 – it can’t build enough for the US market, and it commands a higher price without rebates. And that was before the Cougar Ace incident where thousands of Mazda3′s were damaged in transit.

  • avatar
    nweaver

    Dolo: Why don’t we get the UK focus? (Well, we do as a Mazda, but not as a Ford)

    Because Ford was too cheap to pay for new tooling in the US Focus plant. Let me repeat that: FORD REALLY WAS TOO CHEAP TO PAY FOR NEW TOOLING IN THE FOCUS PLANT!

    The design was completely federalized by Mazda, so all the approval and everything else would be trivial. Heck, all the I4s are designed by Mazda anyway…

    Thus we got a warmed over update, while Europe gets a great car. Because Ford US didn’t care about the small car!

    The proof is in the pudding, the Mazda3 sells for list, NO discounting even on the 2006. The Focus is getting $2.5k of incentives for 2007, on a $15k car.

    I bet there are a lot of Ford execs who are really regretting that decision.

  • avatar
    Caffiend

    For some strange reason, I now want to buy a car with the ignition key between the seats. Damn subliminal blogging!

  • avatar

    A cursory look at the list shows that GM is the biggest loser, but I think it’s clear that upon closer inspection, DCX is the biggest loser.

    GM’s entries on the list are oldies, soon to be a not-so-pleasant memory.

    Not even GM would argue with TWAT #’s 1 and 3.

    GM minivans: Used to be 5 (Chevy, Pontiac, Olds, Saturn, Buick) for sale, but by next year only the Chevy and (maybe) Buick will still be on sale.

    Rendezvous will be gone too.

    DCX, however, has two brand-new launch vehicles on the list: Compass & As(s)pen (is it coincidence they both have ‘ass’ in their names?). Add to that the new Sebring which will surely make next year’s list and this makes DCX the biggest loser in my book.

  • avatar
    chaz_233

    TTAC stopped being true to its name when it myseriously removed that atrocity, the Camry, from the TWAT contenders list even though it was nominated dozens of times.
    The winners list just apes the garbage we read in every other car magazine. All the trouble for a list that looks like a carbon copy of a “consumer” reports article.

  • avatar
    SherbornSean

    Can we have a list of posts I really don’t want to read anymore because they are sooooo tired? Some candidates:
    - TTAC is biased against domestics
    - TTAC is biased against imports
    - Ford should update the Focus (we know)
    - And the Ranger
    - and the CrownVic/Montego/Town Car
    - Camry is boring (then don’t buy one)
    - my ‘Vette is better than your Porsche
    - my Porsche is better than your ‘Vette
    - SUVs suck
    - Mercury has no reason to live
    - Or Buick

  • avatar
    kaisen

    Democracy means everyone has the right to vote. And anyone could have voted on TTAC, everyone was invited, for free. Kudos to TTAC. However, reality = not everyone votes. The ‘voters’ here were TTAC readers …. not a diverse bunch. If all of the subscribers to Sports Illustrated (largest, most diverse demographic) voted, we’d have a VERY different TWAT list. But we are ‘pistonheads’ as RF calls us, and we see the automotive world a little differently than, say, HOT ROD magazine readers.

    So, we got a whole bunch of like-minded enthusiasts to vote on a narrow selection of pre-selected cars. Why do the results surprise us? Seriously. Hats off to TTAC.

  • avatar
    TexasAg03

    i.e. for all intents and purposes a Yukon dressed up as a Village Person.

    I agree that the H1 is awesome. However, I still say that a STOCK 4-wheel drive Tahoe Z71 does not have the capability of an H2. I admit it is not a perfect vehicle.

    Colorado/Canyon ?!?!?!?!

    God awful looks, terrible reliability, no V-6, overdue for re-design, weak sales.

    And I’m a GM fan.

    I base that on two good friends who both own Colorados and couldn’t be happier.

  • avatar
    espo19047

    Are you rating the 06 Aveo? The 2007 Aveo is a great little car. It is safer then the competiton. It is also less expensive. Oh by the way it is the #1 selling small car in the USA.

  • avatar

    The 07 Aveo 5-door is identical to the 06 and is the one Chevy brags about being the lowest priced car in America. It’s also a cracker box.

  • avatar
    BrendanMac

    The proof is in the pudding, the Mazda3 sells for list, NO discounting even on the 2006.

    Good God no. You should only be paying list on Toyotas. There’s some good discounts to be had on a ’3.

    Loved the list. The only thing better than a glowing review of a great car is a searing review of a bad car.

  • avatar

    My list of domestics is based off magazine reviews and overall rate of sales.

    Dodge Charger/300c (hands down best cars Chrysler corp has ever made!)

    Saturn Aura (has received excellent reviews, even from this site!)

    Pontiac G6 (not the same as Saturn, sales have continually increased despite drop in incentives)

    Chevrolet Corvette (best car in the world, for the value; leaf-spring suspension and all)

    Ford Fusion/Milan/MKZ (even though they’re built in Mexico, they have had good reviews and good sales)

    Ford500/Montego ( a solid platform, a good price, people seem to like them, can’t wait for the new 3.5L and front fascias)

    Buick Lucerne( # 1 large sedan in sales, good reviews)

    Cadillac CTS ( do I have to say anything?)

    Cadillac XLR (no clone of the Corvette, a top notch competitor in the luxury roadster segment)

    Ford Mustang (do I have to say anything?)

  • avatar
    starlightmica

    espo19047 -

    Aveo is no longer the subcompact sales champ. Sales YTD, via last week’s press releases:

    Aveo 50,967
    Scion xB 54,495
    Yaris 58,146

    And those are dwarfed by the best selling compact:
    Corolla 330,995

  • avatar
    Matthew Potena

    I agree with all of the comments regarding the ugliness of the Rendezvous. A guy in my office has one and its so ugly I park on the other side of the parking lot to avoid looking at it as I walk into the office! As for domestic cars, I think the following are worthy of owning:
    Corvette (with some work, this could be a world beater)
    Sky/Solstice (redo the top and give it a trunk, please!)
    300C (made with bits of “E”, how bad could it be?)
    Jeep Wrangler (it knows what it is, and makes no excuses)
    Mustang (a shame about the interior and live rear axle)

  • avatar

    i might know a little birdie that compared a rendezvous to goatse. maybe.

    if the minivans/rendezvous were lumped into one unit, we’d have room on the list for my personal worst – the Subaru Baja.

    and I thought the FJ had more in common with the 4Runner’s componentry than the Taco.

  • avatar
    Johnson

    Espo, sorry, but the 2007 Aveo is NOT safer than the competition. In fact, it got pretty bad crash results in Euro NCAP tests.

    Overall, great list, and funny commentary to support it.

    Kaisen, actually, TTAC readers, for the most part, seem to be a bunch of objective, sensible car fans/auto enthusiasts, not necessarily “pistonheads”. Stereotpyical pistonheads would be talking about muscle or sports cars all day long, instead of objectively discussing all cars.

  • avatar
    Jim Boyd

    starlightmica
    Aveo is no longer the subcompact sales champ. Sales YTD, via last week’s press releases:

    Aveo 50,967
    Scion xB 54,495
    Yaris 58,146

    Yaris FTW! Definitely what I want for my next car… Aveo OTOH is craptacular.

  • avatar
    dean

    Speaking of the Compass, I saw my first one today. I was surprised as it actually looks better than the pictures… until you get to the front. Profile and rear views are better than its Caliber twin, but the front is undeniably grotesque. Curvy where the rest of the car is straight-edged, what the hell were they thinking?

  • avatar
    nichjs

    Just as an aside, remember when comparing UK mpg with US mpg that we use the imperial galon, which is 20% bigger than the Us gallon, so divide by 1.2 to get the Us equivalent economy for comparison with US domestics.

    http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en&q=1+imperial+gallon+in+US+gallons&meta=

  • avatar
    jerseydevil

    the Cadillac XLR ir right up there with the silliest things i have ever seen.

  • avatar
    nfestivo

    It’s interesting how we allow the domestic automakers to be only as good as their worst product… but we all hail individual products in isolation of its maker – like Mustang, Z06, 300C, Tahoe/Escalade/Silverado, Solstic/SKY, Focus, F150, CTS, Upcoming Camaro, and others that we own and aspire to own… but when we refer to GM, Ford, Chrysler – the umbrella brand house – we turn sour and appalled and make mention of those products on TWAT. I’m not separating myself from this… I do it just as much as everyone else.

  • avatar
    dhathewa

    nfestivo, Ford and GM’s best products are sold in such small quantities as to make them irrelevant to the experience of 90% of Ford and GM owners. For every ‘Vette, GM sells dozens of Impalas and the Impala experience defines GM for most of us. The hot Mustangs are good muscle cars but 90% of the Mustangs sold are not the hot Mustangs.

  • avatar
    ash78

    nfestivo

    There are many that think that manufacturers should consistent with their quality and passion at every price point, in ever segment (just change content, size and performance to suit the market). However, it’s been posited that most domestics have purposely decontented and “crappified” their lower-end models in an attempts to sell you the nicer ones instead–ie, the ones you mentioned. Well, if you end up with a lower-end model because of budget constraints, you only get angry with the manufacturer and decide you don’t want to do business with them again.

    OTOH, you have VW, who is probably the best at this. I can sit in a Polo or Golf and say “this is a very nice car, I’d like to own a Passat one day”. The Japanese marques do this pretty well, too, but they stratify the branding (eg Scion-Toyota-Lexus) to help win lifetime customers.

  • avatar
    Ar-Pharazon

    (Go ahead and spin this in any negative way that makes you feel good.)

    Consumer Reports tips hat to Ford
    22 models get recommendations
    Detroit Free Press 11/09/06
    by Sarah A. Webster
    (c) Copyright 2006&044; Detroit Free Press. All Rights Reserved.

    ——————————————————————————–

    Ford Motor Co. has scored some bold play for its bold new moves.

    The Ford Fusion sedan, launched in September 2005, has landed on the cover of Consumer Reports’ influential new car and truck preview.

    The Fusion and its catchy chrome-bar grille share the cover with the Toyota Yaris subcompact car.

    Toyota Motor Corp. led all automakers with 31 models recommended by the magazine, which went on sale a day in advance of the official release date.

    But Ford performed admirably, landing firmly in second place with 22 recommended models. It had 17 a year ago.

    Among domestic rivals, Ford has the most recommended models. General Motors Corp. has 16, and Chrysler has six.

    Ford beat Honda Motor Co., which has 16, and Nissan Motor Co., with seven.

    Ford was celebrating the news late Wednesday.

    “It’s a confirmation that we are doing things right,” said Bennie Fowler, vice president of global quality and advanced and manufacturing engineering.

    “The quality at Ford Motor Co. today is as good as any import. … I would like to invite consumers to test drive a Ford. They walked away from us before, but it’s really time for people to come back and give it a try.”

    David Champion, the senior director of the Consumer Reports auto-test division, is scheduled to be in Detroit today, where he will officially release the magazine’s results.

    The Consumer Reports stamp of approval could boost Fusion sales, already at 120,994 this year.

  • avatar
    starlightmica

    Woohoo, Ford beat Honda in the number of CR recommendations. How is that possible? Acura + Honda = 18 different vehicles, and that’s counting the Civic Si and hybrids as separate vehicles.

    Better yet, how many TWATs got recommended by CR this year? Haven’t been able to access the article yet, but I’m certain at least one (Tribeca) will.

    Oddity: for some reason CR likes the Ford Focus, ranking it above every car save the Civic. Go figure.

  • avatar
    ash78

    The only thing I’ve found online from CR is the “New and Notable” list for 2007:

    MDX
    Silverado
    CR-V
    Saturn Outlook
    Tesla Roadster
    Tundra
    Volvo S80

  • avatar
    starlightmica

    Here’s the link:
    http://www.freep.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061109/BUSINESS01/61109001/1014/BUSINESS01

    Ford Fusion is not CR’s highest rated sedan, it’s either the Accord EX V6 or VW Passat V6, but my issue is at home.

    Yes, Tribeca again made CR’s list, making it the only TWAT there. Aspen’s twin, the Dodge Durango, is also recommended.

    CR rates 4 and V6 sedans separately, so Fusion gets listed twice, Civic 3 times. Some vehicles judged to have borderline average reliability have a way of falling on and off the list – The Kia Sorento made it this year and 2 years ago, but not last year.

  • avatar
    Jonny Lieberman

    Tesla Roadster?

  • avatar

    It’s interesting how CR treats each permutation of trim level, body style, and drivetrain as a different model. That doesn’t speak very highly of a particular model overall when only very specifically optioned versions get on the “recommended” list.

    Does anyone know what they use as criteria for selecting these? And why one trim level may make it (e.g., “Pontiac G6, Base” or “Nissan 350Z, convertible”) but not other trim levels of the same car?

  • avatar
    ash78

    starlightmica
    IIRC, the Passat 3.6 is indeed the #1 sedan right now, followed closely by the Acura TL.

    EDIT: Over the past month or two, CR slyly put the Passat back down in family sedans instead of where it was in luxury sedans, even though any thinking person would easily compare it head-to-head against a TL (price, amenities). Again, stupid segmentation ruins a comparison. The Accord is once again the top “family sedan”

    Jonny
    As usual, reporting on high-volume cash cow cars doesn’t sell magazines without something about low-volume electric supercars. Finally, a vehicle that enthusiasts and treehuggers can find some common ground on ;)

  • avatar
    Ar-Pharazon

    Thank you . . . my day would not have been complete without at least someone pointing out to me how this was a negative. There is some information your just can’t get anywhere else!

  • avatar
    nfestivo

    dhathewa:

    GM best product’s are not in small quantities (i.e. 10% of the volume as you suggest.) We all know GM’s portfolio is heavily overweighted in trucks and SUVs – and today they are arguably the best in the full-size segments. We all know those volumes (and margins) are tremendous – hence they were prioritized by GM to fix first. Now that quality is extending to the more “accessible” segments as you refer to – Ex. Aura, G6, CTS, H3, Outlook, Acadia, Enclave, etc… All of which are desireable products where perceived quality needs to catch up to actual quality. I own a G6 sedan and love it… I recommend it to anyone.

    From what I see, the lessons have been learned. It just takes a few years to apply those learnings into new product, unfortunately. Should it have been done YEARS ago… of course. Did it take crisis for them to fully comprehend it… it appears so… Until all bad product is purged from the portfolio, I’m sure all of us will continue to make examples of the Aztek, Uplander, badge engineering, and the other popular examples of past mistakes. I, personally, will continue to use Monte Carlo as the epitome of current mistakes – I so dislike that vehicle.

    I’m just really excited to see what they got at Detroit NAIAS.

  • avatar
    starlightmica

    You’re welcome. From Autoblog yesterday, about TTAC:

    “What a bunch of bitter morons.”

    “That is without a doubt the most useless site on the internet. Just a bunch of pimple-faced, pimple-assed whinners not smart enough to pack their own school lunches. Worthless…”

  • avatar
    ash78

    stalightmica
    That’s especially funny since someone on fark called the Autobloggers “even more infantile than we are” (or something to that effect). When fark is talking down to you, the only step down is the Honda tuner forums :D

  • avatar
    Tony C

    Yes, the highest rated Family Sedans from CR are the Accord EX V6 and the Passat 3.6 V6 — they’re very closely followed by the Accord Hybrid, Camry XLE V6, Passat 2.0T and the Camry Hybrid. However, based on being a new model, previous years’ reliability and such, the Passat’s are not “CR Recommended”.

    Everything else in the category drops out of the “Excellent” range, slipping into “Very Good” or lower.

  • avatar

    As the unfortunate owner of a 2001 Chevy Venture I applaud this list and all it stands for.

    3 trannys, all new gaskets, new radiator, 2 new batteries, ball joints and oh yeah, everything inside is broken. 80k miles.

    8 passenger seating sold me, I was conned.

  • avatar
    starlightmica

    CR now recommends only the Passat V6, giving the Passat 2.0T the dubious honor of least reliable “family car”.

    http://www.detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061109/AUTO01/611090364/1148

  • avatar
    TexasAg03

    The H2 is what it is- a 2500 series Suburban/Yukon XL in Hummer clothing.

    …if “Hummer clothing” means heavily modified suspension, a more capable 4-wheel drive system, increased suspension articulation, electronic locking rear differential, and greater approach and departure angles.

    Once again, I don’t think this is the best vehicle for off-road use, but do some research, please. The H2 is BASED ON the 2500 Suburban chassis, but it is not the SAME AS. I have a 4-wheel drive Suburban, and there is NO WAY that it will come close to doing what an H2 can.

    Rag on the Hummer for something substantial, but not for something that is not true.

  • avatar
    ash78

    starlightmica
    Odd that CR downgrades the 2.0T. That makes no sense to me, unless they are assuming there will be some kind of problems like the old 1.8t had with coilpacks. The 2.0t models are generally more modestly equipped than the V6–fewer electronics and no AWD (the two things most likely to cause problems). I’ve grown a lot more reasons to distrust CR over the years. And their unpublished “justifications” for some of these rankings can really affect sales numbers.

  • avatar
    rottenbob

    I agree, the Compass is not as ugly in person as it is in photos. But it’s still quite ugly… and a desecration of the Jeep name.

    Here is a question for everyone: Will the forthcoming Jeep Patriot be as reviled as the Compass?

  • avatar
    jerseydevil

    TexasAg03

    Hummers suck. Period.

    Many reasons, im sure u’ve heard them all

    My 2 cents

  • avatar
    Ryan

    TexasAg03, can we at least rag on the H2 for being designed to sell to people with compensation issues?

    Seriously, it was originally supposed to have a more raked windshield, until it was decided that wasn’t masculine enough.

  • avatar
    Tequib01

    If you’ve ever wondered “What the hell were they thinking” when they designed the exterior of the Chevy Uplander, I had an epiphany the other day when a white one pulled along side me at a stoplight that might explain it.

    If you squint your eyes just right it looks an “awful” lot like Brian the dog from the Family Guy. Seriously …check it out.

  • avatar
    Point Given

    Funny this brings back a car sales memory. I was once trying to sell a customer a nice SE Murano off of my lot, they said that they were going to check out some of the other competition and then would make a decision. Fair enough I said assuming that they’d be checking out the usual suspects (lexus, acura, occasionally Volvo)…..then, I called them a few days later to do a polite follow up. The lady said that she bought a Rendezvous. She described it as “Much nicer than the Murano”. I practically shouted into the phone “WHAT!”. I am still choked and bitter to this day about that one. One of the very few times a GM product won out (usually honda/toyota).

    the fact that this “suvan” is #3 on the list confirms that either a) that lady and her husband are crazy or b) they were sold on the price (rebated as it was) which normally happens with the domestics.

    PG

  • avatar

    My wife and I have had a Buick Rendezvous for 4.5 years and have been pleased with it. Sure, it’s not the most attractive vehicle out there, but it has a lot of nice features. It also seems to be getting more popular as I have noticed more and more of them out on the road.

    My only complaint, other than the somewhat funky styling, is that it could stand to be a little longer.

  • avatar
    Point Given

    JLP,

    It’s worth noting that the sales world(nissan seller) I was in at the time was heavily anti-domestic and having anything domestic as a competitor was quite a shock. The fact that the Murano (in my opinon) is the best ride that Nissan makes at present plus the fact that I was very good at selling them (nearly 15% of my sales, when everyone else was around 5%) plus the fact that I sold one to my mom even…..

    We had several Rendez’s on the used lot at various times. Frankly, it wasn’t a worthy competitor to the Murano even decked out. I told the national trainer that happened to me, he even thought it was strange.

    BUT, as always, if you take the rebated employee pricing price into account some people will think (right or wrong is a matter of opinon) that it offers better value.

    Related to the above value comment….despite my import snobbishness…. I drive a 97 Dakota single cab extremely base. Reason? I got it as a trade in where I worked *extremely* cheap and for the price it was excellent value. If it was 10,000 cdn for a dakota or 10,000 for a Toyota/Nissan truck it’d be no contest. At 2000 for the Dakota vs 10,000 for Toyota/Nissan…again, no contest.

  • avatar
    TexasAg03

    jerseydevil:
    November 9th, 2006 at 5:52 pm

    TexasAg03

    Hummers suck. Period.

    Many reasons, im sure u’ve heard them all

    My 2 cents

    I don’t have a problem with people that don’t like Hummers, just people that describe them as “re-badged Tahoes” (or whatever GM S.U.V. you choose).

    Ryan:
    TexasAg03, can we at least rag on the H2 for being designed to sell to people with compensation issues?

    Seriously, it was originally supposed to have a more raked windshield, until it was decided that wasn’t masculine enough.

    The same could be said of many performance cars (compensation issues). You are probably right about many Hummer owners, maybe most of them. However, that doesn’t automatically make them “suck”. Just because some, or most, don’t use a particular vehicle for its intended use or to its fullest extent, doesn’t make that a bad vehicle.

    People think that S.U.V. owners should drive minivans to cart their brood. How often are those minivans used to their full capability? We have a Suburban, and rarely have all the seats full, but we have a son and another on the way, so we will be using half of them much of the time soon. We may consider a minivan or a large four-door car next time, but either way, we won’t use the capacity all, or even most, of the time.

    Like I have said, if I wanted an off-road capable vehicle that could cart the family, I would choose from this list:

    H3
    FJ Cruiser
    4-Runner
    Rubicon Unlimited

    Does the fact that I wouldn’t use the capability (either off-road or passenger capacity) most of the time make these bad vehicles??

    I don’t think it does.

  • avatar

    After the Camry’s flaws (yes, Virginia, it has some) were described and it received a huge number of votes, you left it off the list.

    Wow.

    Change the name of the site, before anyone believes it.

  • avatar
    dhathewa

    “After the Camry’s flaws (yes, Virginia, it has some) were described and it received a huge number of votes, you left it off the list.” – Zanary

    Sure the Camry has flaws. But the judgement of the market is that it’s a good car. It sells nearly as fast as it can be delivered to dealers with few to no givebacks.

    I didn’t check every vehicle on the list but it seems to me that they’re all … highly available … on dealer lots and the manufacturers are offering up rebates to help them move. The judgement of the market would seem to be reasonably well aligned with TTAC’s … award.

  • avatar
    BostonTeaParty

    yeah it is a shame the large number of people who nominated the camry couldnt get a chance to vote for it. wonder what the results would have been if that was in it?

  • avatar
    Glenn A.

    Interestingly, the Consumer Reports reliability scores just came out and 3 out of the 10 vehicles were on there – on the LEAST RELIABLE section

    Aveo

    Navigator (brother to the LT)

    GM minivans

  • avatar
    Ar-Pharazon

    Zanary/finger . . . watch yourselves, too much of that type of guff will get you banned. As dhathewa has so graciously pointed out, the fact that Camry sells well negates its flaws. And before you go and point out the relative sales of any domestic on the list . . . well . . . of course they do not sell as well as the Camry, and anyway . . . this is about the judgement of the readers here, not about the stupidity of the people who buy domestic makes, so that doesn’t matter.

  • avatar
    dhathewa

    “Zanary/finger . . . watch yourselves, too much of that type of guff will get you banned. As dhathewa has so graciously pointed out, the fact that Camry sells well negates its flaws.” – Ar-Pharazon

    What? We shouldn’t respect the public’s judgement at all?

    The fact that it sells well and not just well but at a high enough price for Toyota to make money says that the vehicle has qualities we don’t necesasrily appreciate. That fact apparently got taken into account.

    The TTAC … awards (I can’t use the acronym, sorry) … are probably pretty reasonable in that they do line up well with public perception of what’s crap. Look at the Compass: on sale for just a couple months, max, at this point and it carries a $750 giveback already. People look at the Impala, they kick the tires on a Five Hundred (or Fusion or whatever) and then they go to the Toyota dealer and cheerfully fork over quite a bit of cash for the Camry when they could get something else for less.

    For some reason, it’s a winner.

    “The Fusion and the Mercury Milan were among the top-ranked family cars …” “How can this be possible?” – Finger

    Because Ford finally got it right. If they do it right for a few more years, then they have a chance to win back my business, which they worked overtime to piss away.

    Ditto for your remarks about GM. Except that the Vibe, of course, is a Toyota.

  • avatar
    jerseydevil

    I saw a Mercury Milan today.

    it looks cool

  • avatar

    Jonny L, you’re critique of the Saab 9… uh, Chevy Trailblazer busted the laughmeter!!!

  • avatar
    wsn

    finger:

    The Ford Fusion is a good car. I predict it will have decent sales over several years. The Fusion is not on the TWAT short list, for the same reason Camry is not.

    Fusion being on par with Camry, doesn’t mean that Camry should be on the list.

  • avatar
    Steven T.

    What would automakers say if they spoke honestly about their TWAT awards? My remarkable psychic powers allow me to bring you the uncensored Truth. Please stand by. . . .

    Chevy Aveo: Where’s the news, Einstein? We have always given our entry-level offerings the “Chevette treatment.” The low price gets you into the dealer, whereupon we show you what a few more dollars will buy. Have you experienced our “slam the door” trick?

    Lincoln Mark LT: The history books will someday recognize that we presciently anticipated the public’s demand for ultra-bling trucks. Note to file: Lincoln makes so much profit per truck that it’s irrelevant if our market share collapses.

    Saab 9-7x: This is our sportiest mid-sized SUV, but if we had called it a Chevy none of you snobs would have paid any attention. Of course, we’re also phasing out the Saab and needed a cheap badge job to keep the dealers from suing. You want us to be fiscally responsible, don’t you?

    Subaru Tribeca: Would you guys have complained about the styling if it had instead graced a retro Saab 95 wagon? At any rate, Farago’s machismo has blinded him to a crucial point: This is a very special kind of chick car. Think about it, stud muffin: Who’d get wet staring at a flying vagina grill and fallopian dashboard? Dude, you aren’t supposed to like this car.

    Chevy Monte Carlo: If you wanted a real hot rod you should have bought a GTO. The Monte Carlo is for the beer-belly crowd. What most matters is when Joe can look up from his brew and coolly announce how many cubic inches he’s got. As for the styling, it’s slicker than the retro-brick Charger.

    Hummer H2: You got a thing about small penises? Lots of women drive the H2 because it gives them the same sense of security as an armored tank. Due to popular demand, next year we’ll be adding an optional turret for those who need to drive in Iraq (or any major American city).

    Chrysler Aspen: Okay, the dealers made us do it. But you’ve got to admit that we needed an alternative to the Durango’s armadillo look. Also give us credit for not basing the Aspen on our full-sized pickup. The Aspen’s remarkable gas mileage proves our green bona fides.

    Buick Rendezvous: Haven’t you guys ever taught developmentally disabled kids? Slap on a smile and recite the following with feeling: The Rendezvous is far and away the most refined and stylish vehicle ever based on our minivan platform. High fives all around!

    Jeep Compass: Do you want Jeep to go the way of Plymouth? Then show a little love! We desperately need a modern-day Jeepster. Sure, we bombed with the Compass, but keep your mouths shut until we can sneak out a replacement.

    GM minivans: Unlike the p—ies at Ford, we’re not cutting and running from this market. Doesn’t that deserve some respect? As for the styling, we’re hardly pygmies among giants when you consider the Nissan Quest and Honda Odyssey.

    As you can see, each TWAT awardee has learned a great deal from TTAC readers. Expect that next year it will be much more difficult to pick the worst automobiles of the year.

  • avatar
    jakeryan1974

    Here’s an exercise, say something nice about each of the ten worst… I can think of a few unique things they each bring to the table.

  • avatar

    Ok I am going to try to say something nice about each TWAT.

    Aveo:
    It’s cheap.

    Lincoln Mark LT:
    Perfect for rich people who enjoy hot air ballooning.

    Saab 9-7x:
    The best looking vehicle on the GMT 360 platform.

    Subaru Tribeca:
    You’ll never lose it in a parking lot.

    Chevy Monte Carlo:
    When it dies it’s supposedly taking the current Grand Prix with it.

    Hummer H2:
    From the factory it’s a bit better at off-roading than the Tahoe.

    Chrysler Aspen:
    With its introduction, as of 2006, all American automobile brands have an SUV in their range.

    Buick Rendezvous:
    Looks a little better than the Aztek.

    Jeep Compass:
    It’s cheap.

    GM minivans:
    They’re cheap.

    Wow that wasn’t as hard as I thought.

  • avatar

    Aveo
    Funny! A South Korean car leading an “American Revolution.”

    Lincoln Mark LT
    The F-150 underneath is a damn good truck.

    Saab 9-7x
    Best-looking Trailblazer ever made.

    Subaru Tribeca B9
    Handles well.

    Chevrolet Monte Carlo
    It’s affordable and reasonably roomy

    Hummer H2
    Makes Aveo drivers move over double quick (although passing them takes a while)

    Chrysler Aspen
    It’s not as bad as its namesake.

    Jeep Compass
    Gives “real” Jeep owners something else to sneer at.

    GM Minivans
    A minivan with a snout. Not a bad idea.

  • avatar
    Jim H

    Wow, that was a lot of comments to read through. The Subaru Tribeca just didn’t do it for me…although I honestly thought I’d love it before I sat in one. Subaru is still doing very well however…one oversight on their line of cars isn’t the end of the world. Hummers have always been ugly…and likely always will in my opinion. If masculinity means ugly…they’ve got that down pact!

    When considering a car, I always look at the positives and negatives that a site places on each car. Often times, the negatives are very low on my priority list: back seat room, questionable styling, small trunk, etc. Those things don’t rank up high for me…in fact, I almost prefer most of them. I’d rather not be the guy at work that shuttles everyone to lunch because I have the best car for it. I’d rather not be the guy that gets called to pick people up from the airport…since I have the biggest trunk. And I definately don’t want to be the guy that has a car that looks like everyone elses.

    What matters to me: safety, reliability, affordability (I still use the 1/2 of my yearly salary as a cap), fun-to-drive (opinion), good gas mileage (good being completely opinion based), and stylish (again, opinion). Nine out of ten people usually think the copper or burnt orange color of cars is hideous…I happen to like it. That doesn’t mean it’s a deciding factor for me…but it’s definately not a disqualifying factor either. I never wanted to own a silver sedan…but along comes the Subaru Legacy Spec-b…and it no longer was a disqualifying factor. :) But move the gas mileage down about 10% and/or the price up about 10%…and that no longer is a car I want.

    For dream cars, I’ve got a completely different list than reality cars. And if I could afford it, I’d gladly own a $10K-$12K car to commute in while keeping my fun car in the garage…but that’s just not reality.

  • avatar
    SuperAROD

    Saw a Compass on the streets. Looks like a mini, more modern Liberty. The complaints about the interior are interesting, considering it is basically the same interior as the Caliber, which is selling like mad.

    Basically it is an entry level Jeep, much in the tradition of the Jeepster, DJ3, or the Willy’s Jeep Wagon, not ever designed to master the Rubicon.

    I also find it sad that many people forget the history of Jeep and say that if it can’t do the Rubicon, it isn’t a real jeep, which is utter nonsense. They bash the Compass incessentantly, ignorant of the fact that not all Jeeps have been designed as 4wd monsters.

    I’m not a huge fan of the Compass, I think the Patriot has a better look and will be a greater success, but Jeep has as much right to the CUV market as Mazda or Ford does.

    And for $16K, stop expecting gold trim, leather seats, and a juice bar.

  • avatar
    rpaz

    Been driving around Colorado in my Compass on horrible, unplowed, blizzard hit roads and highways and it does AWESOME, , going right thorugh stuff that a lot of people have been getting stuck in, I get compliments on it every where I go, I don’t make enough money to by a BMW, or Mercedes or Cadillac but my Compass does great on the mountain roads of Colorado, not hard core off roading mind you, but in practical applications, like daily driving, it does GREAT….

  • avatar
    Lamborghini48907

    SuperAROD: I disagree, the Compass is like none of those vehicles

  • avatar
    paul1149

    Love the reviews here, but hate the frequent, vulgar reference to female body parts. It’s really a stain on your excellence and professionalism, which otherwise is exceedingly high, and was enough to stop me reading for half a year. Wish you guys would get the revelation and clean things up.

    Thanks,
    p.


Back to TopLeave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.

Subscribe without commenting

Recent Comments

New Car Research

Get a Free Dealer Quote

Staff

  • Authors

  • Brendan McAleer, Canada
  • Marcelo De Vasconcellos, Brazil
  • Matthias Gasnier, Australia
  • J & J Sutherland, Canada
  • Tycho de Feyter, China
  • W. Christian 'Mental' Ward, Abu Dhabi
  • Mark Stevenson, Canada
  • Faisal Ali Khan, India