Ten Worst Automobiles Nominations Please

Frank Williams
by Frank Williams

The Truth About Cars (TTAC) strives to report on all things automotive with the complete, unvarnished, unadulterated, no-holds-barred truth. All our authors write from a single-minded perspective: the consumer’s interests are more important than those of the industry. All our commentators keep us– and the industry– honest. In other words, we’re all a bunch of troublemakers. And it’s time once again to make some trouble. Ladies and gentlemen, I’m proud to announce that nominations are now open for TTAC’s second annual Ten Worst Awards.

Yes, while our colleagues strive to celebrate the best that the U.S. automotive industry has to offer, we're looking for your help to name the ten worst new vehicles domestic money can (but shouldn't) buy. To refresh your memory, here are the winners you selected during our last forary into America's automotive heart of darkness.

2006 Ten Worst Automobiles Today Winners

10. Chevrolet Aveo5


9. Lincoln Mark LT


8. Saab 9-7x


7. Subaru B9 Tribeca


6. Chevrolet Monte Carlo


5. Hummer H2


4. Chrysler Aspen


3. Buick Rendezvous


2. Jeep Compass


1. GM Minivans

Thankfully, the following losers winners have gone to that big garage in the sky: GM Minivans, Chevrolet Monte Carlo and Buick Rendezvous. Another '06 Ten Worst winner is slated for extermination (Saab 9-7x) while the Subaru Tribeca been redesigned to remove its, uh, pudenda. The rest live to die another day, remaining eligible for nomination and another Ten Worst award. Here are the six simple rules governing your nominations and an outline of the entire selection process:

2007 Ten Worst Award Rules of Engagement

1. Any car or light truck offered for sale as a new vehicle in the US between January 1 and today is eligible for nomination. It doesn't matter who built it or where. Repeat nominations from last year are allowed.

2. Nominations may be deleted without prior warning or explanation for any of the following reasons: insufficient justification, excessive verbosity or pontification, foul language or patent absurdity.

3. All nominations must meet TTAC's house rules on flaming or trolling (i.e., don't). Offensive comments about other readers will be summarily deleted and the writer may be permanently banned from posting on TTAC. That said, offensive observations about the nominees are encouraged.

3. Blatantly badge-engineered siblings can be nominated for a joint award if they all suck equally.

4. TTAC's writing team will select 20 finalists from the nominees, based on how well the nominations were justified and our personal opinions of the vehicles in question. Unlike last year, we won't track the total number of nominations for a given vehicle.

5. Readers will vote via an electronic survey on 20 finalists to determine America's Ten Worst cars. Multiple voting will be electronically prohibited. Anyone attempting to circumvent this ban through hackery will be permanently banned from posting on the site.

6. Nominations begin today and will continue until midnight EDT, Monday October 22. We will present the 20 finalists for voting on October 29. The winners will be announced on first of November.

While there's no doubt our readers know Ten Worst-iness when they see it, there are a few specifics that make a vehicle truly TWAT-worthy:

1.) Looks that stop traffic. In a bad way.

2.) The "WTF were they thinking?" factor. A true Ten Worst recipient leaves you wondering which bodily orifice the designers pulled it from and what management was smoking when they approved it. Cheap materials, poor ergonomics and questionable build quality only compound the problem, and help its chances of winning an award.

3.) Misused technology. This could be a car so low-tech you wonder if it was designed in the ‘70s, or so high-tech it's rendered virtually undrivable.

4.) Unfathomable product planning. Your favorite automotive abomination could be the result of poorly-executed badge engineering on an already mediocre vehicle. Or it could be a vehicle that's just a dumb idea, a market segment misfit or an answer to a question no one asked (or ever will).

An ideal TWAT would combine most or all of these factors, with an additional je ne sais quois that makes enthusiasts throw-up in their mouths a little upon sight. Those are the miserable machines we seek.

[NB: If someone has already nominated your favorite, please don't add a "me too" comment, unless you provide additional reasons why the vehicle is a really good (bad?) candidate for an award.]

As TTAC has grown since last year, we'll be posting updates and pithy quotes throughout the week, so you don't have to page through several hundred comments per post.

We here behind the scenes look forward to your nominations and attendant CIVILIZED debate. Thanks for helping us do that voodoo that we do for you.

Frank Williams
Frank Williams

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  • Jerome10 Jerome10 on Oct 19, 2007

    And yet one more I forgot. Chrysler Sebring. Perfection of mediocrity. They definitely checked off every box in the requirement list and then hit the showers. Engine? Check. Seats? Check. Wheels? Check. Horrible style? Check. Terrible all-new 4 cyl engine? Check. Old school 4 speed tranny? Check. Ribbed hood? Check. Rock hard seats? Check. Huge waiting list from Avis, Hertz, Alamo, and Thrifty? Check. Great job boys!

  • Capdeblu Capdeblu on Oct 21, 2007

    I would like to nominate the Saturn P-on no excuse me Ion for worst car of the year. How Saturn could take a relatively funky car the SL and turn in into this is beyond me. Once upon a time Saturns sold for sticker price. They couldnt give the Ions away.

  • V16 2025 VW GLI...or 2025 Honda Civic SI? Same target audience, similar price points. Both are rays of sun in the gray world of SUV'S.
  • FreedMike Said this before and I'll say it again: I'm not that exercised about this whole "pay for a subscription" thing, as long as the deal's reasonable. And here's how you make it reasonable: offer it a monthly charge. Let's say that adaptive headlights are a $500 option on this vehicle, and the subscription is $15 a month, or $540 over a three year lease. So you try the feature for a month, and if you like it, you keep it; if you don't, then you discontinue it, like a Netflix subscription. In any case, you didn't get charged $500 up front the feature. That's not a bad deal.In my case, let's say VW offers an over the air chip reflash that gives me another 25 hp. The total price of the upgrade is $1,000 (which is what a reflash would cost you in the aftermarket). If they offered me a one time monthly subscription for $50 to try it out, I'd take it. In other words, maybe the news isn't all bad.
  • 2ACL A good car, but - at least in this configuration -not one that should command a premium. Its qualities just aren't as enduring as those of Honda's contemporary sports cars. For better or worse, this is a formula they remain able to replicate.
  • Jalop1991 I just read that Tesla's profits are WAY down "as the electric vehicle company has faced both more EV competition from established automakers and a slowing of overall EV sales growth." This Cadillac wouldn't help Tesla at all, but the slowing market of EV sales overall means this should be a halo/boutique car. Regardless, yes, they should make it.
  • FreedMike It's just a damn shame that Alfa never conquered its' quality demons in time for the Giulia and Stelvio to hit the market - these are loaded with personality, and we need more product like that.
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