By on December 10, 2012

It’s finally time to vote for your choice of The Worst Automobiles Today. Find out how below.

Readers can choose one vehicle via our system below. We’ll tally the votes below after the poll closes at 11:59 A.M. on January 9th, 2013. The top 10 cars will be singled out for this prestigious honor bestowed upon them by our readers. In the interest of disclosure, TTAC exercised its editorial powers regarding the nominees list; pursuant to previous rules, we have combined blatant badge-engineering cases in a single category, while a couple nominees were stricken from the record, mostly due to weak arguments largely rooted in personal vendettas against the vehicle. Despite that, it’s still up to you in the end.

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69 Comments on “Vote On Your Choice Of TWATs...”

  • avatar

    There are two options to vote for the Toyota Corolla appearing, but none for the Toyota Matrix. Is this a glitch?

  • avatar

    I still feel the Eclipse shouldn’t be here – it’s not even on the Mitsubishi USA website any more!

  • avatar
    velvet fog

    There’s a whole lot of excrement on that list.

  • avatar

    Wondering how the Nissan Cube didn’t make the list, it was nominated at least 3-4 times.

    • 0 avatar
      James Courteau

      Probably because the Cube is a great little car.

      • 0 avatar

        I’d agree.

        A lot of the list is sour grapes. There are some bad cars (the ZDX, Savannah/Express and ForTwo) and some weird cars wandering in the forest of purposelessness (the CrossCabriolet) but there’s also a lot of cars that are either odd-looking (CrossTour, Juke), dull (Corolla) and/or rub people the wrong way (Volt, Panamera).

        The Corolla, for example, isn’t actually a bad car. Nor is the ILX, Volt, Mazda2, Civic, Quest and several others.

      • 0 avatar

        That would be why it’s sales numbers are poor and it’s a staple of rental fleets?

  • avatar

    How can the Scion xD hold 2% of the total with 0 votes?

  • avatar

    I looked at the results after voting and noted that the Kia Sedona has 5% of the vote with ZERO votes?? Who stuffed the virtual ballot box?

  • avatar

    easy _ the winners are non-union cars and the losers are the uaw cars and union built cars

    Gm designed the best cars in the world time and time again and if it wasn’t for the superior management, designers and engineers it would have been impossible to meet the ridiculous demands of the greedy unions. I have friends in Indiana that got 95% pay for not working, driving new Corvettes and Escalades and they couldn’t stop laughing.

    I have been driving GM cars my whole life and I can no longer support, in good faith, the destruction of the USA.

  • avatar

    There are a few turds on this list, but a lot of them aren’t all that bad. Poor styling/a car in a segment that you aren’t interested in does not mean it’s a bad car.

    It pains be to pick the Patriot, as a Jeep guy, but it is truly BAD. In it’s segment, it offers worse mpg’s while providing less HP than the competition. It also features bland exterior styling combined with Jeep’s chunky, overwrought interior design (the FJ could be worse on the interior part). To add insult to injury, it cheapens the Jeep brand with no off-road capability. If it says Jeep on the front, it better be able to make me worry about getting stuck before it actually does. Honestly, after a test drive, there were no redeeming qualities.

    • 0 avatar

      The 4WD version of the Patriot is a very good off-roader for it’s segment – in fact when compared to the CRV, Escape or Equinox it’s the only offroad capable machine in it’s segment. Remember, it’s a soccer mom CUV not a Wrangler wannabe.

  • avatar
    el scotto

    Not voting for this. It’s mostly a list of this vehicle doesn’t meet someones exacting standards. Truly bad and unreliable horrid rolling pieces of crap? No, this should be called the worse styled/how cheap can we make it car of the year. Would you like to supersize your hateraid?

  • avatar

    Is there anyone who has sat in all these cars, let alone driven all of them? I doubt that very much.
    I voted for one of the few I have driven, an econobox car which I believe would be reliable long term, but one whose seats were execrable. Uncomfortable after the first few minutes, painful after half an hour.If I were hard up, I’d consider it anyway and then stick a decent junkyard seat in it.

  • avatar

    I must say, the ILX is a gorgeous looking car. I have stared at it for long periods of time and the design is spot on….

    If it was my $15,000… a 3 year old ILX 2.4 would certainly be on my list… White please…..

  • avatar
    Domestic Hearse

    Changed my vote from my nomination (MKT — The Humpback from the Deep), to the BMW 5-Series GT. Why? Because three weeks ago, I was riding in an example of a three-day-old 5-GT when the idiot light came on in stop and go freeway traffic. It then proceeded to only move forward only under WOT. And then, just barely. The idiot light then warned that shutting off the engine would probably mean the car would not re-start, and that immediate steps should be taken to find the nearest BMW facility (which we did). Once at the BMW dealer, the car was dead. Would not move. Jacked up and then carted off on rollers. Long story short, two and a half weeks later, and with a new transmission from Germany, and the 5-GT is back on the road after its complete transmission failure just four days after delivery. TWAT-worthy first-hand experience.

  • avatar
    Land Ark

    I wanted to vote for the Karma simply because it was Motor Trend’s COTY. But the so-insultingly-ancient platform-Impala was too much of a draw for me.
    The most depressing are the terrible cars that can’t even muster enough attention to get votes for this kind of thing. Scion xB, how far you’ve fallen.

    • 0 avatar

      I had the Impala for the same reasons you mention, but changed it to the Karma as soon as I saw it on the list. What a joke that car and company is. It’s not funny that so many tax dollars were wasted on it though…

    • 0 avatar

      I’m not sure that I get all of the xB hate in the objective sense. Sure, it pales in comparison to the original by falling into the cliched and bloated all things to all people trap, but it’s not a bad ride at the end of the day.

    • 0 avatar

      No, the Tesla Model S was Motor Trend’s 2013 COTY, and deservedly so. The Fisker Karma was a contender for the 2012 award, but the results were rather embarrassing. The car was deemed too preproduction to properly evaluate.

      • 0 avatar

        Motor Trend was a pathetic joke that showed you knew nothing about cars even when I was a kid in the early 70’s. It had all the prestige (and accuracy) of Popular Science.

        Protip: MT has steadily gone even farther downhill since. Better Homes and Gardens carries more car cred. If I fed my dog Taco Bell and let him spray diarrhea on a random list of cars, it’d produce more accurate results.

      • 0 avatar


        But you have to admit that getting an award like COTY from MT is at the very least a great marketing coup for a startup car company like Tesla Motors (probably a marking coup for MT too). And certainly more influential than anything said from a car blog like TTAC, whose coverage of Tesla started with a “Tesla Birthwatch” quickly followed by a “Tesla Deathwatch”.

        Btw, there should probably be a Fisker Deathwatch, as well as a Coda Deathwatch.

      • 0 avatar

        What’s a marketing “coup?”

      • 0 avatar

        coup (koo)
        n. pl. coups (kooz)
        1. A brilliantly executed stratagem; a triumph.

  • avatar

    Hands down the most useless car on the list is the SmartForTwo. No back seat and priced like a real car. The first editions here in Canada required removal of the engine to change the oil. At least that’s what I was told by an owner, he may have meant practically remove the engine while extolling his displeasure with his wife’s purchase. I suggest they just pick it up turn it upside down and shake the oil out of it. It was a 3 cylinder diesel I believe.
    No room, no great mileage, no resale value. Way to go Mercedes.

    • 0 avatar

      Also, there are many cars that get better gas mileage and can seat 4 and carry cargo. The Smart ForTwo is frickin’ useless.

      And before someone uses the “park head-in at the curb” canard, that doesn’t work with US bumpers, plus most US municipalities specifically disallow it, even if you had the Euro ones.

      • 0 avatar
        Kosher Polack

        Nailed it. I feel like the “head-in at curb” concept is what this car sacrifices EVERYTHING for, but with new American bumpers and lack of municipal approval, you can’t. They brought over the wrong Smart:

      • 0 avatar

        Enlighten us, what gets better economy than the Smart? Diesels and hybrids, sure, but you can’t get any of those for $15,000. The only car, currently for sale in North America, powered by conventional gas, that gets better fuel economy than the Smart is the Scion iQ. Granted, a number of subcompacts are close, but not better.

    • 0 avatar

      There are alot of two seaters on the market here in the USA – are they frickin’ useless too?

      My dislike for the Smart comes from that Mitsubishi engine. Nothing that small ought to get less than 70 mpg in modest mixed driving.

  • avatar

    Is the worst the one that does nothing right (1), the one that does at least something right but otherwise flops (2), the one that’s not too bad per se but used to be way better (3), or the one that represents the worst of car or human culture?

    1. It’s hard to say that a van (Express), pickup (Colorado), luxury car (XTS), econobox (Mazda2), or off-roader (FJ Cruiser) does nothing right. A year ago, the Dodge Nitro would’ve made it but of the above? Eclipse or Patriot.

    2. Smart and IQ (funny how they have similarly pretentious names). Great for you and your groceries in a crowded city with expensive fuel, and…that’s about it.

    3. Nissan Sentra from personal experience, Civic from reviews.

    4. Cadillac Escalade, followed by the rest of the jacked up luxobarge parade.

  • avatar
    Muttley Alfa Barker

    I’ll vote for anything from Nissan on this list.

  • avatar

    XC90??? Really?

    It’s an SUV, so by definition of the class, it’s a TWAT, but for what it is, it’s a very nice TWAT indeed.

  • avatar

    I voted for the Colorado, because it is just an embarrassment. GM is one of the world’s best makers of pickup trucks, pickups are their bread and butter. Even when a crap car comes out, people are still buying Chevy and GMC trucks.

    One would think that for someone with such a rich history of making good trucks could do better than the Colorado. There is no V6 option, just a 5-cyl that is more inefficient and slow than a V6 would be, and then there is the V8, which uses as much gas as a full-size Silverado (great truck).

    The interior is crap, and that is by GM standards, too.

    It may serve its basic purpose, as a mobile open bed, but GM could have easily done a lot better.

    • 0 avatar

      For me, it was a showdown between the Patriot, Galant, 200/Avenger and the Colorado/Canyon. I share your sentiment on these twin trucks. GM could have done much better but didn’t. To me, the positively ancient Ranger was more desirable, let alone the Toyota or Nissan minis.

      I voted for the Jeep because it symbolized all that was wrong with Chrysler before bailout and Fiat. Maybe the 200/Avenger were more deserving, but at least some make-up on those pigs in the form of the Pentastar and new interiors made them a notch above terrible. Patriot got no such love..

    • 0 avatar

      This one was tough because of all the haters, but here it is.

      GMC Canyon

      Rude and crude she might be
      Oh wait, that’s me
      Stout of heart
      She always starts
      Plain and simple she’s a cheap date
      That’s okay tis her fate
      Carrying friends and the load
      We happily drive down the road
      Driven hard with no complaints, then left outside cold and dirty
      If that’s a TWAT then I’ll take thirty

  • avatar
    juicy sushi

    As some have pointed out, while there’s not a lot which is likeable on the list, calling them horrible is tough. Some are just now outdated, some are ugly, some are a strange niche. I think the winner should be the car which fails as an offering within the segment, and has done so since debut, as in, it was uncompetitive as a design, which is a failure on the part of the manufacturer. Out of the list, the car which seems to best embody that is the Mitsubishi Gallant. It was never competitive, and simply showcases a lack of talent and ambition on the part of Mitsubishi.

  • avatar

    Moar crossovers please, specifically those that hold the name of once capable SUVs and those that look tough but would struggle to traverse a slightly rutted construction site. The Pathfinder, Explorer, and Terrain would be a good start.

  • avatar

    I feel this list is a lot longer than it needs to be. To me, a bad car has so much against it, is so poorly executed, and has competitors offering a lot more so that it shouldn’t exist. To me, the Jeep Patriot, all of Mitsubishi’s line-up except the Evo and the Chrysler 200/Sebring/Avenger are bad cars and deserve to be here. The Mazda 2 also fits, as much as I like Mazdas, because it just isn’t as well done as others in the segment.

    An E-series or Express/Savana van is a tool, as is the Nissan NV. Most people who buy them (and to an extent, Colorado/Canyon) are buying them for work use, not as a commuter or for fun. Your average big van buyer doesn’t care how it works, just that it does, so he can do his work. They are also very loyal to brand, much like full size truck buyers.

    And since the big van never got the popularity boost of the full size truck( driven to become “car-like”) they never had to compete except among themselves. While the GM vans feel a bit newer, it wouldn’t be enough to sway from an E-series if that’s all you’ve had.

    In defense of the microcars,the Smart and iQ must work for those who parking and space are at a premium. Really, for a commuter car, we should all be driving something like them. I feel a Smart with a true manual or a manual and a tiny diesel would actually have some redeeming value.

    BUT,for the price of the Smart, I can get a lame Corolla or Civic, who I feel don’t belong on this list either. These cars exist because not everyone is a panel-stroking, apex clipping, car enthusiast( most car buyers aren’t). And they won’t buy a Korean car which may offer more equipment if not the same level of refinement. Sorry, Hyundai and Kia cars still feel “disjointed” to me. An Elantra just doesn’t feel as well done as a whole car compared to a Civic.
    While Corolla and Civic might not be the class leaders they were 10 or 15 years ago, they aren’t bad because they aren’t exciting.

    The vehicles that are exploiting the economy of scale (i.e shameless money grabs) like the 5 series GT, Honda Crosstour, Acura ZDX and ILX aren’t bad, just not necessary. Or, is it because we are so in love with the SUV/CUV thing, we won’t buy wagons in the US that we have these vehicles? They can’t be losing that much by building them or else they wouldn’t.

    I was behind a Murano CrossCabrio in traffic and while it’s not necessary, it’s still needed. Here’s why IMHO: It’s not the best looking thing (same with Juke & Cube or Scion Xb) or most useful
    but it’s different and we need different to shake up the automotive landscape.

    I dislike the Navigator/Expedition and the Escalade/ Lexus GX because of the “bling” factor, they drive terribly and have awful mileage. But the market for giant luxo SUV’s is there and it’s profitable. Plus, if you have the money for one and the family need for it (large family and tows a boat or something) why not?

    • 0 avatar

      +1 on all your points, I couldn’t have said it better myself. Some vehicles have no business on this list (like commercial vans). Some vehicles I don’t care for, but why embrace negativity?

      I’m not voting, I think this is just media sensationalism.

      • 0 avatar

        But an Econoline is a poor car, but of course lets see a Camry, Accord, Mustang or Corvette haul 20 sheets of drywall and tools to a job site. Or how about haul 12 people somewhere without making multiple trips? They are tools and they do the job they are intended to to well. Now the Sprinter that’s another story because while it is “more refined” and does get better MPG than the others it fails miserably at the most important aspects of a work van being economical to operate overall and have minimum down time.

    • 0 avatar

      I had to use a Colorado for work. I think it’s easily the worst truck on the market during its life. It made me long for a Dakota. I would have rather driven an HHR panel towing a utility trailer.

    • 0 avatar

      I agree with everything you say EXCEPT the ILX.

      I had a chance to motor in a Civic EX and an ILX back-to-back. The ILX is truly I tell you, truly Honda’s answer to the Cadillac Cimmaron. Yes, that bad. Fine, they grafted a display into the dashboard, take the nav screen out and there would be no telling the inside from the Honda, which I actually felt had nicer leather seats than the Acura.

      Everything else I agree with. I don’t think any of the work vans belong on this list because as you said, they are tools.

      But overall I do feel this list is too long

  • avatar

    Mini Coupe didn’t make the list? How about as a write-in candidate? That thing should not exist. It’s a huge middle finger from BMW/Mini to consumers.

  • avatar

    Kudos to the editors at TTAC for having both the Impala and Corolla on the list. You can’t have one without the other because they both suffer from the same issues and have the same advantages.

    Both are as reliable as an anvil because both of them are technological anvils (the 4-speed auto 1.8 under the hood Corolla is REALLY an anvil).

    Both have horribly dated interiors that aren’t even close to being class competitive – BUT – you beyond the hard plastics and old school designs of both, they are functional, and at least moderately comfortable.

    If you fault one for how dated they are – you can’t not fault the other. I’m glad that either that argument held water (because the Corolla was not on the list originally) or if someone made that argument among the staff.

    Personally I don’t think either belong on the list – being dated isn’t a “worst car” trait – there are far worse stinkers on this list.

  • avatar

    I voted for the Lexus GX 460. The previous generation (the GX 470) was born into an era where luxury truck-based SUVs were highly in-demand, but the current one has styling that is a caricaturization of its predecessor. I’m not even sure how Lexus is going to graft that new spindle-grille treatment onto such a boxy design. Moreover the car itself is irrelevant. It gets abysmal fuel economy, and offers only mediocre handling, space and comfort qualities. Lexus should scrap the current one and make the next GX a rugged unibody crossover, to go after other vehicles in its price-range…

  • avatar
    Mr Nosy

    I just voted.I guess you guys extended the voting hours…For me, I say Smart Fortwo. Too small-in value,reliability,mediocre fuel economy in relation to its price and size.Get Smart? Even Agent 86 wouldn’t believe its worth a second look. TWAT Fortwo. The,uh,Winner?

    BTW,any idea when the nominees for TITS-Ten Intriguing Transportation Sensations,or ASS (Automotive Shining Stars),or whatever they’re going to be called,will be happening?
    I wouldn’t go with Cars Of Contemporary Killer Style,because ironically enough,it sort of sounds a little too Cosmo or Vogue-y.

  • avatar

    I voted (previously) for the ZDX. There’s simply no reason that car needs to exist. It’s more offensive than the Crosstour because of A) price and B) design.

  • avatar

    I voted for the Mitsubishi Galant, because it has no positive qualities whatsoever, and there is absolutely no good reason to buy one. They’re not even that cheap! I would also like to point out that the Galant is a much, much worse vehicle than the related Avenger or 200, because those have at least had some worthwhile updates. I’m not sure how many of you have actually driven the latest Avenger or 200, but they are not bad vehicles to drive (especially with the V6), and the interior materials are better than many other vehicles in that class. If given the choice as a rental car, I’d place them above the outgoing Malibu or Altima for sure. And let’s not forget, you can buy a new one for the price of a similarly equipped compact car. On a similar note, a friend was cross-shopping the Chevy Aveo and the Jeep Patriot back in 2009, and she went with the Patriot. Out the door, it was less than $14,000 brand new, so not a bad choice if you ask me.

  • avatar

    I still don’t get why some of these cars are on the list. The E150 is still, to my mind, tge best way to get ten people cross-country in comfort… Age be damned. And the Mazda2 may be underpowered and tinny, but it’s the only car in the class that even pretends to like being driven. The steering in the Fiesta is execrable. The Fit nearly as bad, and the Koreans have worse steering than an arcade machine that’s been hammered on by preschoolers.

    Not surprised the ForTwo is getting votes, but is it worse than a Kia Sedona? No… Not really.

  • avatar

    FWIW, in maintaining consistency…


  • avatar

    When do we move on to arguing about the results of the voting?

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