Here Are TTAC Readers' Choice for Worst Vehicles of 2018

here are ttac readers choice for worst vehicles of 2018

There are those vehicles that are truly great. You love to look at them, to drive them (or dream of so doing), to buy them.

Then there are the worst. The stinkers. The overpriced, the ugly, the awful-to-drive, the cars and trucks that just don’t make sense.

We started out by asking you, the reader, to submit up to 10 nominations for best and worst vehicle for 2018. Then we used a scoring system to account for vehicles that were nominated in both categories. The worst 20 vehicles, adjusted for scoring, were then presented for you to choose from. The full list is here.

You had your knives out and sharpened, and you didn’t disappoint. Without further ado, here are the worst vehicles of 2018, as voted by you, the readers, and our staff.

  1. Mercedes-Benz CLA-Class (tie)

Y’all really aren’t fans of this four-door “coupe.” One of you said M-B can do better and any potential buyer should just get a C-Class. Ouch. Apparently an $33K Mercedes with sleek styling is a proposition that sounds great on paper but not so much in terms of execution. One of you called it “blasphemy.”

  1. Acura ILX (tie)

This luxury compact doesn’t stir your soul. Acura may be missing an opportunity here – a fun-to-drive sport-luxury compact would likely sell well, and it seems like Acura should be able to build a good one, based on brand history and the history of parent Honda. But the ILX continues to be a miss.

  1. Mitsubishi Eclipse Cross

Bringing back the name of a beloved sports car and slapping it on a crossover is not, repeat NOT, a good idea from a marketing perspective. But Mitsubishi did it anyway, perhaps hoping that the name recognition would overcome the perceived sacrilege. As commenter Ajla said, it’s “poorly powered” and “a mess.”

  1. Chevrolet Trax

Ah, yes. Perhaps the only subcompact crossover that can compete for “worst” trophies with Ford’s EcoSport. Chevy’s Trax is slow, a chore to drive, and even the name gives some people the heebie-jeebies. Chevrolet can do better in this class, but it hasn’t as of yet.

  1. Fiat 500

Fiat’s subcompact city car is on this list because whatever cute factor it may have, that’s not enough to overcome a subpar interior. Even the existence of the hoonable 500 Abarth isn’t enough. As commenter lprocter82 put it: “because it’s a Yugo.” That hurts.

  1. Tesla Model X

While other cars in the Tesla stable got good marks, not so with the Model X. Ripped as being poorly designed, Tesla’s SUV doesn’t stack up with the sleek Model S and Model 3 sedans. We eagerly await the Elon tweet.

  1. Dodge Journey

Old age doomed this venerable people mover more than anything else. While Fiat Chrysler has updated the Chrysler Pacifica and turned it into one of the better minivans in its class, this crossover has been allowed to age quietly, to the point of neglect. Some of you cast judgment on Journey drivers – one of you called it a “rolling credit score indicator.”

  1. Ford EcoSport

Ah, the subcompact crossover that’s supposed to hack your life! Instead, it can barely hack it as affordable transportation. Spend any time around the EcoSport or behind its wheel, and you’ll assume it was put together in a slapdash effort for Ford to get a subcompact crossover to market. Instead of Americanizing a vehicle purpose-built for the Indian market, Ford would’ve been better served by reading market trends and building something new from the ground up. Alas, that was not the case.

  1. Fiat 500L

What’s worse than a Fiat 500? A Fiat 500L, apparently. One of you called it “a strange bubble,” though we just refer to it a people mover we’d rather not be seen driving – or riding in. Fiat probably needs a well-designed compact four-door utility vehicle to be competitive (the 500X is nice, but perhaps too small), and this ain’t it.

  1. Mitsubishi Mirage

Unlike the best car winner, our “winner” here is no surprise. The Mirage is supposed to be cheap transportation, but while it is possible to do cheap transport well, Mitsubishi seems to have missed that memo. One of you suggests that if your budget is this small, you’re better off with a used Civic. Consider this win a loss for Mitsubishi.

Final Thoughts

As with our best-vehicle voting, the results change if you sort by average rank as opposed to “first place” votes. If we’d done it that way, the Fiat 500L would be the worst car, followed by the Dodge Journey, Chevrolet Trax, Ford EcoSport, and Mitsubishi Mirage.

It’s possible some voters thought that the worst car should be ranked 20th instead of first. That could explain how the Model X had many 20th-place votes. That, or the typical Tesla polarization. Then again, the Toyota C-HR had plenty of 20th-place votes, but very few first-place votes.

Either way, these 10 vehicles are the worst on the market, according to you in the B and B and those of us on staff. The hate is real.

[Images: FCA, GM, Tesla, Mitsubishi, Ford, Daimler AG, Honda]

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2 of 96 comments
  • Cls12vg30 Cls12vg30 on Nov 19, 2018

    Overall the list was pretty predictable. I agree with much of it, although I think the Journey still has its place due to the factors mentioned in other comments, and I have a big soft spot for the Fiat 500. The 2015 Sport my wife owns has been a great car, easy to own and she still loves it like she did the day she bought it. She says if she needs more space she wants a 500X and I'm fine with that. As for the Mirage, I think my feelings for that model are pretty well laid out in this review I wrote a few months back after I rented one:

  • 66Cortina 66Cortina on Nov 20, 2018

    Dumb question here... I keep seeing the phrase 'B & B' on this site, which I think means 'bed & breakfast' except that it doesn't make sense given the context. What am I missing?

  • DenverMike When was it ever a mystery? The Fairmont maybe, but only the 4-door "Futura" trim, that was distinctively upscale. The Citation and Volare didn't have competing trims, nor was there a base stripper Maxima at the time, if ever, crank windows, vinyl seats, 2-doors, etc. So it wasn't a "massacre", not even in spirit, just different market segments. It could be that the Maxima was intended to compete with those, but everything coming from Japan at the time had to take it up a notch, if not two.Thanks to the Japanese "voluntary" trade restriction, everything had extra options, if not hard loaded. The restriction limited how many vehicles were shipped, not what they retailed at. So Japanese automakers naturally raised the "price" (or stakes) without raising MSRP. What the dealers charged (gouged) was a different story.Realistically, the Maxima was going up against entry luxury sedans (except Cimarron lol), especially Euro/German, same as the Cressida. It definitely worked in Japanese automaker's favor, not to mention inspiring Lexus, Acura and Infiniti.
  • Ronnie Schreiber Hydrocarbon based fuels have become unreliable? More expensive at the moment but I haven't seen any lines gathering around gas stations lately, have you? I'm old enough to remember actual gasoline shortages in 1973 and 1979 (of course, since then there have been many recoverable oil deposits discovered around the world plus the introduction of fracking). Consumers Power is still supplying me with natural gas. I recently went camping and had no problem buying propane.Texas had grid problems last winter because they replaced fossil fueled power plants with wind and solar, which didn't work in the cold weather. That's the definition of unreliable.I'm an "all of the above" guy when it comes to energy: fossil fuels, hydro, wind (where it makes sense), nuclear (including funding for fusion research), and possibly solar.Environmental activists, it seems to me, have no interest in energy diversity. Based on what's happened in Sri Lanka and the push against agriculture in Europe and Canada, I think it's safe to say that some folks want most of us to live like medieval peasants to save the planet for their own private jets.
  • Car65688392 thankyou for the information
  • Car65688392 Thankyou for your valuable information
  • MaintenanceCosts There's no mystery anymore about how the Japanese took over the prestige spot in the US mass market (especially on the west coast) when you realize that this thing was up against the likes of the Fairmont, Citation, and Volaré. A massacre.