Surprise! Smart Fortwo among '10 Worst Cars of the Decade'
Now that the 2011 models are starting to pile up, auto site Jalopnik is
taking a run at naming the worst cars of the decade. No shortage of
candidates, we might add. Also to no one's particular surprise,
Detroit's Big 3 automakers produced the most of the worst, capturing all
but two of the coveted spots with their numbskull entries. There's a
special nod to Chrysler. What really surprised us, however, was the
inclusion of the Smart Fortwo -- "world's fastest German golf cart" --
one of the most inventive cars in generations.
Here's a capsule of Jalopnik's reasoning for each choice. The Jalopnik
site [http://www.jalopnik.com /], of course, provides much more detail
and photos of every car. Some picks are sure to surprise:
Jeep Compass, 2007 to present
The $19,350 Compass is "arguably the single greatest affront to Jeep's
storied heritage." It "doesn't offer standard four-wheel drive, or
anything else traditionally Jeepish. Feels as tawdry as it looks."
Chrysler Sebring, 2007 to present
Sebring was hailed at its launch, but the $20,860 car "ended up a
thorough disappointment and the closest thing to an Aztek-like styling
catastrophe seen in years."
Ford Focus, 2005 to present
When Ford's most successful "world" car debuted in 1999, it was actually
good. But Ford piled on the weight, messed up the steering and
suspension feel and styling, ending up with an uncompetitive $15,995 car.
Chevrolet Aveo, 2002 to present
The $12,685 Aveo is "GM's much-pimped AnyCar, the vehicle that it sells
in more countries — and in more guises — than anything else."
Smart ForTwo, 2008 to present
Calling it the "world's fastest German golf car," Jalopnik says of the
$11,660 ForTwo: "If a 1960s Mini can be fun to drive and deliver killer
mileage, why can't a Smart? Why is its combined fuel economy only
slightly better than that of the much larger — and way more comfortable
— Honda Fit? And why is the convertible almost $17,000?
"As a science experiment, it's a success. As a real car, it resembles a
Kia Amanti, 2003 to 2009
"Imagine a half-size Lincoln Continental with indifferent body control;
an outdated, iron-block V-6; mish-mash styling; and a 4100-pound —
that's two tons — curb weight. This was the ($26,045) Kia Amanti. Try
not to look directly at it."
Pontiac Bonneville, 2000 to 2005
The $27,965 Bonneville "can be summed up in one word: cladding. Later
models did without an excess of tacky, add-on bodywork, but early cars
wore enough of the stuff to armor a small tank. The styling excess only
served to cover up a resounding lack of chassis charm."
Dodge Caliber, 2006 to present
At $17,090, "it's a thoroughly depressing, indifferently built car, the
kind of vehicle that Detroit needs to quit building, and quit building now."
Chrysler PT Cruiser, 2000 to present
The $18,995 PT Cruiser is "a perfect example of a good car dragged into
failure by years of corporate indifference," having become "a stale joke."
Hummer H2, 2003 to present
The $63,090 "Sierra Club's Antichrist" is "slower than dirt" with fuel
mileage "stuck in the stone age."