The World's Worst Cars: From Pioneering Failures to Multimillion Dollar Disasters

Overview

Most manufacturers have made some great cars, but all manufacturers have made some unquestionable disasters. Cars that were either terrible designs, badly engineered, poorly manufactured, or misjudged the market. Or in some cases, all of the above. So what went wrong? How did these cars ever get off the drawing board, let alone into the showroom? And how many people bought them?

The World?s Worst Cars takes a detailed look at 150 of these motoring mistakes, both old and new and ...

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Overview

Most manufacturers have made some great cars, but all manufacturers have made some unquestionable disasters. Cars that were either terrible designs, badly engineered, poorly manufactured, or misjudged the market. Or in some cases, all of the above. So what went wrong? How did these cars ever get off the drawing board, let alone into the showroom? And how many people bought them?

The World’s Worst Cars takes a detailed look at 150 of these motoring mistakes, both old and new and from around the world. North America’s embarrassments include the notorious Ford Edsel, the malfunctioning Chrysler TV Maserati collaboration and the grand folly of the Tucker Torpedo. From Britain there’s the simply leaky Morris Marina, the pop-up headlights that didn’t pop up on the Lotus Elite and the “What were they thinking of?” three wheeled, orange fiberglass Bug Bond. Globally, such horrors as the rapidly rusting Alfa Romeo Alfasud, the flimsy Lada Samara, and the plain ugly Subaru SVX all claim their place on the world’s worst cars list.

With an annotated, full-page photograph for each car, detailed technical specifications, archive images and text on every vehicle’s failure, this book is a celebration of the world’s worst automobiles in all their flawed glory.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780760787137
  • Publisher: Sterling
  • Publication date: 8/11/2007
  • Pages: 320
  • Product dimensions: 11.25 (w) x 8.38 (h) x 1.13 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 15 Customer Reviews
  • Posted April 10, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    The World's Worst Cars

    This would make a great gift for a person who's into cars of any type. I picked it up because I have a house full of young men who are into cars. I like the idea of seeing a book in any persons hands; especial a teen! Well, this is one of those books. It's the type of book that a person picks up more than a few times. It's a great coffee table book and has started some real fun conversations about the past. I like to call it a bridge for the youth of today and the older generations. The information is very interesting. The history of the cars was even more interesting.

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  • Posted March 13, 2010

    Very good general overview, but seems all cars listed are 'problems'

    Great reference book, but don't agree that all the cars listed are 'bad cars'!

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  • Posted March 6, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    I owned some of these cars!

    As a motor-head since I was still in a stroller (60+ years ago), I bought this to see if my take on the "worst cars" matches up with with the professional automotive journalist. I found out that a number of the cars that I owned or admired over the years fell into this writer's "worst" category.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 6, 2010

    Guys! Get over your silly selves!

    I got a copy of this book as a Christmas present and I have to say that I was surprised when BN's "review recent purchases" email showed it as only having gotten 2 stars. No, it is not a scholarly treatise on every failure in modern motoring; it's a fun, silly, "News of the Weird"-style walk through some of the more memorable automotive flops.

    Do I agree with every one of the author's conclusions? No, of course not - especially when he includes the Chevy Caprice, which I personally really like. Ditto the Nova. Yeah, I'm a Chevy guy, what can I say? But a collection like this is bound to be a very individual thing, and I still enjoyed reading this one author's take on what he sees to be the World's Worst Cars.

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  • Posted March 3, 2009

    A Waste

    This book can be reviewed as boring.

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  • Posted March 2, 2009

    Some good laughs at the industry's miscues!

    Not a serious piece, but a fun read. Cleverly written by a Brit with a motor industry background and a good sense of humor. A lot of laughs for those of us who suffered through ownership of some of these bombs and have scratched our heads over why some of these duds ever made it to the market.

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  • Posted February 9, 2009

    Worlds Worst Cars

    I returned this book to the store as defective. The pages weren't cut properly. Several pages were joined together. I was disappointed

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 29, 2008

    come on now

    i believe this book gives many cars a bad name which should not have in the first palce. For instance the subaru svx is a great rare car, which drives wonderfully has awd with a decent 230hp.Just becuase it does not conform to your standards of what a usual car is doesn't make it a bad car. In my opinion this author is very iggnorant for writing this book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 28, 2008

    Interesting

    While the author raises some points with some cars, he is completely and utterly incorrect when it comes to many, including the magnificent Subaru SVX.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 5, 2008

    Over critical, but quite funny

    This book is funny. The author is really critical of a few cars that don't deserve it, but that¿s what makes it entertaining. A fun and recommended read for anyone interested in cars. The only problem I have: where's the Cimarron?

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2006

    He knoeth not what he speaks!!

    Many of the vehicles Craig knocks are maybe not great vehicles however, they were usually fine for the nitch they were designed for. If you want to debase a specific vehicle, say a Yugo..then be specific..sure cheap, clanky, poor designs, or unreliable!! but someone still loves those autos

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2006

    A reviewer

    All I need to comment on is that this guy has no idea of worst cars. He comments on AMC eagles being junk. It amazes me that some 'junk car' as he calls it still seen many places running their owners all over. Try to find a toyota, subaru, or what have you from the eighties that is still running around in the michigan winters. You can't because they have rusted away to nothing.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 28, 2005

    A very incomplete history

    I have owned quite a few of the so-called 'automotive disasters' cited in this book and after reading the author's evaluations I have to say I'm not quite sure Mr. Cheetham has any idea what he's talking about. On one of the first pages there is a picture of an AMC Eagle with a caption that credits AMC for being among the first to offer a sport utility car but says it was 'a horror to drive'. A horror?! Obviously he has never gotten behind the wheel of one of these things because I have and am here to say it is far from horrible. Infact, it is one of the most comfortable and nicely drving vehicles I have ever owned. He goes on to criticize the car as being poorly built and not even half way decent though reviews in Popular Mechanics, Mechanix Illustrated, Four Wheeler and other automotive magazines will attest otherwise. The Eagle is actually a pretty remarkable car and there are plenty of credible automotive publishers who seem to agree. And this is just one car the author is totally wrong about. He goes on to include the Ford Maverick as being poorly designed and cheaply built but does this guy not realize that the Maverick was an entry level vehicle? Of course it was cheap. It certainly doesn't qualify as being one of the world's worst cars because of it. My Maverick was, as were countless others, totally solid, dependable and great looking on top of everything else. The Maverick is also enjoying a recent surge in popularity as more and more of them are being chosen as an alternative to the more typical cars of the era to be tricked out, restored or turned in to hot rods. I just sold a Maverick bumper on eBay for $250. A pretty steep price and high demand for a bumper off one of the world's worst cars wouldn't you say? The author also bags on the Mustang II for, among other things, having a lousy suspension. I knew a guy who owned a wrecking yard who always used to tell me when I owned my Mustang II that the first thing to get pulled off a Mustang II when it came to the wrecking yard was its suspension and rack and pinion system because the custom car guys and hot rodders loved to upgrade to the Mustang II setup. Again, having owned one myself I can say that it handled better than most of the cars I'd driven that were over 20 years newer. More inaccurate and unfair criticism? I'm starting to see a pattern. The author basically picks out all the easy automotive punching bags (Pacer, Edsel, Gremlin anyone?) and then tries to gloss over the car's history and reasons for failure in a mere paragraph or two. Hardly enlightening. A lot of the cars in this book, the American ones anyway, did infact have a lot more influence than the author gives them credit for. The AMC Pacer for instance has been given credit time and time again by many magazines and books for design innovations which later became popular on modern cars but didn't catch on in it's own time. A fatc that isn't mentioned in this book. A lot of interesting cars and their places in history are slighted by the author's careless treatment of the subject and I think that kind of sucks. Oh yeah, he put the Chevy Nova in there for many of the same reasons as the Ford Maverick. The Chevy Nova! Come on! If having an interior adorned with inexpensive plastics and average design qualifies a vehicle as being one of the world's worst cars then there is a serious lack of Hondas, Nissans and Toyotas in there that should certainly be included by those standards. How many boring, uninspired and just plain copy-cat cars have the Japanese produced to horn in on the American car market and why are they not as targetted in this book despite meeting so much of the same criteria? I'm sorry, a lot of this book is just lame and does a real disservice to some very good and interesting cars that have been produced over the years. If you do happen to read it at least do a little research for yourself before blindly agreeing with all this guy's choices. Otherwise you might miss out on owning som

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 3, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 16, 2010

    No text was provided for this review.

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