Cars That Probably Shouldn’t Have Been Built

When you see a production car that you know is a dud you should wonder how this car ever made it to the market in the first place. With the need to present cars at shows as concepts and then have them approved and finally released publicly it’s amazing so many cars that aren’t of the expected quality make it to market. Here are some great examples of car that shouldn’t have been built.

Jaguar X-Type – Jaguar has always been admired as a great luxury brand that offers some of the most attractive vehicles on the market, but also a brand that has terrible sales. Around the beginning of the century Jaguar wanted to launch an entry level luxury model to boost sales and volume, but this ended up being noting more than the Ford Contour in Jaguar skin because Ford wouldn’t spend the money to create a proper Jaguar platform for this car.

BMW 318ti – This was a great idea that wasn’t carried through well at all. In order to attract a mainstream audience BMW came up with this three door hatchback with the bobtail back end and only one engine to appease those who wanted to drive an affordable BMW model. At a price of $19,900 they had achieved the goal of offering a small car that would carry the badge, but it was considered to be a compromise and many who saw it didn’t want to drive it.

Ford Mustang II – This is probably the most famous awful car of them all and unfortunately showed us how Ford could ruin a good name when given the chance. This car used nothing more than the Pinto engine and came at you in a way that made you wonder where the exciting pony cars of the previous years had gone. It did receive the Cobra II and King Cobra appearance packages and eventually a V8 engine, but even that engine would be regarded as unworthy of the name as it only produced 140 horsepower.

1990s Lotus Elan –Here is a car that had lackluster looks and was setup as a FWD. That alone makes for a distinctly un-Lotus performance because not Lotus had ever been sold that was FWD at the time and thankfully they haven’t gone back to it either. Overall this car was boring and looked much like some of the domestic offerings from Chevrolet and Ford, making this a Lotus that didn’t separate itself from what we were already driving to work.

Ferrari 400i – This is a Ferrari that seemed to be out of place because it was the first to ever be set up with an automatic transmission. It was also a car that wasn’t sold in the US, even though some of this car made it here and was the car that was driven in the opening credits of Rain Man. Even though we’ve looked at this car as one that seems to be the black sheep of Ferrari, it did have the V12 engine under the hood to make it a car you might actually want to drive.

Cadillac Cimarron – Unfortunately we’ve seen GM use different brand names on the same car for years. Typically you expected a step up as you went up the brand list, but taking the luxury brand and making it use the same build and platform as a Chevrolet Cavalier wasn’t going to fool anyone, no matter how many features you added to the car. This was par if the J-car failure by GM and one that showed just how unimaginative we became in the 1980s.

Porsche 914 – Here’s a car that Porsche would just as soon forget ever happened, but it did happen. This car was to be the entry level machine that used Karmann built bodies because Volkswagen needed to replace their Karmann Ghia at the same time. The problem was that the bodies and some of the other workings of the car ended up being more expensive than Porsche expected and this car became a dud very quickly.

Triumph Stag – This is the car that killed Triumph and the one that should have gone back to the drawing board before ever being built. This was supposed to be a two door 2+2 seating grand touring convertible. Instead it was built on a sedan platform that looked out of place, used an odd hoop on the roof to bastardize the convertible feature of the car and was just as unreliable as you would expect any car of this build from the 1970s to be.

12.05.16 - Ford Mustang II

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