Every year we see some spectacular cars being produced; cars which push at the boundaries of the automotive industry and lead the way forward, inspiring new generations of designers.
But alongside the successes of the automotive industry, there lies a darker history which has given birth to a collection of cars so terrible we’re at pains to remember them.
At Sell Your Problem Car ® we’ve put together a top five list of the very worst cars ever made – but with so many to choose from, it seems a shame that four of our five picks are British made…
Nicknamed the ‘Austin All-aggro’, the British Leyland manufactured Allegro suffered from inexcusable design faults right from the very start when it was introduced, underdeveloped, to an unsuspecting British market in the early 70s.
Said to have been more aerodynamic when travelling in reverse, the Allegro was plagued by unreliable production and bungled management, and despite being the 5th best-selling car in the UK in 1979, its inefficiency and poor build saw sales figures dwindle.
Originally released in 1973, the Reliant Robin, with its super-light fibreglass body, its three-wheeled frame and a tendency to roll over at the very hint of a corner, attempted – but ultimately failed – to fill an early gap in the market.
It was designed to be driven inexpensively with just a B1 motorbike license, but its low weight and no-frills manufacturing meant poor performance, back-breaking comfort and outrageous instability.
But despite its many failings, the Robin was a decidedly unpretentious car. It delivered exactly what it set out to achieve: full-efficiency and ‘all round economy’. It’s now become something of an icon of British culture, recognised for its eccentricity and applauded for its honesty.
Another British Leyland production, this time from the mid-80s, the Rover 200 was renowned for its ability to fall apart.
The car gained more fame as the model of choice for Richard and Hyacinth Bucket in the popular BBC comedy series ‘Keeping up Appearance’ than it did through its own success.
The car Jeremy Clarkson lambasted as ‘simply the worst car in the world’, the Russian-manufactured Lada was an all-round disaster.
Its poor tank-like handing, negligible engine performance and boxy design meant the Lada was already a thing of the past when it rolled off production in the 80s.
In Russia during the Soviet era the Lada was an immensely popular model, with people queuing up to get their hands on one. Over the years, however, the Lada has found itself a symbol of the decline of the Russian automobile industry.
The Morris Ital has found itself at the top of ‘Worst British Cars Ever’ lists ever since it was first released.
Designed quickly, the Ital was manufactured from as many standard, off-the-shelf parts as possible in an attempt to keep costs down and speed up production.
Unfortunately, the Ital couldn’t compete with rival models. Looking out-dated even on its release, it was also beleaguered by terrible rust issues – which makes finding a running Morris Ital today a rare thing indeed.