Cars That Don’t Live up to Their Marketing

Boldride

“You can polish a turd, but it’s still a turd.” My uncle said, upon hearing that I had fitted my 1994 Oldsmobile Achieva with a mesh grille, neon interior lights, and a stereo system. Though youthful endeavors in attempting to spruce up a substandard automobile may have been misguided, automakers are occasionally guilty of doing the same thing. Thought it is quickly becoming a thing of the past, car companies have been known to market a lackluster automobile as something much more. Here are five sub-par cars that don’t meet their marketing:

Ford Mustang II Cobra II

Mustang II Cobra II

Rule of thumb for Fords: any time there is a “II” in the model name, things aren’t going to end well. (See Bronco II) The Mustang II was underpowered, even in V8 form and was ugly as sin. The oil embargo hit American automakers hard, and many had no clue to to build a fuel efficient car that was also fun. The Mustang II is proof just how blindsided American car makers were.

Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS

Chevrolet Monte Carlo SS

There is nothing worse than a sticker package to make a staid car seem more sporting than it really is. There is perhaps no better example from recent history than the 2000 to 2007 Monte Carlo SS. Now, the actual NASCAR racecar Monte Carlo had a V8, manual transmission and rear-wheel drive. Even in the 1983 to 1988 SS. All road versions of the 2000s Monte Carlo SS were front wheel drive and automatic. Sounds sporting? No, it doesn’t. Neither does a 200-horsepower V6 and SS badges on a big, lumbering coupe. The Monte Carlo SS is a glimpse back to a time gone by, and not in a good way.

Jaguar S-Type

Jaguar S-Type

Jaguar currently has an impressive offering of fully modern luxury sedans, but there was a time when the brand was lost, torn between traditional, comfort-based ride, and modern, performance-oriented cars like the BMW 5 Series. To take on the 5 Series, Ford (which owned Jag at the time) employed the DEW platform of the Lincoln LS. Competent entry luxury car, but a 5 Series competitor, it is not. The car never lived up to its billing, and the 1963 S-Type-inspired looks never landed.

Honda Civic Si

View photo

.
Civic Si

Fueled by the “Fast and the Furious” movies, the import tuner craze reached a fever pitch in the early 2000’s. That push greatly over-inflated the cachet of a car like the Civic Si. While many generations of the Si have a cult following, the 00-05 generation is a bit of an enigma. It was built in England and was a totally separate model and bodystle from the rest of the Civic lineup. It was 150 pounds heavier and the MacPherson strut suspension paled in comparison to the double-wishbone setup of the earlier Si. The interior is ugly, the throws of the transmission are nothing like what a sportscar should be, yet somehow this car gets billing as a performance machine. It makes no sense.

Dodge Stratus Turbo/Stratus R/T

Dodge Stratus RT Turbo

I guess the folks at Dodge did not learn the lesson from watching the Chevy Monte Carlo. A sporty name and some body cladding do not make a car go faster. The thing about the Stratus Turbo is that it is actually worse because it goes for a more aggressive look. The whole package is capped off by the bolt-on rear spoiler that looks like it was purchased from Auto Zone.

The lesson here, people, is that if you are going to drive a slow car- own it. The only thing you accomplish by purchasing a car that looks faster than it goes is you raise the expectations of those who see the spoilers and stickers- only to be let down by lackluster performance.

View Comments

Recommended for You

  • Washington state county eyes building ban after deadly mudslide: reports

    Snohomish County was on Wednesday to consider a six-month ban on new construction in landslide-prone areas countywide after a slide last month that killed 41 people, local media reported. A rain-soaked hillside collapsed above the Stillaguamish River on March 22 unleashing a torrent of mud that…

    Reuters25 mins ago
  • EU climate chief urges China to show international commitment

    By Stian Reklev BEIJING (Reuters) - China could set a new pace for slow-moving international climate talks by bringing its domestic commitment to fight global warming on to the world stage, the EU's top climate change official said on Wednesday. EU Climate Change Commissioner Connie Hedegaard is…

    Reuters49 mins ago
  • How Creative Are You? Here's One Way to Find Out

    The Art Institutes schools are offering courses in a variety of programs designed to help budding artists begin their creative journeys. Learn more.

    AdChoices The Art InstitutesSponsored
  • Nepal moves to ease tension among Sherpas after Everest disaster

    By Gopal Sharma and John Chalmers KATHMANDU (Reuters) - Nepal's government decided on Wednesday to send a delegation of officials to the base camp of Mount Everest to cool anger among Sherpas over its response to last week's deadly ice avalanche in which at least 13 guides were killed. Two…

    Reuters
  • Billions needed to upgrade Egypt's power grid as summer crunch looms

    By Maggie Fick CAIRO (Reuters) - Egypt needs to find at least $5 billion to invest in its dilapidated power grid, a government official told Reuters, highlighting a major challenge for the next president as the country faces the risk of worsening blackouts this summer. Energy is a politically…

    Reuters
  • Australia vows to keep searching to solve missing Malaysian plane mystery

    By Byron Kaye PERTH, Australia (Reuters) - Australia vowed on Wednesday to keep searching for a missing Malaysian plane despite no sign of wreckage after almost seven weeks, and as bad weather again grounded aircraft and an undersea drone neared the end of its first full mission. Australian Prime…

    Reuters
  • Obama visits mudslide-hit community in Washington state

    President Barack Obama on Tuesday visited the Washington state community slammed by a deadly mudslide last month, offering condolences to the families of victims, encouragement to rescue workers, and promises of government support. After viewing the mudslide from the air, Obama met for over an…

    Reuters
  • Florida Senator holds Miami Beach hearing on rising sea level

    By David Adams and Zachary Fagenson MIAMI BEACH (Reuters) - Climate change is already impacting south Florida coastal communities, which could see a three-foot rise in sea level by the end of the century, a panel of officials and scientists testified at a Senate hearing on Miami Beach on Tuesday. …

    Reuters
  • Parched California moves to boost water saving toilets, faucets

    By Rory Carroll SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - With California facing its worst drought in a century, state officials have fast-tracked first-in-the-nation water efficiency standards for new toilets, urinals and faucets, an action expected to save about 8.2 billion gallons of water the first year while…

    Reuters
  • Learn the Power of Content Creation

    Full Sail University can help you develop the needed communication skills for today's evolving media landscape.

    AdChoices Full Sail UniversitySponsored
  • Submarine drone search for Malaysian plane to continue

    By Byron Kaye PERTH, Australia (Reuters) - A U.S. submarine drone will keep scouring the Indian Ocean floor for traces of a missing Malaysian jetliner after it finishes its current targeted search, Australian authorities told Reuters as a tropical cyclone suspended the air search. Authorities are…

    Reuters
  • Obama to visit site of Washington State landslide

    The White House said President Barack Obama is due to meet with the families of victims of a deadly mudslide in Washington State on Tuesday afternoon before leaving for a four-country tour of Asia. The Snohomish County Medical Examiner's Office said on Monday that 41 victims have been recovered…

    Reuters
  • Damage claims filed in Washington state over mudslide disaster

    By Jonathan Kaminsky OLYMPIA, Washington (Reuters) - The widow of a man killed in the Washington state mudslide has filed damage claims asserting that official inaction contributed to the disaster that took more than 40 lives. Thomas Durnell, 65, was at home on March 22 when the mudslide hit and…

    Reuters
  • Mazda recalls 109,000 SUVs in the United States for rust issue

    Mazda Motor Corp is recalling 109,000 Tribute compact sport utility vehicles in the United States to address potential rusting frame parts in cold-weather states where road salt is heavily used in the winter. The recall affects Tribute SUVs from model years 2001 to 2004 as corrosion on a part of…

    Reuters
  • Meteor lights up night sky in northern Russia

    MOSCOW (Reuters) - Russians with smartphones and dashboard cameras captured footage of a meteor that flashed across the night sky near the Arctic Circle over the weekend. There were no reports of damage but the ball of fire raised eyebrows after a meteorite crashed to Earth near the Russian city of…

    Reuters
  • As Nepali sherpa families cremate Everest victims, anger grows

    By Gopal Sharma KATHMANDU (Reuters) - Nepali families cremated eight Mount Everest sherpas on Monday as anger grew over how much compensation should be paid to victims of the single deadliest avalanche on the world's highest mountain. The eight bodies, out of a total of 13 recovered at the…

    Reuters
  • Find Your High School Yearbook

    View class yearbooks online free. Reminisce & buy a reprint today.

    AdChoices Classmates.comSponsored
  • Cyclone threatens to disrupt search for missing Malaysian plane

    The search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370, which vanished on March 8 with 239 people on board, has narrowed to a 10 sq km (6.2 sq mile) patch of sea floor about 2,000 km (1,200 miles) west of the Australian city of Perth. Search authorities and the Australian and Malaysian governments have…

    Reuters
  • Slow-moving landslide in Wyoming resort town destroys home

    A slow-moving landslide claimed a house in Jackson, Wyoming as crews scrambled to prevent a water main from rupturing and flooding the affluent resort town with two million gallons of water, a city manager said Saturday. The landslide, which has prompted the evacuations of homes, apartment…

    Reuters
  • South Korea recovers first bodies from inside sunken ferry

    South Korean divers retrieved three bodies from inside a sunken ferry overnight, officials said on Sunday, the first time they have been able to gain entry to the passenger section of the ship. "At 11:48 p.m. (10.48 ET) the joint rescue team broke a glass window and succeeded in getting inside the…

    Reuters
  • 2014 Boston Marathon weather forecast: Quiet weekend weather

    Lots of events this weekend leading up to the 2014 Boston Marathon on Monday. Will weather be an issue for the runners?

    SB Nation
  • Why the mancave could be a big insurance risk

    Refinishing your basement can represent a substantial financial problem. (Hint: It has to do with what your homeowners insurance doesn't cover.)

    CNBC
  • Death toll climbs to at least 13 in worst tragedy on Everest

    By Gopal Sharma KATHMANDU (Reuters) - Rescuers recovered the body of one mountain guide on Saturday after an ice avalanche swept the lower slopes of Mount Everest, bringing the death toll to at least 13 in the deadliest accident on the world's highest mountain. The avalanche struck a perilous…

    Reuters
  • Northeastern Online MBA

    A World-Class University Fully Accredited by the AACSB. Earn an MBA from Northeastern University Online. No GMAT req. Get information now.

    AdChoices Northeastern UniversitySponsored