There was a time when Toyota was the picture of value and reliability. But nowadays the brand has moved considerably upmarket. It would appear that the appeal of reliability and resale value has helped make the brand a trendy staple. The Corolla has gone from being a value-oriented economy car to a baby Lexus of sorts. The hatchback, on the other hand, looks like the lovechild of a Scion XA and a Camry.
Nothing about this car intrinsically says value, which is why drivers should avoid it. If you’re in the market for a hatchback, there are better models to choose from. The Corolla hatchback is nothing like the models of yesteryear that were fun to drive and cheap to own.
Korean automaker Kia has come a long way since its lowly induction to the U.S. market in 1994. Kia has marketed the Soul as an alternative to cheap compact cars often on the market. There are a few things about the current Soul that you should consider. The first of which is the CVT transmission, which attempts to be exciting at best.
The engine is also a carryover from the outgoing model, and it could use some improvement. The thing the Soul has going for it is the fact that it looks stylish. Very few vehicles look like the Soul, but that doesn’t mean most drivers won’t want to avoid it. There is also the fact that Kia offers an exceptional warranty, so if anything goes wrong with the car the company will generally repair it. Drivers shouldn’t be in it in the first place, however.
Jeep is a brand many want to be associated with because of its outdoor lifestyle image. The Compass has always been sort of a lame duck for the Jeep brand. The compact crossover was originally based on the Dodge Caliber compact car and has since been redesigned. Offroad capabilities are not a strong suit for this little Jeep.
In addition to the drawbacks of its off-road capability, there is also the fact that the design is rather outdated already. The Compass was designed to look like a miniature Jeep Grand Cherokee, and that’s both good and bad. As of the current generation, the Compass is one drivers should avoid if they’re in the market for a new car.
When sports car maker Alfa Romeo announced a return to the American automotive market, the press was excited. Yet there’s a lot that the Giulia lacks, with reliability being at the forefront. The performance of the Giulia is exhilarating for a sports sedan. With a range of 280 to 505 hp, you won’t be dreading the morning commute. Reliability is important, however, and the Giulia is noticeably unreliable.
These reports are early on in the car’s existence and it might improve down the road. For right now though, new car buyers would be better off to avoid the Giulia. The car just doesn’t have the reliability that a vehicle with this kind of price tag should.
In many respects, Chrysler innovated the crossover market with the original Pacifica. But the Journey has fallen off the wagon in a lot of regards. Most noticeably is the lack of a redesign. The car has remained the same other than the front fascia refresh. The Journey is vastly outdated when you compare it to nearly every other crossover on the market.
Dodge is trying to position itself as a performance brand, but the Journey just falls short. The aged design is another one any serious driver should avoid. You might get a great deal on a Journey right now, but there are other models on the market worth considering.
Another car that has been around the block for some time now, the 500L is not the most impressive. The tall beltline gives the interior quite the amount of space, but the design is confusing. You don’t know if the car is a wannabe crossover or a Mini Cooper on steroids. The driving characteristics of this car are also lacking. Its performance is very ho-hum when you compare it to other models.
You do get an upscale appearance which does lend the car some credibility. Interior quality is also much higher then you’d expect in a car in this segment. But the drawbacks of the car make it one that you might want to avoid if you are in the market.
There are a couple of cars in the Fiat lineup, and the 500X is a more mainstream model. The spunky little design reminds of a Buick Encore in a lot of aspects. Driveability is a lot better than the 500L but not by much. Nevertheless, Fiat has tried to add some features to the 500X to entice buyers. If you’re an outdoorsy type that rarely leaves urban roads, the 500X might be the right car.
But if you’re looking for a real crossover that can spend time off the beaten path, this isn’t it. The 500X is a car that will disappoint in terms of reliability and the design is not phenomenally different than what’s already out there. There are more than enough reasons to avoid this model.
Jeeps are popular nowadays, but half the people who own them never take them off-road. The design of the Renegade looks great, especially if you opt for one of the wilder colors. The small design makes this Jeep perfect for living in a city where parking is at a premium. But the downfalls are reliability and a lack of performance.
While having the Jeep name in your driveway is almost like a badge of honor, the result is a car that lacks in a few crucial departments. With reliability being especially important in an ever-changing world where income is constantly fluctuating, drivers are best served if they choose to avoid the Compass.
From its outward appearance, the Discovery Sport is the obvious evolution of the brand. Most Land Rover owners never actually drive these off-road. The Discovery Sport is a recently updated model with a redesigned exterior and interior. The performance is derived from a 246 hp 2.0 L 4-cylinder, not the greatest powerplant at all.
You’d expect Land Rover to drop some sort of a V8 in it, but unfortunately, that is not the case. Reliability is average according to reports but maintenance costs are quite high. This generation of the Discovery Sport is very much a car drivers should avoid.
Full-size import pickup trucks have been a tough sell for foreign competitors in America. Nissan continues to try to persuade buyers with the Titan, but the truck still falls short. The one-size-fits-all design of the Titan is a nice concept. Yet it fails to meet the needs that a wide range of buyers have for their pickup trucks.
The Cummins Turbo Diesel will be discontinued after this year, and a few other options will be slimmed down. The Titan does boast a very attractive and user-friendly interior, but pickup truck shoppers are looking for more than that. In a marketplace that seemingly changes every day, the Titan XD is one to avoid among a sea of comparable offerings.
The new generation of the Smart EQ ForTwo is going all-electric for 2020. The problem here is that the rest of the car is still stuck in the past. The Smart Car was a novelty when it was first unveiled. With a crashed economy and high fuel prices it was the perfect blend of urban driving.
However, consumer tastes have since changed and the Smart EQ ForTwo is a dated example of a once-trendy item. When you can choose from so many other more mainstream electric cars it begs the question, why drive the ForTwo? The car isn’t practical enough for a family or most modern drivers who need a commuter car.
With a redesigned WRX on the horizon, there is little reason to take the plunge and purchase the current model. While the WRX is fun to drive, the overall design is dated and the interior cheaply made. The car lacks a lot of the advancements that other sedans have made in terms of safety and refinement. You get the allure of driving a WRX but you get the lack of amenities that goes with it.
The next-generation WRX is going to address a lot of the issues that the current model has. Subaru has spent a lot of time developing this car over the decades. As the WRX advances, we cannot help but be excited about the future of the car. The current model, though is another story, and probably one to avoid.
Oh, how the mighty have fallen. The ILX is a lot like the other Acura models on the market; forgettable. There was a time when Acura was a unique slice of the foreign auto market. But now the cars are lost in a sea of comparable models that all offer the same thing. To make matters worse, the ILX is based on the Honda Civic, itself a compact car.
There is nothing that presents intrinsic value in the ILX, and you can do better with a used 3-Series in this class. Nevertheless, Honda persists on selling these questionable Acura models in the hopes of luring a younger demographic. Those wishing to look back on Acura fondly should avoid this without question.
This is the final year for the Spark as GM is exiting the passenger car market for the most part. The company is instead moving in favor of crossovers and full-size pickup trucks. Chevy never fared very well in the compact market, but there was always a Chevy to choose from. The Spark is a subcompact car that is decently appointed for its size and price.
The main problem stems from a lack of refinement and performance. Naturally, you aren’t going to win the Daytona 500 in a Chevy Spark, but you at least want some sort of power. In terms of design, the Spark is a decent car, but the shortcomings just make it a vehicle to avoid altogether.
The Chrysler 300 is an iconic car for several reasons, but in recent years it has fallen on obscurity. When the car first hit the market it was so different in its design that the general public went crazy for it. You couldn’t keep the 300C on dealership lots, and this was especially true when the Hemi SRT model came out. Now, the car has retained the same styling since the 2011 model year and people are ready for change.
We’re not sure what the future holds for the 300, but as of right now, the car is one to avoid. There are newer updated models in the sedan segment that offer more value for your money. Not to mention the fact that the blocky design of the 300 is reminiscent of an early 2000s Cadillac DTS.
Since as far back as the Amanti, Kia has been yearning to attract a more affluent buyer into their showrooms. While the Cadenza is a great try, the sedan still falls short in several aspects. The main problem here is the fact that the overall design is not high quality in a segment where price and quality are everything. Kia wants this car to be on the same scale as a Lexus or a Cadillac, but it just is not.
Headspace is tight and the overall design looks like a jazzed-up Kia Optima. Not to say that either car is a bad choice, but when you are eclipsing Camry price points, it’s time to take a second look. The Cadenza hasn’t been a sales success yet, and time will tell if Kia is going to be updating the sedan. If not, definitely one to avoid.
The compact and bubbly Encore has been a sales success for the brand. As with most automakers, it is time for the crossover to have a refresh. The dimensions of the Encore are going to be staying the same, other than the refreshed front fascia. That’s not to say that the Encore is a bad car because the overall design is quick appealing.
But the tight interior is tough on taller drivers and passenger legroom is at a minimum. Other features include more luxury options to help bump up the price tag. While the Encore is not an offroad beast, it does offer decent AWD traction. With the winter season coming up, this might be a good option for those that live in a snowy or icy climate. But if you’re just looking for another crossover, you should avoid this.
The Lexus lineup has changed a lot over the past few decades, and the main thing you’ll notice is an increase in models. Lexus was never big in the convertible market, but the SC430 was a decent start. The Lexus LC 500 Convertible is a more mainstream vehicle that can appeal to a broader range of consumers.
The problem is that the build quality just isn’t there in a lot of aspects, and the car tries to be too technologically advanced. One of the plus sides of the LC 500 is the fact the convertible has rather smooth road manners. If you can put up with the questionable build quality of the first-generation car, the LC 500 Convertible might be worth looking into. The days of the convertible are numbered thanks to the rise of the crossover SUV, so this Lexus is another car to avoid.
The Veloster is another car that’s now long in the tooth. The design was something rather unique when it hit the market, especially replacing the Tiburon. Performance-wise, the Veloster is vastly underpowered when you compare it to models that are on the market nowadays. Hyundai is working on a replacement model and that’s why the current Veloster is a car to avoid.
The turbocharged engine is fun to drive, but if you go for the base model you’ll be disappointed. Aside from that, the Veloster is a great concept when you look at it from the outside, yet the platform has become dated.
Cadillac has never had much luck in the space of compact luxury cars, just look at the Cimmaron and the Catera of yesteryear. The CT4 is a new compact luxury sedan designed to take on foreign models once again, except it is based on the outgoing ATS. When you look at the exterior of the CT4, it’s not hard to miss the ATS origins.
While GM claims this is all-new sheet metal the car still looks eerily similar to the sedan drivers have seen for almost a decade. There’s no denying that Cadillac just doesn’t know how to create a compact luxury sedan. Since the original CTS, the brand hasn’t struck a hit with consumers. The CT4 is a compact sedan that’s worth avoiding if you’re in the market for this segment of vehicle.
The Niro is a hot-selling crossover for Kia, so it’s only natural that the company would market it as an EV. New for the 2020 model year, the EV version of the Niro is everything you’d find in the standard. The main issue here is the high price tag which is north of $40k, and that’s quite high for a compact Kia. The interior arrangement is an excellent assortment of tech features and comfort.
But there are much better EV offerings on the market in this price range, and sometimes even for less if you are willing to go for a used car. The Niro EV will appeal to some buyers, but for the most part, this is one crossover to avoid. Some drivers believe this is especially true with the Mustang Mach-E positioned to hit the market.
GM has renewed the Trailblazer name once again. The vehicle hasn’t been in GM showrooms since 2009. This time, it is making its return as a crossover. What makes the Trailblazer worth considering? Not much because the overall demeanor isn’t much different from the rest of the product line. GM has been slapping classic brand names like the Blazer on their new crossovers.
But the Trailblazer is nothing special. Performance is lethargic if you don’t step up to the 1.3-liter turbocharged engine. GM has done a lot to bolster the sales of the Trailblazer, but there are more appealing other options. The market for the crossover vehicle is flooded right now and the Trailblazer doesn’t stand out.
If you live in California there’s no doubt that you’ve seen the Mirai at one point or another. The car has been making waves as the vehicle of the future. But the Mirai is also sort of a science experiment, and not much is known about this type of vehicle yet. There are no trim levels to choose from and the only thing you can pick is the exterior color.
The Toyota Mirai is a great step into the future of getting away from fossil fuels. But the car isn’t enticing enough to just jump in. Instead, you get a car that is relatively unknown in terms of resale value, reliability, and maintenance. Toyota is taking a blind leap of faith with this car and the company expects drivers to also.
The Audi TT is perhaps one of the most underrated sports cars still on the market. You’ve seen them in one form or another for decades. Traditionally, people that own these cars are long-term owners who tend to hold onto their vehicles. Performance-wise, the TT is an exhilarating vehicle with a lot going for it. The style has stayed the same for decades, but that also leads to a problem.
Other sports cars on the market have been updated and provide a better value overall. Sure, you get the joy of driving a TT, but you also have the drawbacks of an aged platform. The TT is expected to be redesigned soon, and the next generation will build on what makes the platform great. For now, the TT is worth avoiding just because of the aged platform and lack of refinement.
Mitsubishi has been in a slump for the past decade. The company is trying to reposition itself as a crossover maker instead of the sports car company that it was. The Outlander has changed a lot since its inception as a Toyota Matrix lookalike. The current model has a decent-looking exterior, but the inside of the car is rather outdated. The third-row seat is very cramped, which is a major drawback.
Aside from that, the performance is also lackluster. The Outlander feels a lot heavier then it is. Road manners are clunky, to say the least, and this is a bit strange coming from a Mitsubishi model. If you’re in the market for a family-friendly crossover, it’s probably best to avoid this one.
The Lexus brand hasn’t seen a small scale wagon since the IS300 in the early 2000s. The UX 250h is a rather unique-looking car from the outside. But the problem is that this car doesn’t warrant its Lexus branding. First and foremost, interior dimensions are quite cramped, and while the front seats aren’t bad, the passenger seating is tight. Lethargic performance is something that tends to make the car dreary to drive.
Nevertheless, the overall style of the car still looks fairly decent from an exterior perspective. When it comes to choosing a compact luxury type of hatchback, there aren’t many on the market. The small liftover and limited lift over height make loading cargo a problem. The Lexus 250h certainly doesn’t stand out at this point and other options offer more in terms of value and quality.
Wagons are a dying species in today’s automotive market, but the Regal TourX is especially endangered. The wagon was designed to appeal to the same shoppers that would go onto a Volvo dealership lot. The result has been a wagon that was less than well-received. Styling is a mixed bag. The low ground clearance makes the car less versatile than a Subaru Outback, although interior dimensions are good.
The advanced safety aids are only available on top trim levels, which is a drawback in today’s automotive market. The low roofline does make it easier to load things onto the roof, but aside from that, the Buick Regal TourX is worth avoiding at this point. There are much better wagon options such as the Volkswagen Golf wagon.