Driving is dangerous, but some cars can actually increase the danger, whether through unsafe design or poor manufacturing. Life is full of dangerous things: sharp objects, diseases, Terminators, gravity, honey badgers. Take your pick. None of them mind if they hurt you. Automakers, on the other hand, generally want you to be as safe as possible. After all, repeat business is good business. But all the same, sometimes it doesn’t work out that way.
Maybe it’s bad engineering or maybe a vehicle is rushed to market too quickly. Sometimes it’s a good idea brought to consumers before its time, and others it’s a bad idea in any time. In other cases, the fault simply lay with sloppy construction and cut-rate materials. No matter what the reasons, there have been plenty of vehicles on the road that could have been rolling advertisements for the coffin industry.
On this list, we’re going to look at 15 dangerous vehicles that self-preservation might advise against driving. Driving any of these is by no means a guarantee that things will go wrong on the road, but all 15 have histories or tendencies that suggest they’re more dangerous than the average car.
This car was in the market for just four years in the 80s. As a two-seater, it served the needs of many car buyers looking for something smaller and more efficient. To give it its fair due though, it passed crash testing with flying colors.
You have to wonder how hard Pontiac reconsidered this car’s name when it developed a reputation for randomly bursting into flames. What it did do though was burst into flames thanks to its coolant features. Though it gave users the direction to fill it with 3 quarts of oil, it actually needed more. This caused chronic under-filling and that led to oil leakage. And that is where the fires started!
The problem lay with faulty connecting rods, which had a tendency to snap, go through the engine block, and spray oil all over the exhaust. Pontiac recalled every Fiero ever made in 1990, but not before being saddled with one of the most ironic names in automotive history.
Believe it or not, Audi, a car company known for its historical engineering prowess, once had “unintended acceleration” problems. This predecessor to the Audi A6 had issues with its idle stabilization system, which caused it to randomly surge ahead – while braking. But that’s not the only reason this car’s on the list. Unlike Toyota years later, Audi never issued a recall on these cars to have the problem fixed, and decades of wear and tear haven’t made them any safer. But they’re still Audis, which means they last forever, and quite a few are probably on the road or for sale today. Vorsicht, mein freund.
Audi has a reputation for quality but back in the 80s the reputation wasn’t as deserved as it is today. In fact, the Audi 5000 had a notable faulty engine. The engine would suddenly rev up and drivers panicked while on the road. Their overcompensation for the problem is what caused the problems. It definitely was enough to get the Audi 5000 on the list of worst cars ever.