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Ugly is in the eye of the beholder

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. So is ugliness. Some cars rated as being horribly hideous by one reviewer might have a certain quirkiness that endears the vehicle to other people. So it’s always a little bit iffy when people come up with the lists of the ugliest cars.

The following were ranked as being the ugliest cars of 2012 by Forbes magazine and website. In other words, if your favourite set of wheels is in this list, or if you actually quite like the looks of a particular vehicle, don’t blame me. A few of these had me scratching my head and wondering what on earth these guys were on about. Some I did agree with, of course. But the practical side of me says that there’s more to a car than the way it looks, and if it gets you from A to B comfortably and efficiently, then looks can be irrelevant. And is it really a big deal that you have a car so hideous that it stands out from all the rest of the computer-designed blandness?

So here’s the list of the ugliest cars of 2012, as Forbes magazine and website calls it.
• Acura ZDX: we don’t have this one over here, so don’t go looking for it in our car reviews page


Ford Transit Connect (actually, it looks better than some fridge-on-wheels vans I’ve seen)


• GMC Terrain: another one that we don’t have here, so you’ll be spared the variation on squareness the designers played with


• Honda Crosstour (are these reviewers nuts?)


• Lexus CT 200h hybrid (see above – who’s paying them?)


• Lincoln MKT (again, one we don’t have over in Australia)


• Mercedes Benz R-Class: OK, so it looks like a hearse… which is a good thing if you actually are an undertaker. But is it really that ugly?


• Mini Coupe: well, it certainly isn’t the classic Mini as we know it.


• Mitsubishi i MieV: yes, this one does look a bit weird. The overall silhouette isn’t bad, so maybe the designers will be able to improve on it as the years go by.


Nissan Murano Crosscabriolet: not that ugly in my books, as you can expect an interesting crossover vehicle to look different


Porsche Panamera: hey, I think this one looks quite nice!


• Smart Pure Coupe: Another oddball one, but that’s expected with Smart.


• Toyota Prius V: I now have a very low opinion of the reviewers of the Forbes magazine.


OK, that was one list. And it was rather limited in that it only considered cars that came out this year (and 2012 isn’t even over yet, so who knows what’s coming?). Other lists, such as the one put out by the Discovery channel, have older and uglier ones, many of which were unsafe into the bargain… now that’s ugly.
The list was:
10 Ford Edsel


9 Studebaker Avanti (yes, that’s the front of the car)


8 Chevrolet Corvair


7 Fiat Yugo


6 Ford Pinto (and an absolute deathtrap into the bargain)


5 Chevrolet Vega


4 AMC Gremlin


3 Fiat Multipla


2 Pontiac Aztek


1 AMC Pacer.


It would be fun to develop a list of the ugliest cars in Australia. Personally, that Fiat Multipla ought to be in there. Any other suggestions?

One comment

  1. Greg says:

    I find the Nissan Micra partucularly ugly. It’s those headlights.

    September 14th, 2012 at 11:31 am