10 Cars That People Will Never Buy Again (and Why)

Cars People Never Buy


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Kia Telluride display at a dealership. Kia Motors is minority owned by the Hyundai Motor Company.

Road to Regret

Cars are investments. If you're fortunate enough, at some point you may either be able to buy a car outright or lease one. With that being said, there are certain cars that are guaranteed to give you a bad time. 

Some cars simply refuse to drive on a consistent basis due to poorly engineered engines. Others have severely outdated anti-theft technology that leave them vulnerable to theft. Here are 10 vehicles you should definitely stay away from when shopping around for a car.

Chrysler PT Cruiser car parked on the road in the forest.
Aliaksandr Litviniuk/istockphoto

1. PT Cruiser

Ah yes, the PT Cruiser. Numerous enraged customers vocalized complaints about faulty back door buttons, as well as the ongoing frustrating experience of pulling back the car’s paneling to access a release from inside the PT Cruiser

Then, there were other PT Cruiser customers that encountered issues with their car horns refusing to stop honking. So basically, a complete nuisance to operate and a nuisance to other drivers on the road. 

Black 2009 Dodge Caliber Hatchback at Dealership

2. Dodge Caliber

Apparently, the Dodge Caliber has faced numerous issues with the transmission, axles, engine, and exhaust, resulting in plenty of grumpy customers. The Dodge Caliber has established itself as being vulnerable to instances of its electronic throttle and front axle falling apart over the span of every 60,000 miles or so. That's not something you want to deal with frequently, especially for the financial impact that such repairs can require. 

Jeep Grand Cherokee
Brandon Woyshnis/istockphoto

3. Jeep Cherokee

The Jeep Cherokee has a lot of work to do when it comes to keeping its suspension boots together. Many frustrated Jeep Cherokee owners have issued complaints about their car’s suspension boots cracking and also leaking oil. They also complained about the electrical and coolant systems being in constant states of disrepair. 

What's more is that numerous Jeep Cherokee customers have complained about their rides being highly susceptible to nasty paint chipping. That being said, you can always try to invest in a higher-quality paint job if you plan to take your Jeep Cherokee for longer road trips. 

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GMC SUV display at a Buick GMC dealership. GMC focuses on upscale trucks and utility vehicles and is a division of GM

4. GMC Acadia

The most common issue that plagued GMC Acadia owners was that the 2016-2019 models' “shift to park” messages would show every dang time you shut the car off. This was due to a faulty chip in the shifter that was originally intended to detect when the car was parked, but after 60,000 miles this very chip would fail. As a result, the car was unable to detect whenever it was actually in park. 

Apparently, this gave way to battery issues with these particular models, as the batteries drain due to the message repeatedly flashing. Talk about a waking nightmare. 

Related: What Is a Beater Car — and Is One Right for You?

mercedes benz car

5. Mercedes

This pick is sure to stir the pot. For a fair number of folks, the mere purchase of a Mercedes is a highly sought after status symbol. However, the necessary repairs that can pop up when one owns a Mercedes really begin to stack up. For instance, if a sensor light goes out on your brand new shiny Mercedes, repairing it could run you upwards of $1,800. 

Related: Iconic German Cars That Changed the Game

Dark gray Ford Bronco SUV parked on the street

6. Ford Bronco Sport

The biggest complaints from Ford Bronco Sport owners revolve around the engine being incredibly loud when you begin moving or come to a stop. This could be attributed to the cars' loud injectors. Then there’s the fact that you can’t adjust the angle of the arms' seat bottoms, which results in flat seat bottoms that become increasingly uncomfortable on longer drives. Lastly, the interior plastics for the Ford Bronco Sport give off a poorly made kind of aesthetic, and are thus prone toward frequent wear and tear over a short period of time.

Related: 25 Ugly Cars That Should Have Never Left the Assembly Line

Kia Sportage on a street

7. Kia

If you didn’t know, now you know. The theft issues for standard Kias are off the charts. In the USA specifically, both Kia and Hyundai were selling their cars without immobilizers. 

Immobilizers are crucial electronic devices that prevent the engine from starting when the correct key isn’t in the vehicle. No immobilizers, easy hot-wiring job. Thankfully though, the issue appears to have been fixed in the more recent 2022 models and onwards. But that doesn’t mean that all the Kia thieves out there know that — they might just opt for breaking your windows. 

Mini Cooper S

8. Mini Cooper

Mini Coopers have long since cultivated a bad reputation for being prone to electrical issues, regular instances of faulty sensors, spotty Bluetooth capabilities, issues with stopping and starting, and malfunctioning lights. You could say that the Mini Cooper is a great examples of a sporty and vaguely sleek-looking car that doesn't live up to the standards that its aesthetic conveys.

Nissan Altima Coupe

9. Nissan Altima

The majority of the very passionate complaints about the Nissan Altima stem from premature CVT transmission failure. When these unfortunate moments arise, the typical repair cost is around $3,000. Even more reason to avoid the car: On average, the standard 2013 Altima generally lasts about 55,000 miles before it decides to take a timeout and go into shutdown mode.

Sue Thatcher/istockphoto

10. Volkswagen Golf Mk7

The Golf Mk7 developed a reputation for having exceedingly temperamental thermostat housing. This is due to the water pump and thermostat housing that operates as one unit. The actual part consisting of plastic is positioned very close to the car’s hot engine components. Maybe not the brightest idea?

As time passes, the mechanical parts that encircle the thermostat can hit scorching temperatures and ignite a cycle of very hot to very cold temperatures. Eventually, the thermostat can crack or become deformed. The worst part is that there's no average timeline to reference here — it can happen with little mileage to many miles on the road.