Forbes: U.S. Carmakers Best at Being Worst

If you made a list of the seven worst new cars on the road, how many would be products of the U.S. Big Three?

If you’re Forbes Magazine, the answer is all seven.

That’s a pretty harsh assessment. It’s also an unfair one, considering at least four of the vehicles are scheduled to either end production or be replaced by all-new models. I’m not normally the guy who jumps to the defense of American automobile manufacturers, but this time they deserve a break.

One of the worst-made vehicles of 2011?

To determine its list, Forbes started with the lowest-rated vehicles from six reliability and performance studies conducted this year by Consumer Reports. Those studies were:

The Most Reliable Cars Report, Best and Worst Values Report, Highest Cost of Ownership, Best and Worst Safety Performance Survey, Best and Worst Fuel-Economy, and the CR overall scores for 2011 vehicles.

Any vehicle named among the worst in at least three of those studies made the cut to land on Forbes’ “Worst” list.

In the last decade, the Big Three automakers have increased their quality exponentially and can now compete with foreign carmakers in most categories. The vehicles that can’t compete are generally ones that haven’t been phased out yet.

The vehicles that made the Forbes list for the 2011 model year are the Cadillac EscaladeChevrolet AveoChevrolet ColoradoDodge NitroFord F-250GMC Canyon and Jeep Wrangler.

The Aveo, Colorado, Nitro and Canyon are, for all intents and purposes, already dead. The Escalade, F-250 and Wrangler all have passionate followings and can only benefit from the improved health of the companies that build them.

As the years roll by, lists like this one from Forbes will feature fewer and fewer American vehicles. While I’m not fully convinced we’ll ever see a list completely devoid of U.S. makes, there’s no reason we should see full domination ever again.

What cars would top your Worst Vehicles of 2011 list?


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  1. I can agree with that list for the most part– The Canyon and Colorado are GM’s worst junk (next to the pitiful Aveo) and dollar for dollar the Escalade is a overpriced Suburban built for the hip hop gangster crowd. The Nitro is yet another Chrysler underachiever imported from Detroit. I’m not sure about the Wrangler. Sure, it’s Jeeps crudest vehicle but it’s not designed to cruise Constitution Avenue for hookers. The F250 is a hard core work truck and hauler so I can’t expect that to be an effeminate mama boy’s Prius that never breaks down. (or goes anywhere interesting.) GM fielded the majority of the list but they forgot bloated banana boats like the Corvette and aged cracker boxes like the Impala. And why just pick on the Aveo? I drove Toyota’s micro and it was just about the worst car I ever drove.

  2. I love it when a bunch of pencil pushers think they know anything about an automobile. I bet they are not American. Jealousy comes to mind. All the Big 3 go in debt yes use some govt money which is our/ the peoples money anyways. and now look thriving once more. You can put america on her ass. But she comes back up swingin her fist. ask Japan and the Taliban ;p lol

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