6 Poorly Rated Cars To Stay Away From

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Jim West/imageBROKER/Shutterstock (14104371ci)Detroit, Michigan USA, 13 September 2023, The Cadillac XT4 luxury SUV on display at the North American International Auto ShowVarious 23ajbhbada.
Jim West/imageBROKER/Shutterstock / Jim West/imageBROKER/Shutterstock

As a general rule, people tend to more frequently base their buying decisions on price. The more you spend on something, the higher your expectations and the more happiness you should derive from your purchase.

This is especially true of cars, which are more expensive than ever. You can concede some quality if you’re only paying a few thousand dollars for a used model or new mediocrity. But when you’re paying a king’s ransom for a new vehicle, you don’t want to feel like a court jester.

The experts at Motor1.com know their class leaders from their lemons. And while the site provides detailed reviews on all autos across the board, its editors took some time recently to highlight the best and worst higher-priced cars they’ve driven so far this year.

Among its best picks for 2023 are Audi’s RS6 Avant Performance, Volvo’s V60 Polestar and Porsche’s 911 Carrera T. However, the site’s editors are less enthusiastic about the six following rides:  

1. Chrysler 300C

2023 marks the final year for Chrysler’s luxurious muscle car, after an 18-year run. And it couldn’t come soon enough for Motor1.com. Not that the site doesn’t like the 6.4-liter V8 and 485 horsepower performance. Limited to just 2,000 units in the U.S. this year, the 300C has overstayed its welcome, especially at a base price of $35,890.  

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2. BMW X1

Redesigned for 2023, the X1 is a decent option in a field of better ones, according to Motor1.com. While Consumer Reports (CR) has a lot of good things to say about BMW’s stylish and powerful compact SUV, it also calls it out for a “stuff ride” and less intuitive controls than previous models. When it reviewed the X1 early in the year, Motor1.com echoed CR’s negative thoughts on ride quality but took the model to task on fuel economy and price, which balloons as you add advanced features and options.

3. Cadillac XT4 Sport

There’s no tip-toeing around when it comes to Motor1.com’s thoughts about the Caddy XT4 Sport. “The turbocharged engine is thrashy, the cabin is cramped, and the switches and displays look almost identical to those of a plebeian Chevrolet Blazer,” one of its editors said. U.S. News & World Report agrees that there is nothing that sets the XT4 apart from its better segment competitors: BMW X3, Genesis GV70 and Lexus NX.  

4. Alfa Romeo Tonale eAWD

Based on the same platform as the Jeep Compass and new Dodge Hornet, Motor1.com found that this all-wheel-drive-only Alfa Romeo plug-in hybrid performed poorly when the battery is runs low. Consumer Reports is blunter in its assessment: “It doesn’t ride well, isn’t particularly sporty, and has a variety of frustrating controls.” Both Motor1.com and Car and Driver recommend the Hornet at a cheaper price point.

5. Volkswagen Jetta

As MotorTrend attests, the VW Jetta loomed large in its compact sedan class at the beginning of the millennium. But like the Chrysler 300C above, the Jetta just seems outdated by today’s automotive marketplace standards. Motor1.com Managing Editor Jeff Perez knocks the Jetta’s style, cabin comfort and performance, saying, “It’s hard to have any love for the Jetta.”

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6. Jeep Compass Latitude

We won’t mention what one YouTuber said about the Jeep Compass (hint: it starts with “c” and ends in “rap”), but as Forbes reports, the Compass gets low marks from CR across all important metrics and loses value quickly, according to JD Power. The Latitude gives poor value for price, according to Motor1.com, which recommends the Honda CR-V and Kia Sportage Hybrid instead.

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