Want all that swanky style and comfort offered by a luxury car, but don’t want to pay a fortune for it? Buying a used luxury car can be a great way to get some top-of-the-line performance and tech features for the low! But don’t be fooled! Not ever used luxury car is the bargain of a lifetime!
So, before you open up your wallet and get totally burned, I’m going to show you 6 of the worst used luxury cars on the market, and an honorable mention!
Maserati Ghibli – Dodgy Supercar
We all use toothpaste everyday, or at least I hope you do. But, toothpaste should be for your teeth, not for filling in massive gaps on your overpriced luxury sedan! I wonder if Maserati made a deal with Colgate.
The Maserati Ghibli has an MSRP of over $75,000, and it’s got a Maserati badge, so why are massive panel gaps acceptable? They’re not! It’s no wonder nearly everyone who leased a Ghibli ended up selling it once their lease was up. And today, you can pick one up under 6 years old with less than 100,000 miles for less than $20,000!
So, it’s depreciated to nearly a 25% of its original value. Ouch! Not only is it lacking a ton of useful safety features, it’s also less powerful than most of its competitors, and way more expensive! Not to mention the “luxurious” interior is kind of like a parts bin special, with window controls, the start-stop button, and the headlight switch all ripped off the Dodge Grand Caravan. Yeah, you’re paying Maserati prices for Dodge quality. Plus, the headroom in the back will give you a serious case of claustrophobia.
Does the Ghibli really seem worth it to you? It’s expensive, not too sporty, not too luxurious, and too cramped for a 3-year-old child. Not too appealing, huh? Well, the next car on our list is equally underwhelming, the Lexus SC430.
Lexus SC430 – Take the L
The Lexus SC430 was so bad that Top Gear ranked it the worst car ever. That’s no easy task. The power produced by the engine wasn’t half what the car needed, powered by the 3UZ engine from the LS430, the SC430 put down just 300 horsepower. And considering it weighed as much as a fully-grown African elephant, not only did it have trouble accelerating, it was hard to handle on corners. Couple that with its soft luxurious suspension and it added up to a car that should have never seen the light of day.
But, since they were building the SC430 as a sporty retractable hardtop luxury thing, Lexus thought they needed to up the sportiness and remove the retractable hardtop and all of its luxury. Thus, the Lexus SC430 GT500 was born. Upping the power to nearly 500 horsepower while fitting it with fancy aero pieces, this car was ready to beat out race-prepped NSX’s and Nismo Z’s!
So, I guess they proved it could be sporty if you had a hefty checkbook and no desire to drive on the road. Unfortunately, the SC430 GT500 wasn’t road legal, which leaves us street drivers with the cramped, slow, unexciting base SC430, a car even more confused than the Maserati Ghibli.
This next car on our list was also made by Maserati, well, sort of. It’s the Chrysler TC By Maserati.
Chrysler TC by Maserati – It Takes Two
Huh? Yeah, Maserati made a Chrysler. I don’t know what to expect from such an unlikely partnership, but to be honest, it was a pretty crappy car. Sure, it had a removable hardtop that looked okay. However, Lee Iacocca CEO at Chrysler had said the car would be the prettiest Italian to arrive in the USA since his mother immigrated. And I don’t know about you, but I can think of much better eye candy than the TC, like the Ferrari F40 or the Lamborghini Diablo.
And the TC by Maserati looked oddly similar to another car in Chrysler’s fleet, the LeBaron. They even shared the same engine! But one thing the TC and the LeBaron didn’t agree on was price, since the TC was way more expensive. Maserati completed the minimum number of cars required by their contract, leaving only 7,300 cars produced, and making many of them difficult to sell.
While the TC by Maserati might be a decent car that got undermined, this next car has no excuses. The Lincoln MKT takes just about everything to avoid when buying a car and puts it together into one package.
Lincoln MKT – Make It Stop
Ugly? Check. Overpriced? Check. I have no idea what Lincoln was thinking with this one. The sad truth is that someone who hasn’t seen this article might end up in the Lincoln dealership shelling out nearly $50,000 of their hard-earned cash on one of these. But not you, Ideal fam!
Gas mileage on the MKT is garbage at only 15 miles per gallon in the city and 21 on the highway. It’s no large 3-row SUV either, it’s a mid-sized luxury crossover, and most other vehicles in its class are getting at least 21 miles per gallon in the city, if not better! And even though it costs nearly $50,000 new, it’s still outdated, lacking many of the high-tech features that come on cars half its price.
So, just take it from me, and stay away from the Lincoln MKT. Another car you definitely want to stay away from is the Cadillac Cimarron.
Cadillac Cimarron – Caddy Cavalier
At first the Cadillac Cimarron might not seem all that bad, and truth be told it’s definitely not the worst car on this list, but it sold worse than Google Glass or BluRay DVD. Why? Well, basically because it was just a rebranded Chevrolet Cavalier. All they did was slap on a new grill and a leather interior.
The Cimarron was much smaller and marketed as a new kind of Cadillac for a new kind of Cadillac owner. Because, back in the early 80’s, Cadillac was making big land yachts powered by massive V8’s, and the Cimarron is anything but that. It’s smaller, weaker, and just not very fun to drive. Powered by tiny four-bangers and weak V6’s, the smaller Cimarron wasn’t sporty by any means.
The base price for the Cimarron was over $12,000, that’s just over $35,000 in today’s money, and that was double what the Cavalier’s price was. That kind of premium for a new grill and leather interior?That’s just crazy!
The next car on our list has been boasted by Michael Scott of The Office, and that should definitely be raising some red flags already.
Chrysler Sebring – Regional Manager
The Chrysler Sebring is just not a good car. First of all, it lost over 50% of its value the minute you drove it off the lot. The Sebring is poorly constructed, poorly conceived, and that’s why not many people bought them. Well, rental car companies bought them because, when they broke down, the rental car companies would just give them back to Chrysler. It’s kind of concerning that Avis and Enterprise were banking on these cars breaking down.
And not only were Chrysler Sebrings unreliable, they were just so bland, boring, and almost dreadful. So much so that it nearly gave it character, and not the kind anybody likes. The engine is underpowered and just downright crappy, and the transmission isn’t any better.
But, if you’re going to have a car with a sloppy suspension and an underpowered engine, it should at least feel safe, right? Well, the Sebring definitely doesn’t. I’ve felt wet paper towels stiffer than a Sebring. But hey, that’s what you get when you turn a 4-door sedan into a 2-door convertible.
It really seems like Chrysler was trying to make a car bad with this one. I mean, who even wants to be seen in one of these overpriced pieces of garbage. Well, unless you’re Michael Scott. So, if you’re not Michael Scott, then stay away from the Sebring.
Unlike the Sebring, this next car has a badge that might fool people into thinking you’re rolling in luxury, but five minutes of driving the Aston Martin Cygnet will shatter that illusion.
Aston Martin Cygnet – Baby Brit
The Aston Martin Cygnet? What’s that? Well, it’s basically a Scion iQ that was sold outside the USA with an Aston Martin badge. So, why on Earth would Aston Martin have Scion build them a car, much less a car this cheap and underpowered? Your guess is as good as mine.
They put a new face and new interior on the Scion iQ, and rebadged it with the Aston wings. They didn’t even change up its 1.3-liter 97-horsepower inline-four! One thing Aston did change up was its price tag, though. Taking a $10,000 Scion iQ, giving it the Aston Martin flavor, and marking it up a whole $30,000. For essentially the same car, you could spend $40,000 or $10,000. Did they really expect to sell the Cygnet? Well, no, not really. Aston Martin wanted to drop fleetwide emissions.
They planned on building 4,000 Cygnets to appease the tree-huggers, but only ended up making 150. So, while they started at $40,000, they’re only going up from there. These overpriced Astons might be awful to drive, but they’ve become somewhat of a collector’s item.
In my opinion, though, you’re still better off buying the Scion-branded version, especially because you can buy a Scion iQ for less than $5,000 and use that extra cash to mod that thing out into a real performance vehicle.