The worst car I ever had .......... - El Bandito
Any stories?
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Andy
Mine was a company car, about 15 years ago. It was an Escort MkIII 1.3 litre (CVH engine). Stap me, what a heap!
Constant trouble with battery charging, then fuel pump leak(?) caused petrol to end up in sump, then camshaft wear caused rough running and lack of power. Shortly after, the auto-choke kept sticking on. Blow me, this car was junK!
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Stuart B
Vauxhall Cavalier 89 G 1.6
If ever there was a Friday afternoon jobbie this was it, on delivery things wrong too numerous to list but heres what I remember
Heated rear screen inop
Rear washer ditto
Rear wiper ditto
Radio aerial (electric) did not raise and not connected at the radio end either
Vacuum pipe and odd wires hanging off in the engine compartment, how the hell it ran for the delivery driver beat me.

Then in service
Cam belt at a very low mileage, no collateral damge though.
Plastic distributor drive broke, comment from AA man "Oh so many of those break we've run out of spares. The saving feature was that as I got towed into the dealer they were in the middle of a customer evening. A few glasses of chilled wine were spilt as AA van with yellow beacons and Cavalier on solid bar drove slowly past the showroom. Tee Hee.
What else? A heap of stuff, more fuel problems, shockers bailed out rather early. Electrics definitely dodgy.
In summary t'was a heap at first and has been the only car I have had since 1983 where it failed to get me to destination. (four times actually)
Having said all that when it went back to leasing company at just short of 100k, by which time more or less all had been sorted, it felt that given a judicious change of a few bushes around the suspension and steering it was ready for round the clock again. More solid than the Pugs that followed, which were far more reliable but somehow felt more fragile.
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Roger Jones
For blessedly few months in the early 1970s, I drove a Mk IV Ford Zephyr (if that was what it was called): the "square cut" job that followed the Z-car style. It didn't let me down, but what a ridiculous tank it was to drive. My next company car was a VW 411LE Variant, which came a close second: I was fortunate in always having a couple of boxes of books available to put in the boot at the front of the car to keep it stable in crosswinds. The brakes were scary, cornering was unedifying, but it was good in a straight line at high speed.
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Ian Cook
T plate Marina 1.7 estate - utter crap, par excellence.

Four years old and 11 body panels with rust holes (more than 11 rust holes).

Complete collapse of front wheel bearing on Brighton seafront in rush hour.

Rear brakes had different size wheel cylinders on each side (discovered during the repair to a leaking cylinder).

Exhaust manifold had UNF studs, but BL reckoned only metric were ever fitted (same as Princess). Had to recut the threads in the tool room.

250 miles to the pint of oil.

Distributor top bearing worn and lots of carbon type powder all over the inside of the dizzy (= no sparks at the plugs).

So many teeth of first gear that it needed a new gearbox just to sell the car.

Ad nauseam!

Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Derek
I had a Marina L reg 1.8 TC. Built down to a price or what? Rust not as bad as Ian's, but the thing only ran on 5-star (as did a colleague's standard 1.8) and it needed a gear box rebuild. Handling becaming alarming at speed as the tail began to lift. The Mk1 Cavalier that replaced it was a revelation by comparison.

I should add that we have since had 1.6 litre Cavaliers in Mk 2 and Mk 3 versions and no real problems with either of them except the automatic choke in winter (both) and condensation in the Mk 3.
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Andy Bairsto
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Phil Goodacre
Vauxhall Chevette (Shove it).
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - David W
Perhaps lucky in that I've bought every one of ours (50+ I guess) knowing what they would be like so none of them was truly terrible. All better than the bus anyway.

One terrible car that was thrust on me for a day however was a Dacia ???????, a Romanian copy of the Renault 12 Estate (I think).

Trim would fall off in your hand, switches twirl around without switching......dreadful handling.

This was a loan car while my Saab Turbo was serviced some years ago, they had a policy of lending you whatever was about. Previously I'd been sent off in a newish Audi 80 Sport and a Quattro, very nice.

Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Honest John
TR7. It was a five speeder with silver hubcaps and tartan door tims which I think made it Canley built rather than Speke. But when I had it they were moving factories again so spares availability was zero. Go over 80 and it overheated, partly because of the criminally bad design of the front which directed air away from the radiator (later cured by a chin scoop spoiler) and partly because it had overheated before so the hear was shot. The dashboard caught fire regularly. CO used to leak into the cabin and knock out the occupants. And the throttle had a mind of its own. Lift off gently on a black ice covered bend and it used to accelerate. Pull into a garage for fuel, lift off completely and it would give you maximum revs. The car was sheer shite and one of the biggest nails in the coffin of the British Motor Industry. To think I sold a 105 Series Alfa Bertone coupe to shift to a company TR7. The Alfa was a rust bucket, but at least the car did what it was supposed to and would pull 6,800rpm in 5th.

Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - ian (cape town)
An aquaintance of mine hus just bought a TR7 drophead - DESPITE ADVISE NOT TO!
Cue hysterical laughter when I read the above!
I'll snip your comments, and send them across to him! (I think "This bloke is the Telegraph's motoring expert" will convince him that I wasn't just slagging him out of jealousy!)
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Richard Hall
Vauxhall Chevette 1300E, bought from an auction for £100. Actually it wasn't that bad, apart from rust eating in to every part of the structure, and a clutch that wouldn't disengage when hot. But the 'E' stood for 'Economy' and Vauxhall weren't referring to fuel economy. Plastic seats, no headrests, a totally unlined bare metal boot, no reversing lights, not even a clock. And it was dog slow and dull to drive. Oh, and it was bright yellow with brown vinyl interior. Bad enough for you?

But I think David W's Dacia Denem (yes, it was a Renault 12 clone) was probably worse.
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - ladas are cool
you have just described my lada, apart from the colour.
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - robert
Fiat Strada
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Andrew Wills
Austin 1300 vanden plas auto - best part were real wood picnic trays on back of front seats
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Dan J
Hmm... It'd have to be a 1980 Datsun Bluebird in fetching 'Canary Yellow'. The carb was faulty, one of the the cam lobes had gone and was irrepairable for less than too many digits on the bill, did 14mpg, leaked all engine fluids out, leaked all water in, on noticing a half out 30A fuse in the fuse panel whilst driving late one night pushed it and created a lightning bolt that lit up the village I was driving through (and gave me a bl**dy big fright as well.

I did what the previous owner did to me, I flogged it to someone for 200 quid...
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - ladas are cool
my hyundai sonata broke down the same day as i bought it, which must be a record. i bought the car because i was told that hyundai's were very reliable (what a load of junk that was), also i still have the car, but every week bits come off it (last week the interior door handle came off, and this week the central locking is working when it wants)
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Dave Etchells
ALFA 155, front tyres shot at 10k miles, crumbly electrics - electric windows that had a mind of their own. Failing central locking that stopped you actually opening the doors! Heated rear window that stopped working line by line of the element and then started working on taking out the radio. General bits and pieces falling off, opening the front passenger door via the lovely chrome lever caused the whole door panel to flex.The final straw was the monumental failure of the exhaust system at 2 years old having done 25k miles. ONE THOUSAND TWO HUNDRED POUNDS for a replacement.
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Brian
My first car, Ford 100E. Over 35 years ago. Cost £60.
When I got it I thought that the brake light switch had gone, but it was just both bulbs burnt out.
Fuel consumption about 25 mpg on a good run. Oil consumption not much less; came home from Wales one night and for the last 60+ miles stopped on the forecourt of each (closed) garage and drained the dregs of the oil cans from their bins into the engine.
Body rusted away rapidly. It ended up with front wings more fibreglass than metal and the sills stuffed with wood. Exhaust held together with wire and Gun-gum.
Starter motor chewed its' teeth regularly. Radiator full of Radweld.
Oh: the good old days.
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Andrew Moorey (Tune-Up Ltd.)
Series 2a LWB land Rover crewcab. How they ever sold ANY of these I will never know. How can anything constructed in such an archaic fashion ever catch on. I must admit though driving a friends 1998 LWB Defender illustrates how far L-R have developed the idea. But my old 2a..... Just sooooo awful to drive, terrible driving position, no brakes, no suspension, no heater. I sold it to the Bluebell railway and the two roughty toughty gorillas who came to see it fell in love with it and were so enthusiastic about it I couldn't help but take their money....
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - David W
Thing is Andrew everything you describe about the Land Rover, which is true by modern car standards, is spot on for a 1940s classic car. If it were such a car you'd have folk drooling over it and happily fork out about £5K for one in good nick.

As it is the LR will only set you back £1200, is capable of lasting another 30 yrs with ease, will tow 4 tons and climb a local mountain.

Actually one of the most successful vehicles ever.

Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - John Slaughter
Got to be an Mk2 Escort 1600 Sport. Everything went wrong with it in the 2 years I had it. New heater, clutch, gearbox repair and then replacement, head gasket, tacho, rear dampers, rear brakes, distributor, battery, starter etc etc. luckily all covered by Fords.

Damn thing never ran properly, was always going off tune and when I sold it after 2 years and about 20k miles I even had my suspicions that the bottom end was sounding rough!

Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - Martyn
Citroen ZX Diesel, thrown together, crap dealer, spent 100 days off the road in 18 months.... kept a box in the boot to hold the parts that fell off
Re: The worst car I ever had .......... - ROBIN
Never owned one,but driven a few.
remember those 70's Italian jobs?
These people could design a suspension system,angine,all the bits,on the back of a menu,that GM couldnt emulate with the most powerful computers money could buy.
Trouble was,they then completely lost interest.
If theyd imported a few Germans to actually make the things just imagine what
enduring classics would have resulted.
I meant physically enduring!
I had a Sud Sprint once that was so brilliant I could hardly beleive it.
Trouble was it got faster and bits dropped off.
The same bloke designed the Scirocco,built superbly by the Germans,but with very compromised abilities and all the soul of refrigerator.It got worse as they improved it too...although,to be fair,so did the alfa.
I will always remember driving from Crawley to my house in Charlwood on the back roads in the Alfa.I was followed by an acquaintance in 7 litres of De Tomaso.I couldnt understand why he kept coming up to my bumper and dropping back,especially as I was driving absolutely on the limit.Why did you not just overtake? I asked him in the pub later that week.
"Because I bloody couldnt get by,what IS that thing,I want one" was his answer.

Value my car