Mar 1 2020

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Top 10 Worst Car Design & Engineering Abominations | Auto Expert John Cadogan | Australia

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Every carmaker can give you a billion reasons why every car in their range is not just okay, but is actually the first in that category to scale the death-defying summit of Mt Superiority. And yet, perversely, they still shoot themselves negligently in the dick at least 10 different ways.

There many brilliant things about modern cars. Triumphs of engineering over adversity. But it might be more fun to talk about this:

[10] Headlamp Logic
There are more lines of computer code operating a car than in a 787 Dreamliner … and yet it’s never been easier to drive unwittingly at night with the headlights off. Riddle me that, Batman.

Here in ‘Straya, where ‘who’s the biggest dipshit driver’ is actually a religion of sorts, you’ll see dozens of drivers doing this every evening. People driving with the parkers on, presumably to conserve electricity.

[9] Crap Manuals
Cars are increasingly complex, and yet the instruction manuals are breathtakingly shit. In fact, they’re so bad, they make ‘shit’ look like ‘excellence’. What would be wrong with plain English? The hi-tech miracle of colour printing? And easy start guide, like a camera? What would be wrong with downloading a hyperlinked PDF that clicks you direct to instructional videos explaining exactly how everything worked?

[8] Blind Spot Monitoring
Blind spot monitoring is a fraud. So clever, yet so stupid. Here’s the hot tip: Blind spots do not exist. They’re up there with Santa, the Easter Bunny and God – completely made up. Figments of one’s imagination.
If you drive with your wing mirrors correctly adjusted – so that the inner edges just overlap the view from the outer edges of the central mirror – there are no blind spots. You get an uplifting, contiguous, sweeping panorama of the driving environment behind your ears. Who knew?

[7] 360-degree Cameras
On this issue of inappropriate technology: Surround camera systems. You’re frigging kidding me, right? How is this possibly a benefit? The only place you need a camera is to the rear – and that’s really useful. Should be mandatory. But those extra cameras on the side and the front? It’s a gimmick.

[6] Space-saver Spare
The space saver spare tyre remains, perhaps, the car industry’s biggest collective long-term con. Pretending this is any kind of benefit to you is absurd. Spare tyres are a risk management device.

[5] Fault Logging
Modern cars log their faults. Some malfunctions generate red flags in the car’s operating system to aid diagnosis in the service department. In principle, this is a good idea. But in practise, it really dumbs down dealership service departments.

[4] Connectivity
Fourth Law of Thermodynamics: Carmaker-designed smartphone & GPS integrations are shit. They’re preposterously shit. Maybe worse than that in some cases.

[3] Keys
While we’re all basking in the ‘head-in-vice’ experience, the other classic ‘prison shower’ carmaker relationship-breaker is the replacement key. Carmakers simply must stop charging hundreds – sometimes thousands – for replacement keys.

[2] Mis-fuelling
You know what’s not interlocked? Refuelling. Seeing as (in particular) putting petrol in a diesel car is the easiest way to organise a repair bill you can’t jump over, don’t you think carmakers and fuel retailers could have all gotten together and organised a set of fuel-spout/fuel-filler protocols so that mis-fuelling was impossible?

[1] DPF Burns
Lung cancer: Bad. I think we all agree. Therefore, diesel exhaust particle filtration: good. In principle. But blind Freddy can see this is an imperfect implementation out there on the road today. Some companies might have been a little too hasty out of the blocks with their filter regeneration systems and protocols.


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