There are cars that only attract a particular kind of driver today. They don't appeal to owners the way most automobiles do because they don’t possess the traits people want. Style, performance and dependability aren’t qualities these cars have. No, what they have instead is notoriety.
There are cars that deservedly get a bad rap, which began when they first rolled off the production line—and the hate towards them hasn’t stopped. There are actual owners who buy these cars not for any rational reason, but purely out of irony. In a sense, they’re trolling the public by driving around in cars they’re pretending is worth having. These are the cars people pick up just to make a costly joke.
All gearheads also need to check out cars women don’t like (according to math).
20 Dodge Dakota Sport Convertible
The Dodge Dakota Sport convertible is the jackpot for contrarian collectors. This sporty pickup without a roof is going to get weird looks and that’s what they like most about it. The Dakota Sport is about the complete opposite in style of any other pickup truck out there on the roads today.
19 Fisker Karma
These cars are eye-catching but they come with lots of problems below the shiny surface, which is why the models underwent widespread recalls. Cheat Sheet lists these early EVs as a potential collector’s item in the future. Most of all, they’re perfect for owners who want to look good cruising on the road in an ironic way.
18 GAZ Volga
The majority of cars in Jay Leno’s collection may be extraordinary, but he still has a lot of stinkers. He admitted to Vanity Fair that his GAZ Volga is “incredibly poorly put together” but still finds it worthy of a spot in his garage. Driving this must pale in comparison to other cars in Leno’s collection, suggesting he can’t help but snicker whenever he’s behind the wheel of the Volga.
By putting a lame car like the DeLorean in the hit movie Back to the Future, public interest in the car skyrocketed. That doesn’t make it any less of a dud though. Everyone knows the car is bad—a point even the movie pokes fun at—so anyone driving around in one is doing it for laughs.
16 Lamborghini LM002
Car fanatics don’t have to imagine an off-roader with a V12 engine made by Lamborghini; that’s because the LM002 exists. On top of all its specs, the car looks funky. Aesthetics aside, it hasn’t stopped the rich and famous from buying them, though it’s difficult to drive around in one seriously.
15 Hummer H2
Hummers are big, unreliable and bad for the environment. The H2 model is all those things but heightened even more. With production coming to a close in 2009, Popular Mechanics suggests it could be a collectible car in the future. For the time being, it’s the perfect ride to drive around in as a joke because of its reputation.
14 Plymouth Prowler
The Plymouth Prowler looks like a performance car, but it lacks the heft to equal its hotrod exterior. According to Time Magazine, the V6 was only able to do 250 hp. The Prowler’s misfire isn’t totally lost, however, finding a home among ironic car buyers who find it humorous to cruise around in cars that are all looks, no fun.
13 Pontiac Aztek
The Aztek stands out for all the wrong reasons. It was an attempt to make an innovative car design that ultimately fell flat on its face. That makes it the perfect car for ironic collectors to go cruising around in. There’s even an option for a tent, which is just one reason it deserves ridicule.
12 Toyota Prius (First Generation)
The Toyota Prius has already been around for over twenty years. While many drive newer models today to save money at the pump, it’s the older versions that jokers will find appealing, especially since the mpg isn't as good. As Cheat Sheet points out, even Jay Leno thinks the early Prius is worth collecting.
11 Ford Excursion
The Ford Excursion was a gratuitously big SUV. Part of the appeal for it lies in how impractical it is. Blue Springs Ford Parts makes the case that it came out during the peak of SUVs and is arguably the most over the top example of one, making it the ideal car to play an elaborate joke in.
10 Tesla Roadster
Tesla continues to gain attention as one of the top automakers today. However, a little more than ten years ago, back when the Tesla Roadster came out, the company wasn’t as popular. That makes this 2008 car a fun and appealing option for those who don’t take their cars seriously.
9 Ford Pinto
The Ford Pinto has a bad reputation among car enthusiasts. It’s all thanks to reports that they caught on fire. While it might scare off most drivers, who it won’t scare off are practical jokers. They’ll fork over the chump change to add one to their collection and look like a daredevil when they go for a spin.
8 Chevy SSR
The famous saying goes, “a picture is worth a thousand words.” There’s no other car on this list that that applies to more than the Chevy SSR. The design alone serves as suitable fodder for any driver who seeks to make their car the laughing stock on the road today.
7 GM EV1
The GM EV1 was a flop. The whole experiment did so poorly for GM, Jalopnik reports they made efforts to scrap them all. That means what few surviving cars remains are valuable to collectors. They also don’t hold much of a charge and aren’t very good cars, making these valuable to practical jokers.
6 Yugo GV
Many consider the Yugo to be one of the worst cars to ever come out. That makes it a dream car to own for those who just want to make other people laugh when they go for a drive. Although other shows have beaten jokers to the punch, as the Yugo's been the butt of jokes on SNL and The Simpsons (Car and Driver).
5 Kia Amanti
The Kia Amanti may not be a humorist’s first choice when it comes to buying a car merely for laughs, but it checks off all the boxes they're looking for. Made between 2004 to 2009, Autoblog reports that they’re much more affordable today compared to their original $28k price tag.
4 Ford Ranger EV
A pickup is about the last vehicle one would imagine being electric. Those who recognize this oddity will find the Ford Ranger EV the perfect kind of truck to add to their collection. One collector named Scott said, “I get lots of interest from collectors that never knew these trucks existed" (FordRangerEV.com).
3 Chevy Chevette
Like the Ford Pinto, the Chevette is not a car that even jokers want to mess around with. As Car and Driver reports, the car isn’t known for its safety, but that hasn’t kept some from picking them up for fun. At least collectors won’t break the bank just to get a laugh.
2 Honda EV Plus
There are two types of collectors that will find something to like in the Honda EV Plus. Those who collect rarities will like it based on the limited units there are in existence. It also appeals to those who find it amusing to drive around and pretend it’s a great car.
1 Toyota RAV4 EV (First Generation)
There are plenty of EVs on the list and the RAV4 is just another one that lacks mass appeal. Cheat Sheet makes a case, however, that it could end up being a worthy addition to car collections. The RAV4 EV belongs with those who drive it for kicks but don’t actually have much respect for it.
Sources: Vanity Fair, Jalopnik, Time Magazine, Blue Springs Ford Parts, Cheat Sheet, FordRangerEV.com, Autoblog, Car and Driver, Popular Mechanics