Being an uninformed, poorly connected, not at all established, amateur, internet auto journalist, I have automakers literally not beating down my door to have me drive the cars that they produce. In fact, if most manufacturers had their way, they wouldn't let me lay a hand on anything with their name on it. As it turns out, you can't just start emailing press departments and expect to end up with complimentary vehicles in your driveway, regardless of how much you promise not to wreck them.
As such, there were a lot of cars that I didn't get to drive this year. Some were only ok. Others were great. A few were outstanding. Still others were below average. A couple were even terrible.
Here is the list of the best and the worst cars that I haven't driven this year.
Best: Morgan Three Wheeler
What is there to say about the Morgan Three Wheeler that people don't know? It's a tub with three wheels. It's powered by a V Twin that sits completely in front of the body. It has no roof. You can get it painted like a WWII fighter plane. Doug Demuro refuses to buy one. I would give an arm and a leg to own it. It's (probably) the best car currently made.
Best: BMW X6M
When you buy an SUV, you expect it to be capable off road. The X6M is not that. When you buy a station wagon, you expect it to have loads of headroom in the back and plenty of storage space. The X6M doesn't have that. When you buy a sports coupe, you expect it to be light and low. The X6M isn't that at all. The X6M, however, does have 555 hp in a fastback crossover SUV that is completely nonsensical. There is (probably) not a single person in the entire world who needs to own an X6M (nor a need for me to test it), and yet BMW still produced it anyways. You have to admire a car that is produced for the zero people who asked for it and the (maybe) 37 people who eventually bought it.
Prior to wrecking it in high school, I briefly drove a Mazda 626. It was probably a good car, but I mostly hated it due to the fact that I didn't like it. Everybody who likes cars knows that Mazda now has an impenetrable lineup of excellent vehicles that should all be purchased. Say what you will about the Camry, but the Mazda6 is (probably) better in every way. In fact, instead of resorting to commercials full of lies, the Mazda6 is actually (probably) fun to drive. Imagine that!
Worst: Mitsubishi Galant
If you want to spot someone who doesn't know how to spend their money wisely, look for someone driving a Mitsubishi Galant. Listening to the Evo fanboys, you'd expect Mitsubishi to have a heck of a strong lineup, but when you actually took a look at what they had to offer, the entire lineup was crap. The only reason that anyone would actually have (probably) voluntarily looked at a Galant would be if they were blind and if they were looking for a Japanese competitor to their old Dodge Avenger. After all, you (probably) couldn't seriously compare the Galant to a real midsize sedan like a Camry or Sonata.
Then Mitsubishi had to go and cancel the Galant. Since no amount of Buffalo Trace would ever convince me to spend money on a Galant, and I would never seriously attempt to find one to test drive a discontinued snoozemobile, I guess I'll have to be content to (probably) never test drive one of the least desirable vehicles ever manufactured.
Worst: Nissan Versa
When you're the cheapest car in America, you inherently compete with used cars. Unfortunately for Nissan, I recently purchased a used BMW 540i for less than half of the base price of the Vera. While the Versa offers a warranty, my used car offers everything from comfortable seats to a quality interior to a powerful engine and even a manual transmission. I haven't driven a CVT, but if the internet's CVT hate is in any way justified, I would (probably) absolutely hate the Versa's transmission. Something tells me that it will also take a long time before the repairs on my 540i surpass the price difference between the country's cheapest car and what I paid for mine. How could I ever give up driving that?
Worst: smart ForTwo
I wanted to be a fan of the ForTwo. I really did. In fact, right before they brought it to the US, I had talked about it enough that my aunt gave me a model of the ForTwo to build. Unfortunately for smart, I became a grown adult and realized that their car (probably) sucks. Sure it's (probably) easy to park in compact spaces, but you know what else is easy to park? A motorcycle. In fact, a motorcycle is (hypothetically) way easier to park because you can just pull into any parking garage and then go around the arm when it's time for you to leave (not that I would ever do such a thing). The ForTwo also only has a maximum of two seats like a motorcycle, and the motorcycle may even have more cargo room if you strap on saddle bags.
What you definitely won't get from the ForTwo is motorcycle fuel efficiency, and even worse, you'll (probably) never be able to overcome how uncool the ForTwo is. While a motorcycle isn't particularly safe, it's also undeniably cool. Motorcycles are cheap as well. ForTwos? Nope. They're not cheap at all. For the price of a super slow and lame ForTwo, you can get a super fast and super cool motorcycle.
Beat that, smart, you (probably) stupidly pretentious company that (probably) won't capitalize its name.
You can follow me on Twitter if you'd like: @CBWoodard
Images: Autoblog.com, CarType.com, Autoblog.com, KBB.com, Edmunds.com, GreenCarReports.com