No list of terrible cars is complete without an Edsel. Everyone hates it, even the people who love it. From the Edsel Owners Club: "The name Edsel has become synonymous with disaster and failure." From Time Magazine: "Cultural critics speculated that the car was a flop because the vertical grill looked like a vagina." Even that venerable Gray Lady, The New York Times, said the car "became a synonym for bold, bad ideas not long after it was introduced in 1957."
What made the thing so terrible? Well, Ford hyped Edsels as if they had superpowers capable of ending the Cold War and getting the hot girl all in the same day, but people caught on pretty quickly that these were the poor-man's Mercury. There were rumors that the cars were built and shipped to dealers with notes explaining that parts were missing, but the dealership could make the car whole in a few easy steps! Ford poured so much money into this bucket of chum that the Edsel ended up as a spectacular failure.