The Worst Cars – What Used Cars to Avoid in 2021

  • The worst cars , just be aware of some of these 10 most unreliable cars in the UK. You don’t want to buy one of these headaches.
  • At the end of the video, I will give you some tips on how to buy a good second-hand car, and you won’t believe the car that comes first. So stick around to the end.

Sometimes buying a used car is just as expensive as buying a new one, or even more expensive. With repairs and general maintenance, expenses accumulate. What seemed like a good buy turned out to be the worst deal of our lives!

That’s why I’ve prepared this video with the 10 most unreliable cars you can find in used car catalogues, with the idea that you should NOT buy one of them. You’ll be VERY surprised when you hear the brand name of the car that ranks first!

I’ll give you some tips when looking at a car before you buy it. But before we get started, be sure to subscribe to the channel and like this video if you want me to bring you more of this kind of content.

Now let’s begin!

Chapters on the Worst Cars:

00:00 Introduction

01:20 Vauxhall Astra

02:13 Volkswagen Passat diesel (2010 – 13)

03:18 Nissan Qashqai (2014 onwards)

04:16 BMW 5 Series E60

05:20 Land Rover Discovery (2015 onwards)

06:30 Nissan X-Trail

07:19 BMW 1 Series E87

08:17 Audi A3 diesel (2003 – 2013)

09:21 Range Rover

10:24 Volvo XC90

11:27 Top Tips

Number 10: Vauxhall Astra

What can we say about the Vauxhall Astra? Hated by many and loved by few, it is one of the worst cars and has become the headache of many British consumers. In fact, several surveys rank it below average in terms of acceptable levels.

Beyond its aesthetics and poor choice of materials, the Astra is an option for those who only want a means of transport to get from point A to point B.

But be careful! Several websites have reported that consumers have experienced problems with the gearbox and spent over £1000 on repairs. Other users have reported problems with the electrical systems and the clutch.

And in the worst scenarios, engine problems. So if you have no other choice and have selected an Astra, I recommend you thoroughly check the car’s history of use and check the gearbox.

Number 9: Volkswagen Passat diesel (2010 – 13)

The Passat is one of those options if you’re looking for a spacious car without being a BMW 7 Series or Mercedes-Benz C-Class.

This early 2010s diesel car, which competes with others in its class such as the Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, has received negative reviews in the long run after consumers found more than one fault.

Gaskets need to be replaced regularly because the diesel engine is prone to oil leaks.

In the worst-case scenario, some units have misfire problems in one of the cylinders due to a faulty coil or poor quality spark plugs. From 88,000 miles onwards, these problems emerge and require immediate attention from a mechanic, making it one of the least reliable cars on this list.

On the electronics side, several users reported problems with the dashboard display. From 100,000 miles onwards, the display starts to lose illumination, and to repair it is necessary to dismantle the entire dashboard. What a mess!

Number 8: Nissan Qashqai (2014 onwards)

The Nissan Qashqai is one of the UK’s most popular and best-selling SUVs, so what the heck is it doing in our top ten? Well, the Qashqai has a few factory issues that crop up as the miles add up.

The battery is one of the most typical problems with these units, so its users need to change it too regularly. This battery sucker has poorly optimized electrical systems that need to be checked by a specialist, and to be honest, a VERY good one.

The most problematic are those produced from 2014 onwards, which are fitted with the 1.2-liter DIG-T engine. This engine tends to get out of sync with the timing chain, so it is suggested to check it from time to time.

And to complete this perfect storm, Qashqai’s come equipped with Nissan’s infamous CVT gearbox, which caused many consumers to spend over £1500 on repairs. Ouch!

Number 7: BMW 5 Series E60

Although BMW is a brand that is highly regarded and valued on a par with Mercedes-Benz, sometimes they make some mistakes.

German engineering is synonymous with reliability and precision, but this is not always the case. For example, BMW’s E60 generation 5-series did not perform as well as expected.

Over the years, users have reported problems with the 535i’s electrical systems and sensors. Other problems include leaking oil filter gaskets and leaking engine covers.

BMW used this generation to introduce turbochargers to its units, so problems with the exhaust valves of the turbos can emerge.

The M5 E60, despite having a Formula 1 derived V10 engine, has a very complex and expensive to repair electrical system. It also has mechanical problems with the gearbox and differential.

In its favor, however, a well-maintained car can last a long time. At least!

Number 6: Land Rover Discovery (2015 onwards)

Land Rover is known for offering vehicles capable of crossing any type of terrain as long as you have a good toolbox to hand.

The Discovery in its base version has problems more to do with the bodywork and cabin fittings. Other common problems with these units have to do with faulty ACs, gearbox, and clutch, and users have spent between £300 and £500 on repairs.

But the Sport version of the Discovery is the most problematic of this generation, one of the worst cars if you ask me. Users have reported problems in the following categories: AC, battery, bodywork, brakes, engine electrics, mechanics, steering column, and a long list of other problems.

Up to a staggering £1000 has been spent by Discovery Sport owners on repairs. How crazy is that?

Does that seem exaggerated? It’s hard to believe that such a historic vehicle has so many problems. Let me know what you think in the comments, and if you’ve made it this far, I invite you to like this video and subscribe to the channel!

Number 5: Nissan X-Trail

Many customers said the X-Trail is a good buy because of its high usability and satellite navigation, but it leaves a lot to be desired in power, driving feel, and build quality.
The suspensions on these units are somewhat problematic when travelling at high speeds, making it an unreliable car.

Turbo units often have problems with lack of power, black smoke, and turbo leaks, indicators that this part has serious problems, and needs to be replaced. Oh, be warned. It is expensive to replace.

Other problems with these units are often related to electronics and power steering. The latter problem tends to occur with units produced between 2011 and 2013 and is an issue you need to avoid so you don’t spend more than £1000 on repairs.

Number 4: BMW 1 Series E87

If you want to choose a BMW 1-series, take a huge magnifying glass and pick the unit you are going to buy with tweezers, because not all 1-series are the same.

The 116i, 118i, 120i models have one small problem in common, and that is they are engine trouble magnets. From timing chain failures to BMW’s Vanos VVT system, we’re talking about serious problems and potential red flags.

The diesel versions do not escape these problems either. Units with the N47 engine have timing chain faults, although here they are much easier to fix. This may be the option to go for!

Those with the M47 engine have a weak turbo that tends to break, as well as crankshaft, and crankcase problems. If you want to get one, make sure you take your mechanic with you and that the timing chain has been replaced, a tip from the house.

Number 3: Audi A3 diesel (2003 – 2013)

Continuing the trend of unreliable cars at the engine level, we have the diesel version of the Audi A3. Its heated seats are an extra frill as most simply stop working over the years, however, this is a lesser evil.

Depending on the engine and usage, the A3 diesel has issues with the turbo exhaust valve, and sometimes there is a loss of pressure, while mysterious coolant leaks start to appear… at this point, we have a clear red flag.

The gearbox, both automatic and manual, has problems so you have to check very carefully that the automatic gearbox shifts smoothly and the manual gearbox that the shift from second to third gear offers no resistance.

Did I mention that you also have problems with the flywheel? This part, when it fails, entails huge repair costs as it is a vital component that keeps the engine running.

But the most serious problem with these units is that they are part of the VAG group’s emissions scandal, and that’s already a clear warning sign.

Number 2: Range Rover

Did you expect the Range Rover to be so high up in our top ten? Apparently, this model has serious quality control issues with each passing year.

Although it remains an icon of British engineering, you need to keep a close eye on it when choosing a second-hand Range Rover. For example, units produced from 2013 onwards can have some issues.

The air suspension tends to fail over the years, and you should make sure it has been properly serviced. The air conditioning is another area that fails in these units, as well as the satellite navigation and electronics in the cabin. I almost forgot! You should also check the window seals, which often leak rainwater. What a nightmare.

As an SUV intended for urban areas, the bodywork is a weak point that is easily detectable to the naked eye. But the most severe problems you can find in a Range Rover are engine problems, engine electronics, gearbox, and mysterious leaks due to poor-quality engine seals.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you later!

Number 1: Volvo XC90

And to close the top, a brand never expected in a list of unreliable cars. For the British market, Volvo is synonymous with reliability, safety, and confidence on the roads.

Thanks to more than 50 years of developing road safety and reflecting this research in its various models, a black sheep was bound to come out after a good run of success. So what’s wrong with the Volvo XC90?

Units between 3 and 8 years after production start to have overheating, tailpipe, and emissions problems. In addition to this, the turbo and fuel injection systems also start to fail. It is definitely, a very serious problem to fix; losing money on fuel is a VERY bad investment.

Other problems include internal and external door locks, premature wear of door panels, and suspension failure. Definitely, the worst and least reliable car, a car to avoid. What a disappointment, Volvo!

Top Tips

Before I go, here are four simple top tips in case you still want to buy some of the cars mentioned in this video or any other used car, no matter if it is a petrol, diesel, hybrid or electric car.

The first thing is not to make a hasty purchase and research the offers. Take your time and find out what kind of use the previous owner gave the car.

Second, ask your mechanic to go with you to look at the car. It is always better to be accompanied by an expert.

Third, make sure all papers are in order, MOT passed, and taxes paid. If there is no transparency, run away from there!

And finally, check the body work for any damage especially rust as you ideally don’t want a car that will cost you far more in getting it past it’s MOT. Send us some images of a car you want to buy and we’ll give you some advice.

If you liked this top and these tips, please like this video and support me by subscribing to the channel. This will help me to keep growing and bring you more videos from the world of motoring. See you soon!

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