From riced-out Civics to sagging ‘70s Firebirds, there are plenty of cars with racey looks, but no performance to back them up. Here are ten modern cars that Jalopnik readers think talk the talk, but don't walk the walk.
Welcome back to Answers of the Day — our daily Jalopnik feature where we take the best ten responses from the previous day's Question of the Day and shine it up to show off. It's by you and for you, the Jalopnik readers. Enjoy!
Photo Credit: Chrysler
10.) Honda Civic Si
Suggested By: hartmanerik3
Why it's overestimated: There's nothing wrong with the handling of Honda's pumped-up grocery-getter, it's just not a very fast car, and certainly not nearly as fast as you'd think with its hunkered-down stance and sporty spoilers. Reader ScorpioGTX1 points out that when you take the car's competition into account, the Civic looks more and more like an image-conscious buy:
The Mustang V6 is faster, has 100 more horsepower, costs the same, and gets the same gas mileage. Sorry, but the Si is an underperformer.
Photo Credit: Donny Boy
9.) Mitsubishi Lancer OZ Rally Edition
Suggested By: feather-throttle-not-hair
Why it's overestimated: I was amazed when I found the picture above, because I've never seen an OZ Rally Lancer that's not painted bright look-at-me! yellow. Yellow very much suits this flashy car, because while the Lancer OZ Rally Edition gives the impression of Evo speed, it only has 120hp to back it up. It might be a fun little twist on a dull family car, but it comes far short of delivering the performance its looks promise.
Photo Credit: Matthew Hardman
8.) Scion TC
Suggested By: that other honda guy
Why it's overestimated: There's nothing wrong with selling a little style to the masses in the shape of a sporty-looking coupe, just don't expect it to blow your doors off. The new car will hit sixty in 8 seconds and the old one will get there a half second later, which we now know is plenty slower than a Subaru Forester, of all things. A Toyota Sienna minivan will keep up with you from the lights, and we don't be surprised if that mommy who's late to soccer practice smokes you the whole way home.
Photo Credit: Scion
7.) Posche Cayenne V6
Suggested By: ChiefPonitaxe
Why it's overestimated: It has a Porsche badge and it's a very expensive car, so the various casts of the Real Housewives will think it's got sports car speed, but don't be fooled. A V6 Toyota RAV4 or Camry will absolutely destroy this Teutonic wonder from a standing start. If you're burning gas in your slushbox Cayenne you'll hit 60 in 7.8 seconds, which is slower even than Porsche's new diesel, itself no hell raiser at 7.6s. Why try and shame your cheap neighbors with a expensive car when they're totally faster than you?
Photo Credit: kenjonbro
6.) Lexus SC430
Suggested By: SennaMP4
Why it's overestimated: Lexus sells a good may cars that aren't as fast as they look, but their crowning moment of glory (one that lasted longer than anyone expected) was the SC430. It has a Lexus badge, a folding metal roof, and sporty two-door styling, but it is anything but an exciting performer. 288 horsepower pushes its 3,840 lb to sixty in a respectable 5.9 seconds, but this is a car so beige that you might well fall asleep while making your run. If there was ever a company that could make a V8 convertible a dull experience, it was Lexus.
Photo Credit: Lexus
5.) Ford Crown Victoria police cars
Suggested By: cobrajoe
Why it's overestimated: You often see Crown Vics speeding past you, but that doesn't make them fast cars. They're really only just going faster. There's a bit of a legend that Crown Vics can keep up with the fastest of cars, and that's not exactly surprising. Nothing says speed like the flashing red and blue. Actually, a cop car can only drag itself to sixty mph in around 9 or 10 seconds. Just because they're slow, don't think that you can outrun the police force, cop radios and all.
Photo Credit: Loki69
4.) Chevrolet Monte Carlo
Suggested By: unhcampus
Why it's overestimated: From the SS to the NASCAR Edition, to the Earnhardt specials, few cars tried to look so fast with nothing but flashy wheels and a bunch of stickers. Just because it looks like a Talledega racer (and it wasn't even that good at that in the first place), it doesn't mean it's a quick car.
Photo Credit: Shayne Gelo
3.) Honda CR-Z
Suggested By: Speigelactus, Devourer of Worlds
Why it's overestimated: The CR-Z may be a fun little car with a nonconventional, complex drivetrain, but it comes across best when you stop thinking about it as a fast car. Unfortunately, Honda marketing and the car's aesthetic make you expect it to be quick. With those lines and with the kind of expectations you invariable bring to the CR-Z, it's always going to be overestimated. It might be a quirky little thing, but fast it ain't.
Photo Credit: Curtis Palmer
2.) Dodge Challenger V6
Suggested By: TheSlurpeeMan
Why it's overestimated: We don't know exactly what the V6 Dodge Challenger is challenging. A minivan? A 1990s Celica? It might look like a muscle car, but it looks like the steroids have worn off for these Dodges. The new ones hit sixty in a respectable 6.4s, but you just take one look at it and expect nothing but tire-smoking V8 speed.
Photo Credit: Dodge
1.) Plymouth Prowler
Suggested By: GR1M RACER
Why it's overestimated: The Plymouth Prowler may in fact be, on average, the slowest car in the world. You buy one, you take if to a few car shows every year and you cruise in it every few Sundays, but I would be surprised if these things didn't spend 99% of their lives going all of zero miles an hour parked in private garages. It might look like a factory hot rod, but it's packing a 214hp V6 and won't get to sixty before seven, nearly eight seconds have gone by. Things got a bit better from '99 to '02 with a new 253hp engine and a 0-60 time of around six seconds, but its looks were still writing checks its performance couldn't cash. If there was ever a car that promised big but didn't deliver, it was the Plymouth Prowler.
Photo Credit: Dan Shouse