My aunt is known for wanting to be seen. If someone perceives her as being more than she is, especially being seen as rich, that’s a plus for her. Growing up, often extended to my cousin, her son. In the late 2000's when we were still teenagers, she thought it would be a good idea to get my cousin his first car. A used 2003 Cadillac STS. Dark blue, she paid just over $11,000 cash for it off a local lot. My grandpa and uncle tried to warn her: that Northstar was a ticking, expensive time bomb. She didn’t care though. He was the only kid in the neighborhood with his own car and one of a few people he knew with “a car of substance”. (You know, something that’s wasn’t a Toyota Echo or Hyundai Accent)
He had it a year before the famous Northstar problems reared their ugly head. It started off with higher than normal oil consumption. It ended with blown head gaskets that left the thing sitting in the driveway collecting dust and spiderwebs for over 10 years before it was towed and donated about two years ago.
We asked readers about the worst cars they’ve seen someone buy for their kids. These were their answers.