Welcome to Jalopnik's 2011 Showroom Stock Demolition Derby! Only cars (no trucks) made in this past year can be entered. Jalopnik readers picked these ten finalists to drive into the arena, but which one will drive out in one piece?
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: John Nuttal
10.) A Saab
Suggested By: exartist
Why it's county fair approved: No one wanted to see Saab go through such a long, protracted death sequence. Let's give at least one of them the chance to go down swinging, or even briefly enjoy the Viking funeral it rightly deserves.
Photo Credit: Automotiveart.nl
9.) Smart ForTwo with an external rollcage
Suggested By: crewwolfy
Why it's county fair approved: Building a hamster-ball-esque rollcage around a Smart ForTwo is a crazy idea. The plan is that you could zip across the arena, getting bounced into the air by bigger cars, but never actually damaged in a meaningful way. Crazy enough to work? Probably not.
Photo Credit: Smart
8.) Toyota Prius
Suggested By: Demon-Xanath
Why it's county fair approved: The Prius is not the best car to enter into a demolition derby. The overhangs are tiny, they're going to get crushed into the engine, and you don't even know what's going to happen to the hybrid drive.
The great thing about the Prius is, even when you lose, everybody wins.
Photo Credit: Toyota UK
7.) Kia Sedona
Suggested By: 87CE 95PV Type Я
Why it's county fair approved: A big, somewhat strong, front-wheel-drive vehicle is just about the perfect car for a demolition derby. A modern minivan should do the trick, with low cost of entry, plenty of metal between the corners of the car and any vital components like the engine or the transmission.
Well, not so much at the front of this short-hood Kia. Just drive backwards into people as much as you can. Make sure you hit them right where you put the "baby on board" sticker.
Photo Credit: Kia
6.) Chrysler 300C
Suggested By: rebeldevil
Why it's county fair approved: It's a huge, heavy American car in the classic mold. Big overhangs front and rear should keep your engine and transmission from getting crushed.
More than any physical advantage, the mind game is what's important, and having a classic American bruiser in the field will give you all the intimidation factor you'll need.
Photo Credit: Chyrsler-Group
5.) Buick Lucerne
Suggested By: 472CID
Why it's county fair approved: The problem with rear-wheel-drive in a demolition derby means that the more you use your trunk as a battering ram, the more you risk breaking apart all the stuff that keep your wheels spinning. Going for a full-size front-driver like this grandpa-spec Buick is even an even better choice than that brutish Chrysler.
Photo Credit: Michael Banovsky
4.) Ford Crown Victoria
Suggested By: Buster Brew
Why it's county fair approved: While the Crown Vic is disadvantaged as a rear-driver, it makes up for it with three important factors. The first is its absolutely hulking overhangs. The second is the strength of its old-school body-on-frame construction. The final advantage is that the last Crown Victoria was built this year, and the swelling pride and nostalgia you'll feel behind the wheel of the last classic American sedan will surely propel you to victory.
Photo Credit: David Traver Adolphus
3.) Mercedes Benz E 250 CDI Estate with a 204 HP BlueEFFICIENCY diesel and a 6-speed manual
Suggested By: Chairman Kaga
Why it's county fair approved: As reader Chairman Kaga explained in yesterday's Comment of the Day, you want a car with a small but powerful engine, set far back in a big engine bay. On top of that you want acres of rear overhang (like you get in a station wagon) and you want plenty of bulk to throw around.
The built-like–a-tank Benz should fit the bill nicely, and you can bash your way to the podium in nothing but leather-lined comfort.
Photo Credit: Daimler-Benz
2.) Chevrolet Impala
Suggested By: PilotMan
Why it's county fair approved: Like the other front-drive full-size sedans on this list, you get to turn the back end of the Impala into a straight battering ram, with no running parts to worry about around the rear wheels.
These Impalas aren't known for being the most strongly built cars out there, but otherwise you have a top contender for the 2011 Showroom Stock Demolition Derby trophy at a bargain price.
Photo Credit: Chevrolet
1.) Ford Taurus
Suggested By: Nikola Tesla
Why it's county fair approved: The Taurus does everything that the other cars on this list do, only much better. It might not look it, but the Taurus is an absolutely monstrous car. It's built out of over four thousand pounds of high-strength steel, and if you spring for the two-wheel-drive model, you can careen about, busting up that already smushed-looking trunk all the way to the winner's circle.
Photo Credit: andrewjsan