If you’ve spent any time looking around The Richest you will have noticed that most articles concerning vehicles are about the most expensive, the most luxurious or the fastest. We are obsessed with what expensive cars celebrities drive and which car maker has the largest engines and the fastest creations. We drool over the most expensive cars, vehicles which can cost more than the houses we live in. All of this time staring at the biggest, best and most expensive has left little to room for considering the ‘lesser’ cars of the automotive world. What about the cheapest, the least reliable and the most gutless? More people drive those cars than the super cars we read about so maybe it’s time to give them a little space.
The following looks at one car category which is often brushed aside by the Lamborghinis, Ferraris, Aston Martins and McLarens. If there are the fastest cars from 0-60 mph then there must be a group of cars which are the slowest to accelerate to 60 mph. Sure, having the slowest accelerating car isn’t sexy or exciting but it’s a reality. Slow acceleration times don’t mean the car is garbage – as you’ll see – it just means that potential racers and those of you looking to burn that annoying car next to you from a stop won’t consider these as potential purchases. Looking through the following list there are some pretty nice and expensive vehicles listed. In all likelihood there is more than one car listed ahead which you wouldn’t mind having in your garage or driveway if the opportunity presented itself.
20. Hyundai Sonata Sport 2.0: 8.0 seconds
In the automotive world cars get labelled with all sorts of badges and letters to make them stand out. The label ‘sport’ is often thrown into the title of the car to denote it somehow stands out from the rest. You might associate ‘sport’ with meaning the car is better handling, faster and an overall improved performer when compared with the other non-‘sport’ cars. In many cases it isn’t but with Hyundai they thankfully came through. The Sonata Sport 2.0 is powered by a 2.0L turbocharged four-cylinder engine which puts out 245 hp and 260 lbs of torque. That’s 60 hp and 82 lbs torque more than the standard 2.4L engine found in the other Sonatas. Unfortunately, for any performance enthusiast, these bigger figures only translate into a 0.4 second better 0-60 time.
19. Audi A3 TDI: 8.2 seconds
This is Audi’s entry level car (that doesn’t sound right, does it?) which is the smallest and least expensive Audi you can find in North America. For those who can’t afford the larger Audis, there’s the A3. For those who need to cut costs a little bit further, there’s the A3 TDI. The TDI uses a 150 hp 2.0L turbo-diesel engine which sacrifices performance for a healthier bank account. It’s a 70 hp drop from the equivalent gasoline version but gives an impressive 43mpg on the highway. In the city this drops to a less impressive 31mpg but that’s okay because it’ll match the rather unimpressive 0-60 time.
T-16. Lexus NX 300H AWD: 8.3 seconds
Lexus is one of the leaders in the luxury crossover market. The company’s NX series has some interesting choices. The NX 200t is the ‘fun’ entry thanks to its 235 hp turbocharged engine. For those Lexus enthusiasts who want to save the polar ice caps and the polar bears who live on them, there is the 300H, a hybrid version. The 300H only puts out 194 hp but its 35 mpg city rating makes up for that with most buyers. The AWD is available with electric motors to drive the rear axles, so as to not draw power from the main engine. As a luxury crossover you wouldn’t expect it to have the best 0-60 performance – and you’d be right. However, it doesn’t have the worst either and its overall performance isn’t bad considering some of the other cars on this list.
T-16. Kia Soul Exclaim: 8.3 seconds
The Kia Soul stands out from many other compact cars thanks to its boxy design and often interesting available color options. Its popularity is due in large part to its general reliability and the rather impressive list of features which come standard and optional for a car with a relatively low price tag. As the top of the line Soul, you’d expect the Exclaim to also come equipped with a higher-end engine. It does – sort of. While Kia field a V6 and turbocharged four cylinder, the Soul lineup only come with standard inline four cylinder engine options. In the case of the Exclaim it’s a 2.0L engine which produces 164 hp. It’s more than enough to get you moving, it just takes a bit to get up to speed.
T-16. Ford F-450 Platinum: 8.3 seconds
In all honesty, people don’t buy a truck this big to race – correction, most people don’t buy a truck this big to race. Part of Ford’s F-series Super Duty lineup, the F-450 is a big truck. It has a four-door crew cab, eight foot bed and four-wheel drive. There is a gasoline engine available but most people opt for the massive 6.7L turbo-diesel V8. This unit puts out 440 hp and an insane 860lbs of torque. So why the slower 0-60 time? The F-450 is built and tuned to be a workhorse. This can be clearly seen in its hauling and towing capacity. This truck has a payload capacity of 7,260 lbs and can tow a 31,200 lb trailer. It won’t beat much off the line but it really has nothing to prove.
15. Hyundai Sonata Limited: 8.4 seconds
In the automotive world, the term ‘limited’ is thrown around quite a bit. What makes a vehicle ‘limited’? The old automotive joke is that a ‘limited’ vehicle is only limited by the number they can move off the lot – in plain English, ‘limited’ is usually used to attract potential buyers to dish out more for something deemed special. In respect to the Sonata Limited, it is the second highest level of Sonata available from Hyundai in 2015. Just below the Sonata 2.0T, the Limited is loaded with all the luxury add-ons you’d expect, including chrome trim, faux wood trim and all sorts of electronic driving aids. Under the hood, you’ll find a 2.4L 190 hp four-banger which will make you feel a bit limited when you look at the 2.0T’s 2.0L turbocharged unit that produces 274 hp.
14. Honda CR-V AWD Touring: 8.5 seconds
In the world of the crossover, and there are many, the Honda CR-V is probably one of the best known. Produced since 1997, the CR-V is currently in its fourth generation of production. For the 2015 year, Honda gave this vehicle a new 2.4L inline four-cylinder engine and transmission which makes it over half a second faster than last year’s CR-V. In addition to shaving off some drive time thanks to its 185 hp the unit is more fuel efficient. Of course, the AWD system adds weight to decrease any 0-60 time, but for many consumers the AWD system is what gives the crossover or SUV its reason for being.
13. Mitsubishi Outlander Sport (2.4L AWD): 8.6 seconds
Known as the RVR outside of the United States, the Outlander Sport is currently in its third generation of production. The Mitsubishi Outlander Sport shares the platform and many designs of the larger 7-seater Outlander, just shrunk down to make up this 5-seater crossover. The sport comes with two engine and drivetrain options. There are both 2.0L and 2.4L four-cylinder engines and FWD or AWD configurations available. The larger 2.4L engine mated with the heavy AWD system gives the vehicle 168 hp and greater capabilities but at the expense of fuel economy and 0-60 time. That said, for a price of around $25,000 we doubt many people will remotely care that their vehicle has a 0-60 time of 8.6 seconds.
12. Chrysler 200C: 8.7 seconds
Yes, there have been some pretty terrible designs and creations which have come out of Chrysler in the past couple of decades. The Neon, the PT Cruiser and the Sebring convertible are just a few examples of vehicles which damaged the company’s reputation. As part of the campaign to reinvent Chrysler and attract a new generation of loyal owners, one of the cars the company unveiled was the 200. The 200 saw the inclusion of new interior designs and the use of higher-end materials in construction. The 200C is at the high end of the range for this car and sees the inclusion of wood trim, heated and vented seats with leather upholstery and a self-parking system. With a number of engine and drivetrain configurations available the basic 2.4L FWD configuration gives a 0-60 time of 8.7 seconds.
T-10. Mitsubishi Outlander Sport (2.0L FWD): 9.0 seconds
The second Outlander Sport on this list, this particular Mitsubishi crossover is the most basic and bare bones version you can get in 2015. Technically known as the Outback Sport ES 2.0, this car costs under $20,000. Of course, for that price you only get the FWD system and the basic 2.0L engine. This four cylinder motor puts out 148 hp which is attained at 6000 rpm – only 500 rpm from the engine’s redline. Of course, to be honest, people who buy crossovers won’t really care about their 0-60 times and people who are buying the cheapest base models probably know they won’t be breaking any records.
T-10. Volkswagen Golf TDI: 9.0 seconds
Next to the Beetle, the Golf is one of the most recognizable faces of German carmaker Volkswagen. Around since 1974, the compact Golf has become so popular in the market because it combines small size, practicality and reliability. Currently in its seventh generation of development, the Golf looks like it is here to stay for many more years. A further appeal of the brand is the option range of engines. From ‘regular’ four-cylinder gas-burning engines to higher performance turbocharged units which produce well over 200 hp. In its more economical turbo-diesel form, the Golf isn’t going to win any races. The turbo-diesel has become a staple of Volkswagen and the Golf 2.0L TDI’s engine puts out a respectable 150 hp and 236 lbs of torque. That will give you 45 mpg on the highway but only a 9.0 0-60 time.
T-8. Honda Fit EX-L: 9.1 seconds
The Fit is a subcompact entry-level vehicle manufactured by Honda. When the company revamped its lineup, the popular Civic hatchback was replaced with the newly designed and more spacious Fit. All Fits are powered by a 1.5L four cylinder engine which produces 130 hp and 113 lbs ft torque. As with all Hondas, the build quality is high and the handling of the car is very tight and responsive. Opting for the highest end Fit, the EX-L, gives you a car equipped with all the available bells and whistles. This includes upgraded navigation, sound systems and heated seats. All of these add-ons make the car pretty comfortable but at the expense of added weight. It’s this weight that puts just a little more strain on the engine, bringing the 0-60 time just past nine seconds.
T-8. Volkswagen e-Golf: 9.1 seconds
The brand new 2015 e-Golf shares many of the styling features found in the Golf listed earlier in this article. However, you can probably guess from the name that this specific model is powered by an electric motor. This of course means that its performance suffers in 0-60 times, yet it isn’t anywhere being the slowest vehicle on this list. That because Volkswagen have had more than a few years researching and developing electric units for their cars. The e-Golf is the result of development and testing which began back in 2011, resulting in the car we see today. On one charge, the car can get around 83 miles which is the equivalent of 116 mpg for a gasoline powered car. That’s impressive, even if its 0-60 time isn’t.
T-6. Subaru Legacy 2.5I Premium: 9.2 seconds
For most of its life, the Subaru Legacy was all about function over form and the car was rather utilitarian and homely looking. Nonetheless, those who owned them generally loved them because they were practical and had excellent bad-weather and off-road capability. The introduction of a dedicated Outback lineup in 2010 spelled the end of the Legacy wagon and the brand switched over to a sedan-only basis. The base model comes equipped with the standard 2.5L horizontally opposed flat-four cylinder engine. This produces 175 hp and gives decent gas mileage considering the car is carrying around a heavier AWD system. The trade-off for improved styling and the better fuel economy over the available 3.6L flat-6 cylinder engine is a rather slow 0-60 time which probably doesn’t bother owners too much given the car’s bad-weather capabilities.
T-6. Subaru Outback 2.5I: 9.2 seconds
The Outback name has been used by Subaru since the 1990s. Named after the vast expanse of wilderness found in Australia, the Outback label was applied to versions of the company’s Impreza and Legacy vehicles to emphasize their rugged and off-road capability. In 2010, Subaru released an Outback which dropped the Legacy label and became the company’s new wagon. Like other Subarus, the Outback shared many common parts, including engine options. The smallest engine available is the 2.5L horizontally opposed four cylinder. This engine is a gas saver compared to the larger 3.6 but, as with the Legacy, it comes at an expense to performance. The 175 hp will no doubt get you around town and work very well off-road, but you can’t ever think about beating that Mustang sitting next to you at the red light – unless it’s snowing or raining.
5. Chevrolet Colorado: 9.3 seconds
In the world of pick-up trucks, full size vehicles have become so large that anyone wanting a smaller option has usually had to consider models from Toyota or Nissan. The Chevrolet Colorado is a new entry. The original (or first generation) of the Colorado sold between 2004 and 2012. After a break, a newly designed model has come back on the market which has been given a much more modern appearance. The base model of the Colorado comes equipped with a 2.5L engine which puts out 193 hp and 184 lbs of torque. In all likelihood you won’t be towing much with this version and, without significant modifications, you won’t be racing it either.
4. Chevrolet Trax (AWD): 9.7 seconds
A bit late getting into the small crossover market, Chevrolet have nevertheless produced a popular vehicle with the Trax. At first glance it literally looks like a shrunken Equinox. The Trax isn’t about performance but instead focuses on room and practicality. This is made abundantly clear when you look under the hood and find a 1.4L turbocharged four-cylinder engine which produces a mere 138 hp and 148 lbs ft of torque. Available with either FWD or AWD, buyers should know that the AWD configuration gives better capabilities but reduced fuel-economy and performance due to extra weight. Chevrolet may cite a 0-60 time of closer to 9 seconds, yet testers at Autoweek found that their AWD Trax came in at 9.7 seconds.
3. Nissan Versa Note SR: 10.3 seconds
In the world of ¼ mile racing, having a 10 second car can be a big milestone for drivers. The Nissan Versa Note is a 10 second car, just in a far different way. So, don’t expect to see it any Fast and Furious-style movies. The Note is the hatchback version of Nissan’s popular Versa subcompact line. On the outside the car looks nice but, as with many Nissans, the interior is often basic and rather cheap looking. Have no fear, the Note SR changes all of this. The SR is the ‘sporty’ version of the Versa Note and sees the addition of such things as a spoiler, sportier exterior trim, alloy wheels and a sportier steering wheel. With all these ‘sporty’ additions it’s just too bad Nissan didn’t boost the power from the standard 109 hp inline four cylinder motor. This means that the SR trim will make you look fast but in the end you’ll still be one of the slowest accelerating cars around.
2. Kia Soul EV: 12.0 seconds
The second Kia Soul on this list, the EV is quite a bit slower off the mark than its more popular sibling, the Exclaim. That won’t shock many car buffs who will know that performance-wise, good things rarely come when the term ‘environmentally friendly’ is used for a car. An electric motor adds around 300 lbs of extra weight but puts out a decent 109 hp and 210 lbs ft of torque. This all gets the car to 60 mph in 12.0 seconds. In the world of electric cars, there are very few manufacturers who push the limits of high performance and Kia isn’t one of them. Of course, people who buy this car probably will not care one bit that they are one of the slowest off the line.
1. Ford Transit 350HD: 12.5 seconds
At top spot (depending on how you look at it) is this full-size van from Ford. For over 60 years Ford had relied on the E-series vans to fill the people/cargo hauling jobs. With the end of the E-series, Ford is looking to this vehicle to fill the void. Compared to its predecessor, the Transit is lighter, more aerodynamic and ergonomic. To be honest, unless it’s the A-Team van you likely aren’t going to break any 0-60 records. In fact, if you are a Transit 350HD owner the race will likely be over before you even arrive at the event. That’s because even though this van is powered by a 3.2L turbo diesel engine, the motor is not tuned for ‘high performance’ in the racing sense of the word. Nevertheless, with a towing capacity of 7,000 lbs, it will get your race car to the track without any problems.
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