5 Best & 5 Worst Summer Cars, Ranked

If you're thinking of taking a trip during the summer, be sure to check out this list of the five best and worst cars to take for a drive in the heat.

Summer is going fast, but it's not over yet! Many are still going camping, taking day trips to the beach or lake. And, unless you're taking a ride share service, you'll need a car to get there.

Related: 10 Best Road Trip Vehicles to Take an Adventure This Summer

Well, here's a list of cars that'll help you decide whether to swipe left or right at the rental counter. These are the 5 best and 5 worst summer cars, ranked!

10 Best: Tesla Model 3

Tesla has made another hit with its affordable and stylish Model 3. Its range is between 220-310 miles and the cost is only$35,000 starting. With a charge time as little as 30-45 minutes, you can charge up at the nearest station while you shop and come out ready to roll! Not only will you not have to pay gas anymore but you'll also be clear of regular maintenance like oil changes and brakes. Another benefit of electric is the second trunk you get for storage called the frunk! This is a highlight if road trips are on your mind before summers out.

9 Worst: 2018 Dodge Caravan

There are a plethora of vehicles I could list as the worst car period. But, this list is focusing on the worst summer cars you can drive. The 2018 Dodge Caravan (or any model year in this body style) is a runner up. While it's not the top pick of fun cars like the Miata, some would prefer a vehicle with more passenger and cargo room for that quintessential family road trip.

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While Dodge invented mini-vans, this version is not only outdated but is also poorly made. From the design which is 11 years old to the craftsmanship, Dodge puts the exclamation point on unreliable! Components that are high wear and tare like power sliding doors are hollow and slow to open. The 6 cylinder engine seems more fit for a compact car than the demands of a 7 passenger load. Interior space while adequate is not competitive with its rivals.

8 Best: Mini Cooper Convertible

The Mini Cooper convertible is a star when it comes to the open road.  Few other cars are quit this enjoyable to drive. (and have a high level of owner satisfaction.) The Mini is both fun to drive and economical, with mpg of 24 city/35 highway! It's sporty enough to get your adrenaline pumping while being sensable at the pump.   The interior room on the ragtop is tighter in the rear than its hardtop sibling but can still hold 4 passengers with a few bags in the truck.

7 Worst: Land Rover Range Rover (L322)

Land Rover L322 (aka Land Rover full-size SUV) made the list for a similar reason as the Dodge, poor reliability. Unless luxury is your only criteria for a good summer car, this SUV leaves much to be desired. It'll look slick in the driveway but has been known to have such serious problems as transmission leaks and electrical issues to name a few.

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Specifically model years 2002-2012 are the culprits although this brand has a reputation for poor reliability. Despite being as popular as they are Land Rover has mechanical issues to clear up before they can make a higher grade.

6 Best: 2019 Jeep Wrangler

The Jeep Wrangler finds itself on many of my "top" lists but not because it's a reliable, sensible vehicle. (In fact, it can be said that this Jeep is worthy of a top 10 worst car to buy in terms of reliability.) The Wrangler finds itself on this list simply because it's not for everyone. The Wrangler is for those who are looking for a unique blend of all-weather fun in all terrains.

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Its off-road capability is legendary and its configurable top combination makes it a stand-alone vehicle even in a crowded SUV market. There are few if any other vehicles that offer so many different options-whether its top-down with doors off or windows down with top on or any other option. This rig is meant to enjoy the sun-kissed days of summer in style.

5 Worst: Dodge Omni/Plymouth Horizon (1979-1990)

The Dodge Omni or Plymouth Horizon was a small 5 door hatch that was a hit of its time. It met the sweet spot the American public needed: a compact fuel-efficient car. In its life span of 11 years, Dodge sold 2.5 million cars!

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But, while its popularity was evident it makes my list of worst summer cars since it's crash test ratings were abysmal. It was even dangerous in a small frontal crash! Not to mention the tiny 1.7-liter engine would only putt along slowly.

4 Best: 2019 Mustang Convertible

The 2019 Mustang is a favorite iconic sports car for the ages. Many people want to get away before the autumn season brings new busyness to their lives.  A Mustang can be a great candidate for the last-minute weekend trip for 2. It's a blast to drive with its gas-sipping eco-boost 4 cylinder engine with 310 horsepower!  It has plenty of cool features like "sport mode" and paddle shifters that transform a sporty car into your very own street racer. The only downside to this pony car is it only fits 2 real adults with a useless rear seat good enough for cargo. Even toddlers would have a hard time fitting in the back. But who says you'll bring the family along this time?

3 Worst: Chrysler Sebring (2006-2010)

Speaking of Chrysler products, the Sebring makes this 5 worst summer cars list because of its poor reliability and build quality. In other words, it's not made to last. While the car is a drop-top sun and fun vehicle, it may not get you to the beach after all.

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With multiple issues from the power top motor, to engine and coolant problems, this model leaves much to be desired! While there have been some improvements from previous generations, the Sebring still leaves a bad taste in your mouth due to its poor dependability.

2 Best: 2019 Mazda Miata MX-5 RF

The Mazda Miata MX-5 RF (retractable fastback) is one of those cars you really can't say enough about. It was inspired by the classic British roadsters like the Triumph Spitfire, and it didn't only imitate them, it beat them at their own game! The Miata is just as curve-hugging as its British inspiration but is reliable!

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Where the Brits fell short the Mazda roadster came through! Again, this car will only hold 2 passengers but the truck is adequately designed to hold real cargo like overnight bags. And, you won't need to have your favorite roadside assistance club on speed dial to enjoy the wind in your hair as you drive down the interstate to your friend's beach house!

1 Worst: Pontiac Aztec (2000-2005)

American manufacturers seem to have a common thread on this list, for being the worst cars. GM chimes in this time with its Pontiac Aztec built from 2000 to 2005. This was a bit of a departure for GM. They were trying to make a true sport utility that you could both drive to the office in on the weekdays and camp in during the weekends. The problem is it wasn't a desirable any day car. The design was flat out ugly and awkward. It had a plethora of mechanical issues that made it land on the number one spot of worst summer cars! Did I mention that it was ugly? Combine these attributes with the fact that Honda was producing its much-beloved Element, which was the pinnacle of high quality and style. The Aztec was a good idea that someone else produced better and put it on the fast track to discontinuation.

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