Pray that some of these eye sores don’t make it to production

We’re in the last legs of 2018, and while the year has been filled with some of the coolest concept cars we’ve seen in a while, it also had its fair share of atrocious anomalies the likes of which we hope we never see again. It’s a little harsh, sure, but some of these automakers didn’t do themselves any favors by rolling these out without getting input from people who probably would’ve told them that their concepts needed a do-over. But alas, these concepts are here to stay, and we’ll forever be reminded that, at various points in 2018, we were subjected to their ugliness.

Mercedes-Maybach Vision Luxury Concept

10 of the Ugliest Concept Cars from 2018 Exterior
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On paper, the Mercedes-Maybach Vision Luxury Concept should have been better. It was largely based on the Vision 6 Concept and it was prepared with the sole purpose of making Rolls-Royce sweat. But when Mercedes unveiled the concept at the 2018 Beijing Auto Show, the only thing the folks over at Goodwood, England did was snicker. They weren’t alone.

It’s hard to believe how Mercedes could have whiffed on a concept as badly as it did with the Vision Ultimate Luxury.

The idea was good, sure, but the execution, specifically with the exterior, didn’t amount to anything. The front section of the concept actually stayed true to the styling of the Vision 6 Concept, but the rear section is where everything fell apart. It’s unclear if Mercedes intentionally wanted to combine the utilitarian looks of an SUV with a rear end of a sedan, but the aesthetic combination does not work. Not in the least bit. That missed opportunity on that end created an awkward-looking profile, specifically when viewed from the side. If this is Mercedes’ interpretation of a future Mercedes-Maybach SUV, it probably needs to go back to the drawing board and give the design a do-over.

Powertrain: Four electric motors and an 80 kWh battery pack
Power: 737 horsepower
0 to 60 MPH Time: Less than four seconds
Top speed: 155 mph
Drive Type: All-wheel drive
Range: More than 200 miles

Read our full review on the 2018 Mercedes-Maybach Vision Luxury Concept

Mercedes Vision Urbanetic Concept

10 of the Ugliest Concept Cars from 2018
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To be fair, the Mercedes Vision Urbanetic Concept can change its appearance depending on the kind of function and purpose it serves. The German automaker developed the concept as an all-electric, fully autonomous, highly customizable transportation bubble. It plays different functions depending on a specific need, but underneath it all, the Vision Urbanetic Concept is like a big all-electric skateboard. That’s one of its biggest calling cards as a conceptual champion of urban mobility.

The Vision Urbanetic Concept made it on this list, largely because one of the “bodies” that Mercedes presented makes the concept look like a huge egg while the other body makes it look like a piece of oversized luggage.

Fortunately, Mercedes says that the concept’s body can hold up to 10 different palettes so there’s a chance that the other bodies will look better than the two that we saw from Mercedes. For the most part, the Vision Urbanetic Concept succeeded in establishing Mercedes’ plans for urban mobility. Let’s just hope that it has better-looking palettes in the oven.

Powertrain: All-electric powertrain (no other performance specs mentioned)

Read our full review on the 2018 Mercedes Vision Urbanetic Concept


10 of the Ugliest Concept Cars from 2018 Exterior
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Concept cars are supposed to be evocative. They’re supposed to create reactions from all of us. Some automakers design concepts that look like superstars. Others, on the other hand, design concepts that are completely cringe-worthy. The BMW iNEXT should have been one of those concepts that captured our imaginations on Bimmer’s plans for its electrified future.

Instead, it rolled out a concept with a face that looked like a constipated Bane from the Dark Knight Rises.

I didn’t understand the idea of pairing slim headlights with massive hog-like twin-kidney grilles. A few months after it debuted at the 2018 Paris Motor Show, I still don’t understand BMW’s reasons for designing the iNext the way it did. It’s a shame because, as a whole, the concept is actually impressive. The body is well-proportioned, the rear section looks cool, and it packs all the technology you’d want to see in a future BMW model. But none of that matters because the iNEXT has the face that even its own mother — if it had one — wouldn’t love.

Powertrain: All-electric powertrain (no other performance specs mentioned)

Read our full review on the 2018 BMW iNEXT

Toyota e-Palette

10 of the Ugliest Concept Cars from 2018
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I understand Toyota’s intention with the e-Palette concept. The automaker presented the concept as an open platform for developers. It’s a multi-purpose smart mobility vehicle that can be used in a variety of functions. Uber can use it as a ride-sharing service. Amazon can use it as a parcel delivery vehicle. Even Pizza Hut can use it as a mobile pizza joint. That’s great as far as the concept’s purpose is concerned. But aesthetically speaking?

The e-Palette is a box on four wheels. It can also look like an oven toaster if your imaginations are on overdrive.

To be fair, the box-like design does have its benefits, namely the amount of usable space in the interior that can be used to serve different functions. A company like Uber can fit spacious seats inside while Pizza Hut can probably create a mobile kitchen inside. Those are impressive uses of space that is really what Toyota is going after. I can’t blame the automaker for that, though a little stylistic improvement would’ve been better, too.

Powertrain: All-electric powertrain (no other performance specs mentioned)

Check out more details on the 2018 Toyota e-Palette

Renault EZ-Ultimo

2018 Renault EZ-Ultimo
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The Renault EZ-Ultimo Concept is probably one of the most polarizing concepts we’ve seen this year. Some of us like it, while some of us don’t. I belong in the camp of the latter, largely because I don’t know what to make of it.

For sure, the concept’s design is futuristic, but it’s the type of futuristic look that’s more confusing than it is inspiring.

There’s nothing elegant about the way it looks from the outside. It’s a different story in the interior, and, for what it’s worth, I will acquiesce to the awesome doors. Those are nice. The interior, too, is top-notch. The swiveling chair, couch, and the use of marble tabletops, walnut flooring, and high-quality metals are all home-run swings. It’s just too bad that I can’t get past the way it looks from the outside. You know what they say about the faces of cars drawing the biggest emotional tugs out of consumers? That sentiment rings true for concepts, too. It’s too bad that the EZ-Ultimo Concept’s front end barely resembles an actual face.

Powertrain: All-electric powertrain (no other performance specs mentioned)

Read our full review on the 2018 Renault EZ-Ultimo.

Hongqi E-Jing GT Concept

The Mercedes-Maybach Vision Ultimate Luxury Concept was one of the headline acts at the 2018 Beijing Motor Show. Make no mistake about it, though. It was far from the only hideous-looking concept that was in attendance at the event. Another concept that received far less attention is the vomit-inducing monstrosity called the Hongqi E-Jing GT Concept. Ok, it’s not a bad-looking concept if you’re color blind. The all-electric luxury sedan draws styling cues from Lincoln and Bentley and uses them to good effect. The tiny headlights and the huge wheels don’t match well, but I like the way the lights actually move along below the radiator grille. Nice touch there. The body is smooth, too. There are no unnecessary bulges or lines in places where there shouldn’t be any. Unfortunately, the presentation falls apart with the choice of color. Hongqi calls the atrocious body finish “Kansas Green,” which, mind you, isn’t named after the U.S. state, but, rather, a lake in northern China called the Kanas Lake. I looked up “Lake Kanas” on Google and it’s absolutely stunning. Unfortunately, I can’t say the same thing on how the color translates on the E-Jing GT Concept. While I’m here, that shade of green doesn’t go well with the red accents on the sedan because that shade of green doesn’t go well with anything.

Electra Meccanica Solo EV Commuter

2017 Electra Meccanica Solo High Resolution Exterior
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Ok, so the Electra Meccanica Solo EV Commuter isn’t really a concept. But I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention this Canadian single-seater on this list. It literally looks like half a car. You can make a claim that it’s actually cute, but doing so means questioning your definition of cute.

Believe it or not, the electric three-wheeler is actually street-legal.

Even more incredible, it actually carries a top speed of 82 mph, which is impressive for a car of its size. In a space-warped world, the Electra Meccanica Solo EV Commuter could be a sweet ride. But safety concerns and road hazards notwithstanding, I wouldn’t be caught dead inside one.

Powertrain: 61 kW AC motor
Power: 82 horsepower
Torque: 128 pound-feet
Top speed: 82 mph
Range: 100 miles

Read our full review on the Electra Meccanica Solo EV Commuter

GAC Enverge

10 of the Ugliest Concept Cars from 2018 Exterior
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The GAC Enverge is the perfect example of a concept that doesn’t age well. It made a splashy debut at the 2018 North American International Auto Show, and while I will admit that I first liked its presentation, time hasn’t been kind on its aesthetics. First of all, gullwing doors, or in this case, scissor doors, on SUV concepts have become the rage these days. It’s nothing new, really, if you look at the Enverge 10 months after it made its debut in Detroit. I also liked the aggressiveness by which GAC presented the SUV. It swung for the fences and hit the ball cleanly.

The interior, in particular, was everything that a concept cabin should be.

It had pillar-to-pillar digital screens, augmented reality for passengers, and enough space for the whole family. But the novelty eventually wore off, and when I look at the Enverge now, I see a concept SUV that isn’t all that interesting anymore. I get it that it’s going to look toned down if GAC decides to build a production model, but why doesn’t the concept have any windows? The only times I see that is when there’s nothing in the cabin to show off. Clearly, the Enverge’s interior is its strength so why make it more difficult for people to see it?

Powertrain: 71 kWh battery and four electric motors AC motor
Range: 370 miles

Read our full review on the 2018 GAC Enverge

Nissan IMX Kuro Concept

Nissan Redefines Laziness by Slapping a Kuro Badge on the IMx Concept Exterior
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This concept is on this list for one reason. It’s an example of automotive laziness that, quite frankly, shouldn’t even happen in today’s industry. Nissan unveiled the IMX Kuro Concept at the 2018 Geneva Motor Show. It was attention-grabbing because of its odd shape for a crossover. We saw it and gave the concept its just due, but once we looked at it closely, we realized that we had seen it before. Yep, the IMX Kuro Concept was presented as a “new” concept with a “completely different personality.”

That would’ve fine except that the IMX Kuro Concept wasn’t new, to begin with. Nissan presented the IMX Concept in Tokyo back in 2017.

All it did with the Kuro Concept was slap a darker color on it, added in a different grille design, and threw in an extra name, presumably hoping that none of us would catch it and nobody would be the wiser. Well, we caught it, Nissan, as did a lot of other people. The IMX Kuro Concept could’ve turned into something cool, but instead, the Japanese automaker decided to be lazy at the wrong place and at the wrong time. Now it’s paying the price for it.

Powertrain: Pair of electric motors
Power: 428 horsepower
Torque: 516 pound-feet
Drive Type: All-wheel drive

Read more details on the 2018 Nissan IMX Kuro Concept

Sbarro 4x4+2 Concept

Defying conventional description and taste, the Sbarro 4x4+2 is, without question, the ugliest concept car of 2018. I honestly don’t have any words for it because words don’t do justice to how much of an eyesore this thing is. I apologize for even mentioning it, ladies and gentlemen. The last thing I need is to give you nightmares this coming holiday season.

Powertrain: V-8 engine
Power: 550 horsepower
Gearbox: Six-speed automatic transmission
Drive Type: All-wheel drive
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