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GM's junk heap

Over its history General Motors has made its share of bad products. Some were poorly built, some were badly executed, others suffered from lousy timing.

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Chevrolet Corvair
Chevrolet Corvair
Brought out in the early 1960s, the Corvair was designed to compete against sporty European cars that were making inroads with American drivers. Its innovative rear-engined design was supposed to give it sporty handling.

In early versions, though, the Corvair's rear suspension design seemed unsuited to the job. The car had dangerously dicey handling in turns.

Consumer advocate Ralph Nader featured the Corvair in part of his famous book "Unsafe at Any Speed." which pilloried the U.S. auto industry for emphasizing design over safety.

GM ultimately improved the Corvair's suspension design, which was a good move. What wasn't so good: hiring private investigators to dig up dirt on Nader. Nader noticed the stalkers, of course, forcing executives to publicly apologize and making GM look all the worse.


NEXT: Chevrolet Vega
Last updated June 02 2009: 3:55 PM ET
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