9 Most Ridiculous Center Consoles Car Companies Got Away With

Orignally published on 2021-12-05 03:43:59 by

Automakers have always been in the race to develop new features and designs that attract more buyers over to their side. While this has its benefits in that we get to see the industry advance, it also inevitably produces designs that we simply can’t help but be appalled by.

As the information and entertainment hub of the car, the center console is one of the most important features of every car interior. Too many or too few amenities on the center console can make or break the driving experience. But what do you do when the console is just so absurd that it’s a distraction just to look at?

Here are some of the worst and most ridiculous-looking center consoles ever sold in production cars.

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9 2006 Fiat Multipla

The center console of the 2006 Fiat Multipla- Ugly
via DrivenToWrite

One would surely find themselves wondering how the center console of the Fiat Multipla was ever allowed to be designed the way it was. The dashboard was uncomfortably bulbous and bubbly, making one feel like they were stuck in some sort of space-warp limbo.

The front of a red 2006 fiat multipla
Via NetCarShow

How the exterior design was greenlit, is not something one should waste time thinking about, either. It happened. Ever since it did happen, however, people have been trying to forget—both the interior and the exterior of the Multipla.

8 1988 Buick Reatta

The interior of the buick reatta with its boxy center console
via AutoBibiKi

The Buick Reatta was a coupe that certainly could have looked better if the designers had put in a little more effort. As streamlined as the exterior was for the Reatta, the interior was just boxy. Stepping inside the car was immediately followed by astonishment at the unusually squared-out dashboard and center panel.

Buick Reatta center console
Via Mecum Auctions

The design wasn’t the end of the problems with the Reatta either. The box-like touchscreen system that was provided was one with very few features, unresponsive at times, and just an overall disaster. RELATED:Watch This 1973 Buick Riviera Obliterate A 1971 Dodge Charger R/T In A Drag Race

7 1983 Citroen GSA Pallas

The interior and center console of the Citroen GSA Pallas
via Pinterest

Back when the USA had such things as Citroen dealerships, the GSA Pallas was launched as a 1200cc station wagon. The one part of the car that garnered the most attention was the center console. An entirely plastic dashboard that felt terribly cheap, along with incomprehensible rotating drums planted right behind the steering wheel made the GSA a tough thing to understand.

The interior of the 1988 Citroen GSA Pallas
via Pinterest

The dash and the instrument panels themselves only had a single button, while the ridiculous revolving rings were in charge of wipers, low and high beams, and even the turn signals. Furthermore, the knob location in the middle of the center console acted like a mouse-pointer in order to select something as basic as changing the radio station.

6 2004 Nissan Quest

the interior and the center console of the Nissan Quest
via Wikimedia Commons

Another minivan that nobody could adore, the Nissan Quest had a center console that was out of a cheap hotel room. Again, completely plasticky, the console pretty much resembled a trashcan in the middle of your car.

The Nissan Quest, 2004, out in the snow
via AutosCA

The gauges and the knobs on the center console couldn’t help but remind one of laundry day, and you’d be forgiven for thinking you’re operating a washing machine.

5 Aston Martin Lagonda

Aston Martin Lagonda Digital Dashboard
Via Pinterest

Apart from also having one of the strangest, longest exterior that the market had seen, the Aston Martin Lagonda also had one of the most unusual dashboards. The steering column never even integrated into the dashboard, after all!

Aston Martin Lagonda 1976 exterior
source: favcars

The unusually boxy dash panel and center console weren’t easy on the eyes in the first place. To add to that, the steering wheel itself connected to a counter rife with buttons and panels, and one couldn’t ever figure out just looking at it, how it was supposed to turn.

4 2006 Toyota Ractis

Steering wheel and console of the toyota ractis
via Pinterest

We’re all thinking the same thing- how did this ever make it into production? Well, perhaps Toyota realized that the Japanese market might not be as unforgiving as the American market. That is probably why the car never made it to American shores.

The rest of the dashboard is just as ugly- not only is it tasteless and dull, but the plastic overload is just unpleasant to be seated around, let alone drive around town with. Looking at it makes one grateful that Toyota never did try to bring the car to the USA.

3 1972 Chevrolet LUV

1977 Chevy luv interior
Via WheelsAge

A popular pickup truck in the ’70s, the LUV by Chevrolet was known for its segment-best off-roading capabilities. However, that’s not why the LUV graces our list.

A blue Chevy LUV from 1974, outdoors
Via: Bing

Manufactured by Isuzu, the Chevy LUV had a center console that was barely anything remarkable. A slim steering wheel, no buttons on the panel, and an overall, largely plasticky look and feel were a deterrent to anyone who cared even a little about the interior’s aesthetics.

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2 2002 BMW 7 Series

Side profile of a grey 2002 BMW 7 Series Sedan
via NetCarShow

The 2002 iteration of BMW’s flagship sedan didn’t have many flaws to talk about. In fact, it barely had any! However, if it’s here on the list, we know why that is. The center console, although quite clean, had the first iteration of what came to be known as the Drive. A rotary dial in the center of the console, the iDrive existed simply because designers began running out of room for buttons. So, they decided to ‘switch’ it up, and the iDrive rotary was born.

The BMW 7 Series interior (2002)- The center console is featured
via NetCarShow

Impossibly hard and frustrating to work, iDrive became even more infuriating because it was supposed to be in charge of a bunch of vehicle settings. From climate adjustment to navigation, to even the radio channels, the iDrive was an impossibly distracting and quite frustrating dial that BMW was allowed to get away with. All they had to do (and did) was stand by the iDrive system, while customers remained fidgeting away with the controller just to change the radio station.

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1 1971 Chrysler Imperial LeBaron Two-Door Hardtop

The Chrysler Imperial LeBaron Hardtop Sedan, side profile, metallic brown
via WikiMediaCommons

Chrysler’s Imperial LeBaron was, in every way, nothing more than mediocre. Sporting some of the longest fenders in all of history, it was a wonder how this car was ever deemed good enough to be sold and marketed the way it was.

The interior of the 1971 Chrysler LeBaron
via WikiMediaCommons

The interior of the LeBaron was every bit the same as the exterior- bloated, hard to look at, and terribly engineered. Why anyone would have wanted to feel like they entered a cheap casino on a highway, is anyone’s guess. The car still went on to be sold for another decade, before the name Imperial was overthrown.

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Orignally published on 2021-12-05 03:43:59 by

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