Top 10 Cars for the 2012 Apocalypse

We won't know until Dec. 21, 2012, if the Mayans accurately predicted the world's demise, but as the new year dawns we can't help but focus on the possible impending apocalypse. Whether that happens as a massive shifting of the Earth's tectonic plates, zombie takeover or some man-made cataclysm, the following new cars have our pick to survive through any trials heading our way.

2012 Volkswagen Beetle

The Volkswagen Beetle is the closest radiation-resistant-named car out there since (wisely) no automakers call their car the Cockroach. According to the TV show, "Mythbusters," the red flour beetle can resist more radiation than the famed nuclear-fallout-survivor cockroach. Even though its VW counterpart isn't built to resist radiation, the Beetle at least has enough headroom in its domed cabin for a radiation suit's helmet.

2012 Lexus LS 460

In the event of ravaging earthquakes, the LS 460's available adaptive air suspension will make you forget about all the aftershocks with its ability to hide road imperfections; it makes the LS feel like it's driving on clouds.

2012 Mercedes-Benz SLS AMG

With room for only two occupants, the 2012 Mercedes SLS AMG leaves no room for ravenous zombies to stowaway in the backseat. Any two-seater will technically provide the same protection, but if you're one of the last humans around, why not go in style? Plus, the gullwing doors allow hasty entry and exit of the cabin for retrieving people while on the go.

2012 Hyundai Equus

The sun is going to be extra hot after the ozone is obliterated from nuclear or natural disaster. Cooled front seats are common in new cars, but cooled rear seats? Not so much. The 2012 Hyundai Equus has them both, plus power rear window shades and refrigerated cool box to keep occupants, and their beverages, chilled.

2012 Ram 3500 Longhorn

Nothing looks more appropriate in the post-apocalyptic world than a diesel-powered dually truck screaming down a dusty road with a cloud of black smoke puking out the exhaust. But today's clean-burning diesels, like the Ram 3500's 6.7-liter Cummins diesel, won't be emitting anything visible from the tailpipes. A diesel deserves to make the list because they can be set up to run on scavenged vegetable oil from restaurants. After the apocalypse, you won't have to worry about voiding the warranty or breaking fuel-quality laws when doing so. Plus, the Ram truck's optional Rambox has factory mounts to hold a pair of shotguns.

2012 Chevrolet Suburban 2500

You'll need to travel long distances without stopping for fuel to avoid scavenger attacks and packs of zombie dogs. The Suburban 2500 is good for 585 miles with its 39-gallon fuel capacity and 15 mpg highway rating. Other vehicles may be able to travel farther without stopping, but the Suburban's heavy-duty construction, four-wheel drive and ability to carry nine people make it fit for survivalists.

2011 Ford Crown Victoria

Crown Victorias have the "WALL-E" factor in post-apocalyptic urban environments. Pixar's WALL-E is a robot left on an uninhabited Earth for cleanup duty; he scavenges through an abundance of duplicate broken robots for extra parts. Spare parts will be a breeze to find on abandoned Crown Victorias because they have been hugely popular choices for police and taxi duty. Plus, the car is mechanically bulletproof and known to accumulate 200,000 miles or more with heavy abuse.

2012 Jeep Wrangler MW3 Edition

The Wrangler is a rugged, go-anywhere SUV with rock-crawling capabilities and heavy-duty hardware. Its capabilities alone are enough reason to get one, but Jeep has an appropriate package if the apocalypse is a result of modern warfare: the Modern Warfare 3 edition launched for the release of the Call of Duty video game. The MW3 package looks the part with an available winch in the heavy-duty front bumper, protective rocker panel rails and power-dome hood.

2012 Ford Raptor

The Raptor's desert-runner capability will make quick work of barren wastelands with a 6.2-liter V-8 making 411 horsepower, huge suspension travel and knobby tires. For 2012, a new camera system mounted in the grille gives a view of what's ahead, and even has its own washer system to clear the lens of mud or zombie guts.

2012 Land Rover Range Rover Supercharged

Why not live out what's left of the world in style and capability? The Land Rover Range Rover is a fully capable off-roader with adjustable terrain modes for gravel, grass, snow, rocks and tarmac. Supercharged models are the way to go with 518 horsepower, zero to 60 mph in 5.9 seconds and top speed of 140 mph. The Range Rover's Achilles' heel will likely be its awful reliability, which could leave you at the mercy of radiation-mutated creatures.

© Cars.com 05/1/2012