clunk·​er | \ ˈkləŋ-kər How to pronounce clunker (audio) \

Definition of clunker

1 : an old or badly working piece of machinery especially : a dilapidated automobile
2 : someone or something notably unsuccessful told a joke that was a real clunker

Synonyms for clunker


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Examples of clunker in a Sentence

My first car was an old clunker that kept breaking down. That joke was a real clunker. The director's recent films have all been clunkers.
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Recent Examples on the Web The Packers striped the Cardinals of their undefeated record and usurped them as the top seed in the N.F.C. They have not lost since their season-opening clunker to the New Orleans Saints. New York Times, 28 Oct. 2021 But after a clunker against Randy Orton in his return match at WrestleMania 36, Edge extended his string of great matches since returning to the company. Alfred Konuwa, Forbes, 21 Oct. 2021 Every team plays at least one clunker a year, and the Ravens used theirs two weeks ago when they were trounced by the Bengals, 41-17. Mike Preston,, 12 Nov. 2021 Following the Jets debacle with this clunker proves ... The Enquirer, 11 Nov. 2021 The clunker dropped Mayfield from 12th in the NFL with a 102.1 rating to 23rd in the NFL at 89.7. Mary Kay Cabot, cleveland, 6 Oct. 2021 Alas, heavy-handedness with the oil — even the nicely green and crisp broccolini was saturated — and a grave dearth of sausage made this one a bit of a clunker. Amy Drew Thompson,, 19 Aug. 2021 From clunker to classic, Anthony Davis and the Lakers are back. Los Angeles Times, 27 May 2021 But the last time Mayfield had a rating this low, the 54.9 clunker in the 38-7 loss in Pittsburgh last season, offensive coordinator Alex Van Pelt vowed that the arrow was pointing up on his QB and that the future was bright. cleveland, 4 Oct. 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'clunker.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of clunker

1930, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of clunker was in 1930

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Last Updated

11 Dec 2021

Cite this Entry

“Clunker.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 Jan. 2022.

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English Language Learners Definition of clunker

: an old car or machine that does not work well
: something that is a complete failure


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