The original line-up of the band, Jon Bon Jovi, David Bryan, Tico Torres, Richie Sambora, Alec John Such, and Hugh McDonald all took to the stage in Cleveland to accept the accolade, which they finally received in their 10th year of eligibility.
The set followed a rather R-rated introduction by radio personality Howard Stern, who bemoaned how long it took for the band that sold more than 130 million albums to be inducted. "It's a bit weird, but life's unusual", he said.
The band were inducted by the Killers' frontman Brandon Flowers who said, in part: "The Cars had it all: the looks, the hooks, Beat-romance lyrics, killer choruses, guitar solos that pissed off your parents, dazzling music videos".
"Cleveland was Ben's hometown, and I know whenever he is, he's so proud of this special occasion and even more so that we're here of all places", The Cars guitarist said.
In the days leading up to their moment in the spotlight, Best Classic Bands spoke to group members Elliot Easton and Greg Hawkes.
He then dropped several key Cleveland-rock names that ranged from Alan Freed to Kid Leo. This year was a little different, though, as the Hall also officially recognized singles for the first time, creating a new (and seemingly limitless) category for songs that shaped the course of rock music, from a couple of the earliest to some psych-rock staples of the "60s".More news: Blizzard and High Wind Warnings remain for eastern Colorado
"I think when you get together with old friends, there's always going to be some deep emotions within that". "We miss him and love him dearly".
As an alternative, inductees the Moody Blues stopped the night time because the previous action.
Tharpe, who died in 1973, was chosen for her early influence on rock. She emphasized the impact of acclaimed 1967 concept album "Days of Future Passed" on more many acts that would come along and try to make more-complex rock music.
The Moody Blues, the Cars, Dire Straits, Nina Simone and Sister Rosetta Tharpe were also inducted into the Hall of Fame. Later in the event, Ann Wilson of Heart and Jerry Cantrell honored Chris Cornell with a commanding rendition Soundgarden's "Black Hole Sun".
"It's been long overdue", said Howard, who performed "That's All" with a backing band that included The Roots' Questlove on drums and Paul Shaffer on piano.
"Nina Simone could sing anything", said R&B star Mary J. Blige in her induction speech honoring the singer, an activist during the Civil Rights Movement whose musical style borrowed from a range of genres. The very few boys who took me on dates in those days were instantaneously upstaged if "Nights in White Satin" or "Dawn Is a Feeling" came on the vehicle radio. And this may factor in some regional bias, but because the night honors so many musicians with lasting impacts, it feels more vital - has more resonance - than the obviously higher-profile Grammy Awards, which year after year honor flashes in the pan along with lasting talents.