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Car Ratings

Getting firsthand information from an actual car owner is one sure way to get an idea of car performance once it leaves the lot. Autobytel features real consumer reviews that give the unbiased experience of a car.

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    2002 Mercedes-Benz CLK-Class - Convertible

    Pros: Beauty. The car is unusually good looking.

    Cons: Space. Cramped even for a convertible.

    Advice: Be sure it fits your needs before you buy it. If it does, you will love it.

    First impression is that there is substance behind the car's incredible beauty. Great engine, brakes, handling. Clever touches with the tilt down in reverse rearview mirror. Good stereo [put the top down, and listen to the engine!]. Smart top mechanism. Little nosedive/tailsquat, body roll is under control. Suspension is well damped and firm. This is a GT, not a sports car. But storage and hauling capacity is in the near sports car range, meaning nearly non-existent. If hauling more than two people is something you do regularly, keep looking, this isn't the car for you. One golf bag is it--you have to meet your playing partner at the course. So consider carefully before committing to a long term relationship. This is a special car, with a distinct personality, in a world with mostly personality-less cars. It will thrill the right owner, but compromising isn't something the CLK does gladly. The backseats are for your briefcase, or a gym bag, or an adult you really don't like. It doesn't squeak and rattle yet, but it probably will. If it doesn't it'll be the first convertible I've spent time in that didn't. But the car is designed to make grins and it does that very well. A sunny day, top down, engine growling, curvy, hilly, smooth road, wow! And if you are stuck in your morning commute, you can dream about a sunny day, top down...you get it. And if traffic is a drag, wait for your opening and jump on it, this car will zoom. It is a gas to drive, it will make you forget about your overdue monthly report. I have an SUV for hauling things, this car is for hauling me. It is one of the most beautiful cars I have ever seen. With the top up, it looks very good--reminiscent of the coupe. With the top down, it's stunningly gorgeous. In my first few days of ownership, I find myself standing in the garage smiling at its lines. It's a pretty thing.

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    2002 Kia Sedona - EX

    Pros: Engine with 5 speed automatic

    Cons: Low EPA but we are getting better then was listed.

    Advice: Drive this Van and compare the price.

    A very soild smooth and quiet driving and riding Van. The 195hp engine and 5 speed automatic give it plenty of power in traffic and cruises at less rpm then our 97 Toyota Avalon at highway speeds. The Sedona van has many features standard that you can't even get with other vans as an option. Like a full size spare, power passenger seat, or a windshield deicer to mention a few. The qaulity is tops with leather seats and all. You can't beat the price or warranty anywhere.

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    2002 GMC Yukon - SLE 4x4

    Pros: programable seats

    Cons: not enough torque

    Advice: buy one

    It is a very comfortable riding vehicle.

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    2002 Mercedes-Benz S-Class - S500

    Pros: Emphasis on safety

    Cons: Low slung spoiler

    Advice: Bring a ton of cash.

    For the last 15 years we have always had at least one Mercedes in our household. The current jet black S-500 Sport is simply the latest and greatest. After surviving two collisions in previous S class models, one a head-on in town and the other a driver's side impact, I'm sure that we will always continue to own one. Safety, comfort and performance merge with one of the best looking packages on the road to provide us with a sense of well-being and confidence. I have driven this car for 11,500 miles without any scheduled service and/or oil change. The auto's computer predicts a service in about 800 miles but the driver's style of driving determines the actual service intervals. Imagine not having to return to the dealership for anything in the first 13 months! What a treat and a great time saver. The air conditioner is top-notch, extremely necessary in the state of Florida. And yet my wife can determine her own climate control and turn on the seat warmer for added comfort. The seat massagers come in handy for my bad back and the voice-activated phone, radio and cd player are convenient and provide for less driver distraction. I only have one complaint. The front spoiler is so low that when parking the vehicle the automatic lowering suspension often rests it on top of the parking divider. This doesn't become obvious until you pull away and the spoiler snags on the divider. Other than that, I am one of the S-500's greatest fans.

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    2002 Land Rover Freelander - S

    Pros: Transmission

    Cons: Door pulls

    Advice: Look at this vehicle before ploping down money on a Honda, etc.

    Why would anyone pay 25-30K for a Honda, Toyota, Isuzu, etc., when they can experience the quality and style of a Land Rover for around the same price. This vehicle is every inch a Land Rover don't let it's small size fool you. Standard are all the features you pay extra for on all other vehicles and then some. I was sold, hope to keep it a long time.

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    2002 Ford Explorer Sport - Value Manual (200A) 4x4

    Pros: Exterior look and available Leather package.

    Cons: Wind noise at speeds above 55 mph

    Advice: I'd suggest test driving at typical driving speed of 65-70 mph to test for wind noise.

    The Explorer Sport was a wonderful test drive. It was a smooth ride, much smoother than your typical 'pickup truck' feel of an SUV. Handling is good and stopping power with the ABS braking system is excellent. The only fault I can find with this vehicle is the increase of wind noise at vehicle speeds over 55 mph. I love the looks of the vehicle and the available leather seating package is a nice addition. Excellent sound system. The vehicle I test drove had a premium sound system with 6 CD in-dash changer. The sound system was also satellite radio ready. Very fun to drive and hauling cargo is a snap. The 60/40 split folding rear seats are easy to handle as well.

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    2002 Hyundai Sonata - GLS (M5)

    Pros: the ability to swith between automatic and manual

    Cons: the bucket seats are somewhat uncomfortable

    Advice: test drive and compare the prices. YOU'LL BE SOLD!

    this car really took my breath away when i first seen it. i never would have imagined myself ever buying a hyundai. But all of that changed when i test drove it. it had the ability to pick up speed and keep up. the interior is very roomy and the exterior is very classy like the jag. and the price....is well within anyone's budget. only problem is the bucket seats are not that comfortable.