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.
2002 Subaru Impreza - WRX (M5) Sedan
Pros: AWD with tons of torque
Cons: Vehicle seems less stable @ +110mph due - could be solved w/suspension upgrade
Advice: Skip carbon fiber trim and get the suspension upgrade + performance mufflerI replaced my 1998 Honda Prelude Type SH with this vehicle and never looked back. The straight line acceleration is incredible with minimal engine noise (unlike the Prelude VTEC)...and the AWD allows me an additional 10-20 mph cornering speed on my favorite roads. It is also a very friendly day-to-day driver...easy to get in and out of, 4 doors, large trunk, etc. Acquire one if you have the means. I cannot wait to drive it everyday!!
2002 Jaguar X-Type - 2.5L (M5)
Cons: Real (?) wood trim looks and feels like plastic
Advice: If you're concerned about Jag's rep for mechincal problems as I was (am), Lease it. All servicing comes with it along with a comprehesive AAA like roadside assistance pacage.I've had my X-type for 3 months. equipped with 3L engine/auto, Luxury and Weather packages. It handles like a sports car with all the comforts and amenities of a luxury sedan. It's a joy to drive on back roads (every bit as fun as my old Triumph Spitfire used to be). However, it is equally good on the expressways. Plenty of power especially at the high end and at the low end too if you hit the 'S' button (neat for leaving tailgaters in the dust). Safety features especially the side impact & curtain air bags front and back give a sense of security. Anxious to try out the all wheel drive and traction control in the snow. This is my first Jag and it is everything I'd hoped it would be
2002 Chrysler PT Cruiser - Base
Pros: outward appearance
Cons: interior arrangement is tight
Advice: be small people and have a sense of humor about being passed on hillsDesperately needs more power and a two door model why the stodgy 15hp when it would be so easy to add the 25 horses needed to keep up with the appearance of a flashy new car? The option to have a two door is a big one for me to few single people cars on the market today this is a stylish car but as a slow starting four door it is strictly for the family and elderly set too bad it really is a head turner
2002 Mitsubishi Galant - LS
Pros: The fact that the car won't let me lock my keys in the car.
Cons: nothing as yet
Advice: Try it, you'll like it!I have fallen in love with this car. Real comfort, real get up and go for easy merging on the highway and with it's high safety rating, real peace of mind.
2002 Kia Sedona - EX
Pros: Comfort of interior layout
Cons: The van is narrow compared to others; golf clubs are tight fit
Advice: Be wary of dealer pricing. Check tire pressure. Skip ABS.This van runs so quietly, it is difficult to believe it is a Kia. Great pick-up, excellent ride, attractive interior. Leather upholstery is tastefully done. Kia engineers appear to have picked out all the good elements from the competition, improved on them, and then lowered the price. Initial ride was too harsh until I lowered the tire pressure from 45 pounds to 35 pounds. Ride improved immensely. Every door and compartment closes with a Lexus quality thunk. Even the radio appears to be good. I purchased for about $1000 under MSRP, but some dealers are increasing price by $1495 for something they call 'market value adjustment'.
2002 Chevrolet Monte Carlo - SS
Pros: There are three things I like most about the 2002 Monte Carlo SS...it's appearance, handling, and the On-Star Security.
Cons: Two things I like least include the 'pull knob' for the headlights (which seems outdated) and turning on the fog lights each time you restart the engine is cumbersome.
Advice: With the access consumers have to internet information, I would simply suggest to fully research your vehicle(s) of choice before visiting a dealership. Being an informed consumer will help you, AND the dealership get you into the auto of your choice!!The Monte Carlo has a smooth ride and decent acceleration. Being a former Pontiac Grand Prix owner, I was skeptical about moving on to another vehicle. I wasn't sure I would be happy owning anything but another Grand Prix. I was pleasantly surprised with the handling and ride of the Monte Carlo. Driving on the highway is great...the Monte Carlo offers a smooth ride and is just fun to drive. The sleek look, exterior and interior is classic, yet sporty! The built in On-Star security system also offers peace of mind. On-Star assistance, combined with the On-Star calling features were a great selling point.
2002 Infiniti I35 - Base
Pros: It is loaded with toys and conveniences.
Advice: buy it.The car handles beautifully especially over rough pavement and corners tightly. It is especially quiet on the highway (I assume the 17 inch wheels have something to do with this) and the seats are very comfortable. all the controls are well placed and easily operated. The 250 HP engine provides for a quick pickup and effortless driving.