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 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.
2002 Ford Expedition - XLT 4x4
Advice: consider a DurangoGot this as a company car about six months ago. So far it has been in the shop once, for a failed sunroof mechanism that is still not right. Overall, I have to say that the ergonomics as well as the fit and finish of the interior is of lesser quality than my old 1998 model. The interior, in general, feels like it went through a downgrade. Get in an Explorer, then get in an Escape. All the same switches and controls. Seats are less comfortable too. That being said, the Explorer is still a great warrior for the urban jungle. Great visibility, good turning radius, and tons of space. I love the new suspension, the engine and tranny (although the shift points take some time to get used to), and the new bodywork.
2002 Honda Civic - EX (M5) Sedan
Pros: The moonroof and cruise control (a must have for me)
Cons: The small-car
Advice: Do your online research first.This car handles very well. The ride is rougher than I was used to but then I was currently driving a larger car and used to a smoother ride. However, I enjoyed the test drive so much I bought it!
2002 Volkswagen GTI - L (M5)
Pros: INTERIOR ROOM
Cons: Outside mirrors should be enlarged
Advice: Buy it before the price goes upKudos to VW for making a compact and roomy auto that is fun to drive. I am 6'3' tall and I have plenty of head, sholder and leg room. The car has plenty of cargo room. Acceleration and handeling performance are outstanding for any vehicle, particularly one priced less than $25,000. I have never owned a VW befor, so long as VW continues to provide this kind of quality and value, I will be a loyal customer!
2002 Dodge Dakota - Base 4x2 Regular Cab
Pros: Blowing the doors off those annoying and loud souped up honda civics
Cons: Using grade 87 fuel will cause a loud rattling noise durring jack rabbit take-offs.
Advice: Get the R/T 5.9L 4x4Even on the 3.9L V6, the optimal performance of the vehicle is wonderful. The accessories are easy to retrieve through mopar or the local dealership, and it easily upgrds the appearance of the truck. The cockpit of the truck is unique in its class, offering excellent visability. And the towing capibilities are supurb for a compact truck.
2002 Saturn S-Series - SC1 (M5) Coupe
Pros: Fuel economy is excellent
Cons: Saturn Service is very poor
Advice: know your dealer, if problem persists, evolk the lemon lawThe SC-1 seems to be a good car overall, the factory brakes are very poor, first problem was at 9,000 and replaced at 12,000 and I finally replaced the rotors with aftermarket at 40,000. The car would not track, the car was reatuned to the dealer 6 times for tracking problems and twice to independent alignment shops for evaluation. Tracking improved with new tires but still present. I am in the Auto Aftermarket business, I know cars, the service writers at three Saturn dealers have very poor automotive knowledge and I suffered the consiquences by not receiving the proper attention to my problems. E-mail to Saturn in KY went unanswered and Telephone calls to service managers were polite but problems never resolved. I would not recomend this car to anyone because of the poor service at the dealer level!
2002 Chevrolet Impala - LS
Pros: The sporty looks and plenty of power.
Cons: I haven't found anything that I don't like so far.
Advice: Compare features and price with others closely, then drive it.!!The Impala is a real Hoot to drive. Plenty of power and a great comfort level fot the modest price. It has made driving fun again as the ride and handling are truely performance oriented. I had two Blazers that I liked to drive, but the Impala has given me a new and exciting feeling of raw but refined automotive excellence. Congrats to the Chevy engineering team for a GREAT vehicle that is affordable to all. I just love it.!!!