Coupes and Compact Cars 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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Coupes and Compact Cars
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    2002 Saturn S-Series - SL2 (M5) Sedan

    Pros: Its known reliability and good value for its price range.

    Cons: Wide turning circle and several little things are just not thought out.

    Advice: I Like it, but perhaps wait to see the redesigned 2003 S-Series.

    It is a good car for the money. I thought the SL2 was a better value than the SL1 when you upgrade the SL1 to Auto, A/C, and Option Pkg. My car had two sample defects. One broken air vent fascia and a rattle that went away (probably a broken piece from the vent fascia). The car is comfortable, handles well, and has enough power when you step on the gas. Dealer handled transaction quickly and I was able to switch cars four times and walk around unattended -- during the sale -- all I needed. The car if reasonably well designed, though my very old Honda Civic still had a lot of usability/design features that were better thought out. Like why does the lower part of the trunk latch have to stick up? I tear stuff on it all the time. Why not recessed? And the tire jack and tire are a pain to get out, use, and put back. I was amazed, though, that Saturn stands by their 30 money-back guarantee. People regularly come up and ask about my Saturn and tell me of either their, or someone they know, experience of what a good, reliable car it is.

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    2002 Acura RSX - Type S (M6)

    Pros: The power and quickness. It purrs like a kitten and growls like a lion when you want it to!!

    Cons: No arm rest for for long trips.

    Advice: Buy it. Great value and you will have fun with it.

    Awesome! The Type S has great short throw shift gear. Let me just say I've raced this car hard on the freeway and backroads and it is amazing. The car will hug hairpin turns with great stability. The bucket seats help you stay in place with any hard sharp cornering.

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    2002 Acura RSX - Base (M5)

    Pros: 6 Speed. The 6th gear helps at highway speed. Better gas mileage with low RPM operation.

    Cons: The two big blind spots. The car has 2 large mirrors to fix this problem.

    Advice: Replace the shift knob with the optional metal one. If you get a cargo net have the dealer do it. It's a pain to install. Test drive this car!

    RSX Type S Smooth and powerful. This car has power at low RPM all the way to the 8000 RPM Redline. Shifting action is the best I have ever felt. The gates are close and the throws short. The clutch is easy to work for smooth yet fast shifts. At highway speeds in 6th gear the car still pulls hard. It's easy to find yourself doing well over 80 MPH without realizing it. The climate control works very well. The seats wrap around you and hold you in place when cornering hard. I didn't know a car could feel or ride like this for under 25,000. Amazing!

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    2002 Volkswagen Cabrio - GL (M5)

    Pros: exterior looks

    Cons: performance, safety, drurability, everything!

    Advice: Don't buy it!

    I purchased a 2001 Cabrio, automatic, and all I have had is problems with this car. My air bags don't function properly. My air bag lights keep on coming on indicating that there are problems with the car. The gas mileage is horrible and the a/c is not cold at all. I took it in and they say that it is normal when other cars, by far, have much colder ac. I had a saturn before this and it drove wonderfully! Don't buy this car. It is the cheapest convertible out there but it is not worth it!

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    2002 Toyota Corolla - S (M5)

    Pros: The daytime light

    Cons: The exterior/interior style.

    Advice: If you don't feel bored with the look, this will be a great car.

    I haven't driven one yet, but I used to go with my friend for a test drive (My friend tested it). I really like this car, but I feel bored with the exterior and interior because it is somewhat new. Unlike Corolla in USA, I have seen 2002 Corolla in Asia, and it looks nicer because it is completely changed both Interiors and exterior.

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    2002 Toyota Corolla - S (M5)

    Pros: HANDLING

    Cons: NONE

    Advice: ENJOY & PAY CLOSE TO DEALER INVOICE

    DROVE 1 MILE & NEW IT WAS A TYPICAL COROLLA.EXCELLENT VEHICLE WITH MORE BELLS & WHISTLES THAN THE 1999 I PREVIOUSLY PURCHASED.

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    2002 Mazda Protege5 - (M5)

    Pros: looks

    Cons: no rear cupholders

    Advice: get the 5 speed manual transmission

    After trading in my 2000 Honda Civic Si coupe for a 2002 Mazda Protege5, I can honestly say that I am glad about this decision. Build quality is top notch and the 2.0 liter engine zings when stepped on hard. The 5 speed manual is a must. Do not even consider the automatic. The best feature of this new model is its looks. People everywhere will gaze at it and start up conversations. The interior is as cool as the exterior. Silver accents along with carbon fiber adorn the dash and the shifter is topped with a cool ball knob. All controls are logically placed and you do not need to look when activating them. I have only two gripes about the Protege5: no rear cupholders and the location of the driver's power lock button. The lock button is really uncomfortable to reach and activate. Other than these two gripes I can say that there is no other car on the market that offers so much for so little. Here are advantages that it has over the competition: 3 year/50,000 instead of 3 year/36,000 mile warranty. Another is roadside assistance at no extra charge. You have to pay for that with Honda. Also, getting 3.9% APR for 48 months financing was not bad either. You can look cool and still carry four other friends along with luggage. If anyone has questions that you would like to discuss in particular please do not hesitate to e-mail me at tuantran1974@hotmail.com. I would be more than happy to discuss my favorite topic: my Protege5.