New 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.
2002 Volkswagen GTI - L (M5)
Pros: Tiptronic transmission made by Audi
Advice: Test drive this car before laying down 22K for anything else!It is hard to explain what it is like to drive this new GTI. The 180 HP engine makes the wheels squeal like never before. Finally, VW has made the stock version of this car a serious contender in the 'speedy' crowd. The GTI stays up with most 6 cylinder challengers and even some 8 cylinders guys. The car is heavy and feels well planted on the road surface. I have the optional 17' wheels and sticky Michelins that help keep the front end on the ground and not in the air. VW also put old optional sport suspension as standard equipment to help keep this pocket rocket stable. For people who like to shift manually once and a while, the Tiptronic automatic transmission (made by Audi) is just right. I think it knows when to shift better than I do since I got a lower 0-60 time in Drive than by my own shifting!! It was just mentioned that VW is bringing out a limited edition (1000) GTIs in May that contain new lower body panels, Recarro GTI seats, and 18' wheels. Get your order in now.
2002 Kia Spectra - GSX (M5) Liftback
Pros: comfortable ride
Cons: need a few more horse power
Advice: Make sure if you want remote controlled mirrors you ask for Electrically controlled!I bought a 2001 GSX with cruise option. Quieter than I had expected. Performance improved once it was broken in. Heat comes on faster than any other vehicle I have ever owned, even on very cold days. AC Worked great. A little low to the ground when entering and exiting. Comfortable for 4 with no problem. I love the hatchback since it keeps me from storing junk there like I would in a regular trunk.
2002 Kia Spectra - Base (M5) Sedan
Cons: Quality, Ride
Advice: Buy ANY other brand.My friend, who doesn't read before she buys, bought the p.o.s. Sephia, thinking she was saving money and not giving up quality in the meantime. I told her to buy a civic like anyone else who wants reliability, but she had to be cheap. In 6000 kms, her transmission went TWICE. Sure, the car is covered under warranty, but she's been left roadside twice. I would recommend reading Consumer Reports, the only non-subsidized source of advice out there, and they will tell you the truth about KIA's awful quality and worse ride. I just sold a 1995 Accord with 210,000 kms and had NO problems with it, EVER. I bought a new 2002 civic three months ago. It's already shown its value beyond the KIA, and you can only imagine what resale and quality will be like in 4 years or so!
2002 Honda Accord - 2.3 EX (M5) Sedan
Advice: Don't Buy one! Buy a Passat!We Owned a 1999 Honda Accord EX.It was the worst Car we've ever owned in our ENTIRE lives! The only good thing about it is Reliability........otherwise it was JUNK as the old Honda's used to be.It had Nothing going for it Accelaration,comfort,ride,handleing,fit and finish and more! Everybody says they are great don't beilieve them they are Terrible.
2002 Honda Accord - 3.0 EX w/Leather (A4) Coupe
Cons: Tires---The Michelins are not good in rain, and cost 131.00 ea
Advice: You cant lose with this car. They never breakMy fouth Accord, this is the best one I have owned. The build quality of this car is only matched by the Toyotas. I just traded a Subaru for this, and it is not in the same league. The AWD offered better traction, but thats it. My V6 cost $6k less, and offers better mileage, its more comfortable, and reliability is better. I drive a lot, so mileage piles up, and the Honda never has problems. A lot of parts wore out on the 99 Outback, the quality was not at all like the Honda. I added a few items on my Accord for performance, and spent time with people who live cars. They all marvel at the level of quality, how well built the Accord and Civics are, how everything fits, nothing is cheap. This car is fast, handles well, and is excellent in bad weather for only front wheel drive(std traction control). The bottom line is you cant lose with this car, I paid 23k for the V6 EX Coupe. At 100k, this car will be in excellent condition, that why they hold their resale value like Mercedes. The Accord is the best car for its cost, read the reviews. My only complaint is the stock tires,the Michelins are just OK, a Continental Contact, which cost 40 dollars less per tire, would be better
2002 Nissan Sentra - GXE (M5)
Pros: Excellent frame rigidity.
Cons: No ABS.
Advice: Recommended for short or long time ownersWhat i like is the feedback that the car is giving us, it is very informative, and you are very aware of what is going on with the car you're driving, giving you also a nice feeling of total control. Every pieces of equipment is working perfectly and efficiently in this car, from the A-C and electrics, up to the wippers! The layout is good, and it give an impression of great overall quality. I rent the GXE 2001 version, and i see it as an excellent car for grown-ups, and people who buy theirs first brand new car.
2002 Nissan Sentra - SE-R (M5)
Pros: ENGINE TECHNOLOGY
Cons: CUP HOLDERS
Advice: SPEC-V REQUIRES PREMIUM GAS SE-R DOES NOTI BOUGHT THE SENTRA SE-R, MANUAL TRANSMISSION HAS MORE POWER THEN ANYTHING ELSE IN THE PRICE RANGE. QUALITY AT THE PRICE PAID CANNOT BE BEAT. NISSAN IS THE AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRIES BEST KEPT SECRET IN THE COMPACT CAR CLASS.