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 Oldsmobile Alero - GLS Sedan
Pros: Performance, styling, features - GLS is a near-luxo car for low-luxo price
Cons: More lateral support on driver-seat would be an easy, low-cost fix for GM - (unless Olds is simply counting on all their buyers being under 175 pounds); engine noise when cold can be distracting.
Advice: If you want an extremely attractive, well-built, refined car (albeit with a not-as-refined engine), that's fun to drive and has Lexus-looks and a lot-less-than-Toyota price tag (and on top of that, a luxo-car 5-year/60K warranty), consider the Alero GLS.The Alero has great acceleration and the 4-speed auto trans is smooth and responsive, but the 3.4 V6 engine isn't as quiet and refined as the competition. Alero has an extrememly well-appointed interior, and - when equipped with the GLS model's leather - places in the near-luxury car market. Guages and controls are all well placed, and the interior styling is extremely attractive. GLS sound-system is first rate. Other nice touches include standard traction control, ample storage, and warning lights for low-oil level, oil change need, and low tire air-pressure. Driver seat could use more lateral boasting for us 190#, 6-footers who ocassionally take 2-hour drives (though one can correct this by carefully inserting thick-guage foam rubber square into the back of the seat bottom). Cupholders are somewhat useless as cupholders - though that's a small gripe. Exterior styling is a head-turner and compliment-attractor. Ride is good and handling above-average. However, road and engine noise rate only as acceptable. Overall, Alero is a gorgeously-styled car on the higher-par of larger compacts, creaping up toward the near-luxury segment - and one cause for that egg drying up on the face of GM: for ordering the execution of Oldsmobile - arguably their critical best line of cars.
2002 Hyundai Sonata - LX (M5)
Pros: lumbar - climate control - keyless entry -
Cons: cup holders - poorly placed cruise control switch
Advice: compare features & price with other midsizeON THE PLUS SIDE - Excellent adjustments on driver's seat, interior & exterior styling are improved, dealer financing was at an excellent rate, good standard audio system, ergonomics are very good for most items, keyless door & trunk opener are standard, heated power mirrors are standard, 60/40 split fold down back seat is very useful, standard Michelin tires , sport/auto trans works well, most comparable ares $3000 - $6,000 more. ON THE MINUS SIDE - Cruise control switch is inaccessible, front cup holders hard to access, ABS should be standard on top models, vanity mirror lights don't work unless power is on, no dome light for rear seats, more powerful V6 desirable, larger moon roof possible, leather seats are comfortable but leather is not top quality.
2002 Mazda Millenia - SS
Pros: engine, ride, material quality inside and out
Cons: deprecitation, back seat room for tall guys
Advice: relatively unknown which leaves room for barginingclassic styling, great quality leather, great engine but mileage is so so, the base model's engine leaves it feeling like it is towing a boat(but it is smooth}, tight back seats, excellent interior material quality and perfect paint, awesome fit and finish, smooth and well controled ride but does have a tendancy to dive and squat slightly during accel/braking, all around I am very impressed with Mazda's 'unknown' luxury car.
2002 Chevrolet Impala - LS
Pros: quiet, smooth, solid handling
Cons: only the payments
Advice: upgrade to the ls modeljust like the tv ad, after driving the impala ls about three feet, i had to have one!
2002 Toyota Celica - GTS (M6)
Advice: Buy a manual celica. If you don't know stick, then learn!The 2000+ celica is a great blend of looks, fun, performance, and practicality. The car handles great and has impressive acceleration for such a small engine. It takes some getting used to, but once you are acquainted with the high-reving 4-banger, you can really fly in this car. The hatchback trunk is huge and gets even bigger with the rear seats folded down. The GT-S gets good fuel mileage, but this is somewhat offset by its premium gas requirement. So if you want something unique, reliable, and fun, go for the celica.
2002 Honda Civic - EX (M5) Coupe
Pros: Sunroof & Keyless entry
Cons: Needs more horsepower
Advice: The upgrade to EX is definitely worth it.I purchased my Civic EX a week ago. I absolutely love it. For those in the market to buy a new car, the Civic is a perfect blend of style, safety, and price. You get a great deal for the money. If I could change anything with the Civic, it would be more Horsepower. The “get up and go” is just enough to make it acceptable… but I would like more. Overall I am obviously very happy with my choice. Kathy – Sacramento California
2002 Pontiac Grand Prix - GT Sedan
Pros: Spoke wheels and racing rails
Cons: There is no light indicator for the cruise control
Advice: If you are looking for a sporty car with great handling buy this one!We purchased the Grand Prix GT Special Edition and we like the way it accelerates and corners like its on rails! It is really an easy and fun to drive vehicle. It has dual pipes on both sides and roars wonderfully. Gives the feeling that you're driving an Indy car. There are only 5000 of these vehicles (Special Edition) made for 2001 and we feel especially happy that we are the owners of one of them. It is a great car for the money, looks and handling.