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Best and worst car buys as model year changes

 

Five favorites for '05
Cadillac STS
You used to know this car as the Seville, but it has a new name for 2005, and it has gone back to Cadillac's rear-wheel-drive roots. Despite being a fresh design, Cadillac is likely to price this luxury sedan aggressively in an effort to lure buyers of European marques and prove that Caddy's got game once again.
Toyota Tacoma
This has always been the stone-cold-reliable model of compact pickup trucks, and for 2005 Toyota has pumped it up in size and will offer a sporty, 240-horsepower X-Runner model. The base model should do nicely for someone who needs something just slightly smaller than a full-sized pickup.
Scion tC
If you haven't heard of Scion, you're probably over 40. It's Toyota's youth brand that's priced so people who work at McDonald's can aspire to own one. You might have even seen the xB model – it looks like an angry toaster on wheels. For 2005, Scion is adding a slick coupe priced under $17,000 that someone over the age of 40 would look sharp in.
Acura TL
New, more-aggressive styling and a 270-horsepower V6 under the hood vaults this entry-level luxury sedan to the top of a highly competitive field.
Jeep Grand Cherokee
The company that invented the SUV has finally gotten serious about making a Grand Cherokee worth owning. The suspension has been significantly reworked, there's available Hemi V8 power and an option list full of luxury features. Plus, Chrysler is hungry for sales.
-- Posted: Sept. 23, 2004
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