Cream of the crop: Best cars in your price
So the family vehicle
is getting a little ragged, or maybe you've just got new-car fever.
Deciding to buy is the easy part. Settling on what to buy is far more
There are more than
400 different models in the U.S. market for the 2004 model year, ranging
from the Kia Rio, the least expensive car available, to the Bentley
Continental GT, a new $150,000 luxury speedster. There are myriad
sport-utility vehicles, dozens of convertibles, scores of sedans and
enough pickup trucks to empty every hardware store in your city.
To help you narrow your
search, Bankrate has broken down the vast new-vehicle field into traditional
body styles and price categories. When it comes to prices, we've listed
vehicles based on the average list price. A model may cost more or
less, depending on what optional equipment is on board, and the out-the-door
price will vary depending on available factory rebates and incentives,
finance charges, trade-in values and the discount negotiated with
Within each category we've ranked the top three
choices, based on value, style, reliability and the fun-to-drive factor.
by price -- sedans
by price -- coupes and hatchbacks
by price -- convertibles
by price -- station wagons
by price -- SUVs
by price -- pickup trucks
by price -- minivans
by price -- when money's no object
The rankings are by Terry Jackson,
former editor-in-chief of AMI Auto World Magazine. Jackson has been
an automotive journalist for more than 20 years. His work has appeared
in Automobile, Road & Track and AutoWeek. He is the author of
six automotive books and evaluates more than 100 new cars a year.
-- Posted: Dec. 9, 2003