Top ten new cars of 2008
We are getting to the year end so we will be presenting plenty of lists of our top ten favorites. To start it off, TopSpeed’s Top Ten New Cars.
Here are the rules:
- * The car must be new or significantly improved this year
- * These are manufacture’s car not tuner cars
- * All cars must be available for sale in the U.S. (cars not sold in the U.S. will be its own list)
- * We do not have to pick from this list as our car of the year
- * Write-ins are encouraged (we may even change the list with enough protest)
We’re already starting off with a disputed car. BMW made is reputation with small cars that could kick ass. Anyone who owned a 2002 regrets the day he/she sold it. The 1-Series is the closest thing we will get to in North America to that same spirit (even if BMW no longer sell four-cylinder cars here.) It’s got razor sharp handling and is available with 300 horsepower.
Yes, the styling is a little awkward and the 3-Series overlaps in pricing, but this is exactly what a BMW should be. The 1-Series is the unassuming sports car.
The CTS is a contender because the level of quality was raised this year, but it made the list because of the CTS-V. Corvette power, Cadillac luxury…’nuff said.
The ZR-1 has 638 hp and costs about $105,000. That’s about $164.50 per horse. No other supercar offers that.
Oh yeah, this is complete car with good handling, too.
The Dodge Challenger is the kind of car that alters personalities. Even an accountant feels like a badass driving one.
This is a big car, and it drives like a big car. The suspension is a little soft, the turning radius could be measured in yards, and compact parking spaces don’t apply here. But that doesn’t matter because even when you’re out on a milk run, you feel cool.
If the Challenger makes you feel cooler, the Jaguar XF makes you feel like a better person. Just by sitting behind the wheel and looking at the real wood, rising shifter knob, and emerging air vents, something changes. You’re social status feels elevated further than any other $50,000 luxury sedan can do.
Lotus Elise SC
Okay, the Elise isn’t all that new, but Lotus did add a supercharger to to SC to haul around or butts even quicker. 217 hp in a car that weighs less than 2000 lbs. is something we love.
Mitsubishi Lance Evolution X
An all-wheel drive practical sports sedan. The only one we like better is the Subaru WRX…
Godzilla is back, and no other car we’ve ever experiences has been so thoroughly though out. It took almost seven years to go from clean sheet to 480 hp (disputed) 3.8-liter twin-turbo V6, all-wheel drive supercoupe. Just to be in the car’s presence (not even the drive) and seeing all the little details in person makes you appreciate the car. We’re still trying to figure out how many organs we need to sell to get one permanently.
This will likely be the most disputed car on the list, but drive one before you pass judgment, damnit.
Saturns are now just Opels with odd badges, and Opels are cool again. This starts at $16,500 before discounts. As far a cheap transportation with some personality, this one really has something to offer. Doubters can kiss my Astra.
Subaru Impreza WRX
Here’s the everyday driver for the person who doesn’t want to grow up. Take it to the office in the morning, and take the long way home. Although the redesign took place in 2007, the engine got 41 more horses in 2008.
We couldn’t get enough of the Subaru WRX in our test fleet. All-wheel drive, razor-sharp steering, 265 hp, $25,000: NO BETTER VALUE FOR THE MONEY.