For a lot of years, I chose my Top Five vehicles I drove during the year. It was a daunting task to whittle the list down to five, and I always felt like I left some great cars off the list. Like last year, I will not limit myself to a number, but rather share with you the vehicles I liked most by category.
So, with that, here we go! By segment, these are the vehicles I liked most based on initial quality, overall value within the segment, overall driving enjoyment, resale value, and performance. They are not ranked in order of my preference, and all these reviews are on the website.
How do you spend a week in a 797-horse Challenger Redeye, do an epic burnout, almost die from smoke inhalation, and not pick it? I can’t, it’s a marvel of a machine, don’t miss my video review! Although a lot less horsepower, there was something really special about the new Mustang Bullitt, maybe it’s nostalgia from the movie, but it is an exceptional car for the money. Also on the lines of fun to drive, the Camaro Hot Wheels Edition, I had a blast with the car, and it was a head turner. I spent a week in the Genesis G80 and have to say, this is one of the best values in a luxury car on the market today. Stepping down in price, I was duly impressed with the changes to the 2019 Toyota Avalon. Always a good car, Avalon is now even better, more stylish, and more technologically competitive with other full-sized cars.
Although I am not ranking these in order, the Subaru Ascent was possibly the SUV that was a standout in my mind. Pricing, the Eyesight Safety System, all-wheel system, interior room, and the price made this an obvious choice for this list. Close by, but substantially smaller, the Acura RDX blew me away. I had to contain myself from gushing over it, it was that good. And speaking of Subaru, the Forester had to make this list. It was very different from the Ascent but had many of the same qualities and features, it was exceptional. For people who need full-sized luxury, the Lincoln Navigator has such amazing front seats, has an incredible head-up display, and such a roomy third row seat, it made the cut. On the total opposite end of the spectrum, the Nissan Kicks represents an outstanding value without giving up any safety features. The gas mileage is exceptional, too.
FCA knocked it out of the park with the new Ram 1500, the quietest pickup I’ve ever been in. It also has an exceptional ride, and the electronics in the cab are the best out there right now. I must not be the only person to think this, Ram sales are way up this year. The Chevy Silverado 1500 LT Trail Boss was an absolutely beautiful truck. It offered a high level of equipment for the money and it was a joy to drive. Finally, the F-150 Powerstroke diesel really delivered. Ford didn’t gouge on the engine price, you have plenty of towing power, and fuel economy was terrific for a full-sized truck. Even with low gas prices, this diesel will pay for itself over time.
CARS & SUVs AROUND OR OVER $100,000
2018 was another year of some really nice six-figure vehicles. The Maserati Ghibli was an exceptional car that came in at $99,000. I admit I have a bit of a bias toward Maserati since I own a Quattroporte, but I think you would agree, it’s a wonderful car. Topping $90,000 fully equipped I had a wonderful week with the Mercedes-Benz AMG E53 coupe, one of the most comfortable cars ever, and a really fun car. However, if you need more of a need for speed, but want an SUV, the Mercedes-Benz GLS63 is the vehicle for you. 577-horses will pin you to the seat, and it will set you back $137,000. If you have that kind of money, nothing compares. Lastly, the BMW 740e is part gas, part electric, but is a true luxury car with a cavernous back seat. You’ll scare the heck out of $100,000 but it may be the true ultimate driving machine.
CHECK OUT ALL OUR REVIEWS
Those were my favorites of 2018, but at CarProUSA.com, you’ll find many more of my reviews as well as a lot of reviews by Terry Box and Amy Plemons. You’ll find them all at www.CarProUSA.com, from the menu button, click reviews.