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Even with the economy in slump and the Big Three US auto manufacturers seeking a handout, there’s plenty of hype around the 2009 model year. Here are some of the vehicles that caught our eye:
Move Your Family
From every angle, and no matter how you look at it, there is something to admire about the 2009 Nissan Cube. It’s the ultimate in efficiency while still scoring points with the cool crowd. At 90 horsepower, it may not win any stoplight drag races, but with room to spare, this economic people-hauler may have never looked more appealing―especially at 35 MPG.
It’s big, it’s powerful, and it’s Korean? That’s right, the 2009 Hyundai Genesis has the looks of a Mercedes and the moves of a BMW. Starting at $30K, it is a great alternative to those seeking luxury for near-luxury price. What is not to love about the leather dashboard, eight airbags, and a multimedia entertainment system?
While this is the first eight-passenger crossover vehicle for Chevrolet, it is not the first for GM. Offering third-row seating and 16 MPG city/23 MPG highway, this Chevy shares its platform with the Buick Enclave, GMC Acadia, and Saturn Outlook. The Traverse is also the first Chevrolet vehicle offering XM NavTraffic traffic information service.
Family on the go, cargo room to spare, and not quite content with an SUV or station wagon? The Toyota Venza is all of those and more. Dubbed a cross-over sedan, the Venza has the roominess of a family hauler with the handling of a sports sedan. Over the river and through the woods, a trip to grandmother’s house may have never been easier.
Move You Plus One
The affordable everyman sports car is back and updated with more horsepower for 2009. The Nissan 370Z has 332 horsepower and 270 pound-feet of torque are enough to stir the soul without hitting the pocketbook. The base price starts at $31K.
Who doesn’t love a good comic book and who wouldn’t love a sports car? Combine the two while watching the revived classic Iron Man and the Audi R8 is born. Although this all-wheel drive 420 horsepower powerhouse may have only two seats, it serves as the poor-man’s Lamborghini, and performs as well as it looks.
Top-down fun with one of the best engines in the industry? The Infiniti G37 convertible gives you open-air excitement while boasting 325 horsepower. The magnesium paddle shifters are mated to the rev-matching five-speed manual transmission, but the coolest aspect of this sweet ride is the three-piece retractable hardtop.