The passenger car segment encompasses a larger array of models than ever before. Versatile new vehicle types like sport wagons and station wagon/SUV crossovers compete with sedans, coupes, convertibles, hatchbacks and wagons for market share. And these new body styles are well distributed among vehicle segments, from compact cars to luxury vehicles. This is good news for buyers, who have more choices now than ever - in terms of price, as well as style and functionality.
Compact car shoppers can choose from reliable transporters like the Honda Civic, which is also available as a gas-electric hybrid and the Toyota Corolla. Sportier alternatives like the Toyota Matrix and Pontiac Vibe offer expanded cargo areas for those interested in buying new cars with an extra dose of utility. The Volkswagen Jetta and Ford Focus can be had either as sedans or wagons. The Focus is also available as a hatchback, like the Volkswagen Golf. The tiniest of the compacts, Mini's Cooper is cute as a button and drives like a go-cart.
Midsize cars are usually only available in sedan, coupe, wagon and, in some cases, convertible styles. The perennially popular Honda Accord and Toyota Camry are favored among shoppers in search of reliability and comfort. Additional sedan contenders include the Nissan Maxima and Altima, Hyundai Sonata, Mazda6 and Chevrolet Malibu. Volkswagen's stylish Passat, the Subaru Legacy, and the Ford Taurus are all available as either sedans or wagons. And drop-top enthusiasts can choose between the Toyota Camry Solara and Chrysler Sebring.
Driving enthusiasts will gravitate toward the sporty cars segment, which includes relatively affordable pocket rockets like the Toyota Celica and Mitsubishi Eclipse. Nissan's long-awaited 350Z is in high demand for its sexy styling, athletic handling and legendary status among serious drivers. Buying new cars in the sporty segment can be either economical or extravagant, but it's certain to be fun.
Because buying new cars involves a lot of decision-making, Autos.com strives to make it easier by providing all the information you need, including comprehensive rankings of every single new car available.