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And the Winners Are...

The Inside Line readers have spoken. Thousands of the most knowledgeable and enthusiastic bunch of car crazies have cast their votes for the best cars and trucks of the year. This is the Edmunds' Inside Line 2008 Readers' Most Wanted Awards.

Because this is the very first year we asked our site users to participate in this program, we want to thank all of the Inside Line readers who cast their votes. Hopefully you found it to be a productive use of your time. If not, next time vote during work hours. Duh.

Unlike the Inside Line Editors' Most Wanted Awards, which awards only a handful of vehicles each year, the 2008 Edmunds' Inside Line Readers' Most Wanted Awards ballot included 15 categories organized according to vehicle type and price range.

Only 2008 model-year vehicles were included in the voting, because it's 2008, and price classifications were based on base MSRP, be it under or over $30,000. The Best Concept Car category of course had no price restriction, because, well, they're concept cars. You should also note that the awards will be given to the specific trim level listed. In other words, the Ford Mustang is the Ford Mustang and the Ford Shelby Mustang GT500 is the Ford Shelby Mustang GT500.

Now, read on to see if any of your favorites made the cut. Then check the results against our 2008 Inside Line Editors' Most Wanted Awards. Needless to say, sometimes editors and readers like the same machines, and sometimes they don't.

Below is a list of the winners in each category, along with a few comments you crazy kids included with your votes. Thanks again for voting, and congratulations to the winners.

Speed Under $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Pontiac G8 GT.

It's Badass.

The Pontiac G8 embodies everything a sport sedan should without breaking the budget. Rear-wheel drive? Check. Big American V8? Check. Well-thought-out interior, excellent road poise and sexy styling? Check, check and check.

It's the perfect combination of speed, looks, utility and value.

Australian engineering is bringing Pontiac back up to the performance level it should be at. It's a fast and furious Charger-butt kicker, with a premium look and feel to boot.

Three things that made the G8 GT receive my vote are...most powerful, most attractive and RWD. Not to mention four doors. Basically a proper driver's car.

It's HOT!

It's an M5 for those of us who aren't doctors. What's not to like?

Six-liter V8 rated at 361 horsepower at 5,300 rpm and 385 pound-feet of torque at 4,400 rpm.

Three-hundred-sixty-one hp. Under $30K. Burnout machine. 'Nuff said.

Speed Over $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Audi R8.

The R8 does so many things right that it's hard to fault it. It has a sonorous V8, looks that would make any supercar designer proud, a dynamic personality and accessible performance all wrapped up in a daily drivable package.

Such a sexy car!

There's not a more head-turning vehicle on the road.

Beautiful, extremely nimble and quick, and extremely limited in supply...everything that makes something "most wanted" both physically and psychologically.

Have you heard it!? What a noise.

Was there any other choice?

It just looks fast.

Unique, beautiful, nothing else on the road. And Quattro lends a bit of practicality to the mix. An everyday sports car that's far less expensive and more visually striking than the Turbo, with a quality interior second to none.

This is the supercar without the supercar drawbacks.

Convertible Under $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Mazda MX-5 Miata.

The most fun you can have without a top for the price.

It's been the hands-down best roadster for under $30,000 for quite some time for a reason: It's just downright good, and a bunch of motoring fun.


Best combination of sport and sexy.

Cheap and fun.

Yes, I'm a guy, and I just voted for a Mazda Miata. Reason? It has always maintained the same formula of a driver-focused, fun-to-drive car.

The best roadster, period. Defines this category.

It's a street legal go-kart.

It's "funner" than the rest.

Keeps it simple.

As fun and as tossable as it can get.

Simply the best convertible for the dollar. Better than Prozac: This car will cheer you up like your favorite lap dog!!! And I mean LAP dog!!!

Convertible Over $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 BMW M6 Convertible.

Simply an amazing car. Good-looking, super-fast, finally a convertible that won't mess up the wife's hair at 70 mph!

Sexy, inside and out.

Love the sound of that V10.

Coupled with a monumentally fast V10, a trick suspension and a body that is guaranteed to get stares, the M6 (in white over red leather, with blacked-out wheels to highlight those huge brakes) is guaranteed to get looks. Then you have to consider that it's comfortable, has a large trunk and is extremely well made.

It is so "baroque," finally love the Bangle style!

Sexiest car in the bunch, PLUS a 507-HP V10.

Best of Group for Luxury, speed, handling and touring.

Imagine pulling up to Flemings in a black BMW convertible sitting on aggressive 19-inch wheels wearing a small badge that reads front of everyone.

Style, grace, quality and sex appeal.

Luxury Under $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Audi A4 2.0T.

This is tough, but the Audi wins for its interior and the performance and gas mileage of its turbo.

Torque torque torque!

Gotta love the 2.0-liter turbo with Audi looks and performance.

Stylish, practical, luxurious.

Great-looking, fully featured and not as commonly owned by teenagers.

Audi is the king of interiors.

Just spend five minutes in the ****pit, even sitting still, and you will understand why Audi interiors are the benchmark. A solid mechanical package, decent speed, good handling, like many other entries on this list, but with a package that makes you feel like you are driving a much more expensive car.

Style, engine, QUATTRO!

Compact German sport sedan with one of the best turbo four-cylinder motors in the industry. Fuel-efficient, plenty of torque, compact and reliable. Clean exterior design in an age of Bangle-ness, and lack of confusing iDrive/MMI interior complexities. And, those A4 "for drivers who can park themselves" commercials and stunningly badass.

Luxury Over $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Audi R8.

The R8 is the best-performing luxury car on this list.

This is my dream car.

Four-wheel drive and the great sound of a V8 engine.

Luxury with a stick? I'll take one.


Audi took all of what they do very well, and infused it with some real outside-the-box passion and a bit of insanity to come up with something magical. It sounds, looks and drives like nothing else out there.

The R8 can be used as a daily driver with ease. After driving to pick up little Johnny from his track meet, head over to the track.

Drove it. Love it.

Very usable everyday supercar. Great looks and great V8.

Why bother listing the others?

I dream about this car. A lot.

Family Under $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Honda Accord.

Pleasure to drive and a dream to own.... The Accord does it all!

Has an excellent resale value, good build quality and looks good.

Modern, reliable, comfortable.

How can you argue with this? The benchmark.

It just does everything well.

The Accord is spacious, simple, reliable and frugal as always, with a touch of fun for the driver.

Space, refinement, reliability and a little essence of sport sedan thrown in for good measure.

It's the fun-to-drive family sedan.

It's probably the car I could wake up to every morning and feel good about my decision.

Apparently a lot of people don't like the look of the new Accord. I disagree.

Does this vote need rationale? Everyone else wishes they could make an Accord.

Family Over $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 BMW X5.

What SUV? This is so much fun to drive.

A true driver's SUV, yet still versatile enough for the whole family!

It has good looks and performance and at the same time can carry your family around.


Wickedly cool.

Space, power and a little height to make you feel safer.

An SUV that handles like a BMW and has room for seven.

Because I've driven one on a racetrack.

If you can afford it, best combination of style, room and country club cachet.

Plenty of utility for my small family, and dad gets to have fun driving.

Mom won't get bored driving the children to school every day, and the styling will ensure that Mom and Dad get to that Saturday dinner in style.

Hauling Under $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Toyota Tacoma.

Quality and durability.

A very dependable truck.

Tough workhorse.

Nothing beats a Taco!

Performance, six-speed manual, looks, reliability and capacity.

Reliability meets brute force.

Power, duh.

It won't ever die.



Love this truck. It's not puffy, doesn't look like it's compensating for anything, but still gets the job done.

Hauling Over $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Mercedes-Benz GL550.

Style, size, power, comfort and utility.

Comfort and style! And 382 horses with tons of torque!

The 5.5-liter V8.


Power and lux.

If it can carry the pope, it can carry me as well...

The best model for Mercedes-Benz in my opinion. It has size, space and style and one heck of a powertrain. If huge SUVs were viable, this is the best of the best — for a price, of course.

You don't haul in a GL 550, you transport.

Have you ridden inside of it? DIVINE!

Badass Truck!

It is not a pickup truck but it will get you and four houses' worth of stuff from Point A to Point B in ultimate comfort.

Hauling in style.

Commuting Under $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Volkswagen GTI.


Cheap and fun.

Very performance-minded, yet is cheap and practical.

Best interior, loads of torque for land squirting.

This car will turn any commute into something to look forward to.

DSG, 31 mpg, nice ride, good handling.

The only one that gets good gas mileage and is still fun while not being harsh or retarded. You can fit people, you can fit stuff, you have comfort and you have fun.

Turbo engine and good looks with a great interior. Practical, too.

Three letters: D-S-G.

Has the power to move you around, has the space to carry you around.

Who needs a Prius when you can add some fun into the equation?

Commuting Over $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 BMW 328i.

The gold standard.

Good engine, great handling, great ride quality, luxurious interior and looks better than the 1 Series.

Nicely engineered RWD car that's got some fun in reserve for the occasional lonely off-ramp.

Plenty of power and still has decent gas mileage.

Who says commuting shouldn't be fun?

Great gas mileage, refinement and sporting character.

The 328 has space for five if you need to carpool, and a combination of power, performance, ride, handling, fuel economy and low emissions that make it the ideal commuter car.

For all the reasons car guys pick BMWs.

Please explain to my wife that a 3 Series BMW is a commuter car so I can have a good excuse to buy one.

Instant Classic Under $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Mini Cooper S.

It may easily be one of the most fun-to-drive vehicles under $30K, period.

The design is perfect!

It's a no-brainer. Very well-executed car in styling, power, handling, etc.

Everyone's going to remember this car.

The Italian Job.

A great car that will still be loved after the new wears off and your neighbor drives something that generates electrical power for the traction motor.

The Mini Cooper will be around for a long time. It's fun to look at and it's like a go-kart on steroids. Very fun to drive.

Too cute.

It just looks fun.

They were instant classics 40-50 years ago. Why not now?

Most unique inside and out. Most devoted following I've ever seen of a new car.

Instant Classic Over $30,000
And the winner is the 2008 Audi R8.

Cutting-edge, high-performance, and makes a Porsche 911 seem normal.

Power, handling, and "do a double-take, oh my gawd, did you see that?!" styling. Not to mention an Audi interior.

Look at it.



An aesthetic breakthrough in automotive design and a pure statement in engineering.

Twenty-first century sports car icon, the first of its kind for a new era.

Just sweeeet.

Attractive, unique styling, great performance and a decent level of rareness.

Wow. I really need to tell you? Just look at the thing!

It's the Countach poster on the bedroom wall for this generation.

Best Concept Car
And the winner is the Audi R8 V12 TDI Le Mans.

This is what they should've done from the beginning.

Would be the most fun to drive by far.

I wouldn't kill for the Audi R8 V12 TDI Le Mans, but that's only because I wouldn't kill anyone. Simply put, I'd sell my body to science just for 15 minutes behind the wheel of that thing.

Would love to drive that car. Mountains of torque available from the diesel. Looks amazing inside and out.

Give me a diesel sports car, please....

Five-hundred hp and they limited the torque to 750 because the transmission can't take all of it. I want one.

A diesel supercar would be a car for the history books.

It makes diesel cool.

Schoolboy's dream.

Showcases what happens when you think outside the box and look at diesel as a high-performance alternative with fuel savings. Crazy torque.

Think about it: You're 12, don't know much about cars except you love exotics. Which car will still be on your wall when you come home from college for Thanksgiving and stay in your old room?

· Super Moderator
21,460 Posts
Re: Edmunds' Inside Line 2008 Readers' Most Wanted Awards

Don't agree with the Family Sedan under $30k thing, the Malibu trumps the accord at everything. :yup:

Congrats to the G8 GT though!
Man I need $30k...

· Registered
3,421 Posts
I saw my first G8 GT in Hampton Beach, N.H. two weeks ago. What an incredibly beautiful car. It actually looks better in person than in any photograph. I don't like the fake hood scoops but everything else is beyond perfect. If there is any justice in the car world then this car should sell out in short order.

· Registered
6,732 Posts
I really disagree with the entire concept of this survey. Much like the internet in general, people who have no idea what they are talking about give their opinion. That's fine when you're talking about the looks of a vehicle, but I bet a lot of people commented on the handling and ride of vehicles they've never driven.

· Registered
56 Posts
Fun to have the G8 there - but this is an ad for Audi with a few others thrown in for a grain of cred.
Shameless - but we go down this road again and again with the media.
I would love to drive the G8 and will take care of that soon. Hey, maybe I can do a survey based on reality. Probably wouldn't sell.

· Registered
56 Posts
I saw my first G8 GT in Hampton Beach, N.H. two weeks ago. What an incredibly beautiful car. It actually looks better in person than in any photograph. I don't like the fake hood scoops but everything else is beyond perfect. If there is any justice in the car world then this car should sell out in short order.
I think so too.
It really does look better in person.

· Registered
4,665 Posts
Most wanted doesn't equal most found. Still can't find one. It would be nice if there were some around to buy??

I hate when GM builds up demand and has no supply. Same for the hybrid Malibus. Can't buy one. Just stupid.

· Premium Member
7,317 Posts
May I ask?

Where is it built in America?

Shhhhhhh! or the usual suspects will turn up in this thread and start unloading on it again. The GT does have a US engine and trans.........

And it was developed with the US in mind with US designers working on it. Interestingly apparently on GM's dealer-order inventory page there are no 2008 G8s left so the dealers have them all, not even V6s, and of the first 3300 '09s GTs due shortly, most of them have been 'tagged' or snapped up by dealers in 3-4 working days. Dealers are now busily tagging some of the popular combos like sunroof/sport kit in rarer colours from the 'not yet built' category. The '09 blue is apparently moving right on out....

They must be selling OK somewhere in the US. Still no GXPs as yet.

· Registered
366 Posts
Some observations:

How many of you are like me and don't have an audi, mercedes, MINI, etc. dealership within one hour of you? Interesting. The only cars on that list that I could have serviced if needed are the pontiac and the toyota! Before we start the move out of the sticks crap, my town isn't that small!

I remember when "under $30,000" actually meant UNDER $30,000! $27,595 is hardly under $30K. Bravo G8 though, it is a nice car.

This list shows how great the miata is. Year after year its on everyone's list! Plus it really is fun, easy to own, cheap, bulletproof, and has a decent resale value. Bravo miata.
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