Eighth Place: 2005 Honda Civic Si
There was no doubt that the long beloved Honda Civic Si, with its reputation for durability and a fun-to-drive character, would meet the criteria to make the final cut on our list. Though producing only 160 horsepower from a 2.0-liter, VTEC, four-cylinder engine, the Civic Si’s smooth, free-revving powerplant and slick shifting transmission beckon you to push it to its limits. No automatic here: The Civic Si comes standard with a five-speed manual transmission. And with fuel economy of 26-mpg city and 31-mpg highway, the Civic Si takes its place near the top of the economy ratings. Finally, considering the Civic Si’s resale value and the fun this car produces, the price of $20,085 is a steal. But we’re not fans of the Civic’s doorstop styling or funky dash-mounted shifter, which forced the Si down in the rankings.