On Monday I announced Autoblog's totally subjective Car of the Year awards. After a few days of reading back on my experience with the first round of vehicles (Chrysler PT Cruiser Convertible GT, Mazda 6s 5-door, Dodge Neon SRT-4, Kia Spectra, Mazda RX-8, Chevy Equinox, Passat TDI Wagon, Saturn Vue Red Line) I found it hard to pick my three top contenders from this group. Sure the RX-8 easily passed on to the next level but the PT Cruiser Convertible, Mazda 6s 5-door and Dodge Neon SRT-4 all were legitimate contenders.

It came down to the fact that the Mazda 6, while offering great utility and performance, wasn?t as much of a blast to drive as the other two in their respective segments. It was close though and I think the 6 is a terrific sedan/hatch/wagon. As for the losers they did nothing to endear me to them no matter what type of vehicle they were. Some did their jobs well, while others were only adequate. These days adequate doesn?t cut it. Monday we?ll post Round 2?s contenders. 

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