TTAC's Best and Brightest have spoken. You provided us with 81 nominations for our Ten Best award, from the Aston Martin Vanquish to the HUMMER H2. From this cornucopia of cars, our ever-eager writers selected the short list of 20 finalists. As you might expect, the final list leans heavily towards vehicles notable for their performance and driving excellence. Half of this year's contenders were also finalists last year [indicated by an asterisk]. So here they are, along with some of your more "colorful" comments. Once you've had a look, please step into the e-voting booth and choose TTAC's Ten Best.
Audi A5/S5: In the old days, the Ford Thunderbird was a big stylish and fast coupe, without being as brash as a Trans Am or ‘Stang. Audi's bangle-free design looks great, and the chassis is improved from the A4. –squid
Audi R8: No other car in the last decade has created such a stir as this one. Incredible styling, performance and presence. The R8 stops traffic, then peels out leaving bystanders to wipe off their drool. –Jeff in Canada
Audi S4/RS4*: Audi has constantly evolved their S4 series to make it a true driver's car and outshine its Bavarian rivals ultimate driving machine. –jaje
BMW 3-Series*: No other car offers such variety. Sedan, coupe, wagon, convertible? Check. NA or turbo straight 6? Check. RWD or AWD? Check. The great thing is that all versions are fantastic cars to drive. –Quentin
Cadillac CTS: As uniquely American as a 2000lb bomb being dropped on a Taliban, and as shocking in real life as well. The interior makes an Audi or BMW look positively old fashioned. And they offer it in a manual in every trim level. –Capt Mike
Chevy Corvette/Z06/ZR1*: This is the one car that Chevy continually and consistently updates for the better and doesn't let it rot on the vine. It will embarrass many cars even those twice it's price. –jaje
Honda Civic: Provides laser-precise handling, a quiet comfortable interior, and decent power. It's a blast to drive, yet somehow manages to get class-leading fuel efficiency. – Axel.
Honda Fit*: It is an impeccably designed small car, with good mpg, an ingenious interior (those seats fold in every direction!), reliability, and playful handling. –Adub
Hyundai Genesis: Penny pinchers unite! Someone at Hyundai has some pretty big coconuts, skipping the whole mass market thing and going squarely for BMW. –yournamehere
Infiniti G35/37*: More competent RWD sports sedan than the 3-series, restyle looks great even in coupe form. Available AWD for the snowbelt. –TEXN3
Mazda Mazda3/MazdaSpeed3*: In both sedan and hatchback form, the Mazda3 offers enough zoom-zoom to satisfy your wants and enough practicality to satisfy your needs. –Theodore
Mazda MX-5*: You don't understand cars until you have driven one of these… to its limits. There are no cars that give you this level of handling enjoyment for this price range, and way beyond. –Aardappel
MINI Cooper S: Here is a great performance car for the era of $4+ fuel: fun to drive, fast, thrifty, handles great, outstanding resale value, and the look is still unique after all these years. –Steve-O
Nissan GT-R: The handling and quickness are unfathomable, the power is brutal and its pretty much undeniable in whether or not it accomplishes its purpose. Best of all is its consistency. You have to try to make a mistake in this car. – John R
Pontiac G8: Rear wheel drive V8 performance without body cladding dripping off. Probably the last of the breed with gas prices and fuel economy standards. –carguy622
Porsche 911*: I've tried to dislike it, tried to rationalize its capabilities with respect to its price, but the car is the perfect sports car and the only sports car you can drive every day. If petrol still exists in some decades (and it will) you can buy one now and drive it happily every day for at least the next 20 years. –JJ
Porsche Boxster S*: This is the everyman's sports car. This car has a perfectly balanced driving character and has perfectly balanced the needs of modern accommodations, safety, and emissions with the purity of the original 356 vision. –Joe O
Toyota Prius: Tomorrow's car today. Not really a driver's car, but a practical and painless transportation module that is optimized for the conditions in which most urbanites actually drive. Not a back-roads car, but every time I get stuck in semi-stationary traffic, I wish I had one. -argentla
VW GTI*: Hatchback versatility, decent mpg's, upscale interior, and an absolute fantastic drive. It delivers all you need to have a blast on back roads and interstate cruises for a mid 20k price. -blankfocus
VW Jetta TDI Sportwagen: Sporty, fun to drive, TDI power and torque leave all the others in the dust and the wagon version is very utilitarian, to boot. –Beelzebubba
Now comes the time to narrow this list down to the ten winners. Click below to pop over to our poll and place your votes. Then watch this space to see which vehicles become TTAC's Ten Best for 2008.