This weekend, in the unusual pre-Christmas situation of not having anything specific to do I decided to spend some time looking at, and driving, various options to replace my wonderful Accord. Now, I should add that actual replacement will happen in the second half of 2015, so there is no rush here - but I like to research thoroughly and take my time making my decision. However, having started out with a list of 24 possible contenders of various types, I needed to get to a short(er) list! I should also note that I would normally change my car at 3 years, and this time I'm going for an extra year (with extended Honda warranty) because I like my Accord so much...but it will be 4 years and over 50k miles by September/October 2015, so my judgement is that it will need to be replaced while it still has a decent trade-in value. My requirements are changing slightly, as I'm now doing fewer motorway miles and more on A and B-roads. Total annual mileage is dropping too, from 15k per year to more like 8-10k. My requirements: - Nothing by VAG (due to bitter previous experience ) - Must be automatic - Would like a 4WD, but not essential - Happy to downsize for the right car, at the right price - Not that bothered about excitement and fun (I have my MINI for that), I prefer comfort and smoothness for my everyday car - Reliability is a must - Good equipment list - leather and satnav essential - Don't want to spend a fortune - up to £15k cost to change ideally, so total budget around £25-27k based on what I'm being (predicted) for the Accord - Will buy new, but preferably "nearly new" - so less than 6 months old and fewer than 5k miles - Petrol or diesel, not bothered. Have had diesel for years, but with my reduced mileage petrol is looking much more sensible - Would like to stay with Honda if possible I've ended up with a slightly surprising shortlist, which just shows the value of actually looking at as many options as possible over a short period. In no particular order... - MINI Paceman ALL4. I know not for everybody, but I like the styling and the drive was very good (petrol Cooper S). Good nearly new deals, too. - Volvo XC60. Lovely inside, but quite pricey and perhaps a bit big for what I need. - Volvo S80. A beautiful interior, but what great prices for nearly new. Tempting... - Subaru Forester. Again, probably a bit bigger than ideal, but a really nice thing with a good warranty and prices. Equipment not the best though except for the top models. Petrol 2.0litre engine was a real surprise - media reports saying it is poor are baffling! - Subaru XV. A real surprise, as I looked at one last time but discounted it. Fantastic deals available. - Kia Optima. Very good, but I have some concerns around reliability and residuals. A value option though, and what an equipment list. Nice looking too. - Honda CR-V. As with some of the other 4x4 options, really a bit bigger than necessary. The 2.0 litre petrol would be most sensible, but prices are high for the EX I'd want. - Honda Civic. Not the Tourer, the hatch. I actually really like it, and the 1.8 petrol is a smooth thing. Good deals and prices too, and I'd be looking at the top model. Other than the HR-V coming next year, that's my list. What didn't make the cut? BMW discounted as I found interior quality very poor for the price, and I'm not that keen on the image. Lexus and Infiniti (as I've noted before) are a great disappointment for me. Mazda similarly, the CX5 and Mazda 6 just didn't do it for me, neither did the Jaguar XF which I just found a bit "flash" TBH. Land Rover Freelander is about to be replaced, and just feels a bit "old" at this point. And expensive. Anything I've missed? Any horror stories I should know about for those on the list ??