XLadyRogue, good approach from you. Car is not a box of chocolates you buy, eat and throw away, or throw away without eating if you don't like it. Buying a car is substantial investment which if approached not seriously enough can lead to problems and disappointment.
I do enjoy reading cars reviews and tests from time to time, even if no upcoming purchase is on my mind. It's just interesting to me.
The good-looking car is important. I believe that NO matter how good the car is on technical side, it should not be bought if it is plain ugly.
Why do you like the off-roaders so much? Do you really go THAT often to a country side? I mean, in USA there lots and lots of huge cars on high base (often the GM products <img src="/images/graemlins/smile.gif" alt="" /> ).