As much as you might like to dream about what you want in a car, it's best to think more practically about your needs — not just at present, but in the future, too. Functionality should trump flash. Here are some practical considerations to keep in mind:
How many passengers do you need to carry?
What type of driving do you do: highway, surface streets, off-road?
Will you drive in ice and snow?
Do you have a long commute and, because of that, is fuel economy important to you?
Do you need all-wheel drive?
What safety features are important to you?
Do you need a lot of cargo capacity?
Will you be using children's car seats?
Will you be doing any towing?
How much garage or parking space do you have?