What factors make a car among the best sold in America? Reliability, which is determined by the number of repairs a vehicle needs. Features, based on driverless capacity or electronics. Safety, based on airbags and crash avoidance technology. The factors vary from research study to research study. One of the best-known car rating organizations has just put out its 10 best car list.
That is, the nonprofit Consumer Reports’ “10 Top Picks of 2021: Best Cars of the Year.” The selections need to rate well based on 50 tests at the firm’s Auto Test Center. They need to do well when Consumer Reports polled its members, and the vehicles also need to score well on independent safety tests. Finally, the research shows what car owners are likely to think of their vehicles in the future based on both customer satisfaction and reliability.
Unlike other ratings, Consumer Reports picks vehicles and groups them by price. It grouped vehicles priced under $25,000, another set priced between $25,000 and $35,000, another between $35,000 and $45,000 and a final set for $45,000 and above. It is an odd way to make selections, based on its methods of evaluation, since price should not be a primary consideration.
Here are the winners and their scores based on a 100-point scale:
- Small Car: Toyota Corolla (77 points)
- Subcompact SUV: Mazda CX-30 (75)
$25,000 to $35,000
- Hybrid: Toyota Prius (80)
- Midsized Sedan: Toyota Camry (88)
- Small SUV: Subaru Forester (89)
$35,000 to $45,000
- SUV/Wagon: Subaru Outback (86)
- Midsized Three-Row SUV: Kia Telluride (96)
- Compact Pickup Truck: Honda Ridgeline (80)
$45,000 and above
- Midsized SUV: Lexus RX (80)
- Electric Car: Tesla Model 3 (75)