Included on this website are 31 Best Buys broken down into 19 classes of vehicles that cover the entire automotive spectrum. Whether you’re looking for a thrifty subcompact, roomy family sedan, spacious SUV/crossover or minivan, or heavy-hauling pickup, we’ve selected the cream of their respective crops—and included enough pertinent information about them—to help you focus on the best choices for your needs.
Each of the 19 classes is introduced with a description and listing of the vehicles it contains, what’s new for 2014, and which ones offer something unusual. Then it’s on to the Best Buy selections for the class.
Each Best Buy entry starts with the basics we think are most pivotal to the buying decision: base price range (which does not include the destination charge or any options), available body styles, drive wheels (front, rear, and/or all-wheel drive), available engines, the EPA fuel-economy range, and where the vehicle is built.
Next is a simple explanation of why the vehicle is a Best Buy, where it may be lacking, and any elements worth noting. Then comes a more detailed description of the vehicle itself, along with what’s new for the 2014 model year.
A more detailed fuel-economy section follows, with official EPA ratings for each powertrain variation, and, if applicable, Consumer Guide’s own fuel-economy numbers achieved during our real-world testing.
Last but not least is our Value in Class section, where we summarize the vehicle’s strengths, shortcomings, and position in its segment. It’s also where we list our favorite versions of a given vehicle.
One of the challenges facing new-car shoppers is understanding the host of modern high-tech features now available. If you’re unfamiliar with any terms you come across, they might be covered in the handy Glossary.
—The Editors of Consumer Guide® Automotive