Top things car owners want in cars
A problem shared is half solved
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What It Takes to Be Tops
Overall Score: To be a Top Pick, a model has to have an exemplary Overall Score in its category. This single number consolidates the findings from four key pillars: road-test performance, predicted reliability, owner satisfaction, and safety. A car that bests the competition by these measures is truly extraordinary.
Road Test: Performance for each car is rated based on more than 50 evaluations conducted at our 327-acre Auto Test Center, ranging from instrumented track tests to assessments of comfort and convenience while in daily use by our staff.
Reliability: We predict how trouble-free new cars will be based on actual problems reported by subscribers in our 2016 auto survey on more than half a million vehicles. Predictions for new or redesigned models depend on the manufacturer’s track record or previous generations.
Owner Satisfaction: Simply put, a good car should make its owner happy. We rate owner satisfaction based on the percentage of surveyed owners who say that if they had to do it all over again, they would definitely buy the same car. Our latest subscriber survey collected data on more than 300,000 vehicles from model years 2014 and later.
Safety: All cars recommended by Consumer Reports must perform satisfactorily in accident-avoidance tests at our track and provide effective occupant protection based on crash tests conducted by the government and/or insurance industry (if tested). We give credit to models that have standard forward-collision warning (FCW) systems or automatic emergency braking (AEB) systems.