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William Maley

Industry News: Consumer Reports Picks The Vehicles With The Best Value

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If you're looking a vehicle that has the best value in the marketplace, then according to Consumer Reports, you should be looking at the Toyota Prius. The publication announced the results of their annual Best New-Car Value analysis. The analysis looks at the five-year cost for a vehicle to an owner which includes such factors as maintenance, insurance, and depreciation. That cost is factored in with Consumer Reports’ road-test score and reliability rating for each vehicle.

This is the second year the Prius has been named the best value in the marketplace. Consumer Reports says the Prius has a nice balance of performance, reliability, and low estimated five-year ownership costs of 47 cents per mile.

“The Prius’ 44 mpg overall is the best fuel economy of any non-plug-in car that Consumer Reports has tested. Though it’s not particularly cheap to buy, the Prius’ depreciation is so low that it costs less to own over the first five years than its initial MSRP. We call that a bargain,” said Consumer Reports Automotive Editor Rik Paul.

Now with there being a best, that usually means there is a worst. In this case, it happens to be the Nissan Armada. Consumer Reports says the Armada scored poorly in this year's reliability survey and gets 13 MPG combined, giving it the highest ownership cost of a $1.20 per mile.

Here is a list of the best and worst for each class.

  • Compact /Subcompact Cars: Best, Toyota Prius Four; Worst, Volkswagen Beetle 2.5L
  • Midsized Cars: Best, Subaru Legacy 2.5i Premium; Worst, Nissan Altima 3.5 SL
  • Large Cars: Best, Toyota Avalon Hybrid Limited; Worst, Ford Taurus Limited
  • Luxury Cars: Best, Lexus ES 300h; Worst, BMW 750Li
  • Sports Cars/Convertibles: Best: Mazda MX-5 Miata Grand Touring; Worst, Chevrolet Camaro convertible 2SS (V8)
  • Wagons/Minivans: Best, Mazda5 Grand Touring; Worst, Chrysler Town & Country Touring-L
  • Small SUVs: Best, Subaru Forester 2.5i Premium; Worst, Ford Escape SE (1.6T)
  • Midsized SUVs: Best, Nissan Murano SL; Worst, Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sahara
  • Luxury/Large SUVs: Best, BMW X1 xDrive28i; Worst, Nissan Armada Platinum
  • Pickups: Best, Honda Ridgeline RTS; Worst, Ford F-250 Lariat (6.7L V8)
Source: Consumer Reports

William Maley is a staff writer for Cheers & Gears. He can be reached at william.maley@cheersandgears.com or you can follow him on twitter at @realmudmonster.

Press Release is on Page 2

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As always, Clearly their love for Japan comes through over America. I would disagree with more than half of those choices.

Big benefit is it leaves many awesome auto's at lower prices for those of us that can and do love American Rides to pick up. :D

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Ridgeline... best value for a truck? What's the value of a truck that can't haul anything?

Exactly. But in CR world, if it gets good mileage it is the best vehicle. If they put a pickup bed on the back of a Prius it would be the best truck on the market because it got 40 mpg, the fact that the tow capacity is 500 lbs wouldn't be relevant.

This list is laughable, the best value Luxury car is an ES300h? Low MSRP compared to other luxury cars and high mpg make it valuable? Value should be judged on what you get for the money, $40k for an Avalon with an italic "L" on the front isn't good value. Based on CR thinking the Mitsubishi Mirage has the best value of any car, it costs $12,995 and gets 44 mpg, so it must be the best car for sale on the market.

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