By on December 20, 2013

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The Toyota Prius was ranked at the top of Consumer Reports’ Best New Car Value scoring for the second year in a row. CR’s analysis ranked over 200 vehicles on performance, reliability and costs and determined that over five years the Prius will cost 47 cents per mile to own and operate. Lower depreciation and operating costs for the Prius offset paying a premium for the hybrid.

“The Prius’ 44 mpg overall is the best fuel economy of any non-plug-in car that Consumer Reports has tested,” Rik Paul, the magazine’s automotive editor, said in a statement. “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.”

At the other end of the cost of ownership spectrum is the Nissan Armada, which costs consumers $1.20 per mile.

Factors going into the rankings are Consumer Reports’ own road tests, reliability predicted from the magazines’ reader generated data, plus a score calculated from depreciation, fuel, insurance premiums, maintenance, sales tax and repairs costs over five years.  Ten car categories were ranked, with the Prius coming out as the overall winner.

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 Frester 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)

 

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81 Comments on “Toyota Prius Best, Nissan Armada Worst in Consumer Reports’ Cost Per Mile Rankings...”


  • avatar
    NormSV650

    Does CR use MSRP because no but Hank Hill pays for price or a penny more?

    Until the C-max came out us non-hybrid owners never knew the Prius was such a poor driver. Now that the two are compared the reviews really beat up on the Prius driving experience.

    • 0 avatar
      morbo

      That’s actually funny. Co-worker just got a C-Max. He loves the car except for the handling; absolutely atrocious handling. Can’t even make a complete turn in the office parking garage, that not only my 300C handles easily (not a fair comparison of wrong wheel drive vs. rear wheel drive), but even large FWD SUVs (think Traverse/Highlander/Explorer) can make.

      If the C-Max is the best handling hybrid, I’m scared to think how terrible the Prius and Insight hybrids must drive.

      • 0 avatar
        srogers

        I don’t believe that I’ve ever seen “complete turn in the office parking garage” used as a measure of handling prowess.

        • 0 avatar
          morbo

          When you frequently park in 50 year old parking decks with tightly packed, dent inducing pillars, the ability to pull out of a parking spot with k-turning is critical.

          • 0 avatar
            bball40dtw

            The Prius and Insight have small turning circles. If you handling priority is ease of parking over nice to drive, those cars will be better than the C-Max.

          • 0 avatar
            rdchappell

            Turning circle still has very little to do with handling.

          • 0 avatar
            golden2husky

            The handling of the Prius cars we have at work is dreadful. My father’s Avalon handles better, and that car squeals its Michelins when it sees a curve. Despite the superb mileage, the driving experience of the Prius makes it a non-starter for me.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        The C-Max has a terrible turning radius. When my wife and I switched cars for a week, she said that C-Max doesn’t turn as well as the MKT she usually drives. The Focus with the 18″ wheels has a poor turning radius as well. However, on road the C-Max and Focus are at the top or near the top in on road handling in their segements.

      • 0 avatar
        WheelMcCoy

        From what some consider a useless rag, Consumer Reports has turning circle stats:

        Ford C-Max: 41 ft
        Toyota Prius: 37 ft
        Mazda5: 38 ft

        And yes, I know these numbers are for grandma and grandpa drivers. The anti-CR crowd does donuts, so their turning circles could be smaller.

        • 0 avatar
          fredtal

          Still I prefer to make an actual U-turn and not look like a fat ass doing Y-turn.

          • 0 avatar
            WheelMcCoy

            Yes, I like small nimble cars that can do a u-turn.

            These numbers support that the Ford C-Max has an unusually large turning circle for a vehicle its size. Anything 40 ft and over is too large for my taste.

      • 0 avatar
        carlisimo

        Assessments of handling generally don’t include turning radius. That IS an important consideration, but it’s not handling.

        A lot of the better-handling FWD cars (Hondas and Acuras, especially) have terrible turning radii because they’re compelled to sell with wider wheels than the wheel wells should’ve held. Some of the hot hatches in Europe are the same. But it does mean more grip.

        • 0 avatar
          bball40dtw

          The Focus ST has a 39+ foot turning circle and its considered to be one of the best handling FWD cars.

          • 0 avatar
            WheelMcCoy

            MINI Cooper has a 37 ft turning circle, and it is also among the best FWD handlers. Part of the reason for a largish turning circle is that FWD is just crowded with gear up front, and the wheels don’t have room to move.

            The 2010 Mazda3 is exceptional. Also a great handler, it has a svelte 34 ft turning circle.

      • 0 avatar
        Luke42

        The Prius has a really tight turning radius. But turning radius != handling. Just drive a Prius, and you’ll learn exactly what I mean.

        The Prius is a practical little transportation appliance. If you want a sports car, look elsewhere.

      • 0 avatar
        hifi

        Really, your “coworkers” opinion of the turning radius somehow justifies why you prefer one car over another?

        Well I like the C-Max. I like the C-Max because my mother’s dentist said that it easily holds 105 used toothpicks when lined up and stuck in the crevice between the dashboard. The Prius only accommodates 102. Clearly for this reason, the Prius handles horribly.

    • 0 avatar
      oldowl

      Besides CR, TTAC, and TrueDelta, what are the best auto review sites?

      • 0 avatar
        05lgt

        cue the crickets.

      • 0 avatar
        Dave M.

        I like New Car Test Drive as well. They do a relatively thorough review, albeit a little optimistic…

      • 0 avatar
        burgersandbeer

        For video reviews, 2theredline does a pretty good job.

        As far as I can tell, the guy doing them is just an enthusiast without performance driving credentials. That’s fine with me, since he doesn’t pretend to have them, and according to TTAC most other journalists don’t have them either (though they do their best to fake it). The reviews are just another opinion by a fellow enthusiast.

        I also still think Edmunds and C&D have value, though you have to read between the lines and pay attention to what isn’t written as much as what is.

  • avatar
    raph

    Does depreciation really factor into the cost of ownership if you plan on buying the car and keeping it until either you or the car dies? It certainly makes sense for somebody who leases a car or plans on purchasing a new car regularly otherwise it doesn’t seem to be that important.

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      Yes, the 5 year window doesn’t factor in thousands of dollars for battery replacement if you were to keep the hybrid longer. Plus, what does that do to the environment when you thousands of battery replacements every year.

      • 0 avatar
        jmo

        Huh? The Prius battery has proven to be incredibly durable and reliable.

        • 0 avatar
          Luke42

          Yeah, 9 years on our 2004 Prius with the original battery, and counting.

          Also replacement batteries are between $1500 and $3700 and are projected to last 250k miles.

          Pretty much like an automatic transmission, except that you can swap it in the driveway without jacking up the car. The multiple safety interlocks built into the battery will probably protect you if you fail to follow electrical safety common sense, too. As someone who occasionally works around high stage electric systems, swapping a heavy automatic transmission would be way more dangerous, difficult, and expensive than swapping a Prius traction batteryfor me (personally).

          Alas, my wife’s 9 year old Prius with 155k-ish miles on it is so darn reliable I haven’t gotten to swap anything other than the lawn-tractor sized 12v starter battery and the air filters on it yet[0].

          [0] I elected to have a professional replace the wheel bearing that went out. The car is old enough to have wheel bearings going out, but not old enough to have problems with the big battery. That’s all you need to know, really.

      • 0 avatar
        bikegoesbaa

        Did you just step out of a time machine from 2001?

        The last decade+ of hybrid experience has pretty conclusively proven the following:

        -Hybrid batteries have a life cycle that is similar to a well-designed automatic transmission; and will easily last 10 years and 150,000 miles or more without service or replacement. As with any complex component there will be occasional infant failures. These appear to be rare. Depending on the state Toyota warrants their batteries to 8/100k or 10/150k.

        -There is enough value/demand in used battery packs to support an entire industry devoted to recycling them; just like any other rebuildable high-value auto part. Do you think Prius batteries are just chucked into a landfill? That would be dumb, since recyclers will pay you for them.

        • 0 avatar
          Pch101

          You have to remember that Norm is the owner of a Saab that has no regard for the laws of physics, one which achieves better fuel economy than anything produced by the evil Toyota Motor Corporation.

          (Translation: he’s more than a bit off.)

          • 0 avatar
            28-Cars-Later

            He may still have the Saab, but I think he’s also got a Verano now with the same aftermarket physics defiance options package.

          • 0 avatar
            Pch101

            Why can’t I find one of these cars that manages to confound the scientific community on a daily basis?

          • 0 avatar
            Dr. Kenneth Noisewater

            Ah, the TK421 modification. Gotta have that if you want your car to KICK. Adds like 3 or 4 quads!

        • 0 avatar
          84Cressida

          Well said. Toyota also has a battery recycling program in place, so the batteries aren’t going to litter up a land fill like so many want to believe.

          • 0 avatar
            Luke42

            Also, the battery unit is made of dozens of smaller cells.

            Pretty much anyone who can solder has the theoretical background required to take two junkyard battery packs and make two good ones.

            Like any other sort of tinkering with bare electronucs, it takes a little time and safety is important – but BMS does the tricky part of balancing the cells and keeping the different strings in sync.

      • 0 avatar
        bball40dtw

        There are things to be critical about when it comes to the Prius, but reliability and battery issues are not among them. Even if you did have to replace a battery after 10-15 years, its not as expensive as many make it out to be.

        • 0 avatar
          Luke42

          Indeed. It’s a small car with a lightweight suspension and unusually strong susceptibility to side winds. The ergonomics deliberately goad you in to driving like a little old grandmother. It looks funny. And, frankly, it’s more fun to own than it is to actually drive.

          But it’s also a very practical and dependable vehicle. It’s earned it’s spot in our driveway, and my wife won’t let me replace it — even with a newer Prius. I’m more than OK with that!

    • 0 avatar
      redav

      The way I factor in depreciation is: Cost.

      That’s it. If you assume 100% depreciation the moment to take possession of it, all the calculations work out great when you plan on keeping it forever.

    • 0 avatar
      05lgt

      depreciation is a factor if your car gets totaled or stolen. Those sales are not voluntary, but they still take place at (less than) market value. Since CR compensates for the increased insurance costs the slow depreciation might bring in, it seems fair to include it.

  • avatar
    Sjalabais

    Very interesting! 0.47 cent is the exact operating and ownership price per kilometre (!) my 1996 Nissan Primera cost me here in Norway. That includes depreciation, fluids, fixes, insurance, taxes, tolls etc.

  • avatar
    Flybrian

    The best minivan for the FAMILY is the Mazda5? And the Wrangler is dead last when considering factors such as resale value?

    Jesus.

    I know, I know. CR is an interesting read occasionally, but I swear the people who live and die by CR when shopping for a car are the same dolts who have a 750 FICO and/or a pre-approval draft and go into Carmax and stroke a check for a generic car like a Camry or a Pathfinder and feel they got a ‘good deal.’

    • 0 avatar
      Avatar77

      I think “CR is not for enthusiasts” is a pretty tired meme at this point. We all are aware of what CR is – it’s for the majority of people who care more about how much their car is going to cost them than how it drives. If you read TTAC on a regular basis you are not part of that majority.

      • 0 avatar
        WheelMcCoy

        >> I think “CR is not for enthusiasts” is a pretty tired meme at this point.

        I concur. Those who think otherwise should search YouTube for the Consumer Reports’ drive of the BRS/FRS.

        CR has broadened their coverage of cars. It’s still very scientific and fair — they purchase their own cars and do it anonymously — but they’ve learned to understand fun. I read an interview with Jake Fischer (head of car reviews there and an auto-crosser) and he admitted the old CR got the first Miata wrong. They dinged it for having a small trunk! That’s not the Miata’s raison d’tre and they understand that now.

        Similarly, when I read reviews of the first gen Integra, CR said the ride was too hard while MotorTrend and R&T described the ride as too soft. Their views were coming from opposite ends!

        For those who remember the old CR, I’d say give the modern CR a second look.

      • 0 avatar
        burgersandbeer

        “…the majority of people who care more about how much their car is going to cost them than how it drives. If you read TTAC on a regular basis you are not part of that majority.”

        I think at least half of the TTAC regulars fall in this category.

      • 0 avatar
        Power6

        That’s not even true. CR is for people who like to have information from a primary source rather than wild speculation on the internets, even if we are enthusiasts at the end of the day. I read what they write, they don’t control my mind and make me but a Honda.

        Enthusiasts are not required to be ignorant.

    • 0 avatar
      TorontoSkeptic

      For all the hate CR gets, I still believe it’s accurate. Show me another publication that doesn’t take advertising from the big manufacturers and doesn’t receive test cars. That’s the Achilles heel of all auto sites and TTAC has mentioned it before (i.e. “newest model is always great, old model was such a dog” because that fits the product cycle).

      Does anyone really doubt that a 7-series is going to be horribly expensive to operate in every regard (maintenance, insurance, depreciation)? Or that the Taurus gets bad fuel economy and isn’t very reliable?

      • 0 avatar
        morbo

        Yeah, their methodology may not be the ‘best’, depending on how you view the world, but they are at least honest. Something rare in for any consumer product and especially automobiles. Judging by what I see on the roads of the capital wasteland, it’s basically the CR recommended list in your choice of grey, light grey, silver, dark grey, or gray.

        With the occasional chromed reflective Infiniti driven by a wealthy Chinese Georgetown student or an AMG Mercedes G_wagon racing down Wilson Blvd. driven by a wealthy Saudi princeling.

    • 0 avatar

      I don’t think Wrangler can possibly maintain its insane resale value when so many are on the road. The vast majority are mall crawlers and it’s easy to find an unmolested stocker nowadays, of any vintage past 2007. This may figure into CRs calculations. And honestly, Sahara is crazy. It’s the jeep that includes a useless plastic cover over the plastic bumper. No, really. A PURELY COSMETIC COVER. On a jeep.

    • 0 avatar
      gearhead77

      As a 5 owner, it’s fairly cheap to run, fairly efficient and has barely enough room for our family with twin boys. We bought ours new as a dealer leftover in 09. Grand Touring with leather,moonroof,heated seats,auto wipers and HID lamps. Only thing ours is missing is nav. 24k sticker for 08, around 26k now for same vehicle. Mazda had 3k off when we bought ours, so it was even better.

      Try to get a new Odyssey, Sienna or Chrysler for that money with that much stuff. You can get the Dodge cheaper and it’s a bit better in overall space, but not much else. And the Mazda is fun to drive, can’t say the same for any other mini. But the lack of space is pushing us towards one of the other minis in about 6 months, but the Mazda will stay with us.

      CR will never get the Wrangler. Only true Jeep lovers enjoy the Wrangler in all of its forms. But it’s a pretty awful vehicle by my standards and pretty pricey to boot.

    • 0 avatar
      golden2husky

      …And the Wrangler is dead last when considering factors such as resale value?….

      CR’s testing tends to reward good all around performers, hence the Camcord love. Top reliability makes it all the better. Narrow focus, specialized vehicles like the Wrangler will never score well for that reason. They excel in the market they were built for, but the end result is other factors suffer. Hence the death knell in CR ratings. One of the best resale values is not enough to save it. But clearly the market that appreciates a Wrangler for what it is (and isn’t) seems to be pleased with them.

    • 0 avatar
      rpn453

      “The best minivan for the FAMILY is the Mazda5?”

      It has no competition. It’s the only minivan in North America. The rest are huge.

  • avatar
    cargogh

    By the time I hit 13, I knew to dismiss CR’s reviews and accolades, The cars they deemed winners were for the librarian crowd who would never pull over a 0.65g on a comfortable turn and sphincter-flexed at sub 10 sec 0-60. That’s what the car rags taught me by 1976. That type was never the driver I wanted to become, so their list usually became inverted to cars not to consider. Even so, rarely a car I liked made it on their list, and those would be the ones I could suggest someone should consider–like at a family reunion for Cousin Brenda, an accountant, who was car shopping. She was a CR-type person who relied on beige a decade before the first Camry.
    Their list is always slightly interesting and I read it each year. I figured that when I got old at 35, I might utilize CR’s findings. But I’m actually 50 now and their research continues to be as about useful to me as tits on a boar hog.

    • 0 avatar
      danio3834

      They review cars like they review appliances. CR is for those who see cars as appliances. I like you, want to know more.

      They seem to be reasonably scientific when testing vehicles themselves, but I’ve always been somewhat skeptical of their reliability reporting, especially when they used to give a free pass to certain new models on reliability, while refraining from others.

      It just stunk of the “well everyone knows brand X is the most reliable” BS, like it’s common knowledge that’s beyond reproach and never subject to change.

      • 0 avatar
        Quentin

        IIRC, they no longer do that and haven’t since 2008ish.

        I use them as part of my research because they do a fantastic job of judging how the vehicle is to live with on a day to day basis. I like Alex’s reviews for the same reason. The fact that they have their own fuel economy loop and standardized tests for accel, handling, braking, etc makes is a very valuable tool for comparing vehicles side by side.

        • 0 avatar
          NormSV650

          What is their fuel economy criteria? Nothing on their website and the prius forums have called into question as to why their FE numbers are so low. Nobody knows as they do not disclose the loop or allow others on their so called proving grounds. It is difficult to credibility if no one knows the testing metrics?

          • 0 avatar
            Quentin

            I’ve searched for that in the past and from what I recall, they don’t disclose the actual cycle like the EPA does. As long as they are consistent with the cycle, I’m OK with that because it prevents the automakers from teaching to the test. Their city loop seems to be about the lowest you could expect to get (lower than EPA city) and the highway loop seems to be the highest you can expect to get (higher than EPA highway). My anecdotal experience with 2 vehicles seems to support that. CR also usually does a 150mi roadtrip which is a pretty good judge of what you can expect on a trip. They also do use 5 or 6 drivers to run each loop, removing the highest and lowest and averaging the remaining ones, IIRC.

            CR’s city FE numbers are so low, especially compared to the EPA city numbers that hybrids get, because CR must use a more severe cycle. When I’m in small town, multiple stoplights, but still moving decently in my Prius v, I easily break the EPA city number. When I was in bumper to bumper traffic for several hours over the summer coming out of Norfolk into NC, I was considerably lower than the EPA city number. I think that CR’s cycle must be more like that bumper to bumper, slow moving terribleness rather than the EPA city cycle which is pretty well perfect for hybrids: low speed start, not a high top speed, slow down, recover energy, repeat.

    • 0 avatar
      fredtal

      What I like about CR is that they actually BUY their cars from the dealer. All their data is from what they record, not what the manufaucturers feed them. They also put a lot of emphasis on safety that I don’t but should. Their reviews are nothing I enjoy reading, but since I’m now starting to shop for a new car I’ll read. It’s just more information I gather to make a decision as to what I decide to drive. Oh yea and at 61 and much wiser than I was at 21.

  • avatar
    bills79jeep

    Garbage in, garbage out. I’m not sure I see the value in judging vehicles by a single parameter. A quick glance at this list quickly indicates it’s lack of value. Who has ever cross-shopped a Ridgeline and an F-250? As a Jeep fan, I can sadly say people have probably cross-shopped the Murano and Sahara Wrangler. For them, I just hope they bought the Murano.

    Also, what is a Subaru Frester? I considered a used Forester before they got too big (hipster/TTAC/mom’s basement plug), is this some newer version?

    • 0 avatar
      MisterNoisy

      ‘As a Jeep fan, I can sadly say people have probably cross-shopped the Murano and Sahara Wrangler. For them, I just hope they bought the Murano.’

      Based on the number of ‘mall crawler’ Wrangler Unlimiteds with faux-beadlock wheels I see cruising around, I’d wager that a good number of them didn’t.

    • 0 avatar
      azmtbkr81

      I shook my head at that too, I know CR doesn’t want to over complicate things with an excess of categories but seeing as the #1 selling vehicle in the US is a pickup truck they could at least break the pickup categories into mid-size, full-size, and heavy-duty. Otherwise don’t bother to test pickups at all.

      • 0 avatar
        86er

        This would be my instinct too, except that a lot of people buy trucks, esp. heavy-duty trucks, for the first time in their later years for the purpose of RV’ing.

        For a publication that is supposed to be beyond reproach, sensical comparisons for people new to this segment would be useful. Instead, CR’s people come across as a bunch of weirdo outlier contrarians, deaf but sadly not dumb, to the largest vehicle segment in North America.

    • 0 avatar

      Better yet, who has cross-shopped a BMW x1 (one of the smaller SUV’s on the market) and the Nissan Armada (one of the largest)? And who needs CU to tell them that an SUV that’s the size of a city block and takes premium is going to be kinda pricy to operate?

  • avatar
    Stuck in DC traffic

    I think the issue with the results is depreciation factors big into end numbers. It’s no surprise an Avalon holds it’s value better than a Taurus and is cheaper to operate. It reminds me of edmunds true cost to own figures.

    • 0 avatar
      bball40dtw

      But what are they using for the actual aquisition price of a Taurus? Ford has up to $5000 off a Taurus Limited. The actual price paid should significantly effect cost per mile.

  • avatar
    86er

    “Pickups
    Best, Honda Ridgeline RTS; Worst, Ford F-250 Lariat (6.7L V8)”

    Oh Christ, I was gonna get that F-250 gasser but now I think I’ll buy a Ridgeline…

    • 0 avatar
      morbo

      Yeah, they probably need to separate out HD trucks (2500/250 +) from the 1500/150/FWD trucks.

    • 0 avatar
      Drzhivago138

      The Ridgeline is not a pickup, but I can tell you already knew that. It’s a crossover version of the Avalanche; essentially a Pilot with a bed. So, in other words, all the pickup that 90% of half-ton owners really need. The closest thing that we have nowadays to the El Caminos and Rancheros of yore, but has more in common with the Dodge Rampage and Subaru BRAT.

      Also, the 6.7L V8 refers to the Powerstroke diesel; the gas is a 6.2L. CR should really make the distinction more clear in those vehicles that offer differently fueled engines.

      • 0 avatar
        86er

        Good catch; would a comparably equipped Powerstroke diesel actually consume fuel at a greater rate than the gas engine? I doubt it, not that Consumer Reports would have a sniff.

        • 0 avatar
          DC Bruce

          This is a good example of why these comparisons from CR are a black box; you don’t know what’s going on inside. Obviously, the Ridgeline and the F-250 are not interchangeable products; so they don’t belong in the same comparison. In every test I’ve seen of 3/4 ton pickups (like the F-250), the gasoline version always uses more fuel than the diesel, whether running empty or pulling maximum rated load up a 7% grade. So, perhaps the reason CR called out the 6.7 liter diesel vs. the 6.2 liter gasoline engine (which is significantly thirstier and more expensive to fuel, even given the price spread between the two fuels) is the disastrous reliability history of the prior Ford Powerstroke diesels, the 6.4 liter and the 6.0 liter, both of which had significant design flaws. On that basis, perhaps CR “predicted” poor reliability for the 6.7, leading to a higher operating expense than for the thirstier gasoline engine. But, of course, CR doesn’t explain; that’s why it’s a black box.

          • 0 avatar
            Drzhivago138

            Yes; the 6.2 gives lower MPGs than the diesel, but given the price of diesel vs. gas in some areas, plus the heftier price tag of an oil-burner, you might have to drive 75K+ miles to make it profitable. Unless, of course, you’re driving a diesel for the sake of driving a diesel (which many truck owners are).

  • avatar
    econobiker

    People who own big SUVs and hyper-sports cars usually don’t care about Consumer Reports.

    The goofiest thing I observed was the customer submitted bad ratings for the Corvette one year. Only 6 survey’s submitted though for the ‘Vette versus 1,000′s for Camry, Accord, etc…

    • 0 avatar
      WheelMcCoy

      >> Only 6 survey’s submitted though for the ‘Vette versus 1,000′s for Camry, Accord, etc…

      Urban myth? 6 surveys are statistically insignificant. Reputable sites like CR (and TrueDelta) won’t publish those results.

    • 0 avatar
      Quentin

      They sell something like 1000 corvettes a month. Toyota sells 30,000 midsizers a month. So does Honda. Ford and Nissan sell 25,000 midsizers a month. The midsize segment has something like 200k units a month. 6/1000 = 0.6% rate. 1000/200000 = 0.5% rate.

      Are you talking about reliability ratings or their road test ratings? Their road test ratings are a single vehicle they buy and judge through their battery of test. Reliability and owner satisfaction is obtained via sampling from CR readers.

      BTW, I own a BOF SUV that CR absolutely hated. For the reasons they stated, when applied to someone looking at a family vehicle, I 100% agree that the 4Runner is a terrible choice. I like to take mine offroad and through streams and other stupid crap that I shouldn’t be doing with a 4 year old vehicle. CR agreed that it was excellent offroad. Considering that most people don’t intend on actually taking their new vehicles offroad, their assessment is pretty spot on. I’m also hoping to finally get a sports car this coming year. /anecdote

  • avatar
    ttacgreg

    Having read CR since the mid 60′s I have this to say.
    They were clearly more frumpy than they are now, and I like that better.
    There are plenty of other sources to go to for the enthusiast’s viewpoints.

    I am getting vibes that they are on a bit of an ego and power trip. After all, manufacturers are known to promptly respond to their criticisms . . .that never happens with what Motor Trend might report.

    A particular case that leaves me a bit confused is their clear attitude about the Prius C. They have taken several opportunities demean it, even though it is a car that can claim several superlatives: reliability, owner satisfaction, crash test performance, and cost of ownership. Their one gripe that I agree with is the car does have a very firm/harsh ride. I get the feeling they thrashed the daylights out of it to get lower fuel economy than the 500 lb. heavier liftback, and then they turned around a bitched about the noisy motor that was being thrashed. They seem to be presenting an almost offended air about their feelings toward the Prius C, and leave it up to the reader to look between the lines for the truths.

    I do remember them having some fun with the fact that a ’67 Firebird had wheels that ground naked wounds into the fenderwells at full steering lock

    • 0 avatar
      WheelMcCoy

      My takeaway is that CR didn’t like the Prius C because it was built on the Yaris platform (read cheap). They figured an owner would be better off buying a used Prius for similar money. And the battery in a used Prius? CR testing has determined that they do last 12 to 15 years.

  • avatar
    jacob_coulter

    Will there ever be a domestic vehicle from the Big 3 in the “best” category for reliability?

    And it’s no surprise that most of the “worst” categories are filled with offerings from the Big 3.

    I think the gap has narrowed, but would it kill the Big 3 to actually make a more reliable car than the competition? Or have they just figured consumers don’t care about the gap enough to base their purchase decision on?

    I know, I know, all of these poor rankings are the result Consumer Reports being owned by the Japanese and the fact that people are too stupid to figure out Ford’s MyTouch.

    • 0 avatar
      Dave M.

      I’d venture and say the 1986 Chevy Nova, Geo Prism and Pontiac Vibe.

      Surely GM learned tons from the NUMMI venture, like how to make high quality reliable cars that hold their value. Meanwhile surely Toyota learned how to make high quality reliable a/c systems and power window switches.

    • 0 avatar
      golden2husky

      Yeah, the Camaro convertible SS is a “worst” car by CR. If that is really the case, we have reached the point where the worst car is amazingly awesome. I guess the “best” models fill themselves with free fuel overnight.

  • avatar
    salguod

    A Prius is 47 cents per mile? That seems rather high, frankly. The 2010 Outlook that I owned for a bit over 3 years cost me $0.412 per mile to own. That includes everything but insurance and registration. Given the enormous difference in fuel economy and the fact that my Outlook depreciated nearly 50% in that time, it seems that 47 cents for a Prius over 5 years is a bit high as does $1.20 for the Armada.

    My 1999 Odyssey cost me $0.256 over 9 years, my 2005 Mazda3 is at $0.246 from new in Feb 2006 to date. I’m curious why CRs numbers are so much higher than mine.


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