It's All Forgiven: Toyota Tops Consumer Reports Top Picks Of 2011

Bertel Schmitt
by Bertel Schmitt
it s all forgiven toyota tops consumer reports top picks of 2011

Consumer Reports released its top picks car list for 2011. According to Consumer Reports, these are the most reliable cars you can (and should) buy. With some notable exceptions, it’s a foreign affair. Out of 10 cars recommended, eight are foreign, or make that Asian: 6 Japanese cars are top picks, followed by two Korean and two American cars. European cars are conspicuously absent.

Most notable: Consumer Reports completely renounced its former fatwa against Toyota and made Toyota the most recommended brand of 2011: Three of the top picks are Toyotas.

Even Detroit flag waver extraordinaire, the DetN, must concede: “Toyota Motor Corp. led all automakers with three top picks from Consumer Reports, rebounding from last year’s sudden acceleration woes that cost it recommendations. “

Two oddities should not remain unmentioned:

The Chevrolet Avalanche is mis-categorized. It should be listed under “Classic Cars”. The first new generation Avalanche showed up at dealers in 2006, and save a little juggling of engine choices, it pretty much remained the same ever since.

The Hyundai Elantra on the other hand is brand new for the U.S. It is amazing how CR could collect all the reliability data on the Elantra in such a short time.

And the winners are:

CategoryCarBUDGET CARHonda FitSMALL CARHyundai ElantraFAMILY SEDANNissan AltimaSMALL SUVToyota RAV4GREEN CARToyota PriusFAMILY SUVKia SorentoSPORTY CARFord MustangFAMILY HAULERToyota SiennaSPORTS SEDANInfiniti G37PICKUP TRUCKChevrolet Avalanche

Join the conversation
6 of 37 comments
  • Steven02 Steven02 on Mar 01, 2011

    Picks look about like expected given CR's ability to predict reliability for cars it doesn't know about yet. I will say that the green car segment shouldn't be there. That is just lazy.

  • Sector 5 Sector 5 on Mar 01, 2011

    Gosh darn where is Fiat?

  • JustPassinThru JustPassinThru on Mar 01, 2011

    I'm no fan of CR; and I'll be the first to admit that driving a Toyota is like shifting from Drive into Quaalude; but my experience, that of a dozen others I know, that of repeat buyers and of many non-buff magazines, are the same. Boring to drive, bland to look at, a Toyota is a brick-outhouse on wheels. They last; and lest you think millions of owners are lying...just look at resale values. When I strike it rich, I'll go for some six-figure status name. Right this moment, as I dream of cars to shoot the apexes with...I'll put my money on one that starts every time.

  • 210delray 210delray on Mar 01, 2011

    Kind of ironic to see all the vitriol directed against CVTs (I have had little experience with them) when on the Edmunds' forums, people are whining about their 6-speed transmissions shifting too often! Maybe we ought to bring back the mighty Powerglide tranny!

    • See 1 previous
    • Psarhjinian Psarhjinian on Mar 02, 2011

      This is very true. It also makes the hypocritical whining about cars with 5- and 4ATs kind of funny. I had a rental Corolla CE recently (1.8L engine, 4AT) and while we're not talking the pinnacle of performance here (and the seats were really unpleasant), it certainly wasn't constantly shifting like most 6ATs do.** It got pretty good mileage while being reasonably quick. CR's tests agreed with this, and it makes me suspect the trend to 5+ geat automatics has more to do with gaming EPA tests and winning spec sheet wars than quantifiable performance. Example counterpoint: the Ford Fiesta. Nice car, but it's really slow, shifted fairly often, and I wasn't anywhere near EPA when I drove it. I'm pretty sure the Corolla nipped it's mileage figures. ** CVTs, on the other hand, don't shift at all.