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Consumers Digest’s 2017 Automotive Best Buys

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What do you get when you combine 55 years of commitment to the consumer, scrutiny of 12 automobile design and performance characteristics, and 128 combined years of behind-the-wheel auto know-how? Consumers Digest’s Automotive Best Buy recommendations for the 2017 model year, that’s what. That means 44 recommended vehicles (across 13 classes of automobiles) that represent exceptional values in each segment. It means evaluation of specific vehicle attributes; analysis by and feedback from six longtime automotive journalists; answers to questions that you would pose to dealers and salespeople yourself.

What don’t you get? You don’t get dated, often inappropriate recommendations of vehicles that are based solely on prior model-year surveys. You don’t get reviews by amateurs. You don’t get recommendations that are rooted in bias.

The editors of Consumers Digest are proud of the stringent nature of the publication’s process and evaluation across dozens of categories, in general. The publication’s research and reporting on the automotive sector is no exception. This includes constant scrutiny of the automotive marketplace to identify shifts in vehicle production and in consumer demand, to ensure that shopper's needs are best met.

As for the analysis and reviews that we provide: You can expect first-hand, authoritative insight that drills down to the specifics that pertain directly to what you’ll experience when you get behind the wheel.* Observations like:

  • This feisty little car’s sporty attitude results from peppy acceleration and fantastic handling and cornering.
  • The car’s interior delivers the quiet that families demand, is executed with high-quality materials and includes a slick smart-entertainment system that looks and feels like it belongs in a luxury-branded model.
  • Unsurprisingly, you’re apt to spin the wheels in wet or snowy conditions with either engine, so you should consider buying the optional all-wheel-drive powertrain.
  • One could beef about what amounts to a 50 percent boost in price for the top version and its 6.2-liter, 650-hp supercharged V8 engine, but it affords lightning-quick acceleration that’s on part with far costlier Ferraris and Lamborghinis, with a zero-to-60-mph time of about 3 seconds.
  • Although the latter engine takes a bit of weight off of the front wheels to provide nominally more responsive handling, we prefer the V6 engine for its smoother power delivery.
  • The optional 2.4-liter four-cylinder engine, which generates a pleasingly lively 180 hp, is connected to a nine-speed automatic transmission that we found tended to shift up during acceleration and down during deceleration more than we prefer.
  • The previous generation of the vehicle was short on features, but the 2017 vintage permits the inclusion of numerous collision-avoidance systems and a full array of creature comforts.
  • The SUV includes selectable driving modes that optimize the engine and transmission response for a sportier or more fuel-efficient operation, but it tends to drive best when left in standard mode.

So, click on the links of the specific automobile categories at left to avail yourself to Best Buy recommendations that hit home like no others can.

* Reviews of vehicles generally are published around the time of their introduction. Figures and other information that are noted in the reviews could vary with those that you will find now. Automakers occasionally revise such information during a model year.

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