Cars & Motorcycles
Consumer Reports New Cars

Consumer Reports New Cars

March 2020

Consumer Reports New Cars will help you decide which new car, suv, minivan, or pick up truck is right for you. We buy every vehicle our engineers test and drive them like you would. We also provide exclusive, real world reliability ratings based on subscribers' experiences with more than 740,000 vehicles.

United States
Consumer Union
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In this issue

1 min.
the cr difference

WHEN YOU’RE BUYING a new car, it can feel like everyone you encounter just wants to sell you something and there’s nobody out there you can trust. CR is here to help! You can rely on our recommendations because we have detailed data that nobody else does. We conduct exclusive annual reliability surveys of our members to find out which vehicles cost their owners time and money, and which ones are trouble-free. We also ask owners whether they’re satisfied with their vehicle, because the only thing better than a reliable car is a reliable car that owners love, too. This year alone, we gathered data on about a half-million cars, trucks, SUVs, minivans, and wagons. But that’s not all. Only CR buys its own test vehicles, so when we conduct more than 50…

2 min.
consumer reports new cars

President and CEO Marta L. Tellado Senior Vice President, Chief Operating Officer Leonora Wiener Vice President, Chief Content Officer Gwendolyn Bounds Editor in Chief, Consumer Reports Magazine Diane Salvatore Design Director Matthew Lenning Creative Director, Brand Young Kim Associate Design Director Sheri Geller Art Directors Tammy Morton Fernandez, Lisa Slater, Tracy Stora Photo Editors Emilie Harjes, Karen Shinbaum Vice President, Research, Testing & Insights Liam McCormack Senior Director, Content Development Glenn Derene Deputy Directors, Content Development Christopher Kirkpatrick, Ellen Kunes Associate Directors, Content Development Scott Billings, Althea Chang Senior Director, Content Impact & Corporate Outreach Jen Shecter Editorial Director, Digital Erle Norton Senior Director, Product Testing Maria Rerecich AUTO TEST CENTER: Editors/Writers: Keith Barry, Je. S. Bartlett, Jonathan Linkov, Mike Monticello, Je. Plungis Auto Test Center: Jake Fisher, Jennifer Stockburger, Directors Product Testers: Michael Bloch, Child Seat Project Leader; Frank Chamberlain, Track Maintenance Specialist; Erik Dill,…

2 min.
ask our experts

Q. Does CR include tax credits in the list price of an electric vehicle (EV)? What happens with a lease? CR doesn’t include potential savings from tax credits because they’re taken o. taxes, not given as a cash discount. Plus, they aren’t guaranteed. And a full credit is available only when a manufacturer has sold 200,000 EVs. After that, the credits are phased out, dropping to a maximum of $3,750 for six months, then to a max of $1,875 for six months before going away for good. (Tesla and GM sold their 200,000th EVs in 2018.) There have also been political debates about changing or abolishing the tax credit altogether. Lessees aren’t eligible for the credit, but the manufacturer is—and usually passes it on to the lessee in the form of lower…

9 min.
cars that go the distance

THE EXCITEMENT being the first-on-the-block with an all-new car can quickly turn to regret when problems arise. That’s what Consumer Reports’ auto experts found when analyzing the data from our exclusive Auto Reliability Survey. Whether it’s a luxury SUV or a family minivan, they’re often most reliable in their final year, before being redesigned, and are least reliable when launched as an all-new model. Every year, CR members report to us through our survey whether they had problems with their vehicle in the previous 12 months. This year their responses have given us data on about 420,000 vehicles, from which we can determine which vehicles are likely to be trouble-free or trouble-prone. The smart money is to wait a few years to see whether the manufacturer has ironed out the problems of…

6 min.
towing? here’s how much truck you need

TRUCK MAKERS LOVE to make bold advertising claims about how much their pickup can tow. Read the fine print, though, and the truck usually needs to be configured a very specific way for it to attain that eye-popping number. Many things can affect the tow rating, including cab size, bed length, engine, transmission, and two-wheel or four-wheel drive, as well as optional towing or trailer packages. To cut through the confusion, we contacted truck manufacturers to find out which configurations are most commonly sold, and how much those specific trucks are capable of towing. We paid special attention to two popular trailer weights: 5,000 pounds (a small boat) and 7,500 pounds (a travel trailer). It’s important to keep in mind that the weight of what you’re towing should be less than your truck’s…

13 min.
what we’re testing at our track

TOYOTA SUPRA This reborn sports car is surprising, delightful, and entertaining. THE TOYOTA SUPRA returns to the market after a two-decade absence, with sharper reflexes, extroverted styling, advanced safety systems, and modern infotainment technology. This latest Supra is born from a partnership between Toyota and BMW: The Supra is based on the BMW Z4 roadster, and both cars are built in the same factory in Austria. But these mechanical cousins have distinct personalities. We had the opportunity to rent a preproduction Supra from Toyota, and we recently purchased our own to test. Based on our initial experience, the Supra is a better-balanced car than the Z4. More than that, it is among the most thrilling cars we have experienced on the CR test track. What We Like … So Far Right from the first step on…