How We Calculate Ratings

We calculate the ratings found in the complete list of vehicles and the in-depth reviews using two sources of information: reliability data provided by reputable third part resources and professional reviews written by automotive experts and critics. The opinions of our editors and our own tests do not in any way impact the overall ratings.

For every vehicle in the complete and sortable list, our editors collect and study reviews about it and use the critics’ ratings and sentiment to give that vehicle an overall score. The reviews we consider are published by major newspaper and well-known automotive magazines and websites such as Kelley Blue Book, Edmunds, The Car Connection, U.S. News & World Report, MotorTrend, Cars.com, Consumer Guide Automotive, Car and Driver and Autobytel.

Each vehicle is given an initial score in three different areas:

  • Performance – Based on the reviewer’s opinions of the acceleration, braking, handling, ride quality and other aspects.
  • Interior – According to the journalist’s thoughts regarding a vehicle’s features, comfort, build quality, cargo space and styling.
  • Critics’ Ratings – Based on the level of recommendation and their overall opinion of a car.

In order to provide an even more complete and accurate analysis of a vehicle’s ranking compared to its competition, we take other information that is important to consumers into account such as safety and reliability data.

  • Safety – Ratings from leading organizations such as the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration and the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety.
  • Reliability – A measure provided by J.D. Power and Associates that is determined using 3 years worth of dependability data from their Vehicle Dependability Study (VDS) and Initial Quality Study (IQS).
  • Awards – Vehicles that receive accolades such as Motor Trend Car of the Year or North American Car of the Year get additional points added to their rating.

As soon as this data is analyzed, we use a simple but effective formula that places more weight on the aspects that consumers say are most important to them. The result is a overall rating out of 10 that enables car buyers to compare vehicles quickly and easily in order to pick and choose between the ones they research in more detail.

Once reviews have been published for next year’s models, we will update the complete list with the data we collect. Check back regularly to find ratings of the latest 7+ passenger vehicles!

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