Consumer Reports’ best new cars overall lists the best and the worst of 2011 models. Highest-scoring models on a 100-point scale in 50 tests narrow down to just 10 best. These are a wide variety of vehicles, which can prove helpful to consumers trying to narrow down a consideration list. Here they are, presented with highest-scoring first.
Lexus LS 460L has all the attributes of a top-notch luxury family sedan. Available in rear-wheel driv (RWD) and all-wheel drive (AWD), it’s also one of the least-expensive of the top-end luxury cars, with a starting base price of $71,080 (RWD) and $74,080 (AWD). EPA-estimated fuel economy is 16 mpg city/24 mpg highway (RWD) and 23 mpg highway in AWD.
2011 BMW 135i is a rear-wheel drive coupe powered by a 300-horsepower 3.0-liter six-cylinder engine with TwinPower Turbo technology mated to six-speed manual transmission that achieves 20 mpg city/28 mpg highway estimated fuel economy.
2011Carrera S (manual) – Right behind the BMW 135i is the 2011 Porsche 911 Carrera S (manual) with a score of 96. No Porsche 911 is cheap, and the 2011 Porsche 911 Carrera S starts out at $90,500. Performance is where Carrera S shines, with its 385-horsepower 3.8-liter flat-six cylinder engine and six-speed manual transmission that does zero to 60 mph in 4.5 seconds. Fuel economy is rated at 18 mpg city/25 mpg highway.
2012 Mazda5 Grand Touring – Boasting a solid overall score of 95, the 2012 Mazda5 Grand Touring is number four on the list. Powered by a 157-horespower 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine, the six-passenger 2012 Mazda5 achieves an EPA-estimated 21 mpg city/28 mpg highway. Starting price for the top-of-the-line Grand Touring model is $23,875.
3.7-liter V6 engine, achieving EPA-estimated 19 mpg city/27 mpg highway. The 2011 Infiniti G37 Journey begins at $35,400.
2012– The high-performance 2012 Infiniti M37 model achieves a 93 score in Consumer Reports’ testing. Power comes from a 330-horsepower 3.7-liter V6 engine mated with seven-speed automatic transmission. EPA-estimated fuel economy for the RWD sedan is 18 mpg city/26 mpg highway. Pricing for the 2012 Infiniti M37 begins at $47,700.
20113.5 SR (V6) – In seventh place, the 2011 Nissan Altima 3.5 SR (V6) receives a 93 score. With a starting price of $24,750, the 2011 Nissan Altima 3.5 SR is powered by a 270-horsepower 3.5-liter V6 and achieves an estimated 20 mpg city/27 mpg highway fuel economy.
2011Z06 (manual) – In the mid-range between base and ZR1, the high-performance 2011 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 achieves an overall score of 92. Hold on tight, this high-performance Corvette has blistering power from a 505-horsepower 7.0-liter all-aluminum block V8 engine mated with short-throw manual gearbox. Fuel economy for all this horsepower is more than respectable at EPA-estimated 18 mpg city/24 mpg highway. The 2011 Chevrolet Corvette Z06 will set you back, though, starting at $74,305.
20113.8 –Another 92 posted overall score belongs to the 2011 Hyundai Genesis 3.8. With a starting base price of $33,000, the 2011 Hyundai Genesis 3.8 gets its power from a 290-horsepower 3.8-liter V6 engine paired with six-speed automatic. Fuel economy is EPA-estimated at 18 mpg city/27 mpg highway.
2011 Nissan Altima 2.5 S (4-cylinder) – Rounding out the top 10 of Consumer Reports’ best new cars overall is the 2011 Nissan Altima 2.5 S (4-cylinder) with an overall 91 score. The powertrain is a 175-horsepower 2.5-liter four-cylinder that achieves 23 mpg city/32 mpg highway. Starting price is $22,070.