Much like there is no secret way to lose weight, there is no secret way to build a good car. There is one thing that makes a car become above average, and that is concerted, dedicated effort. Some manufacturers understand that, while others have a different reality.
Take some of the old-timers on this list, like Honda for instance. Honda makes some cars that are sensible and tantalizing and has been doing so for years. Consider some cars from Ford, which is also an established brand. This manufacturer, however, has not been doing so good in terms of sedans and coupes because of the way it handles its powertrains; some issues continue to haunt it from the rather recent past. However, Ford is probably happily running with its sales of the pickups—so, it is doing good in some segments. And then you have other old companies, like Chrysler, which are still out there for some unknown reason. I suppose Chrysler is able to use Dodge as its life support.
And then there is the youngest manufacturer here—Tesla. While I listed one lineup of Tesla in the “Worst Reviewed Cars,” it should be noted that another lineup almost made it on the other side of the list.
Various factors—price, exterior design, interior quality, powertrain and brand reputation—were considered when making this list.
All cars listed are 2018 model year.
BEST: HONDA ACCORD
I agree with the Car and Driver’s review of the new Honda Accord. The lamplights and chrome streak look aesthetically pleasing, but no doubt that conclusion is not accepted universally. Nonetheless, the sleek design has seeped into the Honda Accord, and I am pleasantly surprised with the end result.
Car and Driver boasted about the powertrain: “Its base naturally aspirated 2.4-liter inline-four gave way to a downsized forced-induction 1.5 at the bottom of the lineup while a turbo 2.0-liter replaces the six. They’re new (and shared with the Civic), but they’re still Honda engines—smooth, responsive, and vice-free. Cementing the appeal of these drivetrains is that a delightful six-speed manual transmission is offered with both engines and that the automatics—both the base car’s CVT and the 10-speed that comes with the 2.0-liter—are exemplars of their forms.”
The interior looks delightful, as if it were done in an artisanal style, despite the lineup having no association with the word “luxury.” Moreover, not only does the interior look decorative, but it also has the performance to back up the claim. Whether it is the steering wheel, pedals, knobs or switches on the infotainment system, all respond quickly. And, of course, this car will last you a long time.