(CONSUMER REPORTS) — Consumer Reports Top Pick cars for 2015 are the best of the best of the 270 cars recently tested in 10 of the most popular categories. Consumer Reports’ Top Picks are based on reliability data from more than a million vehicles and safety performance in government and industry tests, plus engineers drive the vehicles for thousands of miles and evaluate them in more than 50 tests.
This year’s list contains three models built by American carmakers.
The Buick Regal is the Top Pick sports sedan. Consumer Reports auto engineers find that the Regal’s agile handling and stylish features give the feel of driving a high-end European car.
The Chevrolet Impala V6 is the Top Pick large car. It’s roomy and comfortable. It rides like a luxury car, but with better handling than you usually get with large cars.
For the second year in a row, the Best Overall car goes to the American-made Tesla Model S. But it’s pricey at close to $90,000.
This year’s Top Picks are again dominated by Japanese carmakers, with Subaru the biggest winner. Subarus continue to do really well in Consumer Reports’ tests. They’re reliable and offer a lot of practicality, plus all-wheel drive is standard. The Subaru Impreza wins best compact car. The Subaru Legacy is the Top Pick for midsized sedans. And the Subaru Forester wins the small SUV category.
Other Japanese winners: the Toyota Highlander for midsized SUV and the Honda Odyssey for Top Pick minivan.
Top luxury car goes to the only European car on the list: the Audi A6. It handles well, is beautifully finished, and gets decent fuel economy for its size.
Rounding out Consumer Reports’ Top Picks in the green car category, the Toyota Prius earns Top Pick for the 12th year in row. Costing $29,000, it’s affordable, gets great fuel economy, and is very reliable.