Cars Blog

Finance Blogs » Cars Blog » 2012 models that car owners love

2012 models that car owners love

By Tara Baukus Mello ·
Wednesday, August 8, 2012
Posted: 6 am ET

If you're car shopping and looking for testimonials from current owners of the models you are considering, look no further than the 2012 Ideal Vehicle Awards. The awards survey more than 75,000 car owners who have owned their 2012 model-year car for 90 days, the largest survey of consumers who own a single model year, rating how happy they are with their cars in 15 areas.

Audi and Mini each received the top brand awards for Premium Brand and Popular Brand, respectively, while Honda/Acura received five individual vehicle awards, followed by General Motors with four, then Chrysler/Jeep and Volkswagen/Audi with three awards.

The 15 key areas that comprised the rating included: exterior styling, exterior size, passenger roominess, cargo space, driver's seat comfort, driver’s seat visibility, info/entertainment technology, interior lighting, power and acceleration, ease of getting in and out, interior storage compartments, ride, handling, safety features, and tires and wheels.

The awards are presented annually by AutoPacific, an auto industry research firm, and Autobytel, an independent car information site.

The individual awards were presented in the following categories:

2012 Ideal Vehicle Awards: Passenger cars

Premium luxury car 2012 Mercedes Benz S-Class
Aspirational luxury car 2012 Audi A4
Large car 2012 Dodge Charger
Luxury midsize car 2012 Acura TSX
Premium midsize car 2012 Volkswagen Passat
Midsize car 2012 Subaru Legacy
Premium compact car 2012 MINI Cooper
Compact car 2012 Volkswagen Golf
Economy car 2012 Honda Fit
Sports car 2012 Chevrolet Corvette
Sporty car 2012 Dodge Challenger
Hybrid/EV car 2012 Nissan Leaf
Source: AutoPacific and Autobytel.

2012 Ideal Vehicle Awards: Light trucks

Large light-duty pickup 2012 Ford F-150
Heavy-duty pickup 2012 GMC Sierra HD
Compact pickup 2012 GMC Canyon
Luxury SUV 2012 Land Rover LR4
Large SUV 2012 GMC Yukon XL
Midsize SUV 2012 Jeep Grand Cherokee
Premium luxury crossover SUV 2012 Porsche Cayenne
Luxury crossover SUV 2012 Volvo XC70
Large crossover SUV 2012 Ford Flex
Premium midsize crossover SUV 2012 Honda Pilot
Midsize crossover SUV 2012 Honda CR-V
Compact crossover SUV 2012 MINI Countryman
Minivan 2012 Honda Odyssey
Hybrid/EV truck 2012 Toyota Highlander Hybrid
Source: AutoPacific and Autobytel.

Tara Baukus Mello writes the cars blog as well as the weekly Driving for Dollars column, providing both practical financial advice for consumers as well as insight into the latest developments in the automotive world. Follow her on Facebook here or on Twitter @SheDrives.

Bankrate wants to hear from you and encourages comments. We ask that you stay on topic, respect other people's opinions, and avoid profanity, offensive statements, and illegal content. Please keep in mind that we reserve the right to (but are not obligated to) edit or delete your comments. Please avoid posting private or confidential information, and also keep in mind that anything you post may be disclosed, published, transmitted or reused.

By submitting a post, you agree to be bound by Bankrate's terms of use. Please refer to Bankrate's privacy policy for more information regarding Bankrate's privacy practices.
August 17, 2012 at 5:02 pm

the categories are ... confusing.

What is the definition of "sporty" car?
"Aspirational luxury car"?

There is a "Compact crossover SUV" but no "Premium Compact crossover SUV" or "Luxury Compact crossover SUV"?

There is a "Large crossover SUV" but no "Premium Large crossover SUV"?