One of the country's most trusted sources for independent automotive research—Consumer Reports—has named the Tesla Model S the "Best Overall" vehicle among its "Top Picks" for the current year. The news comes after the premium EV scored 99/100 points during CR road tests during 2013, and marks the first time the publication has named a "Best Overall" winner since 2010 (when the Lexus LS earned that honor).
CR editors specifically lauded the Tesla Model S for its:
- "Blistering acceleration, razor-sharp handling, compliant ride, and versatile cabin, which can fit a small third-row seat"
- "Massive, easy-to-use 17-inch touch screen [that] controls most functions"
- "Totally keyless operation, full Internet access, and ultra-quiet, zero-emission driving"
The car’s 225-mile range and quick charging times also earned praise from CR, with editors concluding that: "The Tesla is a glimpse into a future where cars and computers coexist in seamless harmony."
Along with the Tesla Model S, the rest of the Consumer Reports (ITALS) Top Picks for2014 were:
- Subaru Forester (Small SUV)—Backed by an exceedingly versatile and "user-friendly" cabin and "class-leading" fuel economy
- Honda Accord (Midsized sedan)—Recognized for hitting "a true sweet spot in today's auto market" with the four-cylinder model
- Subaru Impreza (Compact car)—Called "well-rounded" and capable of "commendable" fuel-economy given its standard all-wheel drive
- Hyundai Santa Fe (Midsized SUV)—Acclaimed for "a comfortable ride, a quiet interior, a limo-like rear seat, and generous cargo area"
- Toyota Prius (Green car)—Chosen in this category for the 11th consecutive year
- Ram 1500 (Pickup truck)—Noted as the first Top Pick from the Chrysler Group in 16 years
- Audi A6 (Luxury car)—Highlighted as "a joy to drive" with, as expected from Audi, "a sumptuous, impeccably finished, first-class cabin
- BMW 328i (Sport sedan)—Still helping to "set the standard for sport sedans" by showcasing "excellent handling and a high fun-to-drive factor"
- Honda Odyssey (Minivan)—Simply "the most complete family vehicle you can buy"
Note: To qualify for CR’s Top Pick list, vehicles must earn superior in-segment overall test scores, achieve at least average reliability scores in the publication’s annual owner-driven auto survey, and “must perform adequately” in safety testing by the government and/or insurance industry.