2007 Editors’ Choice Awards: Over the past several months, we’ve evaluated and reported on a wide range of vehicles, from Korean economy cars to high-dollar European sedans and everything in between. After all that seat time, we’ve come to at least two very solid conclusions: 1) buyers have an amazing array of choices in an increasing number of categories; and 2) despite improvements generally across the board, certain 2007 vehicles outshine the competition in terms of comfort, design, quality, performance, or overall value. These are the cars, trucks, and SUVs we deem most worthy of car shoppers’ consideration, and hence, earn their spot among Autobytel’s 2007 Editors’ Choice Awards winners.
How we did it
his year, our seasoned staff of auto critics compiled a list of every new or substantially revised vehicle and assigned them to their respective categories, which were based on factors such as segment and price. Vehicles that were not driven by at least one staff member prior to final voting on Nov. 17, 2006 were disqualified, as were those that went on sale before February 2006 or after February 2007. However, contenders for the Best Car for the Environment, Best Family Car, and Best Car for Teen Drivers awards were not limited by sales dates or model year. Each staff member voted for the vehicle they’d most often recommend, with winners determined by a simple majority.
Best New Car for the Environment finalists scored an 8 or better on the EPA’s greenhouse gas emissions rating system. Best Family Car finalists included any four-door vehicle starting below $30,000 with at least four stars in every NHTSA category, no safety concerns, and Good IIHS ratings for frontal- and side-impacts as of Nov. 15, 2006. Best Car for Teen Drivers contenders had to be equally safe with a base price of $25,000 or less. Best New Small Cars offered 95 cu.ft. of passenger room or less, Midsize Cars offered 105 cu.ft. or less, Best New Small SUVs provided 75 cu.ft. of cargo room or less, midsize suvs provided 75-95 cu.ft., and large SUVs provided more than 95 cu.ft..