2022 Buyer’s Guide and Search by New Vehicle Type, Brand and Price

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place SUV/Minivan

2021 Ford Mustang Mach-E Premium AWD

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place SUV/Minivan

More details

Vehicle type:
SUV/Minivan

Fuel type:
Electric

MPGe:
96/84

Price as tested:
$56,200

IIHS / NHTSA:






IIHS–>

The Mustang Mach-E isn’t just a car, it’s a phenomenon: America’s oldest automaker has put the moniker of the original pony car, introduced in 1964, on a dedicated electric crossover. The Mach-E is a great car – definitely a Mustang, but new from the ground up. Our Premium AWD tester had 2 motors (346 hp) and the larger 88 kWh battery, which provides plenty of power and range (about 270 miles according to the EPA). It’s powerful, fast and fun to drive. The spacious cabin is quiet; Ford’s comprehensive suite of advanced safety features, Co-Pilot360, is standard. Still, Ford has a few wrinkles to iron out. The ride is good on smooth pavement, but can be jarring on uneven or potholed streets. Braking and acceleration could be smoother at low speeds and in traffic jams. The center console tablet is huge (nearly 16 inches), but some menus are unintuitive and require multiple steps for simple tasks. Finally, the simple interior styling, devoid of any Mustang elements, doesn’t match the Mach-E’s sheetmetal flair.

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place Big


2021 Mercedes-Benz S580 Saloon 4MATIC

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place Big

More details

Vehicle type:
Big

Fuel type:
Gasoline

mpg:
17/25

Price as tested:
$140,130

IIHS / NHTSA:





Mercedes-Benz’s handsome S-Class sedan, redesigned for 2021, has a lot going for it, like any car priced easily at $100,000. For one thing, this full-size flagship sedan is as fun to drive or drive as any car on the road. The 4.0-liter twin-turbo V8 (496 hp) and the integrated electric motor, which can propel all 4 wheels depending on driving conditions, proved to be both responsive and refined. The standard adaptive air suspension provides a remarkably smooth ride. Our test car’s optional rear-wheel steering setup added to the S 580’s nimble handling. Inside, the S 580 is the epitome of opulence and style. The design is elegant and the cozy interior is covered with the best materials. Technology abounds, from a 3D augmented reality head-up display to massaging seats (10-way programmable) to dynamic ambient lighting. This is where the S 580 stumbles a bit – it’s a car clearly designed by engineers who asked “Can we add (insert a feature)?” rather than “should we?” Examples include a complex infotainment system, difficult-to-use steering wheel controls, and numerous in-vehicle driver distractions, such as instructional driver fatigue videos.

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place Average height


2021 BMW 530th Sedan

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place Average height

More details

Vehicle type:
Average height

Fuel type:
Hybrid

mpg:
24/29

Price as tested:
$70,485

IIHS / NHTSA:





The BMW 5 Series, an iconic sports sedan now in its seventh generation, was last redesigned in 2017. For 2021, it received minor tweaks including a grille and screen larger touch screens and improved voice commands. The 530e plug-in hybrid is powered by a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine (181 hp) and an electric motor (107 hp). In 2021, it got a 40 hp increase (288 hp in total), thanks to XtraBoost, a feature that provides extra power when the driver presses the accelerator. Driving the 530e is a satisfying experience, nicely combining strong acceleration, smooth braking, responsive handling, a comfortable ride and a spacious, quiet cabin with premium materials. Fuel efficiency (26 mpg, 64 MPGe) is decent. On the other hand, the electric range of the 530e is low (21 miles). And, as with many BMWs, many items that are standard on other luxury cars, including some advanced safety features, cost extra on the 530e. Counterpoint: The 530e qualifies for a federal tax credit of $5,836, bringing its base price below that of a standard 530i.

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place Small


2021 BMW 330th Sedan

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place Small

More details

Vehicle type:
Small

Fuel type:
Hybrid

mpg:
25/33

Price as tested:
$57,945

IIHS / NHTSA:






IIHS

The BMW 3 Series reintroduced its plug-in hybrid variant in 2021, after a 2-year hiatus. The powertrain, which consists of a 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine and an electric motor (288 hp in total), offers quick acceleration and plenty of power. Our test car’s responsive handling was enhanced by its optional Adaptive M suspension. The fit and finish of the 330e is excellent inside and out. The front and rear seats are very comfortable, although the cabin is a bit cramped and rear visibility is poor. Adaptive LED headlights and dual-zone climate control are standard, and the digital infotainment system is easy to use. Our 330e had a 75 MPGe rating, but its all-electric range is only 23 miles and recharge times are slow. Its fuel economy is 28 mpg combined. Unfortunately, BMW tends to charge extra for features that many luxury automakers include as standard, such as a heated steering wheel and front seats, lumbar support, and advanced safety features. More than 20% of the price of our 330e test vehicle was for optional equipment

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place To pick up


2021 Ford F-150 4X4 Supercrew Hybrid

Car Guide Winner: 1st Place To pick up

More details

Vehicle type:
To pick up

Fuel type:
Hybrid

mpg:
24/24

Price as tested:
$63,251





Introduced in 1948, the Ford F-Series has been the most popular vehicle sold in the United States for 4 decades. The 14th-generation F-150, new for 2021, is less revolutionary than some previous redesigns, with one exception: the addition of a hybrid powertrain. Called PowerBoost, the hybrid system consists of a 3.5-liter V6 (400 hp), an electric motor (47 hp), a 1.5 kWh battery and a 10-speed automatic transmission , good for 430 total hp and 570 lb-ft of torque. The hybrid system offers a 4 mpg (20%) increase in gas mileage, and each hybrid model comes standard with Pro Power Onboard, a 2.4kW generator (a 7.2kW unit comes in option). The F-150’s roomy interior offers plenty of legroom and headroom front and rear, and the infotainment system is well-sized and easy to use. Safety features on our test truck included LED headlights with automatic high beams, a 360-degree camera with parking sensors, and a blind spot warning system that adjusts to the length of the trailer. . But not everything smelled of roses. Driving the F-150 was rougher than we would have liked, even for a pickup truck. The transmission shifts occasionally slipped, especially at low speeds. And the transitions between electric and gasoline were often jarring.

Comments are closed.