Follow us:
  1. Home
  2. Automotive
  3. Car Models

Find the Best Car Models

Search local inventory and find your next vehicle on Rydeshopper.com

        by ConsumerAffairs Research Team

        A car is an expensive purchase, so it's essential to research different features and packages before you make a decision. Whether you're shopping for your first car or you've done this before, use our guide to research the best car model for you. We explain how to choose features and a car style that is right for your lifestyle and budget.

        Banner image

        Time for a new car and not sure where to start?

        Search local inventory today!

        Find a Dealer Near You

        Compare Reviews for Top Car Models

        Sort

        What features matter most?

        How fuel efficient are cars today?

        As the cost of gasoline rises, fuel-efficient cars are becoming more prominent and sought-out. Many car manufacturers include hybrid versions of base models so you may see more electric cars on car lots that can save you thousands of dollars a year on gas.

        • EcoBoost engines: EcoBoost engines are designed to provide the same torque and horsepower as a regular engine but get around 30 percent better fuel efficiency and 15 percent lower greenhouse emissions.
        • Hybrids: Hybrid vehicles use a combination of fuel and electric power. During startup and low speeds (under 35-40 mph), the engine uses battery power and switches to fuel once the battery is depleted or the vehicle needs more power during higher speeds. Simultaneously, the gasoline powers an electric generator to recharge the battery.
        • Electric cars: Electric cars run solely on battery power and must be recharged as the power gets low. Electric cars that are currently on the market can get the equivalent of 60 to over 100 miles per gallon.

        What are some popular safety features in car models?

        Safety features in new cars have greatly improved and not only include features that help protect passengers in the event of a crash, but features that help prevent accidents.

        • Airbags: Airbags are not a new safety feature but they have improved in current car models. Many new vehicles come with front, side and curtain airbags that deploy upon impact.
        • Forward-Collision Warning (FCW): One of the most innovative safety features on the market today is FCW. It uses laser, radar or cameras to monitor surrounding conditions and your current speed to alert you about potential impacts. This gives you ample time to react to and avoid a potential collision.
        • Blind-spot monitoring: Blind-spot monitoring works by alerting you with side mirror lights and audible chimes when there’s a vehicle in your blind-spot.
        • Rear cross-traffic alert: Rear cross-traffic alerts notify you when traffic or a jogger is approaching from the side as you back out.

        What are some common technological features in car models?

        Advances in technology take convenience to a new level for new car model owners. Things like heated seats and steering wheels, voice control, smartphone integration, Bluetooth and head-up displays are great features that come standard or in packages in many new models.

        • Voice control: Voice control allows you to put your phone away and keep your eyes on the road. You can speak a radio station, GPS destination or contact to call and the car automatically performs the action.
        • Smartphone integration: Many new car models include smartphone integration in their standard models. Features like Apple’s CarPlay and Android’s Auto bring your phone screen to life on the dashboard’s touchscreen.
        • Head-up display: Head-up displays project information like miles per hour (mph), speed, navigation information and temperature on the windshield in front of you so you don’t have to divert your eyes to check operating information.

        What are the different types of add-ons for car models?

        Car models come with various trim levels, options and packages that can be a little confusing and sound redundant. Most of these are based around a base model and include various add-on options for an increased price.

        • Trim levels: Trim levels denote the engine type, transmission type, the number of doors and standard features. For example, a particular car model might have a base model that starts with an L and goes up to XLE as more features are added and the price increases.
        • Options: Options are add-ons like technology, safety and luxury features that don’t come standard on a model. Options include things like sunroofs, advanced entertainment/stereo systems and extra safety features.
        • Packages: Packages are options that are bundled and priced together in groups like a “convenience package” or “technology package.” Buying a package is usually cheaper than buying individually priced options.

        What are the most common types of cars?

        Subcompact cars

        Subcompact cars are smaller than a compact car but larger than a microcar. They are typically around 165-175 inches in length and can be have two or four doors. Examples of subcompact cars include the Ford Fiesta, MINI Cooper and Honda Fit.

        Compact cars

        Compact cars are slightly smaller than mid-size cars and have two or four doors. Compact cars have an interior volume of around 100-110 cubic feet. Examples of compact cars include the Mazda3, Chevrolet Cruze and Nissan Sentra.

        Mid-size cars

        Mid-size cars are equal to or bigger than compact cars and have an interior volume of 110-120 cubic feet. Many mid-size models come in a two- or four-door version, as well as a hatchback version. Examples of mid-size cars include the Toyota Camry, Ford Fusion and Chevrolet Malibu.

        Full-size cars

        Full-size cars are designed for comfort and luxury, with ample room for up to five passengers. The interior volume of a full-size car is greater than 120 cubic feet. Examples of full-size cars include the Chevrolet Impala, Nissan Maxima and Dodge Charger.

        Trucks

        Pickup trucks come in sizes ranging from mid-size to super-duty and are designed for carrying and towing large payloads.

        SUVs

        Sport utility vehicles (SUVs) are typically mid- to full-size, carrying five to eight passengers comfortably while having ample room for luggage or other cargo. SUVs come in different styles with various add-on packages to support multiple lifestyles. Interior entertainment systems are common in current models, as well as luggage and bike racks.

        Who buys cars?

        Individuals

        It’s important for individuals to choose a vehicle that fits their lifestyle. Someone who commutes long distances may want a fuel-efficient car, while someone who owns land may find a full-size truck useful.

        Families

        Families with multiple kids benefit from having spacious vehicles like minivans or mid- to full-size SUVs. Many of these models come with built-in entertainment systems and can seat up to eight passengers.

        People in the agricultural and industrial industries

        People who work in agriculture, construction and similar outdoor jobs require vehicles such as trucks to carry and tow heavy payloads while crossing rugged terrain.

        Companies needing fleet vehicles

        Larger corporations sometimes keep an inventory of fleet vehicles that can be checked out by employees needing to travel for work. Fleet vehicles usually consist of a mix of large SUVs, fuel-efficient cars and trucks for field workers.

        Not sure how to choose?

        Get buying tips about Car Models delivered to your inbox.

          By entering your email, you agree to sign up for consumer news, tips and giveaways from ConsumerAffairs. Unsubscribe at any time.

          Thank you, you have successfully subscribed to our newsletter!

          Compare Reviews for Top Car Models