We try our hardest to be unbiased, but the cars that catch our eye are the ones that accelerate, handle and stop with competence. A large part of this is based on some fundamental design and packaging choices made during the vehicles development.

After examining the top performing vehicles, we identified over 15 criteria that set the best cars apart from the rest. With these criteria, we created the Velocity Index to get a feel for whether or not a vehicle could be a standout performance model. Keep in mind, big differences in numbers are of interest -- minor differences are insignificant.

This is only a guideline number that represents the car's "potential" to be a top-performing vehicle. We test a lot of cars. There will always be an intangible quality to certain cars that just makes them "feel right". Variances in manufacturing may even yield differences between two otherwise identical vehicles... Your mileage will vary.

Overall Best

Top Models Considering Price

For most of us, that really only tells part of the story. It seems justified that a $300,000 sports car should be at the top of the list. A more interesting question is, "how do I get the most performance for my dollar? Whats the best "'value?'"

Price Adjusted Best of Breed

Subaru WRX
Convertible Mazda MX-5
Coupe Subaru BRZ / Toyota GR 86
SUV Kia Seltos
Sedan Audi A4 Sedan / Honda Civic Type R / Kia Forte
Truck Hyundai Santa Cruz
Van Kia Carnival
Wagon Mini Clubman