Thursday

Consumer Reports Top 5 Vehicles to Avoid

A short while back, Consumer Reports recently published its annual "Best & Worst Cars" issue. Perusing the best car models is always fun, but it is equally important to pay attention to models that received the lowest scores. Consumer Reports rates each car on a 100 point scale, based on more than 50 unbiased tests and evaluations.

Considerations when testing vehicles include:

- Safety. Each car is tested at its handing limit, determining how the vehicle will respond to emergency avoidance maneuvers and extreme road conditions.
- Real World Fuel Economy. Those who test the vehicles gauge the fuel economy of both everyday driving and driving on a controlled track.
- Ride Comfort. Ech vehicle is driven for thousands of miles and comfort is one of many important factors when rating an automobile.

With those considerations in mind, Consumer Reports' highest scoring vehicle (Lexus LS460L) earned a 99 on the 100 point scale. Below are the five lowest scoring vehicles for 2008.

1. Jeep Wrangler Unlimited Sahara
Score: 17
Main Areas of Concern: Braking, Noise Level, Reliability, Fuel Economy

2. Hummer H3 (5 cyl)
Score: 27
Main Areas of Concern: Acceleration, Fuel Economy, Emergency Handling

3. Jeep Liberty Sport
Score: 27
Main Areas of Concern: Fuel Economy, Noise, Agility

4. Chevrolet Aveo LS (Manual)
Score: 30
Main Areas of Concern: Acceleration, Handling

5. Chevrolet Aveo LS (Automatic)
Score: 32
Main Areas of Concern: Acceleration, Handling

While Consumer Reports isn't the only organization that is currently testing vehicles, it is important to remember that these evaluations are completely unbiased. Consumer Reports receives no money for advertising or any other services. For that reason alone, it would be shrewd for drivers to consider the magazine's opinions when purchasing a new vehicle.

By-line: Heather Johnson is a freelance business, finance and credit writer, as well as a regular contributor for Business Credit Cards, a site for comparing business credit cards. She welcomes questions, comments, and freelancing job inquiries at her email address heatherjohnson2323@gmail.com.