Top 10 Cars That Stayed True to Their Concept


During the past decade, the once fanciful concept car — never meant to see the light of day — has morphed into more of a design study for future products. Taking that notion to the next level, our editors have rated the 10 production cars that did the best job of incorporating their concept when made into reality during the past decade.

Related: 2015 Detroit Auto Show Winners and Losers 

Note: We didn't take into account certain "concepts" often considered prototypes that some automakers roll out at auto shows. Those show cars are barely discernible from the real thing and are introduced much closer to when the actual cars go on sale.

By David Thomas | February 9, 2015 | Comments (0)

Top 10 Best-Selling Cars: January 2015


Auto sales got off to a strong start in January as car shoppers piled into pickup trucks, SUVs and — less expectedly — small cars. With the largest seven automakers reporting figures, new-car sales are up 14.8 percent. The Detroit Three and Japan's three largest automakers all registered double-digit gains, while Hyundai-Kia, the lone laggard, gained just 2.2 percent.

Related: January's Fastest- and Slowest-Selling Cars

Most of the popular nameplates saw renewed popularity: With a new Ford F-150 in growing dealer supply (and landing among January's fastest-selling cars), the F-Series pickup truck gained 16.8 percent. The Chevrolet Silverado increased 24.8 percent. Compact-car shoppers pushed the Toyota Corolla, goosed by slightly more year-over-year incentives, up 20.2 percent. And the refreshed Honda CR-V — outside of pickup trucks, the best-selling nameplate in December 2014 — remains hot, ballooning 27.3 percent without incentives.

By Kelsey Mays | February 3, 2015 | Comments (8)

What Were the Largest Recalls in 2014?


Any way you slice it, 2014 was a record year for recalls. It took less than half the year for the industry to crack the full-year record en route to more than 62 million recalls for the year, by The New York Times' estimate.

Related: More Recall News

What were the largest recalls in 2014? Assessing totals is murky science at best, given the numbers are often amended later and recalls are sometimes expanded. We searched the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's records for every recall issued in 2014, with the caveat that some numbers could change. Not surprisingly, the two biggest recall headlines — ignitions and airbags — accounted for plenty of the top 10.

By Kelsey Mays | February 2, 2015 | Comments (0)

What Was the Best-Selling Car in 2014?


With all major automakers reporting their figures, auto sales in 2014 are up about 6 percent over 2013 for a grand total of around 16.5 million cars. That would be the auto industry's best year since 2006 or 2005, depending on final totals for 2014 from smaller automakers.

Related: Top 10 Best-Selling Cars: December 2014

The Ford F-Series' 753,851 sales for the year put the truck atop the industry's new-car sales ladder for the umpteenth time, which should surprise no one. What's more interesting is the timing of it. The F-150 accounts for roughly two-thirds of F-Series sales in any given year, and F-Series sales slipped 1.3 percent in 2014. But that came with scant sales from the redesigned 2015 F-150 — meaning somewhere around 500,000 F-Series sales in 2014 were from the old F-150. It's a testament to the truck's popularity, as those shoppers didn't exactly come for the deals. For most months in 2014, year-over-year cash incentives on the F-Series stayed roughly equivalent to their year-before levels.

Helped by a strong construction market and sliding gas prices in the second half of 2014, full-size pickups had a strong year. Fiat Chrysler Automobiles' Ram pickup and GM's Chevrolet Silverado each saw double-digit sales gains, though shoppers found relatively more incentives on both trucks in 2014 versus 2013. We'll see how the new F-150 affects F-Series sales in 2015 and if FCA and GM ratchet up the deals to keep pace.

By Kelsey Mays | January 5, 2015 | Comments (4)

Top 10 Best-Selling Cars: December 2014


If kids spent December piling into the loot from Santa, parents spent it piling into the trucks at their local dealership. Detroit's full-size pickups led the month's top sellers, followed in fourth place by Honda's popular SUV, the CR-V. It received a substantial update for 2015, and three months after it hit dealerships, demand is still strong. Despite no big incentives and comparatively little inventory — 34 days' supply in December versus 67 days a year ago, per Automotive News — shoppers lifted the CR-V past perennial midsize sedan favorites.

Related: December's Fastest- and Slowest-Selling Cars

It was a trend writ large among all SUVs. Excluding luxury models, small crossovers gained about 12 percent in December. Big three-row crossovers and full-size, truck-based SUVs piled on about 15 percent apiece. Falling fuel prices all month long helped: Between the final helping of Thanksgiving leftovers and the final chorus of "Auld Lang Syne," a gallon of regular gas dropped some 50 cents nationwide, according to AAA. As of Jan. 2, it averaged just $2.23 per gallon across the country — $1.09 cheaper than it was a year ago.

That bolstered pickup sales, but not for the truck you'd think. Ford's redesigned 2015 F-150 trickled into dealerships in December, but it's still in short supply, accounting for less than 10 percent of new F-150 inventory on F-Series sales ebbed (the F-150 accounts for about two-thirds of that), but pickup shoppers snapped up Ram and Chevrolet Silverado trucks. Both had sales gains of more than 30 percent, and neither one did that with big year-over-year incentives.

By Kelsey Mays | January 5, 2015 | Comments (0)

Top 10 Photo Galleries of 2014


There's really no way to cover cars without photos of them. You can write all you want about style, but each reader is going to take a look at the pictures and make up his or her own mind on a car's looks.

Related: More Photo Galleries

This year it seemed people really made up their minds about cats, too. Hellcats, that is. Our initial looks at the 2015 Dodge Charger Hellcat and 2015 Challenger Hellcat were the most popular photo galleries of the year.

The rest are an assortment of what you might expect — except for No. 3. No. 3 will shock you.

By David Thomas | December 23, 2014 | Comments (0)

Prediction: 10 Cars We Think Won't See 2016


Like your favorite new network TV show, some cars just won't be around anymore. This year yielded a bumper crop of exciting new cars, trucks and SUVs, but what about those that have been, let's say, taken out to the farm? Which cars won't make it another model year?

Related: Ten Cars That Won't See 2015

We asked our fellow editors to gaze into their automotive crystal balls and predict 10 cars that we think could meet their end after the 2015 model year. Some may surprise you; some have been rumored to get the ax for a while, and thus grace our endangered species list again this year. This list is ordered from most likely to vanish to least likely, in our opinion.

By Jennifer Geiger | December 15, 2014 | Comments (9)

Top 10 Best-Selling Cars: November 2014


The national average for a gallon of regular unleaded is 23 cents cheaper today than it was a month ago, according to AAA. It's a whopping 51 cents cheaper than it was a year ago. Slumping oil prices in November set energy analysts abuzz and consumers charging toward pickup trucks and SUVs.

Related: November's Fastest- and Slowest-Selling Cars

Shoppers snapped up the restyled Honda CR-V like it was the last slice of pumpkin pie. It was among the fastest-selling cars in November, and sales gained 37.7 percent to make Honda's crossover the most popular non-pickup for the month. That's a seismic shift in popularity for an SUV that didn't make the top 10 list as recently as February.

Indeed, small SUVs were in Rogue — er, vogue — all month long. The Jeep Cherokee, now heavily incentivized versus its just-introduced period in November 2013, gained 66.6 percent to become Fiat Chrysler Automobile's second most popular model behind the Ram pickup. With gains from major players like the CR-V, Nissan Rogue (up 43.7 percent) and Ford Escape (up 21.6 percent), compact SUVs tacked on more than 20 percent in year-over-year sales. That's despite most of the segment's major players having similar cash incentives compared to a year-ago.

By Kelsey Mays | December 2, 2014 | Comments (1)

The Top 10 Worst Car Redesigns Since 2000


Typically when a car gets redesigned, it gets better. An automaker has likely spent years improving its performance, styling and comfort to make car shoppers take note. A redesigned model can spark sales, and the most successful ones can change the course of an entire brand.

Related: More Top 10s

However, not every redesign is a success. The editors at have come up with 10 of the worst attempts at overhauling a car since the millennium turned in 2000. And to prove first impressions count we've included some of our thoughts from the cars' original reviews that seem to still resonate today.

By David Thomas | November 11, 2014 | Comments (7)

Top 10 Best-Selling Cars: October 2014


A rash of airbag recalls in October hasn't deterred car shoppers. Sales from seven largest automakers gained 5.8 percent in October, leading to an annualized rate that should top 16 million cars for the eighth month in a row. Among the top 10 sellers, two new compacts enter the list — the Toyota Corolla and the Chevrolet Cruze. The Ford Fusion and Toyota RAV4, despite sales increases, are off.

Related: October's Fastest- and Slowest-Selling Cars

Mammoth gains from its Jeep and Ram divisions lifted Fiat Chrysler Automobiles up 21.7 percent to lead the Big Seven in sales gains. The Ram pickup gained 33.5 percent despite no sizeable change in incentives over the year-ago month, and that was versus a pretty good October 2013. It's possible the pickup snatched a number of truck shoppers who didn't want to buy the outgoing Ford F-150. September's strong housing starts, which typically feed pickup sales, provided a boost, too. F-Series sales slipped as truck shoppers await the redesigned 2015 F-150, which arrives later this year, but the Chevrolet Silverado and GMC Sierra combined to gain 10.8 percent.

 Here are the top 10 best-selling cars in October:

By Kelsey Mays | November 3, 2014 | Comments (0)

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