What are the best new cars to buy? This is a tricky question and it depends a lot on what you are looking for. Some vehicles are valuable; others strive for perfection. Some try to be generalists; others specialize in one particular aspect. Maybe you're looking for a super-efficient electric car, or you still want a raucous V8. We are not here to judge.
What unites the best cars, regardless of their purpose, is that they go beyond what they should be. Whether it's a trusted icon who's been mastering the art for decades, or an upstart who's caught one of these car's product planners dozing off, the best cars do a little more to deliver an optimal driving experience.
Here's our authoritative (though admittedly subjective) list of the best cars you can buy in 2022.
Best Small Pickup: Ford Maverick
The Maverick isn't the flashiest car in Ford's lineup, but it's a new small truck that could change the way a truck can be. It's the first affordable, practical, and fun new car for people to come out in a long time. And if that wasn't enough, the base Maverick is now the cheapest hybrid sold in the United States.
Best Midsize Pickup: Toyota Tacoma
Tacoma looks better than the competition; it looks muscular and athletic, but without the effort of other manufacturers. It is simple, functional and durable. This combination is what many truck and SUV buyers want. And that's why Tacoma dominates its market segment.
Best Full-Size Pickup: Ford F-150
Spending money on luxury cars for a pickup truck seems crazy, but once you've spent a little time in one of the regal Ford F-150s, it almost makes sense. The F-150 is equipped with all sorts of ingenious features that, combined with its huge innate capabilities, arguably make it worth the $80,000 loss.
Best Heavy Pickup: Ram Power Wagon
Whether you choose a well equipped Power Wagon from the factory or start with 2500 Tradesman and then add the Power Wagon package, you will get a lot of truck for your money. There is simply no other three-quarter-ton pickup truck that can do everything a Power Wagon can, let alone do.
Best Small Pickup: Hyundai Tucson Hybrid
The Tucson Hybrid does its job well as a compact crossover; it's spacious, efficient, and will get the family from point A to point B smoothly and safely. But unlike most of its competitors, it gets the job done while looking amazing, feeling like a premium product, and delivering pure driving pleasure.
Best Small Luxury SUV: Genesis GV70
Genesis is still a luxury upstart — the brand didn't launch its first autonomous vehicle until 2017, and expanded to SUVs last year — but the GV70 is a bold statement of intent from a mature automaker. The GV70 doesn't just offer a better price than rivals like the BMW X3 or Audi Q5. It's simply better, and all at a relatively affordable price.
Best Midsize SUV: Kia Telluride
Telluride offers luxury amenities at an affordable price. It's more advanced than most of its competitors from reputable inexpensive brands in this price range. If you don't have a fat wad of cash to buy a Lincoln Navigator, or you don't have a serious desire to land, the Telluride should be on your three-tier list.
Best off-road SUV: Ford Bronco
Bronco dared to challenge the illustrious Jeep Wrangler. And Ford did the right thing. The Bronco is as cool as everyone hoped; the Wrangler has legitimate competition, and even - dare we utter the blasphemy - it has a lot to catch up.
Best midsize luxury SUV: Genesis GV80
The Genesis GV80 looks distinctive, exotic and expensive with a bold grille, signature dual lighting and premium materials. If you're not quite sure what you're looking at, it looks like a Bentley, and it's no coincidence that Genesis was poached from the GV80's lead designer.
Best Full-Size Luxury SUV: Lexus LX 600
The Toyota Land Cruiser is special, and the LX has always been special because it's a Land Cruiser. There just aren't many vehicles where you can take your kids to school, climb a mountain without breaking a sweat, and then have your driver drive you to work in supreme comfort.
Best Minivan: Toyota Sienna
The all-new Toyota Sienna looks really cool and offers what most competitors - a minivan or a three-row SUV - don't have: outstanding fuel efficiency and all-wheel drive in one vehicle. It's kind of a game-changer that could draw buyers to minivans.
Best Small Car: Honda Civic
This all-new Civic is worthy of your attention - and not just because Honda promotes it on Twitch for polite young people like you. The Civic offers great handling, exceptional value, a classy interior and not one but two manual transmission versions.
Best Small Luxury Car: Genesis G70
The Genesis G70 represents a huge value in the luxury sports sedan market. And it's not just a value game. With great looks, a luxurious interior, sporty driving dynamics and a powerful engine, it's just as good as its famous rivals, if not better.
Best Midsize Car: Honda Accord
Honda will no longer let you get the owner's manual for the Accord. But you still get the performance and refinement of a luxury car at a very affordable price. There's a reason the Accord has made the "Top 10 Cars and Drivers" list 36 times.
Best Midsize Luxury Car: Mercedes E-Class
The E-Class has been a Goldilocks mainstay in the Mercedes lineup for decades. Looking for a luxurious entry-level sedan with a smooth ride? A 600-horsepower fire-breathing van? How about something exactly average, which is brilliant in itself? E-Class will help you.
Best Full-Size Luxury Car: Mercedes S-Class
SUVs and crossovers (hell, maybe even pickup trucks) have become the de facto choice for luxury shoppers these days, but a few hundred miles behind the wheel of a new S-Class will remind you just how appealing it is to drive a fancy car. instead of a sedan.
Best Wagon: Subaru Outback
Many vehicles attempt to combine the best of passenger car handling with the capability and practicality of an SUV, but few succeed - at a price that mere mortals can afford - like the Subaru Outback, which has the same roominess and off-road prowess. like the Subaru Outback. many sports cars without fuel economy problems.
Best Sports Car: Porsche 911
Porsche 911 is not just a benchmark. The current generation is an objective improvement in almost every measurable way. It's more powerful, faster, handles better, provides greater passenger safety, features more advanced technology and is even more environmentally friendly than its predecessors.
Best Affordable Sports Car: Volkswagen Golf GTI
Driving every day, the 8th Gen GTI is the same GTI as always, but a little better. The car is still fast, lively and responsive. The steering remains precise. The GTI's handling is smooth and easy from the start. The response to your contribution can be downright supernatural.
Best Sports Sedan: Cadillac CT5-V Blackwing
The CT5-V Blackwing produces 668 horsepower from its supercharged 6.2-liter V8 engine. To put it into perspective, you get more horsepower than a Cadillac DPi-VR race car - with traction control that would be illegal in any racing series.
Best Plug-in Hybrid Car: Volvo V60 Recharge