Kiplinger Offers New Set of "10 Best Awards"
|   Wednesday, August 27, 2014
Every time you turn around, it seems as if there's another institution, magazine or organization offering their "10 Best Value Awards for 2014."

Everyone knows about the Motor Trend "Car of the Year Award" or "Truck of the Year Award" and Car and Driver has been offering its "10 Best" models of each type of car or truck for more than 30 years. And there are many, many more.

This time, it's Kiplinger's Magazine that is wading into the "10 Best" battleground with its offerings of what it thinks are the best cars of the year.
Usually, Kiplinger's has been content to offer money and investment advice and their car listings are, like as not, just an extension of their thinking that they are helping their customers make important buying or money decisions. After all, after property the next most expensive item in your life is your auto.

Kiplinger's has drawn some interesting and very reasonable conclusions after its research into the "10 Best Values of 2014." For example, it notes that the close competition in the market means the consumer has better values, as there are more choices in every segment of the automotive market. This makes sense and is very true.

Also, the American car is back among the winners in the market because GM and Chrysler, after many lean years, are back and are offering some very nice vehicles to buyers at fairly reasonable prices. This is a true statement because both Chrysler and GM were hit hard by the bad times of the mid-2000s. They were hit so hard, in fact, that Chrysler ended up literally as a subsidiary of Fiat and GM filed bankruptcy papers and had to use government bailout funds to survive.

Both vehicle makers did what they had to do to survive and they did and now they are playing catch-up with Ford, the other large American automaker, as well as the rest of the automakers who have manufacturing facilities here. This includes Honda, Toyota, Mercedes-Benz and even Korean makes Hyundai and Kia as well as imports such as the Mazda brand (really a Ford subsidiary that shares many platforms with its parent).

To qualify for consideration as one of its "10 Best," Kiplinger's says the vehicle must have been substantially changed or altered so that it is essentially a new vehicle. It must also offer new features and must represent a value in its market segment. The magazine uses market price points as the demarcation points in its choices.

For 2014, the best cars are listed in the following categories:

Under $20,000: Mazda3
$20,000-$25,000: Mazda6
$25,000-$30,000: Chevy Impala
$30,000-$40,000: Mercedes-Benz CLA
$40,000-$50,000: Cadillac CTS
$50,000-over: Mercedes-Benz S-Class
Sports Cars: Chevrolet Corvette Stingray
Small Crossovers: Subaru Forester
Mid-Sized Crossovers: Jeep Grand Cherokee
Large Crossovers: Acura MDX
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