Helping you find the right vehicle at the right price is what we do at Kelley Blue Book. Our annual Best Buy Awards, now in their sixth year, are the distillation of that mission in one comprehensive award program. KBB Best Buys identifies the top vehicles in categories that that resonate with the majority of new car buyers. As we have witnessed since the inception of the Best Buy Awards, the only constant these days is change. Vehicles that were once dominant players in the market, like family sedans, have lost some of their appeal. They’re still important, but the bulk of the vehicles being sold today are crossover SUVs and trucks. In recognizing the popularity of latter as well as the expanding nature of these offerings, we’ve added two new categories — midsize trucks and two-row midsize SUVs.
We are also cognizant of the coming wave of alternative-powered vehicles as well. While their percentage of the market is represented by single digits, electric vehicles and plug-in hybrid offerings are growing in number. As a result, we now have divided the previous alternative power category into two, one for pure EVs, the other for plug-in hybrids.
In evaluating and selecting our category winners, Kelley Blue Book editors look for vehicles that deliver the best combination of quality, comfort, driving dynamics, dependability, low ownership costs and affordability. By blending all these attributes in the cars, SUVs and pickups that best meet customer needs, these Best Buy category winners are sure bets when it comes time to compile your new vehicle wish list.
How we determine what makes a Best Buy
The evaluation process for the annual KBB Best Buy Awards is a year-round effort. Our editors are constantly driving and reviewing hundreds of new cars, trucks and SUVs and use these insights to compile Expert Reviews, Top 10 lists, Buyer’s Guides and comparison tests. Early on, we are able to identify candidates that will compete in the various categories and in late summer, bring them in for rigorous side-by-side comparisons. We not only drive the vehicles over various test loops simulating the daily use of everyday drivers, but also closely go over the vehicles checking out interior room, amenities, comfort, quality of materials and build, infotainment systems and overall ease of use. We also do extensive homework on the value equation, determining the affordability of pricing versus the competition and pore over 5-Year Cost to Own data and resale value. The value is equation is critical, as a lower cost vehicle may not represent the best deal if it’s not able to retain its value over time. We also consider a manufacturer’s reputation for delivering quality, reliability and durability along with the length of both bumper-to-bumper and powertrain warranties.
With 16 different categories ranging from full-size pickup trucks to plug-in electric vehicles, the 2020 Kelley Blue Book Best Buys have something to offer everyone. Depending on need, there is a vehicle that that’s right for you and these awards are another tool in helping you make the right decision. In addition to the category awards, KBB also recognizes the Best New Model, an award given to the best all-new or significantly redesigned model that represents innovation and value.
Best New Model
Category Best Buys