See Which Car Batteries Consumer Reports Recommends
If you’re car battery ever dies, replacing it will be the first thing on your mind. Either that, or getting a jumpstart. But if you’re constantly having to give your battery a boost, it may be time for a new one. Consumer Reports highlights all the best batteries depending on the group size required for your car.
Consumer Reports best car batteries based on group size
A “group size” simply describes the dimensions and power supply of the battery. Consult your owner’s manual or the internet to learn which kind of battery fits inside your car. Many brands use a certain size battery across all their cars, but it’s best to do your research. And make sure the battery can produce enough cold-cranking amps (CCA) to actually start the vehicle.
With that in mind, here are the best car batteries according to Consumer Reports depending on group size.
- 24/24F Battery Size: NAPA Legend Premium 8424F
- 35 Battery Size: Odyssey Extreme Series 35-PC1400T
- 47 (H5) Battery Size: Duracell Platinum AGM 47 (H5)
- 48 (H6) Battery Size: Odyssey Performance 48-720
- 49 (H8) Battery Size: ACDelco 49 AGM
- 51R Battery Size: Duracell 51R
- 65 Battery Size: Delphi BU9065 MaxStart AGM Premium 65
Size 24/24F: The NAPA Legend Premium 8424F
Used in many Acura, Honda, Infiniti, Lexus, Nissan, and Toyota vehicles, the NAPA Legend Premium can produce 725 cold-cranking amps (CCA). With a retail price of $170, it scored a 5/5 rating in the life, reserve capacity, and CCA tests. The life test measures how well the battery charges and discharges repeatedly. And the reserve capacity test estimates how long the car battery could run if the charging system (alternator) fails.
Consumer Reports says the battery has an 18-month warranty, though a customer review claims that the warranty can be extended anywhere between 24 and 84 months. Just call NAPA to confirm.
Size 35: Odyssey Extreme Series 35-PC1400T
These batteries fit in many large Chrysler vehicles, and certain 1996 to 2000 GM pickups, SUVs, and sedans. With a retail price of around $300, the Odyssey Extreme Series 35-PC1400T’s CCA rating is 850 and has a built-in handle for ease of installation. The warranty lasts up to 48 months, and the battery itself scored all 5/5 in the life, reserve capacity, and CCA tests.
If $300 is a bit of a stretch, you can also look at the EverStart MAXX-35N. This car battery costs just $90, and is Consumer Report’s second pick due to its slightly unpredictable nature. The battery sometimes lasts upwards of seven years, and downwards of two. The 36-month warranty was also honored, according to one review.
Size 47 (H5): Duracell Platinum AGM 47 (H5)
Size 47 (H5) batteries fit many Buick, Chevrolet, Fiat, and Volkswagen models. With a CCA rating of 600 amps, the Duracell Platinum AGM 47 (H5) costs just $135. It comes also with a 36-month free replacement warranty. The car battery scored a 5/5 in the life, reserve capacity and CCA tests, and Consumer Reports claims the battery performs well in both cold and hot environments.
The only other size 47 battery rated by Consumer Reports is the Interstate Mega-Tron II MT47H5. This battery also costs $135, but only comes with a 24-month warranty and a reserve capacity score of 4/5 (all other tests scored a 5/5).
Size 48 (H6): Odyssey Performance 48-720
Used in many Audi, BMW, Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, Jeep, Mercedes-Benz, Mini, Volkswagen, and Volvo vehicles, the Odyssey Performance 48-720 car battery has a CCA rating of 723. Priced between $250 and $275, the battery comes with a 48-month warranty. It scored a 5/5 in the life and CCA categories, and a 4/5 in the reserve capacity test.
A cheaper, though the less reliable option for size 48 batteries would be the Interstate MTX-48/H6. At just $185, this car battery can produce 760 CCA. However, it only scored a 4/5 in the reserve capacity and CCA tests (the CCA test measures how the car performs in colder temperatures). This battery also only comes with a 36-month warranty, rather than the Odyssey’s 48-month warranty.
Size 49 (H8): ACDelco 49 AGM
Used in many European and Asian vehicles from Audi, BMW, Hyundai, and Mercedes-Benz, the battery is rated at 900 CCA (the highest of any car on this list). Priced at around $200, the ACDelco 49 AGM scored a 5/5 in the life and reserve capacity tests. However, this battery only scored a 4/5 in the CCA test, meaning it may struggle to start in colder environments. Should you have to replace it, it comes with a 36-month warranty.
Size 51R: Duracell 51R
Used on many Japanese vehicles from Honda, Mazda, and Nissan, the Duracell 51R is rated at 500 CCA. This car battery costs just $105 and comes with a 36-month replacement warranty. It scored a 5/5 in the life and CCA tests, however, it only scored a 3/5 in the reserve capacity test. That means, if your alternator goes out, the battery will not hold a charge very long. This, however, is a problem with every 51R sized battery Consumer Reports has reviewed, likely due to the compact nature of the battery itself.
Size 65: Delphi BU9065 MaxStart AGM Premium 65
Used in large cars, trucks, and SUVs from Ford or Mercury, the battery has a CCA rating of 750. Costing around $230, the battery scored a 5/5 in the life, reserve capacity, and CCA tests. It also comes with a 36-month warranty.
A slightly cheaper, but just as viable option would be ACDelco Professional Gold 65PG. At just $125, this car battery has a CCA rating of 850, and a 42-month warranty. However, the battery did score a 4/5 in the reserve capacity category (and a 5/5 in the life and CCA tests).
Regardless of which battery you drive home with, make sure you don’t skimp. The more you spend on a good battery now, the less likely you have to replace it further down the line.