Sedans & Coupes

Consumer Reports Recommended Every Large Car It Tested for 2021

Consumer Reports reviewed the five most popular new large cars on the market today. The 2021 Toyota Avalon came out on top, receiving the highest score among its competitors. After thorough testing and evaluation of each vehicle, CR ended up recommending every full-size sedan it tested.

Though these large cars are in the same class, each offers unique features and benefits. Let’s dive a little deeper to see why all earned Consumer Reports’ stamp of approval.

The best large car for families per Consumer Reports

RELATED: The 2021 Toyota Avalon Is the Best Full-Size Sedan to Buy This Year

Consumer Reports deems the Toyota Avalon the best large car for 2021. It earned an 88 out of 100 overall score and achieved an impressive 93 on the road test. The V6 powertrain in the gas-powered sedan delivers effortless performance with an eight-speed transmission. And the hybrid Avalon, which gets 42 mpg overall, ranks better in fuel economy than others in its class. 

The spacious interior offers a luxurious feel with wood trim and soft materials throughout the cabin. Easy-to-use controls, advanced safety features, and commendable agility make the 2021 Toyota Avalon an obvious choice for the best large car of the year. Consumer Reports found the sedan to be a “sensible alternative to higher-priced luxury cars.”

U.S. News agrees, naming the Toyota Avalon the best large car for families for 2021. Giving it an 8.2 out 10 overall score, with 9.3 for safety, U.S. News said, “The 2021 Avalon is teeming with standard features that tend to appeal to families.”

Other highly rated large cars that Consumer Reports recommends

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The 2021 Nissan Maxima secured the second-highest rating from Consumer Reports, with both road test and overall scores of 81/100. With a starting price of $37,090, this quick sedan punches 0 to 60 mph in 6.5 seconds. The 3.5-liter V6 engine thrusts 300 hp while still delivering an estimated fuel economy rating of 25 mpg. The Maxima’s predicted reliability score is 4 out of 5, and more than 80 percent of owners say they would purchase this sedan again.

CR also recommends the 2021 Dodge Charger and 2020 Kia Cadenza. Both received a 79 out of 100 overall scores.

The Charger boasts the fastest acceleration in its class, roaring from 0 to 60 mph in 6.1 seconds. It earned a strong 85 out of 100 on the road test and a 4 out of 5 in predicted reliability and owner satisfaction. The fuel economy dragged down the Charger’s overall score, getting an estimated 20 mpg combined with an annual fuel cost of $1,440. Limited cargo space and average emergency handling also contributed to the lower overall score. 

With a starting price of $37,850, the Kia Cadenza is the most expensive base model among its competitors. It received an impressive 91 out of 100 road test score, bested only by the Toyota Avalon. Consumer Reports said, “Ultimately, the well-rounded Cadenza competes well in the narrow market segment of ‘big’ cars such as the Chrysler 300 and Avalon. The Cadenza proves that Kia should no longer be considered as a second-tier value brand.”

Another large car worth considering

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The 2021 Chrysler 300 rounds out the list of large cars bearing the CR Recommended badge. Earning an overall score of 78 and a road test score of 83, the trusted 300 offers the most luxurious cabin among competitors. The quiet interior oozes upscale comfort, with leather seating, padded surfaces, lined storage compartments, and wood-like trim.

This capable sedan packs a 3.6-liter V6 or a Hemi V8 engine for powerful performance. But, predictably, it loses points for poor fuel economy. 

Consumer Reports says, “Chrysler’s flagship sedan is a capable, sophisticated, and luxuriously large sedan.”