Published on January 9th, 2016 | by James Ayre


#1, #2, #3 — 3 Electric Cars Top Consumer Reports Owner Satisfaction Survey

January 9th, 2016 by  

Originally published on EV Obsession.

The Tesla Model S is the most satisfying car for commuting, according to the most recent Annual Auto Survey from Consumer Reports.

Following closely on the first place position held by the Tesla offering are two of the other top-selling electric vehicles out there — the Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and the Nissan LEAF all-electric (EV). The Chevy Volt ranked second overall, and the Nissan LEAF third overall.

Tesla Model S red blue black grey Volt and LEAF !


Following those top three, the Ford C-Max took the fourth position, the Lexus ES took the fifth position, the Mazda3 took the sixth position, the Subaru Legacy took the seventh position, the Toyota Prius took the eighth position, the Honda Accord took the ninth position, and the Volkswagen Passat took the tenth position.

Overall, the list does seem to put EVs and PHEVs in a good light — with such vehicles dominating the list. The list was compiled based on owner satisfaction surveys related to 230,000 vehicles (all vehicles being less than 3 years old).

The Model S has topped the list every year since it came to market, and the Chevy Volt was #1 for two years before that.

Consumer Reports provides more:

“It is a joy to drive: comfortable, agile, responsive, quiet, and ‘green.’”

“Driver assist and cruise control with tracking are very convenient for routine rush hour stop and go traffic.”

“Auto Pilot 1.0 keeps a safe distance between my car and others; Quiet; Comfortable; Navigation automatically adjusts to the fastest route (huge when the 405 is backed up).”

Commenting on the Chevy Volt, those that answered the survey stated:

“Essentially I gave myself a raise. My electric bill increased about $100 overall. However my employer has free charging stations at work, so I no longer pay the cost of commuting home. The HOV sticker took me about 60 seconds to appreciate.”

“Able to complete my daily commute using no gas on most days. The car is much more comfortable than I anticipated. Nice to see an American manufacturer stepping up to the plate with a great EV.”

“My wife uses this car for her daily commute. She can do so easily on battery alone, even on the coldest days. We then recharge overnight in the garage at a fraction of the cost of a gasoline powered vehicle. The car is smooth, comfortable and quiet.”

(Thanks to “Breezy” on the forum for this.)

Images by Zachary Shahan & Cynthia Shahan | EV Obsession | CleanTechnica

Check out our new 93-page EV report, based on over 2,000 surveys collected from EV drivers in 49 of 50 US states, 26 European countries, and 9 Canadian provinces.

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About the Author

's background is predominantly in geopolitics and history, but he has an obsessive interest in pretty much everything. After an early life spent in the Imperial Free City of Dortmund, James followed the river Ruhr to Cofbuokheim, where he attended the University of Astnide. And where he also briefly considered entering the coal mining business. He currently writes for a living, on a broad variety of subjects, ranging from science, to politics, to military history, to renewable energy. You can follow his work on Google+.

  • Mark Gutting-Kilzer

    Half of the vehicles in the top ten are EV’s or hybrid-EV’s

    • Harry Johnson

      It’s almost as if gas cars suck. Oops.

      • Dragon

        I rather tend to think gas cars blow.

  • neroden

    No surprise. Electric cars are just plain nicer to drive. Instant response (as opposed to delays due to fuel injection etc.), same torque at all speeds, no gear shifting. Just plain nicer.

  • phineasjw

    Can I offer some user feedback on this article?

    When there’s a LIST of something, please stop hiding the answers across multiple paragraphs, subsequently disguising the model name with language like “Tesla offering”, and further separating the order of the two and three rankings by yet another sentence.

    The best user experience with the least cognitive load is to present a simple bullet list —

    1. Tesla Model S
    2. Chevy Volt
    3. Nissan Leaf

    I’m mentioning it because I see this pattern repeated here frequently — the headline implies a list of something but there’s never a simple list within the article.

    • Kyle Field

      Appreciate the feedback.

    • neroden

      He’s right. That’s what lists are for. 🙂

    • +1

  • sault

    Even though the EVs won out on this list, you can practically smell the anti-EV bias from the gearheads at Consumer Reports. They low-ball the range numbers on all these vehicles to the extreme, using the old 73 mile range for the LEAF and saying the 2016 has a “claimed” 107 miles of range. The 2016 Volt has a “promised” 53 miles of range. It’ll take a while for the writers at CR to get over their prejudice.

    • Kyle Field

      Nevertheless…I saw the CR nuts at all the EV events at CES 😀 I’m thinking they will come around, especially as EVs prove their reliability over the long haul.

      • Kraylin

        It’s got to be hard for the “CR nuts” they have reviewed gasoline vehicles their entire life, being a “gearhead” myself I find the inner struggle in myself strange at the best of times. I still love the sound of a finely tuned Ferrari and yet for day to day commuting the silence of an Electric Vehicle is also alluring.

        Jay Leno once said the electric vehicle will do for petrol vehicles what the car did for horses, turning them into a recreational item. In a perfect world I would have my race car for sport and a great EV for day to day life. Well ok one step further once battery tech is perfected perhaps you could have a nice light weight electric race car as well… I may miss the sound though *shrug* I’m getting old and nostalgic…. lol

        • Matt

          I think Jay nail it!

        • Kyle Field

          No man, I miss the sound as well! I still find myself wanting it…imagining it…or something when I walk out to my Model S and start it up…pound on the throttle off the line…rev it at a light. I was strangely enthralled by the 6.4 liter v8 Challenger at the auto show a few months back. It feels different…it feels good. I’m still all in on EVs but I feel you on that one.

          I used to have a 5.7 liter trans am with race suspension, exhaust, etc and it was FUN! The Mod S is more fun…but not quite the same.

      • vorten

        Maybe EV’s could install a great sound system for the driver who misses the roar and rush of power. A radio dial to choose which monster ICE exhaust sound you want; 73 corvette no problem and how about 2013 911 T for the ride home, Saturn V for the ride home from a night at the movies. The manufacturer could put an electric vibrator under the seat to mimic the shaking and knocks of an old gasmobile and a compressed can of vintage exhaust to spritz up the cabin air. Technology is for dreamers.

    • Matt

      Yes the press may still love ICEs (hear the baby purr) but they can hide that top three are EV. That will get more people looking, which is what it takes. Remember if you write about cars, that mean that you are likely a car nut. Which until now means a ICE nut. So yes, it will take some of them time to let go the past.

      • Dragon

        ICE nut… Isn’t that the thing the squirrel in Ice Age is always coveting?

    • newnodm

      CR was (is) obviously very enthusiastic about the Model S. The early model S clearly has quality problems, especially in the drive unit. This fact is obvious on the main Tesla forum and certainly showed up in data from owners from CR surveys.

      “Smelling anti-EV bias” is the polar opposite of forming beliefs based on empirical evidence.

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