Top Picks 2012 Cars

Each year, Consumer Reports names Top Pick vehicles-cars that out do all the others in their class. This year, one carmaker is a real standout.

Pushing vehicles to their limits, evaluating how well they do in an emergency situation, and how they handle everyday driving.

Those are some of the 50-plus tests Consumer Reports puts vehicles through at its test track to find the best performer. But that's not all.

David Champion of Consumer Reports says, "To be a Top Pick, the vehicle also has to be reliable because you don't want to spend time taking your vehicle to the shop. And all the money that might cost."

And the vehicles have to perform well...if they've gone through industry or government crash tests.

Champion says, "Toyota is back this year. Out of the 10 Top Picks, Toyota took five of them."

Among them-the Toyota Camry Hybrid. It's this year's Top Pick for Family Sedan.

Champion says, "The redesigned Toyota Camry Hybrid is much more engaging to drive, gets and impressive 38 miles per gallon, and has a nice plush interior."

In the Family SUV category, the Toyota Highlander is the Top Pick.

And the Toyota Prius is the Top Pick Green Car.

Champion says, "Toyota in the past has had some issues with reliability and lots of recalls. But our reliability data shows that they're very good in terms of reliability and they've tested well."

Ford and Chevy each got a top spot.

The Chevrolet Avalanche is the 2012 Top Pick for Pickup Trucks.

And the Ford Mustang muscled its way to the Top Pick Sporty Car. And unlike others in its class, it's comfortable and gets pretty good fuel economy.

The two other Toyotas that Consumer Reports name Top Picks are the Toyota RAV4 for Small SUV and the Toyota Sienna for Family Hauler.

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