The Global Happy Motorist Index [U.S. and Europe breakdown]

Zutobi
by Zutobi · Updated Apr 28, 2022

Which car makes and models are the most loved by motorists?

When looking for a new car, be it your tenth purchase or your very first car after learning to drive, looking at reviews from real owners is one of the best ways to get genuine and accurate information on the car you are considering.

The actual users of cars can give in-depth knowledge about the car’s reliability and performance as they have the most experience of how the car performs in the real world.

But what cars have the highest ratings among car owners? We created a list of the 50 top-selling cars from around the world and recorded their average reviews from the people who have owned them.

We used the owner review sites Parkers, HonestJohn, Autotrader, and Edmunds to record average owner reviews for these vehicles. In our final list, only models which had ratings from at least three sites are shown. Average ratings were calculated as an average of the ratings taken from each review site.

The Cars with the Highest Owner Ratings

1. Tesla Model 3 – Average rating of 4.53

Parkers average rating – 4.6

HonestJohn average rating- 5.0

AutoTrader average rating – 4.5

Edmunds average rating – 4.0

Tesla’s Model 3 takes the top spot for the highest-rated car on our list, scoring an average rating of 4.53 across the four publications we looked at. It’s clear then why the Model 3 is Tesla’s top-selling car and one of the world’s best electric cars right now.

2. Volvo XC40 – Average rating of 4.5

Parkers average rating – 3.9

HonestJohn average rating- 5.0

AutoTrader average rating – 4.6

Edmunds average rating – 4.5

The Volvo XC40 takes the runner-up position on our list with an impressive average rating of 4.5 across all our publications. The XC40 is a compact SUV designed for practicality and comfort and was one of the top-selling cars in Europe throughout 2021.

3. Ford Puma – Average rating of 4.43

Parkers average rating – 4.3

HonestJohn average rating- 5

AutoTrader average rating – 4

Edmunds average rating – N/A

Completing our top three is the Ford Puma, with an average rating of 4.43. Another European 2021 top-seller, the Puma is an affordable five-door SUV with eye-catching looks and designed for driving fun.

The Cars with the Lowest Owner Ratings

1. Perodua Myvi – Average rating of 2.8

Parkers average rating – 3.5

HonestJohn average rating – 3.0

AutoTrader average rating – 1.9

Edmunds average rating – N/A

Despite being the top-selling car in Malaysia for eight consecutive years, the Perodua Myvi has pulled in the lowest average owner ratings on our list with an average rating of 2.8. Essentially a rebadged Daihatsu Sirion, the Myvi is a small and budget-friendly supermini.

2. Vauxhall Zafira – Average rating of 3.53

Parkers average rating – 3.6

HonestJohn average rating- 3.0

AutoTrader average rating – 4.0

Edmunds average rating – N/A

The Vauxhall Zafira is a good practical vehicle for those looking for family transport, however, its unappealing design and firmer ride have left it with a lower average rating of 3.53. Despite this, the Zafira is still a very popular choice for larger families.

3. Subaru Legacy – Average rating of 3.6

Parkers average rating – 3.5

HonestJohn average rating – 3.0

AutoTrader average rating – 3.8

Edmunds average rating – 4.1

The Subaru Legacy comes runner-up for the lowest-rated car on our list with an average rating of 3.6 across our four publications. The Legacy is Subaru’s top-selling model despite its low owner rating.

 

The Brands with the Highest and Lowest Owner Ratings

The Brands with the Highest Owner Ratings

By taking the average ratings from each car on our list we were able to calculate the average ratings for each brand in our top 50. These ratings are based only on the cars in our top 50.

1. Tesla – Average Rating of 4.53

Tesla has scored the highest average ratings from all the brands on our list, with a 4.53 average rating. Tesla is an American automotive company specializing in the design and manufacture of electric vehicles and has skyrocketed in popularity over recent years.

2. Land Rover – Average Rating of 4.3

Runner-up for highest-rated brand on this list is Land Rover, with two models in our top ten spots. Land Rover has exclusively built four-wheel drive models for over 62 years until 2010, which speaks to their experience in building luxury SUVs.

3. Mazda – Average Rating of 4.3

Completing our top three highest rated brands is Mazda, with an impressive 4.3 average rating across our three publications. Mazda is a Japanese multinational car manufacturer and the Mazda CX-5 is one of the top-selling cars in America in 2021.

The Brands with the Lowest Owner Ratings

1. Perodua – Average Rating of 2.80

Malaysia’s largest car manufacturer, Perodua, scored the lowest average ratings for brands on our list with a 2.8 average rating. Not only the biggest manufacturer in Malaysia, Perodua is expected to become the largest manufacturer of subcompact cars in the whole of Southeast Asia.

2. Mercedes-Benz – Average Rating of 3.75

The German luxury car manufacturer, Mercedes-Benz, came second lowest on our list with an average rating of 3.75. Despite these somewhat low owner reviews, Mercedes-Benz generally has a good reputation for producing quality and durable cars.

3. Nissan – Average Rating of 3.76

Nissian just beat Mercedes-Benz with a rating of 3.76, just 0.01 above. Nissian is a Japanese multinational manufacturer and was the largest manufacturer in North America in 2014. More recently, Nissan has invested in the production of electric vehicles and was the world’s largest producer of electric cars in 2018.

America’s Top Selling Cars with the Highest Owner Ratings

1. Toyota Corolla – average rating of 4.33

Parkers average rating – 3.6

HonestJohn.co.uk average rating – 5.0

AutoTrader average rating – 4.0

Edmunds average rating – 4.7

The Corolla was the 12th most sold car in America and the 3rd most sold car in Japan over 2021 and has an impressive average owner rating of 4.33. This hatchback offers a pairing between comfortable and precise handling with a solid build quality.

2. Mazda CX-5 – average rating of 4.3

Parkers average rating – 4.3

HonestJohn.co.uk average rating – 3.9

AutoTrader average rating – 4.7

Edmunds average rating – 4.3

The Mazda CX-5 is an award-winning luxury family SUV with the highest average rating of 4.3 from our list of America’s top-selling cars. The CX-5 is one of the top selling cars in both America and the UK, and accounted for a whopping 14% increase in Mazda’s sales from 2020 to 2021.

3. Hyundai Tucson – average rating of 4.25

Parkers average rating – 3.8

HonestJohn.co.uk average rating – 4

AutoTrader average rating – 4.6

Edmunds average rating – 4.6

Hyundai’s Tucson is a family SUV that is both well built and practical. With an average rating of 4.25, the Tucson completes our top three highest rated cars out of our top selling American models. With 150,949 units sold, this car was the 22nd most sold model in America over 2021.

Europe’s Top Selling Cars with the Highest Owner Ratings

1. Tesla Model 3 – average rating of 4.53

Parkers average rating – 4.6

HonestJohn.co.uk average rating – 5.0

AutoTrader average rating – 4.5

Edmunds average rating – 4.0

Despite coming from an American company headquartered in California, the Tesla Model 3 is one of Europe’s top-selling cars. Of all the European top-sellers on our list, the Model 3 is the highest rated.

2. Volvo XC40 – Average rating of 4.5

Parkers average rating – 3.9

HonestJohn average rating- 5.0

AutoTrader average rating – 4.6

Edmunds average rating – 4.5

The Volvo XC40 is both the second highest rated car on our list and the second highest rated car out of our European top-sellers. The XC40 is an award-winning vehicle built for city life.

3. Ford Puma – Average rating of 4.43

Parkers average rating – 4.3

HonestJohn average rating- 5.0

AutoTrader average rating – 4.0

Edmunds average rating – N/A

Ford’s Puma was the 20th top-selling car in Europe over 2021, and has a high average rating of 4.43, making it the third highest rated car on our list of European best sellers.

Methodology

We created a list of top selling cars taken from the top-selling models across the world, across Europe, and across America. We then recorded average owner ratings for each model from Parkers, HonestJohn, Autotrader, and Edmunds. Any cars without data from at least three of these sites were removed from the list. An average rating was calculated by averaging the four recorded ratings.

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