Jack Gillis and the Center for Auto Safety Reveal “Best Bets” among the 2016 Vehicles in 36th Edition of The Car Book


The Center for Auto Safety is the nation’s premier independent, member driven, non-profit consumer advocacy organization dedicated to improving vehicle safety, quality, and fuel economy on behalf of all drivers, passengers, and pedestrians.

For Immediate Release                                           CONTACT: Richard Eckman
May 2, 2016                                                                     202-737-0766, [email protected]
For additional information and media copies


Jack Gillis and the Center for Auto Safety Reveal  “Best Bets” among the 2016 Vehicles in 36th Edition of The Car Book

Washington, DC – Jack Gillis’s THE CAR BOOK 2016, published in cooperation with the Center for Auto Safety, the nation’s leading automotive safety advocacy organization, identifies this year’s automotive Best Bets.  For 36 years, Gillis, a noted consumer advocate and auto safety expert, and the Center for Auto Safety have compiled the information consumers need to purchase a safe and reliable vehicle—totally unbiased and advertising free.


Honda Odyssey (8)

Chevrolet Sonic (10)
Honda Fit (7)
Kia Soul (7)

Buick Verano (10)
Toyota Corolla (9)
BMW 3 Series (8)
Mazda Mazda3 (8)
Volkswagen Jetta (7) 

Acura TLX (10)
Volvo S60 (10)
Honda Accord (10)
Hyundai Sonata (10)
Chrysler 200 (9)
Audi A6 (8)
Chevrolet Malibu (8) 

Tesla Model S (10)
Cadillac XTS (9)
Buick LaCrosse (8)
Toyota Avalon (8)
Hyundai Genesis (7)

Acura RDX (10)
Buick Encore (10)
Chevrolet Trax (9)

Volvo XC60 (10)
Ford Edge (9)
Honda Pilot (8)

Lincoln Navigator (9)
Ford Expedition (7)
Toyota Highlander (7)

Ford F-150 (9)

Note on The Car Book Ratings: The number following the vehicle is the overall Car Book 1-10 comparative rating (10 being the best). The rating includes: crash safety, fuel economy, repair and maintenance costs, warranties, insurance costs, rollover, safety features and complaint history.  Because safety is a key element in the Gillis ratings, vehicles that do not have government crash test ratings are not given an overall rating.

For 36 years, The Car Book has been guiding consumers to the safest and best performing vehicles in an unbiased, straightforward, easy to understand format. “Our goal is simple,” said Clarence Ditlow, Executive Director, Center for Auto Safety, “to empower consumers by providing relevant information about the most complex purchase they make.”

“Thanks to the information in The Car Book, consumers are able to ‘vote’ with their hard earned dollars for the best performers and that has put enormous pressure on the car makers to improve,” said Gillis.

As a Revived Auto Industry Breaks Sales Records, Still Struggling Consumers Need All the Help They Can Get When Buying a Car.

Today, thanks to The Car Book, information about moon roofs, stylized interiors and speed has given way to critically important information, on safety features, crash test performance, fuel economy, and operating costs. The Car Book helps consumers make one of their most difficult buying decisions, one of their best decisions.

Along with ratings for most of the 2016 models, The Car Book will help consumers with:

  • Buying vs. Leasing?—Leasing will cost more.
  • Which cars have advanced safety features that meet voluntary government standards?— Mercedes-Benz C, E, & S Class, Tesla Model S, Volvo S60, and Volvo XC70 have Crash Imminent Braking and Lane Keeping Assist.
  • Which companies offer free maintenance for the first 4 or 5 years?—Cadillac, BMW
  • Which companies offer the best warranties— Hyundai, Mitsubishi, and Tesla
  • How do you factor in repair costs?—Nine typical repairs will cost you about $2,800 in a Kia Forte vs. $5,200 in a Mitsubishi Lancer…About $3900 in a Ford Expedition and almost $7,000 in a Toyota Highlander…Changing the water pump in a Ford Flex will cost $1,047 compared to the Lincoln Navigator, which is only $275 for the same repair. 

History of The Car Book

In 1980, under Jack Gillis’ direction while at NHTSA’s Office of Automotive Ratings, the government published the first edition of The Car Book. It became the most popular publication the government offered. Under pressure from the car makers, who didn’t want this information made available to the public, the Reagan Administration killed the book. The next year, to the great consternation of the government and the auto industry, Gillis left NHTSA and continued publishing the book in cooperation with the Center for Auto Safety.

The Car Book was the first to compile complex safety and performance data on new model cars and gave consumers access to information they were previously denied. The Car Book translates complicated data, such as crash test scores, into a simple, easy to understand index. Since Gillis began providing consumers with access to this information, the auto industry has been forced to respond: Cars have become safer, warranties have improved, and the government has adopted a simpler system for its crash ratings.

To arrange interviews or receive review copies, contact:

Richard Eckman in Washington, DC at (202) 737-0766 or [email protected]

THE CAR BOOK is available through the Center for Auto Safety here.  Sales through the non-profit Center for Auto Safety, an independent consumer group founded in 1970 to improve vehicle/highway safety and quality benefit their efforts.  Book sellers contact Baker and Taylor.  The book is also available through Amazon.com.