Cars.com’s multicar comparison results aren’t magic. Our expert judges spend a week driving and comparing vehicles in the best way anyone can evaluate competitors: back to back. Judges include Cars.com editors and, often, an in-market shopper who take each car on identical routes to uncover the little idiosyncrasies that in some cases can determine the difference between a winner and a loser.
For the 2018 Mid-Size Sedan Challenge comparing the Honda Accord, Nissan Altima and Toyota Camry, judges took each contender for a 90-minute loop on a range of roads around Cars.com’s Chicago headquarters. We also took laps on a one-third-mile closed handling course southwest of the city, with associated exercises — including a simulated evasive maneuver — on a 12,000-square-foot skidpad.
Our judges’ opinions account for a large portion of determining a contestant’s score, but depending on the class, we also include objective scoring in the form of fuel economy, car-seat fitment, safety features and/or crashworthiness, acceleration and braking. Below is how we scored sedans in the 2018 Mid-Size Sedan SUV Challenge.