Consumers' Favorites: Best Cars for College Graduates


Proving that one can still have fun after college, the top four cars were all driving enthusiasts' favorites. The practical yet sprightly Mazda 3 took 1st place with 15.4 percent of the vote, while the astoundingly agile Scion FR-S nabbed 2nd with 13.4 percent. There was a tie for 3rd, with the peppy Honda Civic Si and refined Volkswagen GTI each earning 11 percent of your votes.

See how the rest of the field did in the full results below and make sure to exercise your right to vote in our next Consumers' Favorites poll.

  1. Mazda Mazda3

    1. Mazda Mazda3 (15.4%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    Purposeful styling, fuel-efficient engines and an ideal ride and handling balance keep the 2014 Mazda 3 among the favorites in the compact car class.

  2. Scion FR-S

    2. Scion FR-S (13.4%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    The FR-S is not your friend's boxy Scion. Sleek styling, rear-wheel drive and sharp handling make the 2014 Scion FR-S one of the most appealing and attainable performance cars sold today.

  3. Honda Civic Si

    3. Honda Civic Si (11.0%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    Honda has made another major round of improvements to the Civic for 2014. As a result, the 2014 Honda Civic is one of the best compact cars you can buy.

  4. Volkswagen GTI

    3. Volkswagen GTI (11.0%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    Based on its total package of performance, comfort and everyday convenience, the 2014 Volkswagen GTI remains one of our top picks for a sporty hatchback.

  5. Toyota Prius

    5. Toyota Prius (6.8%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    The 2014 Toyota Prius remains the quintessential hybrid car and a solid all-around choice, though other, newer hybrids are more enjoyable to drive.

  6. Volkswagen Jetta

    6. Volkswagen Jetta (5.3%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    The Volkswagen Jetta is a pleasantly roomy sedan, and improvements for 2014, including a new turbocharged gas engine, have made it more appealing.

  7. Chevrolet Camaro (V6)

    7. Chevrolet Camaro (V6) (4.8%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    For tire-burning power and Hollywood looks, it doesn't get much better than the 2014 Chevrolet Camaro. The reintroduced Z/28 model is sure to thrill around a racetrack as well.

  8. Ford Mustang (V6)

    8. Ford Mustang (V6) (4.2%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    Even without any dramatic changes for this year, the 2014 Ford Mustang continues to offer style, thrills and value. It's our top pick among muscle cars.

  9. Jeep Cherokee

    8. Jeep Cherokee (4.2%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    The 2014 Jeep Cherokee has more off-road capability than anyone expects from a crossover, but the bigger story is that it's civilized and comfortable enough to drive to work every day. It's worth a look if you're shopping for a small SUV.

  10. Kia Optima

    10. Kia Optima (3.3%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    Thanks to evocative styling and an impressive set of features, the 2014 Kia Optima is one of our top picks for a midsize sedan.

  11. Subaru Forester

    10. Subaru Forester (3.3%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    A full redesign brings better fuel efficiency as well as greater interior room and refinement for the 2014 Subaru Forester. It's a top pick for a small to midsize crossover SUV.

  12. Honda CR-V

    12. Honda CR-V (3.0%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    Roomy, fuel-efficient and loaded with family-friendly features, the 2014 Honda CR-V is our top choice among compact crossover SUVs.

  13. Ford Escape

    13. Ford Escape (2.7%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    The 2014 Ford Escape is one of our favorite small crossover utility vehicles, thanks to athletic driving dynamics, an inviting cabin and useful high-tech features.

  14. Toyota RAV4

    13. Toyota RAV4 (2.7%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    Although the 2014 Toyota RAV4 isn't a standout in any one area, its combination of features, passenger space and everyday utility warrant a closer look if you're shopping for a small crossover.

  15. Mini Cooper

    15. Mini Cooper (2.4%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    It may not be a very practical car, but with its personable, spritely demeanor, the 2014 Mini Cooper is a great pick for a small hatchback or convertible.

  16. Kia Soul

    16. Kia Soul (1.8%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    The 2014 Kia Soul's funky styling and fun-to-drive attitude make it great for city commutes, and its hatchback versatility makes it practical as well.

  17. Kia Forte

    17. Kia Forte (1.5%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    Quality and value are high points on the 2014 Kia Forte, and its sharp new look pushes it toward the head of the compact-car class.

  18. Nissan Rogue

    17. Nissan Rogue (1.5%) - Tie

    What Edmunds.com says:
    With its excellent fuel economy, premium character and available three-row seating, the all-new 2014 Nissan Rogue is an excellent choice for shoppers desiring a comfortable and functional small crossover SUV.

  19. Mazda CX-5

    19. Mazda CX-5 (1.2%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    In many ways, the 2014 Mazda CX-5 is quite a conventional compact crossover. However, its sharp styling and engaging driving experience set it apart from the pack.

  20. Chevrolet Equinox

    20. Chevrolet Equinox (1.0%)

    What Edmunds.com says:
    The 2014 Chevy Equinox is a worthy choice for a small crossover SUV, particularly if you're interested in one with a nice highway ride and an available V6 engine.

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