Not as small as a compact nor as ungainly as a full-size, the best midsize sedans are perhaps the most versatile of their species. Passenger and trunk space are seldom serious concerns for these machines, and depending on whether you go for an affordable or a luxury option, you’re certain to find one that has all the features you could possibly want in an everyday driver. More than a few of these automobiles pack some serious equipment under their hoods, so those with a taste for adventure are just as likely to find the car of their dreams.
With so many factors to consider when looking to buy, it is a little overwhelming. But we’ve done all the hard work for you. In our reviews, we look at every option out there. From four-door family cars to 2-door speedsters, and from modest high-value-for-money commuters to specced out luxury electric vehicles, we’ve got all the bases covered. Anything you need to know about passenger or cargo space, interior quality, performance and handling, or even tech elements has been assessed by our reviewers, and our high-demand comparisons make it easy to see how your top pick fairs against the competition.
What defines a medium-size sedan?
By trying to meet just about every possible requirement, these machines really can’t afford to do anything poorly if they want to remain competitive. But that does not mean they excel at everything. Each has its own specific strengths and weaknesses, but the segment as a whole has some general rules of thumb.
Practicality - with space for both passengers and cargo
Decent economy - both in terms of initial cost and mileage figures.
Dependability - which includes at least some modern driver-aids
Driveability - not every vehicle is going to wow you, but they should all be comfortable
Not as spacious as larger sedans or SUVs
Less economical than a hatchback
High-performance options are pricey
Most Reliable Midsize Sedan Models
While this list focuses on brands with offerings for 2020, quite a few of these automobiles are in the advanced stages of their production cycle, so you can even find a highly affordable 2017 or 2018 model if any catch your eye. Here are three that make the most reliable midsize sedan roster:
Tesla Model S - Topping our midsize sedan rankings with an almost perfect score is the high-tech electric progeny of Elon Musk. Available in either the regular or S Performance trims, this machine doesn’t come cheap - $79,990 or $99,990, respectively. But, for your money, you receive a vehicle with every possible feature. It is also not lacking in space, with plenty of room in both rows of seats, and a truly impressive 26.3-cubic-foot trunk. Inside it’s less opulent than you’d expect from the price, but the minimalist refinement is actually rather refreshing.
Kia Stinger - Less pricey is the $33,090 offering from Kia. Neither its turbo-four-pot nor twin-turbo V6 engine matches the amazing performance and mileage of the Tesla, but it is still a fun car to drive. Despite the modest price tag, the Stinger is still well-appointed with quality materials and many standard items. The trunk is nothing to sneeze at either, offering 21.8 cubic feet.
Hyundai Sonata - Among the most economical entrants on the market, the Sonata costs as little as $23,600 in its base configuration. Both available engines fail to impress with outright power delivery, but their fuel economy of 28/38/32 mpg or 27/36/31 mpg is no joke. Add to this a well-thought-out cabin with loads of passenger room and a relatively competitive 16-cubic-foot cargo hold, and the highly economical offering from Hyundai manages to make our top five.
What is the best medium-size sedan?
Looking purely at the 2020 list, the Tesla Model S Performance takes the lead by a few integers. However, its high price tag restricts its accessibility. The more accessible Kia Stinger will likely coax more love from the US market, and its simpler design makes it one of the most reliable midsize sedans out there.
What is the most affordable midsize sedan?
There are actually a number of models asking for almost the exact same starting MSRP. The Ford Fusion, Kia Optima, VW Passat, and Honda Insight are all available for under $24k. However, only the Sonata also manages to score over 9.0 on our BuzzScore ranking, earning it a spot among the top midsize sedans on the market.
What is the best-selling medium-sized sedan?
While it may sit squarely in the middle of our rankings, the Toyota Camry is among the most popular 4-door cars in the US market. It is well-priced at $24,45 - $35,130 and achieves really impressive mileage of 29/41/34 mpg. In most other regards, it only covers the bases adequately, with a 15.1-cubic-foot trunk and middling driveability courtesy of its 203-horsepower engine. It offers a slightly more expensive hybrid configuration, though, which is basically a bit better in every way.