Most-loved cars, a dozen best buys and the road to Hades

There are a lot of good auto blogs online.

We think the RoadLoans blog is one of them, something largely confirmed by monthly views reported by Google Analytics and other rankings of best web sites for car enthusiasts.

What readers may not realize is that RoadLoans is a direct-lending program of Santander Consumer USA (SC), which also has a blog providing more content intended to engage, inform and entertain readers interested in news and trends about or related to cars, trucks and SUVs.

Following are snippets of recent content, and links to the SC posts if you want to read more:

 

Most-loved cars

 

American heart-throbs

It’s all about love.

Thirty-seven vehicles that have captured the hearts of their drivers.

The most-loved brands? Subaru, Ford, Chevrolet and Toyota, each of which garnered multiple Most Loved Vehicle Awards based on the Strategic Vision Customer Love Index (CLI).

The 2016 awards also recognized the best mass-market brand (MINI), best brand under $26,000 (smart), best luxury brand (Porsche) and best full-line corporation (Volkswagen Group of America), plus millennials’ top five mass-market and luxury vehicles.

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KBB’s 12 Best Buys

Let’s call it a baker’s dozen.

Kelley Blue Book’s 12 Best Buy Award winners – plus an overall winner.

That overall Best Buy?

The Honda Civic, which, KBB said, “isn’t just the best compact car money can buy, for the second year in a row we’ve deemed it the best value on the market,” combining qualities that “break this winner loose from the category it occupies and elevate it above the entire market.”

The KBB list is a lot more selective than some other Best Buy lineups, but for those shoppers focused on a specific category of vehicle, some “really helpful” guidance is baked in.

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11-step shopping guide

Shopping for a car is easier said than done.

That being said …

It’s done every day – sometimes by shoppers who don’t know what they’re doing.

We try to make sure you aren’t one of those by sharing the most common steps to shopping for a used car, according to a survey conducted by the website CarStory.com.

While we may quibble about the order in which some of the shopping steps occur – and, yes, we have several quibbles – there is a common sense to following them.

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The road to Hades

There’s an old saying that the road to Hades is paved with good intentions.

But if you live in the states or cities with the worst roads in America, you might be willing to drive any road that has decent pavement.

“Keeping the wheel steady on America’s roads and highways has become increasingly challenging as drivers encounter potholes and pavement deterioration,” said TRIP, a national transportation research group based in Washington, D.C., in its recent report “Bumpy Roads Ahead.”

But the streets and highways in some cities are especially bad, according to the research group’s report.

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