Radio Road Test Data Page
What we test:
Test times are measured with a KAT Three Axis Matrix Accelerometer. We also measure the number of g's generated during the most likely emergency situation faced by drivers, which is a panic stop from 30 miles an hour (for example, when a car stops short in traffic in front of you). The amount of force generated depends on the vehicle's weight, efficiency of the brakes, and the friction between the tires and the pavement.
Mileage observations will vary dependent on the test. Most of the test driving is done on the highway, but a significant part is logged in traffic and other urban areas, where stop and go driving is more prevalent. The type of driving when the observation is made will be mentioned in the program. We use Environmental Protection Agency Fuel Economy Estimates (City and Highway) for comparison purposes. You can find out more about those ratings at the EPA Fuel Economy Website.
From time to time we will mention warranty information, and data derived from crash testing performed by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (or the Feds, as we call them on the program). You can find out more about safety ratings at the NHTSA Safety Rating Website.
Pricing information is derived from the manufacturer's suggested retail price as displayed on the "Monroney" window sticker.
Other than the protocols above, the road tests are conducted in the real world, on freeways and back roads and in traffic--the conditions all drivers deal with. The tests strive to present a mix of American and foreign cars and light trucks in all market segments...from luxury, to economy to all out performance. The tests strive to be as neutral as possible, so you can make your own conclusions. We do mention things we like and don't. If there is an element that could be added to our test protocol that might make the test more relevant to listeners, then reach out to us by e-mail, Twitter, Facebook or blog (see our Contact Page for that information.). You can also visit our broadcast archive page, to find links which will allow you to download an mp3 copy of the most recent and some of our permanent milestone road tests at no charge.