Inner Beauty for the Masses

Three sedans, two 5-door hatchbacks, two pickup trucks, two CUVs and a minivan round out the 2015 Ward’s 10 Best Interiors, a collection of accessible vehicles from mostly mainstream brands with exemplary passenger compartments.

While last year’s winners included four vehicles priced above $68,000, such as the $372,800 Rolls-Royce Wraith, the 2015 class is downright proletarian: The most expensive interior honored comes in a top-of-the-line version of the all-new Mercedes C-Class sedan, priced at $65,000 with all-wheel drive and a 329-hp bi-turbo V-6.

“It’s important that great interiors be available in every class of vehicle, not just luxury models that most consumers will never be able to afford,” says WardsAuto World Editor-in-Chief Drew Winter.

“In this year’s competition, we saw a lot of evidence that automakers are thinking creatively about interiors and putting a lot of design horsepower into not just luxury vehicles, but pickups, minivans and family sedans. And they are investing more in high-quality trim materials, electronic features and other details that will surprise and delight shoppers,” Winter says.

This year’s winners in alphabetical order with as-tested sticker prices:

  • ’14 BMW i3 ($52,550)
  • ’15 Chrysler 300C Platinum ($51,175)
  • ’15 Ford F-150 King Ranch ($60,675)
  • ’15 GMC Canyon SLT ($40,465)
  • ’15 Honda Fit EX-L ($21,590)
  • ’15 Jeep Renegade Limited ($33,205)
  • ’15 Kia Sedona SXL ($43,295)
  • ’16 Mazda6 Grand Touring ($33,395)
  • ’15 Mercedes C400 ($65,000)
  • ’15 Nissan Murano SL ($41,905)

WardsAuto editors selected the winners after spending February and March evaluating 42 interiors that are all-new or significantly redesigned for the U.S. market.

Each vehicle is scored based on materials, ergonomics, safety, comfort, value and fit-and-finish. In the category of driver information, editors test the user-friendliness of the human-machine interface to see how effectively vehicle information is communicated.

The most important category, worth 20 out of 100 points, is aesthestics and design harmony. Does the color scheme work, and does the interior match or at least complement the exterior styling? Do the individual elements work well together? Does the interior sell the vehicle?

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