This month of Editors’ Picks saw a couple of enthusiast vehicles awarded the honor. The first of those two is the new Ford Bronco. We’ve had our hands on a number of Bronco variants, and can say without a doubt that it’s an off-roader you’re going to like. Yes, it’d be great if they were widely available, though that will come in time. Beyond this, we also saw a couple of family-friendly crossovers get the nod. The most notable of these is Mercedes’ new GLB-Class. The little, rounded cube is as cute and good to look at as it is useful and pleasing to drive. We suspect it’s going to be a winner.
In case you missed our previous Editors’ Picks posts, here’s a quick refresher on what’s going on here. We rate all the new cars we drive with a 1-10 score. Cars that are exemplary in their respective segments get Editors’ Pick status. Those are the ones we’d recommend to our friends, family and anybody who’s curious and asks the question. The list that you’ll find below consists of every car we rated in May that earned an Editors’ Pick.
2021 Ford Bronco
Quick take: Ford’s vintage revival lives up to the hype. Nicer to drive than the Wrangler on-road and just as capable off, the Bronco checks every box you’d expect from a modern off-roader.
What it competes with: Jeep Wrangler, Toyota 4Runner, Land Rover Defender
Pros: Stellar retro design, tons of configurations/customization options, great off-roader and reasonably comfortable on-road
Cons: Expensive, initial availability extremely limited, no hybrid option
From the editors:
Associate Editor Byron Hurd — “I absolutely loved driving the Bronco. It bests the Wrangler in a few key categories and is every bit its equal in most others. Now, if only people could buy one … “
Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore — “The Ford Bronco lives up to its hype and heritage with a blend of off-road capability, retro styling and the best daily-driving dynamics in the segment. Finally, the Jeep Wrangler has a worthy rival.”
In-depth analysis: 2021 Ford Bronco First Drive Review | As great as you hoped
2021 Hyundai Santa Fe
Quick take: The Santa Fe splits the difference between the Tucson and Palisade splendidly. It offers multiple solid powertrain options, and the new flashy styling is backed up by great tech and upscale interior.
What it competes with: Honda Passport, Ford Edge, Chevrolet Blazer, Jeep Grand Cherokee, Nissan Murano, VW Atlas Cross Sport, Toyota Venza
Pros: Flashy exterior design, advanced and easy-to-use tech, good value
Cons: The Tucson is a healthy alternative, only average fuel economy for non-hybrid
From the editors:
Road Test Editor Zac Palmer — “The Santa Fe checks all the boxes you might want in a midsize crossover, and I’m an especially big fan of the new hybrid version. Not many cars in this ‘tweener class have great fuel economy, but now there’s one that does. Plus, you can get the Hybrid with a brown interior!
Editor-in-Chief Greg Migliore — “The Santa Fe is an attractive crossover with a premium interior and interesting powertrain lineups — you can get a hybrid — that make it one of the better values in the segment. It translates the Palisade’s best attributes into a smaller package and is a strong value in a competitive segment.”
In-depth analysis: 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe breaks cover with opinion-splitting design, hybrid power
2021 Mercedes-Benz GLB-Class
Quick take: The GLB-Class is supremely utilitarian, looks cute and drives well. Its AMG 35 variant is a proper little performance crossover that only adds to the model’s appeal.
What it competes with: Land Rover Discovery Sport, BMW X1, Audi Q3, Volvo XC40
Pros: Fun to drive, cute looks, top-notch tech, super utilitarian
Cons: Gets expensive quickly, cheaper interior materials for a Mercedes
From the editors:
Road Test Editor Zac Palmer — “The GLB 35 that I drove was a riot in a small but useful package. It makes all the right noises, handles respectably well and has enough space for friends and all your things. If the GLA 35 is an XL hot hatch, the GLB 35 is an XXL hot hatch, and it makes for an awesome do-everything type of car.
Associate Editor Byron Hurd — “I really had no idea what to expect from the GLB 250. It was larger than its specs suggest and quite roomy for its footprint. I wouldn’t call it fun, necessarily, but it’s a lot of car for its size and position.”
In-depth analysis: 2021 Mercedes-Benz GLB-Class Review | What’s new, pricing, specs, features and photos
2021 Toyota Supra
Quick take: The new Supra fulfills the mission of being a super fun and lively sports car. It may not be a Toyota underneath, but there’s no arguing with how great it is to both look and drive.
What it competes with: Ford Mustang, Chevy Camaro, Porsche 718 Cayman, Jaguar F-Type, BMW M2
Pros: Super quick, superb styling, very fun to drive
Cons: Boring interior, outdated tech, four-cylinder model is a rung below
From the editors:
Road Test Editor Zac Palmer — “Setting aside any discussions of who truly made the Toyota Supra, the bottom line is that this two-door coupe is a serious hoot to drive. It’s dialed-in to be a driver’s car, and any enthusiast will have a ball from behind the wheel. Do I wish there was a manual available? Yes, but the eight-speed auto is a good one, and the car as a whole is a rockstar. Just get the six-cylinder, because you’re better off with something else for the four-cylinder’s price.
News Editor Joel Stocksdale — “I’ve had some brief time with a Supra on track, and it’s a lively little thing. It reacts quickly and feels a bit tail happy. It also has a layer of BMW numbness that’s a bit disappointing. But aside from that (and the weird buffeting with the windows down), it’s quite a bit of fun.”
In-depth analysis: 2021 Toyota GR Supra First Drive | More power is good — who knew?