1975 Mercedes-Benz 450SEL, Best Cars of 1975
The Mercedes-Benz 450SEL was the 1975 Consumer Guide luxury-category Best Buy.

According to Consumer Guide© Auto ’75, Best Buy selections are, “chosen on the basis of market research into what buyers in each category are seeking in their cars; and on a straight-forward, dollars-and-cents evaluation of what buyers are getting in quality, durability, economy, and function.”

Best Cars of 1975

Things really haven’t changed much in the four decades since that passage was written. In fact, for a look at Consumer Guide©’s 2014 Best buys, click here.

Back in ’75 we awarded Best Buy status to one vehicle in each of nine categories. Here’s the breakdown:

Consumer Guide Magazine
Consumer Guide’s 1975 Best Buys were revealed in Consumer Guide Auto ’75.


Subcompacts: Chevrolet Vega

Compacts:    Chevrolet Nova

Sports Cars: Chevrolet Monza 2+2

Intermediates: Oldsmobile Cutlass

Standards: Plymouth Gran Fury

Upper Standards: Chrysler Newport

Personal Luxury: Chrysler Cordoba

Luxury: Mercedes-Benz 450 SEL

Imported Sports Car: Datsun 260Z


Almost 40 years later, we aren’t going to try and defend calling the Chevrolet Monza a sports car.

Plymouth Gran Fury was the 1975 standard-class Best Buy.

We would like to call attention to the awardee in the luxury category. Given that the editors of Consumer Guide© are—and always have been–the kind of guys that wouldn’t visit the emergency room without a Groupon, it’s worth noting that the chosen vehicle had a base price of around $15,000. To put that in perspective, the Lincoln Continental sedan started at just over $9500.

Still, the Consumer Guide© editors of 1975 make a power case for favoring the Mercedes-Benz 450SEL over all rivals, citing mostly engineering and build quality. We invite you to read the original effusive praise provided below.

 Also, note references to the coming Cadillac Seville in the text below as the “LaSalle.”

Our Apologies: The Personal Luxury Cars of 1975


1975 Consumer Guide

More cars of 1975

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