Best-Selling New Cars in America

© Ford Motor CompanyMost Popular
A full year of auto sales figures for 2021 are now on the books. Although signs indicate the auto industry is still struggling after a tumultuous 2020 due to the ongoing chip shortage affecting new car supply, overall sales for 2021 were up by about 3.4 percent, with the total number of vehicles sold coming in around 15 million units. For the first time ever, General Motors is not at the top of the U.S. sales ladder — Toyota outsold the Detroit automotive giant last year. Several car companies reported declining sales for the final months of 2021, although most of the vehicles on this list have positive sales for the full year. What follows are the best-selling new cars in America during 2021, according to numbers compiled from individual automaker sales reports.

© American Honda Motors25. Honda HR-V
2021 Sales: 137,090
Vs. 2020: 63.1%
The smallest SUV in Honda’s lineup, the HR-V had a strong sales increase for 2021 — one that moved it into the top 25 best-selling vehicles for the first time ever. Introduced as a 2016 model, the HR-V received exterior updates for 2019 including a new grille, headlights and taillights; revised bumpers; and two new trim levels. The 2022 HR-V is now on sale in four trim levels: LX, Sport, EX and EX-L, and all are offered in front- or all-wheel drive. Power comes from a 1.8-liter i-VTEC engine producing 141 horsepower and 127 lb-ft of torque, combined with a continuously variable transmission.

© American Honda Motors24. Honda Pilot
2021 Sales: 143,062
Vs. 2020: 15.5%
As with most vehicles, the pandemic impacted sales of Honda’s largest SUV early in 2020; however, buyers have returned and sales ended on a positive note in 2021. Honda refreshed the Pilot for the 2019 model year with more aggressive exterior styling, an available hands-free power tailgate, powertrain refinements, and an available Display Audio touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Under the hood resides a 3.5-liter 280-horsepower V6 engine driving the front wheels; all-wheel drive is available. For 2022 Honda adds the entry-level Pilot Sport with standard 2WD, as well as the off-road-ready Pilot TrailSport with raised ground clearance and bolder exterior styling.

© Toyota Motor Sales USA23. Toyota 4Runner
2021 Sales: 144,696
Vs. 2020: 12.1%
After 35 years, Toyota’s 4Runner remains one of the few truck-based SUVs left on the market. This highly capable contender has a loyal following and sales ended on a high note for 2021. The 4Runner continues to be powered by a 4.0-liter V6 engine producing 270 horsepower and 278 lb-ft of torque delivered through a 5-speed automatic transmission. Even though all 4Runners are ready for off-road adventure, Toyota adds a 4Runner TRD Sport to the lineup for the 2022 model year. Designed to complement the TRD Off-Road and TRD Pro versions, the TRD Sport gets unique color-keyed accents on the grille, rocker panels and body molding with an emphasis on everyday driving dynamics.

© Ford Motor Company22. Ford Escape
2021 Sales: 145,415
Vs. 2020: –18.5%
At one time this small 5-seat crossover from Ford had been the best-selling American-brand SUV; however, sales declined in 2020 with little recovery in 2021. Lower, wider and longer than its predecessor, the Escape was all new for the 2020 model year sporting looks that are a significant departure from the previous generation. The front-end styling looks surprisingly similar to those on Ford’s now discontinued passenger cars, rather than the brand’s SUVs. The Escape is available with a choice of four engines; the standard unit is a 3-cylinder 1.5-liter EcoBoost producing 180 horsepower. Ford also offers the Escape Hybrid, available as a standard hybrid as well as a plug-in version.

© Hyundai Motor America21. Hyundai Tucson
2021 Sales: 150,949
Vs. 2020: 22.1%
In 2020 Tucson sales in the U.S. were down but rebounded nicely in 2021, thanks in part to the arrival of the redesigned 2022 model. The new Tucson is longer, wider and taller than the previous version, and has lower, wider headlights and daytime running lights that seem to be an extension of the grille. The profile reveals a chrome accent that begins at the mirror and follows the shape of the roof. Tucson’s standard powertrain is a 161-horsepower 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine with an 8-speed automatic transmission. An available hybrid drivetrain pairs a turbocharged 1.6-liter gasoline engine with a 44.2 kW electric motor and 1.49 kWh battery pack for an estimated total system output of 226 horsepower and 258 lb-ft of torque.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience20. Subaru Outback
2021 Sales: 154,623
Vs. 2020: 0.9%
Sales of the popular Outback were strong during the first half of 2021, but the microchip shortage affected this popular model. Sales in the second half of 2021 fell, with the end result being no change from 2020. The latest Subaru built on the company’s global platform, the Outback underwent updates last year with fresh exterior styling, many new features, a greatly improved interior, updated powertrains and the latest version of EyeSight — Subaru’s suite of advanced safety technology. EyeSight includes adaptive cruise control, pre-collision braking, lane departure warning and lane-keeping assist. All Outbacks feature Subaru’s Symmetrical all-wheel drive with active torque vectoring, vehicle dynamics control and a generous 8.7-inches of ground clearance. For 2021 Subaru added the Outback Wilderness to the lineup — the most rugged, capable Outback the company has ever built.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience19. Subaru Forester
2021 Sales: 154,723
Vs. 2020: –12.6%
Subaru introduced an all-new Forester in 2019, and it is one of the few models that had some sales success during a difficult 2020. Unfortunately the Forester is also falling prey to supply issues so overall sales are slightly behind last year. For 2022 Subaru adds the Forester Wilderness, and the entire Forester lineup has new exterior styling for the new model year as well, including a redesigned grille, a new front bumper, LED headlights, a revised lower rear bumper and new exterior trim details. Easily identified by its distinctive copper exterior accents, the Forester Wilderness receives upgraded suspension, all-terrain tires, a revised drivetrain, standard X-MODE and 9.2 inches of ground clearance to become the most off-road-capable Forester ever.

© Mazda North America18. Mazda CX-5
2021 Sales: 163,940
Vs. 2020: 12.7%
The Mazda CX-5 made a big comeback from a slow-selling 2020, ending with a significant sales increase in 2021. Adopting the styling of the larger CX-9, the CX-5 is refined in nearly every way with a revised chassis, an updated SKYACTIV-G 2.5-liter gasoline engine, a new interior and many available features. For 2019 Mazda added the Grand Touring Reserve and Signature trim levels, both powered by the turbocharged SKYACTIV-G 2.5T engine, rated at 250 horsepower and 320 lb-ft of torque with premium fuel; i-ACTIV all-wheel drive is standard. The new Carbon Edition includes Polymetal Gray paint, gloss black door mirrors, 19-inch black metallic aluminum alloy wheels and red leather seats.

© General Motors17. Chevrolet Equinox
2021 Sales: 165,323
Vs. 2020: –39.0%
Chevrolet’s second-best-selling vehicle after the full-size Silverado pickup, Equinox sales are continuing to perform poorly compared to 12 months earlier. This may change when the new Equinox arrives for the 2022 model year. The updated model features refreshed styling with a new grille, slim LED headlights and new LED daytime running lights. The new Equinox has a long list of standard safety features including an updated infotainment system with an available 8-inch display screen, as well as Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity. Power will come from a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine producing 170 horsepower.

© American Honda Motors16. Honda Accord
2021 Sales: 202,676
Vs. 2020: 1.6%
Although still one of the best-selling passenger cars in America, the Honda Accord has not experienced great sales success since its last major redesign for the 2018 model year. And even though the Accord had a sales increase in 2020, chip supply issues kept those gains to a minimum. Available in a range of trim levels, the refreshed 2021 Accord has updated styling and additional safety features. Inside, an 8-inch display screen is now standard on all trim levels, as are Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. The fuel-efficient Accord Hybrid gets powertrain updates to improve throttle response while still delivering close to 50 mpg.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience15. Jeep Wrangler
2021 Sales: 204,610
Vs. 2020: 1.6%
As with many vehicles on this list, the iconic Jeep Wrangler experienced a sales decline in the latter part of 2021; however, thanks to a strong first half the Wrangler maintained a small sales increase for year overall. The latest-generation Wrangler premiered for the 2018 model year — the first redesign of this iconic off-roader in a decade. Jeep stayed true to the original model, retaining the 7-slot grille and round headlights, although the grille is taller and wider and the big headlights have a stylish LED halo around the outer bezel. The latest Wrangler is much more refined on road without losing any of its legendary off-road capability. For 2021 Jeep added two significant versions — the Wrangler 4xe plug-in hybrid and the 470-horsepower Wrangler Rubicon 392.

© Ford Motor Company14. Ford Explorer
2021 Sales: 219,871
Vs. 2020: –2.8%
Explorer is one of the few vehicles in America that posted positive gains in 2020, but sales ended up slightly lower for 2021. Ford engineers updated the Explorer for the 2020 model year with an all-new rear-wheel-drive flexible architecture designed to improve ride, handling and overall capability. Ford also added two variants to the Explorer lineup — the Hybrid and the ST. The latter boasts a 400-horseower EcoBoost engine and is responsible for almost 20 percent of total Explorer sales. The Explorer features Co-Pilot360 — a suite of advanced safety features including automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection and post-impact braking. For 2021 Ford added the Explorer Timberline, a new trim level for the popular full-size SUV that offers a more rugged overland appearance backed by engineering updates and new equipment to improve off-road performance.

© General Motors13. GMC Sierra
2021 Sales: 248,924
Vs. 2020: –1.6%
The best-seller in the GMC lineup, the Sierra’s 2021 sales dropped slightly compared to 2020. Similar to its Chevrolet Silverado sibling, a completely new Sierra pickup rolled out for the 2019 model year. Larger in practically every dimension, the new Sierra boasts a range of comfort, convenience and safety features. One standout is the truck’s MultiPro Tailgate, which offers six positions for easier loading; it can also be used as a standing workstation. A range of engine / transmission options are available, including a new 2.7-liter turbo and a new turbodiesel powertrain. For 2022 GMC adds the Sierra Denali Ultimate — the most luxurious Sierra the company has ever offered. Also new is the off-road-ready Sierra AT4X.

© Toyota Motor Sales, USA12. Toyota Corolla
2021 Sales: 248,993
Vs. 2020: 5.0%
Toyota rolled out an all-new Corolla last year; although the new model didn’t result in a sales boost at the time, the 2021 sales year did end up showing improvement. The Corolla — along with a Corolla Hybrid — features updated styling with a wider stance as well as signature LED headlights and a range of new features. Three powertrains are available, including an efficient hybrid system that has a U.S. EPA fuel-economy rating of more than 50 mpg. Toyota equips all levels of the new Corolla with Toyota Safety Sense 2.0. This suite of advanced safety features includes automatic emergency braking, lane departure alert with steering assist, automatic high-beam headlights and road sign recognition. For 2022 Toyota expands the Corolla lineup additional Apex and Nightshade editions.

© Toyota Motor Sales, USA11. Toyota Tacoma
2021 Sales: 252,520
Vs. 2020: 5.7%
Toyota’s popular midsize pickup began staging a sales comeback at the end of 2020 that continued through 2021. The truck had its last full redesign for the 2016 model year, showcasing a more aggressive look, a new V6 engine, a smoother ride and stellar off-road capability. The Tacoma is available in several configurations with two cab styles, two bed lengths, five trim levels and a choice of 2WD or 4WD. Last year the Tacoma received a new grille and wheel designs for most trim levels, as well as an upgraded audio system with a larger touchscreen and Android Auto, Apple CarPlay and Amazon Alexa compatibility. For 2022 Toyota adds a new Trail Edition to the Tacoma lineup, featuring a lifted suspension and a standard locking rear differential for better off-road performance.

© American Honda Motors10. Honda Civic
2021 Sales: 263,787
Vs. 2020: 1.0%
Although Civic sales were down earlier in 2021, overall the popular sedan continues to hold its own. Now in its 11th generation since its introduction in 1973, the 2022 Honda Civic is built on a new stronger platform with fresh exterior styling. The new model features a longer hood for a more premium look, further enhanced by LED lights front and back. The interior has a high-tech vibe thanks to an available LCD driver’s display, as well as a 9-inch HD touchscreen display with wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto integration. Two engine choices are available — a 2.0-liter or 1.5-liter turbocharged unit, both teamed with a continuously variable transmission. The CVT is designed for better response as well as improved fuel economy.

© Toyota Motor Sales USA9. Toyota Highlander
2021 Sales: 264,128
Vs. 2020: 24.4%
All new for the 2020 model year, the Toyota Highlander had positively trending 2020 numbers until last March, when sales dropped in keeping with the rest of the market. Since then the updated crossover has staged a comeback. The fourth generation of this popular crossover gets built on Toyota’s New Global Architecture and is available with premium projector headlights and a 3.5-liter V6 engine that produces a plentiful 295 horsepower and 263 lb-ft of torque — enough power to provide a maximum towing capacity of 5,000 pounds when properly equipped. The Japan-based automaker also offers a Highlander Hybrid possessing great performance via a fuel-efficient gas-electric powertrain. For 2022 Toyota adds the Highlander Hybrid Bronze Edition with unique styling and premium features.

© Stellantis North America8. Jeep Grand Cherokee
2021 Sales: 264,444
Vs. 2020: 26.1%
Jeep’s time-honored SUV is experiencing a healthy recovery after a difficult 2020, primarily due to the introductions of the all-new 2022 Grand Cherokee and Grand Cherokee L. Grand Cherokee L is 15 inches longer than the standard Grand Cherokee and offers a third-row seat for the first time. Like the Grand Cherokee L, the updated two-row 2022 Grand Cherokee — as well as the hybrid Grand Cherokee 4xe — features slim LED headlights, a smaller forward-leaning 7-slot grille, a roof that tapers to the rear spoiler and slim wraparound taillights. Initial engine choices are a 3.6-liter Pentastar V6 and a 5.7-liter HEMI V8.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience7. Nissan Rogue
2021 Sales: 285,602
Vs. 2020: 25.3%
Nissan’s small crossover sales have bounced back significantly after a slow 2020, and Rogue remains the best-selling vehicle in the Nissan lineup. The automaker capitalized on this trend with the introduction of an all-new 2021 Rogue. Built on a new platform with fresh styling, advanced safety features and a family friendly interior, the latest Rogue features a long list of standard equipment across all trim levels including LED headlights and taillights and alloy wheels, as well as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity. Access to the rear seat improves in the new model thanks to rear doors that open nearly 90 degrees — much wider than the previous generation.

© Toyota Motor Sales, USA6. Toyota Camry
2021 Sales: 313,795
Vs. 2020: 6.6%
The Toyota Camry experienced slow sales toward the end of 2021, but still managed to maintain an overall increase to retain its position as the best-selling passenger car in America for the 20th year. Toyota introduced the eighth-generation Camry a few years ago, and for 2021 this best-seller received updated exterior styling, interior improvements, and the latest version of the company’s Safety Sense 2.0 suite of safety features. For those seeking even more performance, Toyota offers the Camry TRD with performance suspension and brakes, more aggressive styling and a cat-back exhaust system.

© American Honda Motors5. Honda CR-V
2021 Sales: 361,271
Vs. 2020: 7.7%
The CR-V experienced a steep decline in December sales compared to a year earlier, but overall the CR-V is still standing strong and remains the best-selling model of the Honda lineup. Last year Honda refreshed the CR-V’s exterior and added the first hybrid variant. Similar to the Honda Accord Hybrid, the all-wheel-drive CR-V Hybrid uses a 2-motor powertrain that teams dual electric motors with a 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle engine for a combined output of 212 horsepower, making it the most powerful variant in the CR-V lineup.

© Toyota Motor Sales USA4. Toyota RAV4
2021 Sales: 407,739
Vs. 2020: –5.3%
Although Toyota’s RAV4 experienced a slight sales decline last year, it still retains its spot as the best-selling SUV in America. One of the original compact crossovers on American roads, the RAV4 was completely redone in 2019 with bold new styling, improved capability, increased performance and an array of new safety and convenience features. In addition to the updated styling and efficient powertrains, the RAV4 features automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection and lane departure alert as standard equipment. For 2021 Toyota added the RAV4 Prime plug-in hybrid to the lineup, offering better fuel efficiency as well as much higher performance.

© General Motors3. Chevrolet Silverado
2021 Sales: 529,765
Vs. 2020: –10.8%
The longtime best-seller of the Chevrolet lineup, the full-size Silverado pickup truck experienced a sales drop in 2021 — enough that it fell to third position in overall U.S. sales. Chevrolet hopes to reverse that trend with the introduction of a 2022 Silverado with updated exterior styling as well as a revised interior with enhanced technology. Higher-level trims get a new 13.4-inch display screen and available Super Cruise driver-assistance technology. Also new is the Silverado ZR2, which takes its place as the flagship of the Silverado lineup with impressive off-road capability direct from the factory.

© Perry Stern, Automotive Content Experience2. Ram Pickup
2021 Sales: 569,388
Vs. 2020: 1.0%
Ram introduced an all-new 1500 pickup in 2019 and followed shortly thereafter with the Ram Heavy Duty. Sales continue to show strong results — the big truck has overtaken Chevrolet to become the second-best-selling vehicle in America for 2021. The Ram features bold exterior styling and the interior is one of the nicest on the market. Multiple trim levels are available, as well as a new lineup of powertrains that includes a powerful diesel and eventually a hybrid system. The updated Ram Heavy Duty now boasts a new diesel with 1,075 lb-ft of torque providing a 37,100-pound towing capacity. For 2021 Ram added the high-performance 702-horsepower TRX, designed for tackling off-road terrain at high speeds.

© Ford Motor Company1. Ford F-Series
2021 Sales: 726,004
Vs. 2020: –7.8%
With annual sales that far outpace the competition, the Ford F-Series extended its streak in 2021 as the best-selling vehicle in America for 40 years — 45 years as best-selling truck. Even though sales were down slightly in 2021, Ford’s large truck offering easily retains its No. 1 spot thanks to the introduction of the new 2021 F-150. With fresh styling, an updated interior, a new hybrid powertrain, a range of innovative and versatile new features and a class-leading 14,000-pound towing capacity, the 2021 Ford F-150 will likely continue the F-Series juggernaut. Earlier in 2021 Ford debuted the first all-electric F-150 Lightning which will arrive in showrooms later this year.

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