In the J.D. Power APEAL survey, the Dodge (Credit: Dodge)

In the J.D. Power APEAL survey, the Dodge Challenger was top-ranked in the Midsize Sporty Car category. It was one of three Dodge models to top a category in the survey.

J.D. Power survey reveals 12 appealing cars

An annual survey by J.D. Power shows consumer satisfaction levels with a variety of cars across an array of segments.

The 2014 U.S. Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout (APEAL) Study found that all-new and redesigned models continue to see a rise in APEAL scores compared with carry-over models (805 vs. 791, respectively). While satisfaction with fuel economy and interior styling is higher among owners of all-new models vs. those of carry-over models, drivers said there is less differentiation in terms of the usefulness of the controls and functions for navigation, voice recognition and other technology applications.

“Manufacturers often look to new features and technologies to keep their vehicles fresh and attractive, but designing systems that consumers find intuitive and easy to use has been a challenge,” said Renee Stephens, vice president of U.S. automotive at J.D. Power.

The overall APEAL score in 2014 averages 794, which is a 1-point decrease from 2013. Fuel economy is the only category in which there has been improvement year over year, but Stephens noted that the segment remains the lowest-scoring category in the study by a wide margin.

Below are the top cars as rated by segment in the J.D. Power survey.

Small Car

The Hyundai Accent topped the Ford Fiesta and
(Credit: Hyundai)

The Hyundai Accent topped the Ford Fiesta and Chevrolet Sonic as the top car in the Small Car segment.

Compact Car

The first of three Dodge models to sit
(Credit: Dodge)

The first of three Dodge models to sit atop this segment in the J.D. Power survey, the Dodge Dart finished ahead of the Volkswagen Beetle and Nissan Sentra.

Compact Premium Car

The BMW 4 Series sits atop the Compact
(Credit: BMW)

The BMW 4 Series sits atop the Compact Premium Car segment, with Audi's A5 and A4 models in its rearview mirror.

Compact Sport Car

The Volkswagen GTI was ranked as the top
(Credit: VW)

The Volkswagen GTI was ranked as the top car in the Compact Sport Car segment. The Hyundai Veloster and MINI Cooper finished second and third respectively.

Compact Premium Sporty Car

Looking for a solid upscale compact sports car.
(Credit: Porsche)

Looking for a solid upscale compact sports car. Then you might want to take a look at what Porsche is offering. The Boxster finished atop the Compact Premium Sporty Car segment, with its sister car, the Cayman, finishing second.

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Midsize Car

Topping the Midsize Car segment on the J.D.
(Credit: Mazda)

Topping the Midsize Car segment on the J.D. Power list is the Mazda 6, which beat the Kia Optima and Hyundai Sonata.

Midsize Sporty Car

Looking for a midsize sports car? Then the
(Credit: Dodge)

Looking for a midsize sports car? Then the Dodge Challenger may be the car for you. In fact, the Challenger — at least according to the J.D. Power survey — is the only car in the segment that appealed to survey respondents.

Midsize Premium Car

The first of two Mercedes-Benz to receive top
(Credit: Mercedes-Benz)

The first of two Mercedes-Benz to receive top rankings, the CLS Class topped the Midsize Premium Car segment. For the second time in the survey (see the Compact Premium Car segment) two Audi models, this time the A7 and A8, finished second and third respectively.

Midsize Premium Sporty Car

The Porsche 911 was ranked No. 1 in
(Credit: Porsche)

The Porsche 911 was ranked No. 1 in the Midsize Premium Sporty Car segment. Coming in second was the Chevrolet Corvette followed by the Jaguar F-Type.

Large Car

Top-ranked in the Large Car segment, the Charger
(Credit: Dodge)

Top-ranked in the Large Car segment, the Charger is the third Dodge model to sit atop a segment in the J.D. Power APEAL study. In this segment, the Chevrolet SS and Kia Cadenza finished second and third respectively.

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Large Premium Car (tie)

The Large Premium Car segment was the only
(Credit: Audi)

The Large Premium Car segment was the only one in the survey with a tie. The Audi A8, shown, finished deadlocked with the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.

Large Premium Car (tie)

The Mercedes-Benz S-Class, shown, tied with the Audi
(Credit: Mercedes-Benz)

The Mercedes-Benz S-Class, shown, tied with the Audi A8 in the Large Premium Car segment.