NADAguides vs Car and Driver

Both Car and Driver and Nadaguides (National Appraisal Guides) relay pricing information about autos that help users with their purchasing & selling decisions. And while the latter also provides the same information on Motorcycles, RVs, Powersports, and Boats, the former seems to primarily focus on pricing data, news, buzz, etc. around autos only. Learn more below.

National Appraisal Guides (NADAguides)

When we attempt to value a used vehicle we use a number of data points. These data points include, but are not limited to, actual wholesale transactions (around 80% of the market with our relationship with NAAA) and retail transactions (through our relationship with J.D. Power and their PIN data which is obtained their actual Dealer Management Systems), as well as asking price information from www.autotrader.com. In addition, we have data from various OEMs and wholesalers and retailers of used vehicles that provide us the amounts for which they paid and sold their vehicles. We also take into consideration MSRP, invoice, equipment assumptions, as well as supply and demand and other macro- and micro-economic factors and the competitive landscape of vehicles. Our retail value is what a person could reasonably pay for a vehicle at a dealer’s lot. Our values are designed and intended to assist users in performing their own valuation of a particular used vehicle. The process by which users of NADAguides determine valuation is inherently subjective. Individual vehicles may have an actual value that is higher or lower than the estimated values created by us.


NADA has been around for over 80 years and is the premier valuation guide in the used vehicle industry. Customers include, but are not limited to: dealers, wholesalers, rental car companies, insurance companies, lending institutions, OEMs, government agencies, as well as individual consumers. We attempt to create the most accurate, market-reflective, unbiased vehicle values and we believe we do so each and every time one of our products is presented to the outside world.


NADAguides is additionally known as a credible source for pricing outside of the automobile industry. Comprehensive pricing data is also published for powersports, recreational vehicles, boats and manufactured housing.

Car and Driver

Car and Driver, or C/D, began as a magazine in 1955, centered on the sports car world. It rebranded itself in 1961 to appeal to a greater range of automotive enthusiasts and buyers. Currently, it stands at 62 in the top circulated magazines in the country with over 1.2 million subscribers. The digital edition and website continue this mission to give readers the straight talk about cars. C/D differs from NADAguides with its razor focus on automobiles. It is user-cordial when it comes to buying a car. It’s an excellent place to research vehicles and learn about the latest industry developments.

The site provides comprehensive coverage of industry news, with a bent toward innovation, prototypes, and sports cars. It has detailed buying guides by body style. The reviews are unabashed, giving readers both the good and bad about each vehicle in encyclopedic detail. They provide information on new features for the model year and a breakdown of the major components with a leading summary.

C/D also features comparison tests of comparable vehicles. They are also thorough with a discussion of firsthand use that is peppered with insider observations of the test drivers. They take the cars through all the hoops with mentions of comfort, noise levels, and amenities. They don’t take the manufacturer’s word on gas mileage or performance, examining the vehicles themselves.

The reviews are meaty and may overwhelm individuals who are not familiar with automobiles to that degree. However, they also provide detailed specs, pricing information, and fuel economy to give would-be buyers the intel they need to make an informed decision. While its emphasis is clearly on new cars, the site provides information on used and certified pre-owned vehicles too.

The search tool is detailed, allowing users to filter options by make, color, and a full list of features. The website rates choices as good or great deals, based on the price versus the market value. The individual listings provide a full lineup of amenities and specs. Seller notes offer additional information about the vehicle’s history and ownership.

Other tools allow users to determine the price of their trade-ins, with data from Black Book. It is up-to-date and published daily. There is also a comparison option to view choices side-by-side. The results provide an overwhelming list of specs, features, and warranty. They also include safety ratings and crash test results. Again, the bias leans toward newer vehicles.

The C/D website has an expansive library of articles that cover everything automotive from the best vehicles for the apocalypse to the top portable grills. It also includes the industry news with an emphasis on changes for the next model year, technological innovations, and buzz about the manufacturers.