Top 5 Cheapest-to-Own Cars | Car Buying Tips

Top 5 Cheapest-to-Own Cars

When buying a car, remember to look beyond the sticker price. Owning a car is much more than simply purchasing it. Consider maintenance cost, insurance, taxes, registration fees, fuel economy, and standard features. If you are looking for a car that is cheap to own, paying a bit higher initial price may be worth it in the long run.

Kelly Blue Book (KBB) researches and keeps track of all vehicle ownership costs and publishes its 5-Year Cost to Own Awards annually. They calculate how much it costs to own a given car over a period of five years in 22 different categories. Based on this research, we present you the top 5 cheapest-to-own vehicles for 2018.

1. Chevrolet Spark

Top 5 Cheapest-to-Own Cars | Car Buying Tips

Chevrolet Spark was ranked number one by KBB in the category: Subcompact Car with KBB 5-year cost to own: $21,819. Its initial price ranges from $13,050 to $17,475. Some of its main advantages include:

  • A well-equipped information and entertainment system that comes with the basic model
  • Great power and handling for a city car

It has a few drawbacks, such as the small cargo area and the lack of sufficient power on the highway.

2. Toyota Corolla iM

Toyota Corolla iM won in the category: Compact Car with KBB 5-year cost to own: $30,856. It has an initial price that starts at $18,850 up to $19,590. The car is praised for:

Top 5 Cheapest-to-Own Cars | Car Buying Tips

  • The abundance of standard features that come even with the base model, and
  • The excellent cargo capacity.

Some of its disadvantages include a loud engine with not so much power and fewer comfort and entertainment features compared to other vehicles in the same class.

3. Honda HR-V

Honda HR-V takes the first place in the category: Subcompact SUV with KBB 5-year cost to own: $32,874. The price tag on a new car is between 19,670 and $26,540. The vehicle has many advantages that make it a good choice:

Top 5 Cheapest-to-Own Cars | Car Buying Tips

  • Adult-friendly back seat
  • Sufficient cargo area
  • High quality of the build
  • Above-average reliability

There are a few drawbacks though, like the awkward touch screen and the firm front seat cushions, which are minor for an SUV of this class. The biggest disadvantage is perhaps that it takes some time to reach highway speed.

4. Toyota Prius c

Toyota Prius c is at the head in the category: Hybrid/Alternative-Energy Car with KBB 5-year cost to own: $33,454. Its initial price starts at $20,630 and is the least expensive Toyota hybrid. The things that you will like in this car are:

Top 5 Cheapest-to-Own Cars | Car Buying Tips

  • The clean lines
  • The spacious interior
  • The direct steering

Some of its disadvantages are that the engine gets quite noisy when pushed and the budget materials used for the interior. Otherwise, it is a great vehicle compared to its rivals.

5. Honda Civic Si

Honda Civic Si was chosen as the top performer in category: Sporty Compact Car with KBB 5-year cost to own: $33,484. Its price ranges from $18,840 to $34,100 depending on the extras it offers. The car is loved for many reasons that include:

Top 5 Cheapest-to-Own Cars | Car Buying Tips

  • High-grade cabin
  • A lot of cargo room
  • Spacious and comfortable seats
  • Excellent fuel economy
  • Very comfortable ride and great agility

As for the negatives, the available infotainment system is a bit tricky to use.

It is worth noting that according to KBB Hyundai is the Best Brand winner since the cars it offers come at an affordable price and is also cost-efficient in the long run. The Best Luxury Brand winner for 2018 is Acura. They manage to make vehicles that are both luxurious and great value and are worth investing in them.

Investing in a Budget-friendly Cars

Budget-friendly Cars that deserve a look

If you are considering investing in a new car, make sure prioritize what is important to you in a vehicle. Price should not be the only consideration. You need a vehicle that gives you the maximum comfort and suits your needs.

Six budget-friendly cars to buy new

Investing in a Budget-friendly CarsPurchasing a new car is a good investment, especially if you get a quality vehicle packed with extras at a reasonable price. Here are a few great options:

  • Approximately $16,000
  • 138 horsepower
  • Turbocharged 1.4L ecotec engine

This car which comes in 10 different colors offers a lot of amenities: it has 10 airbags, forward collision alert, rear park assistance, OnStar automatic crash response system, air conditioning, infotainment display, keyless entry, 7-inch diagonal color touch-screen display, Wi-Fi connectivity, tilting and telescoping steering wheel. This car is small and compact, which makes it the best car for singles or young couples. In addition, the rear 60/40 split-folding seats make a lot of space in the back for those who travel.

  • Approximately $15,500
  • 6-liter four-cylinder engine
  • 137 horsepower

This car not only looks good on the road but also provides you with a lot of comfort, utility and good performance. It has both manual and automatic six-speed transmissions, it is quiet, has a lot of back space, and drives smoothly on the road, which makes it an excellent choice for people who commute or take road trips.

  • Approximately $15,000
  • 6-liter four-cylinder engine
  • 138 horsepower

This car has long warranty coverage, quick acceleration, LX non-telescoping steering wheel, and big seats for more comfort. It is a great choice for people who need a ride that is going to take them from point A to point B with comfort. Kia Rio Sedan comes with a stellar list of extras that feature 15-inch steel wheels, air-conditioning, 60/40-split folding rear seatbacks, fog lights, dual illuminated vanity mirrors, four-speaker sound system with a CD player, satellite radio, a USB port. It guarantees both security and good time while on the road.

  • Approximately $13,800
  • 4-liter four-cylinder engine
  • 98 horsepower and 94 pound-feet of torque

     This is a great and inexpensive car for people who need a daily driver. This car comes equipped with a rearview camera, 7-inch touchscreen, 4G LTE hotspot, 15-inch steel wheel, air-conditioning, 60/40-split folding rear seat, trip computer, OnStar telematics system, Bluetooth connectivity, and USB port. Furthermore, Chevrolet Spark is a really safe car thanks to the four-wheel antilock brakes, hill-hold assist, front and rear side airbags, front-seat knee airbags, stability and traction control, automatic crash notification, and forward collision alert. Chevrolet Spark makes the best choice for people who have just started driving because it is easy to maneuver, offers smooth drive, and is easy to park because of its compact size.

  • Approximately $13,800
  • 74 to 78 horsepower
  • 2-liter three-cylinder engine

This model also makes a perfect daily driver. It has 14-inch steel wheels, rear view, LED taillights, a tilt-only steering wheel, 60/40 split-folding rear seats, four-speaker sound system, USB connectivity, fog lights, key-less ignition, cruise control, 6.5- inch touchscreen. Mitsubishi Mirage is a very safe car thanks to its four-wheel anti-lock brakes, front-seat airbags, a driver knee airbag, front rear parking sensors, and traction and stability control. It is surely a good choice at a great price and deserves to make it to your list of potential options.

  • Approximately 12,800
  • 6-liter four-cylinder
  • 109 horsepower
  • 107 pound-feet of torque

This car provides safety, smooth ride, class, a lot of room inside for a more comfortable ride, and a large trunk. The model comes with four trim levels: S, SL, SV, and S Plus. It offers 15-inch steel wheels, air-conditioning, tilt-only steering wheel, Bluetooth connectivity, trip computer, sound system, keyless entry, 60/40-split folding rear seatbacks, USB port, satellite radio, audio system, and more. Nissan Versa S provides excellent safety measures like antilock brakes, traction and stability control, airbags, cruise control, and rearview camera. Moreover, this model has passed a lot of crash tests with excellent results, which makes it an excellent choice in terms of road safety.

Two suggestions for affordable used cars

If you are thinking about a budget-friendly vehicle, you should also consider buying a used car. There are many good models that will meet your needs without stripping you out of cash. Here are two suggestions:

1982 – 1992 BMW 3-SERIES

These are, indeed, older models. However, they are classics and are a great choice for new drivers. Prices can be as low as $2000 and you will have paid for a car that looks good, drives well and is budget-friendly. If you are wondering which car to buy for your son who just got a driver’s license, the BMW 3 Series are the right choice and are made to last for years ahead.

2001 – 2007 VOLVO S60

These are, once again, classic cars which are made to last years! The prices start from $2000. You will have peace of mind driving these models because they have passed a lot of collision test with great results. Besides, we all know that Volvo engines are made to outlive their owners, so you can trust in the reliability of the make.

The list above is far from exhaustive, but hopefully it will help you decide on the best option for you.