Exactly no one wants to spend more on a new vehicle than they have to, even the people paying for bananas markups on GR Corollas. It’s all about value for the dollar, whether that means you’re working the salesperson over for a break on floormats in a Thriftmiser Grey Lady or negotiating for a less egregious markup on a Deluxo Elegance Cabriolet Poupon with the Ostrich Hide Oligarch package. More for less, please, as even the most affordable cars aren’t cheap.
And so, we put it to you, Autopians: which new vehicle (be it hatchback or hypercar, SUV or sportscar, truck or van) delivers maximum value in exchange for your hard-earned dollar? And is your call based on—performance? Features? Reputation? Personal experience? We want to know! We can talk motorcycles too, if you like. It’s your comment section!
So there you go, this is your chance to evangelize for your favorite high-scorers on the all-important Bang for the Buck scale. To the comments!
I don’t own either one of these (yet) but assuming you could actually buy them for MSRP, to my taste, it’d be the Ford Maverick XL hybrid or the ’24 Chevy Trax 1RS.
I’ll take the Maverick in Area 51 blue/grey, or the Trax in Cacti Green, and be done with car shopping for a bit (in theory). 😉
Genesis G70. 20% less than a comparably spec’d 3 Series, better interior design, and a return to form for ride/handling/steering.
During the pandemic, I was able to snag a leftover 2019 G70 6MT for a little under 33k, MSRP was 39k. This was mid-level Camry/Accord money. So far it’s been a very satisfying car to own and drive. Admittedly though after a few years now, while it’s quick enough, I do find myself yearning for a more exciting engine, something with two more cylinders in the line.
I think a value dream garage would be a Ford Maverick and a Subaru BRZ (or the Toyota). For ~$60k you would get it all.
Since the average new car price is pushing $50k this does not seem unreasonable.
Misubishi, they are the only manufacturer where dealers are still selling onprice
the dealer group by me has 50 some stores of most brands and sells them all at MSRP
Are we talking MSRP or really real world price?
Nissan Versa S, manual transmission. “Only” a 5-speed but the cheapest new car with a stick you can buy at 17 grand including shipping and since its’ full redesign a couple years ago considerably more refined than the now-CVT-only Mitsu Mirage.
If you can find one…
As a couple others mentioned, the Bolt EV and EUV absolutely spank every other car as a value proposition.
GM lowered their EV base price by $10,500 over the last two years anticipating the end of the $7,500 EV credit. THEN the credit comes back AND GM kept the new low price.
After the $7,500 credit, you can be in a new Bolt EV 1LT for $19,995 including destination.
Fun to drive. Plenty of room. 259 miles of range. 0-60 in 6.5. Virtually zero maintenance. AND, they’ll pay to install 240V power in your garage.
Yep, I just bought one.
I think we have a winner
So far all are great cars without much to argue about – the Mazdas especially are bargain luxury cars. We have a CX-5 in the family and it is really not much of a downgrade from an X-3, except for the relatively weak engine although this isn’t really noticeable for most regular drivers. Now for a controversial take – based on rental car experience, pricing, and warranty most of the Mitsubishi models seem to be great deals. Pre-pandemic I rented an Outlander Sport for a few hundred miles (including about half of Skyline Drive) and it was way more enjoyable to drive than you would expect – the CVT (which may be a maintenance headache) didn’t really detract from the driving experience. Mitsubishi’s 100K powertrain warranty is about as good as it gets. Not sure about the Mitsubishi dealers, but here in the Northeast the Mazda dealers are relatively easy to deal with and basic maintenance well done (although at the last oil change – 20 months old and 20K miles – they wanted to do a brake fluid service – I said no, the lease will be up before this car has any problems with the brake fluid – and I could not find it on the Mazda service schedule.)
Another easy value pick – the Chrysler 300.
If Pandemic pricing ever ends, I am going to be cross-shopping a weird mix of cars (although being 6’7″ and wanting a car to tour with that is comfortable for me for long stretches dramatically reduces my options). If I could deal with any of the terrible local Cadillac dealers I would look at a CT4V (maybe BW) or a CT5V (no BW, too terrible gas mileage – gotta at least look out a little for the environment). And next weekend I am going to the BMW test drive experience, where maybe one of their cars has fixed the driving dynamics to make one of their models the “acceptable driving experience,” pre-pandemic I was thinking about an X-3 M40, but the recent reviews seem to say they screwed up the steering again – also not sure what seats these cars are coming through with, but that makes a huge difference and eliminates some oddball cars like a Ghibli (which used to be able to be bought almost new for a huge discount and a 100K warranty).
Toyota 4 Runner.
Depreciation can be calculated using the odometer only, and that really only seems matters once you’re in 6 digits.
Also it does vehicle stuff and the rear window rolls down.
I bought a 2018 VW Sportwagen, in base trim for $26500cdn. Were it not for the lovely Mrs. RogerRZ, it would have been $1500 cheaper cause I would have bought it with a manual transmission. It hauls a lot of stuff, has all the features I need, and is not boring to drive. Surprisingly, over a little more than 75000 miles, it’s not cost a dime except for tires and oil changes. Not even brakes.
The fact you can’t buy this anymore makes me sad…
The C8 Corvette – fast, powerful, good fuel economy for its performance, and a bargain at the price compared to the exotics with which it competes.
Frankly if i won a corvette i would sell it without even driving it. For me it isnt worth it at half the price.