Top 10 Best Cars For The Money

Businessman holding car key and money

Top 10 Cars That Give You the Most Bang for Your Buck!

  1. 2019 Subaru Impreza
  2. 2019 Ford Fiesta
  3. 2019 Volkswagen Jetta
  4. 2019 Hyundai Accent
  5. 2019 Chevrolet Cruze
  6. 2019 Subaru WRX
  7. 2019 Honda Insight
  8. 2019 Chevrolet Sonic
  9. 2019 Toyota Corolla
  10. 2019 Subaru Legacy

What Are Your Concerns?

One of the largest first purchases for many, is their first car. Questions such as “what color do I choose,” “do I need a two-door, or 4-door vehicle,” or “would I like a sunroof” flood your senses. After the initial excitement wears off, the economic impact and responsibility of maintaining such an asset may set in. Whether its your first car, or tenth, the analysis carried out by the team here at EINSURANCE will help you navigate through the clutter of all the marketing gimmicks, and find that car best suited to your needs.

We’ve gathered and analyzed a great deal of data to essentially answer the proverbial question of ‘Which Car Provides the Best Value?’ In doing so, several other key findings were uncovered. Although ‘value’ is a relatively subjective notion, for the purposes of this analysis it is considered that asset which provides a potential customer with the best return on their investment (purchase price of vehicle). Note that you may place significant value on car color, or tire size; make sure to incorporate such personal preferences into your analysis of which car works best for you. Essentially, using our analysis as a guide or baseline, and adjusting it as necessary to incorporate your unique tastes.

Market Conditions Place Extra Emphasis on Savings

Annual mileage driven has consistently increased over the past three decades, and although gas pricing is rising this year, it’s still the lowest its been in over a decade. This combination of trends, along with the fact that technological advances made in cars today is driving up the average cost of repair, make finding value in your car purchase even more crucial.This increased driving trend has no signs of losing steam, as the total miles driven in the U.S. for the last twelve months has reached an all-time high of 3.2 trillion miles. Although collectively, Americans are driving more each year, those people aged 35-54 years of age make up the largest percentage of drivers, and those aged 20-54 account for more than half of the annual miles driven. As such, when applying our analysis below to your specific scenario, make sure you account for how many miles you actually drive.

annual miles driven and average gasoline prices

Sources: (1) U.S. Department of Transportation, Federal Highway Administration, Traffic Volume Trends, June 2018 (2) U.S. Energy Information Administration

Factors to Consider For Your Next Car Purchase

Given vehicles are typically sold slightly ahead of their manufacture year, we chose to use 2019 four door sedans, as the cars of choice for our analysis. We compiled the manufacturer suggested retail prices (MSRPs), mileage data and resale data for each of the vehicles. For the purposes of our analysis we assumed the following:

  1. All miles driven are in the city
  2. Gas price of $2.90
  3. 12,000 total miles driven annually
  4. Resale value range of 2014 version of each vehicle
  5. Car is driven over 5 years, then sold
  6. All mechanical-related expenses are covered under a five year warranty

After collating everything, the sample size of four door sedans was 34. There are certainly more 2019 four door sedans, but they were excluded from the data set because they were either, just recently manufactured (built in 2017 or newer), so new that there was no mileage data calculated for the vehicle, or their MSRP was greater than $75,000 (assumption being, the more expensive the vehicle, the less impact notions like ‘value’ and ‘savings’ have on your decision to purchase). Given the vehicles chosen are the latest models of their respective manufacturers, projecting a resale value for these specific cars in the future, can at best simply be an estimate. We constructed this estimate by taking the mid-point of the resale value range for the 2014 model of each sedan. The underlying assumption being that each sedan will carry value over the next five years, as it did the prior five.

The data was then used to create an objective expense that essentially was used as a proxy for the true cost of purchasing each vehicle. This expense was calculated by taking the MSRP of each vehicle, netting out the indicative proceeds from its resale value, then adding the expense of gas.  The results show that the lowest costing vehicle (car that saves you the most money) is the 2019 Subaru Impreza. The Impreza was not the cheapest vehicle, nor the most economical in terms of miles per gallon (MPG), however, its MSRP in relation to its ability to retain much of its value, truly makes it a smart choice. In fact, Subaru holds the most cars in the top 10, taking the first, sixth, and tenth positions; providing a good indication of the quality of their vehicles.

MPG has become a very popular term and selling point in recent years, driven by the push for dual powered vehicles (gasoline and electric). Although the highest performing car, in terms of MPG came in seventh, the 2019 Honda Insight, the data generally shows that if your vehicle operates in the neighborhood of 25 MPG, gas will not be a huge factor in potential savings.  Conversely, the data shows that resale value has a major impact on potential savings. The 2019 Subaru WRX, the sixth-place position, has the highest resale value at 83.2% of its 2019 MSRP. Note that the 2019 Subaru Impreza, the car that provides the most value, is not far behind carrying a resale value of 81.4% of its 2019 MSRP.

top 10 cars to consider for next purchase

Sources: (3)Taken from each manufacturer’s website (4)An indication of the true cost to purchase the vehicle. Derived through accounting for gas, resale value and the upfront price of the vehicle.

Key Takeaways from The Analysis

There are several takeaways from the analysis, and many will be different for each person when adjusted for an individual’s specific circumstances. However, there are a few salient findings that are of note:

  1. Subaru vehicles are indeed great purchases, driven by their ability to retain their value.
  2. MPG is certainly an important factor to take into consideration when purchasing a vehicle, but resale value generally has a larger impact on the true cost of the vehicle.
  3. Price is not the only, nor the most important factor to consider when choosing a vehicle. Given factors such as resale value and MPG, there are cars that you could purchase at a higher MSRP that over the long run, provide you more value than cars that were perhaps cheaper.

Don’t Forget To Get Car Insurance For Your New Car

We here at EINSURANCE hope this analysis provides a basis for which you can use as a starting point during the tough decision of choosing a vehicle. And remember, when its time to obtain insurance for your new purchase, you visit!


About Dale Williams

Dale Q. Williams, MBA, is a well-respected financial executive whose experience spans from insurance to investment banking. Dale has first hand underwriting experience through working for one of the largest U.S. based insurance carriers, and advisory experience from working for several bulge-bracket and middle-market investment banks. Dale also received his MBA from University of Chicago Booth School of Business, with concentrations in finance and accounting.