Buying a new car can be stressful. Even if you have enough money there’s the small matter of knowing which make and model to invest in. That’s where we come in. We’ve scoured the internet for the most popular and affordable choices on the market right now and packaged them all together.

This isn’t about which car maker sells the cheapest cars. It’s about which models are the most economical in their class. A few of the vehicles featured here cost more up front, but should cost you much less over time. With that in mind, here’s our list of the top 7 affordable cars you need to check out!

Honda Civic

Price: starting at $26,0001

Fuel efficiency: starting at 33/42 MPG

Horsepower: starting at 158 HP

Pros:

  • Above-average fuel efficiency. 
  • Low cost of ownership. 
  • Lots of standard safety and driver-assistance features. 

Cons:

  • Higher MSRP than some of the other options on our list. 
  • Standard infotainment display is a tad small.  
  • Base model lacks power. 

Honda Civics dominate the roads due to the vehicle’s reliability, affordability, great resale value, and low cost of ownership.2 The 2023 Civic comes with a 7-inch infotainment screen that leaves a little to be desired, but it can be upgraded to a 9-inch version. It may be pricier up front, but the features and low-cost of ownership make this year’s Civic a true value buy.

Kia Forte

Price: starting at $19,4903

Fuel efficiency: starting at 28/41 MPG

Horsepower: starting at 147 HP 

Pros:

  • Competitive price. 
  • Spacious interior that offers great storage and has a large trunk. 
  • Great warranty. 

Cons:

  • Rear seats are a little cramped. 
  • The ride has a reputation for being a little stiff. 
  • Poor acceleration.

The savings don’t stop at the sticker price. The all-new Kia Forte aims to save drivers a ton at the pump too. A refined interior design pairs well with the simplistic and easy to control infotainment system. Every Forte comes standard with safety assistance features like lane-departure warning, lane keeping assist, automated emergency braking and more. 

Toyota Camry

Price: starting at $25,9454

Fuel efficiency: starting at 28/39 MPG

Horsepower: starting at 203 HP 

Pros:

  • Impressive fuel efficiency.
  • Lots of standard driver assistance features. 
  • Great resale value. 

Cons:

  • Higher MSRP than some of the other options on our list. 
  • Lots of noise at highway speeds.
  • Underperforms compared to competitors.5

Camry’s have always been considered value buys despite their higher-than-average MSRP. They hold their value, cost less to repair, and last longer than most other brands. It more than makes up for its lack of power by including an overwhelming amount of tech, safety, and driver assistance in every Camry sold. 

Subaru Impreza

Price: starting at $20,8156

Fuel efficiency: starting at 28/36 MP

Horsepower: 152 HP 

Pros:

  • All-wheel drive. 
  • Available with a manual transmission. 
  • Great safety rating.7

Cons:

  • Underpowered engine.
  • Outdated tech. 
  • Lackluster interior. 

This one is for those that value safety. But then again, show us someone that doesn’t want standard EyeSight driver-assistance. The engine is a little underpowered and the interior is due for a redesign, but the boost in handling and impressive price tag helps this year’s Subaru Impreza stand out from the pack. 

Kia Rio

Price: starting at $16,7508

Fuel efficiency: starting at 32/41 MPG9

Horsepower: 120 HP  

Pros:

  • Great on gas. 
  • Available in sedan or hatchback.
  • Great warranty. 

Cons:

  • Poor storage. 
  • Lacks features. 
  • Not very powerful. 

Kia backs their 2023 Rio with a 10 year powertrain warranty, which is one of the best in business. This economical commuter delivers much of what a city-dweller needs, great gas mileage, a great MSRP, and reliability you can count on. It does leave a little to be desired in the standard features department, but it’s hard to complain with that sticker price. 

Mitsubishi Mirage

Price: starting at $16,24510

Fuel efficiency: starting at 35/41 MPG

Horsepower: 78 HP  

Pros:

  • One of the most affordable cars on the market today.
  • Incredibly fuel efficient. 
  • Great warranty.

Cons:

  • Noisy on the roads and under the hood.11
  • Underpowered engine. 
  • Bare bones interior. 

The 2023 Mitsubishi Mirage screams economical. From its ultra-low sticker price to its impressively high MPG numbers, this thing is all about saving you cash. Buyers shouldn’t expect a luxurious interior and lots of extra features, but it does come with a 10 year powertrain warranty and a five year limited warranty.

Nissan Versa

Price: starting at $15,73012

Fuel efficiency: starting at 27/35 MPG

Horsepower: 122 HP  

Pros:

  • Modern exterior styling. 
  • Great gas mileage.
  • Low base price.

Cons:

  • Cramped rear seating. 
  • Very slow. 
  • Basic interior. 

Come for the low MSRP and stay for the low operation costs. Great gas mileage and a fully redesigned exterior give the 2023 Versa a sizable boost in value. You can’t ask for a lower sticker price, and the car comes standard with a 7-inch infotainment display, front and rear automated emergency braking, and a five year powertrain warranty. 

Money Well Spent

There are so many economical choices available to eager car buyers and today’s discussion is proof of that. Honda, Toyota, Kia, Nissan, and Mitsubishi continue to innovate, which means even more value for your dollar. $20K, or the auto loan equivalent, is all that stands between you and a brand new vehicle, and that’s something to smile about.

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