Fuel, maintenance, and other costs of ownership can dent that car´s $15,000 asking price, turning it more into a $24,000 headache. A better indicator of how cheap or expensive a car is is its total ownership cost, the cost of owning it for five years that accounts for every expense from insurance to depreciation costs which can drop the value of a new car by as much as 30% after being purchased.
Here are our top 5 picks for cars with low costs of ownership.
Hyundai Sonata – The Sonata holds the lowest total cost of ownership in the midsize segment, with an average of $2080 less. Its a perennial Car of the Year candidate with 10 year and 100,000 mile warranty coverage, value (starting at $19,000 for its GLS model), and fuel efficiency (24-35 mpg) for the best non-hybrid numbers in its class.
Toyota Venza – The Venza costs $38800 less to own over five years than its peers in the midsize SUV class, besting the Ford Explorer, Mazda CX-9, and the Chevrolet Traverse. Turning it on with its highly debated crossover/wagon identity, it offers 21-27 mpg, solid safety scores, and low insurance costs.
Audi A5 – The Audi A5 is one of the cheapest luxury cars to own. At $65000 less than other luxury cars, the $36,000 Audi A5 comes with Quattro all-wheel drive, 21/31 mpg, albeit with an underpowered 2.0 liter turbocharged motor running 211HP, paling in comparison to similar cars like the BMW 3-Series with a choice of two engines. The A5´s warranty is larger than the norm at four years and 50,000 miles.
Honda Fit – Starting at $15,000 with a $23,000 total 5 year cost of ownership, this hatchback has been the subject of countless industry awards for its combination of value, fuel economy (27/33 mpg), insurance cost, and matrix of storage options.
Honda Accord – Honda continues it dominance for cars with the lowest total cost of ownership with the Accord, a major player with its near class leading fuel economy (23-33 mpg), ¨large car¨ interior space, and a fresh redesign for 2011. Its a major player despite facing improving competition with Mazda, Sonata, and Fusion which bast all wheel drive, more technologically advanced trims (see Ford´s Sync system), and more.