New Report: 10 Used Car Models That Are the Best Buys

The study reveals a wide variety of cars to drive off the lot.
Updated June 6, 2024
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man driving car on snowy road

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New car prices skyrocketed a few years ago, and though they have come down incrementally, interest rates are at historic highs. Inflation and high rates have made it hard to cut car costs and even more so to buy a brand-new car. So where should savvy consumers look for their next ride?

The used car market. Many used vehicles are in great condition, inside and out, and quite a few vehicles hold onto their value and will provide you with years of trouble-free driving. 

If the idea of researching pre-owned cars gives you a migraine, you’re in luck — recently conducted a massive survey to figure out the best five-year-old used cars on the market. Here are their picks for the ten best five-year-old cars.

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How the research was conducted

Zabi/Adobe car on the road

Vehicles were evaluated by age and purchase price per 10,000 miles of remaining lifespan. Only cars with at least 100,000 miles of remaining life were included. 

The top ten includes vehicles from Chevrolet, Honda, and Buick, with Ford, Dodge, and Toyota models conspicuously absent though certain models did make appearances farther down the list.

Chevrolet Trax

Courtesy of Chevrolet Trax
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,442
  • Average Price: $17,274
  • Remaining Lifespan (Miles): 119,833
  • Remaining Lifespan: 64.9%

The Chevrolet Trax is an SUV known for its roomy interior and fuel efficiency. It has a towing capacity of 1,263 pounds, reliable handling, and a modern in-dash infotainment system.

Honda Fit

Courtesy of Car and Driver black honda fit driving on road
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,473
  • Average Price: $19,049
  • Average Lifespan (Miles): 123,319
  • Remaining Lifespan: 67.7%

The Honda Fit is a roomy subcompact hatchback with front-wheel drive. It has an infotainment system that’s comparable to those found in high-end luxury cars, with an onboard navigation system, USB ports, and Bluetooth capability. The Fit’s software is compatible with both Apple and Android products.

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Honda Insight

Courtesy of Car and Driver honda insight parked outdoors
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,485
  • Average Price: $22,109
  • Average Lifespan (Miles): 148,885
  • Remaining Lifespan:68.8%

The Honda Insight is a hybrid compact sedan with zippy acceleration and a comfortable cabin with plenty of storage and fold-down rear seats. It has a touchscreen infotainment system and is compatible with Android and iOS devices.

Buick Encore

Courtesy of Buick buick encore
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,492
  • Average Price: $18,632
  • Average Lifespan (Miles): 124,853
  • Remaining Lifespan: 67.6%

This small SUV has a spacious cabin, upgraded interior, a smooth ride. It’s a reliable choice with an intuitive infotainment system and available turbocharged engine in some models.

Mitsubishi Outlander

Michael Simari/Car and Driver Mitsubishi Outlander
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,498
  • Average Price: $17,188
  • Remaining Lifespan (Miles): 114,789
  • Remaining Lifespan: 62.9%

This sturdy SUV offers a plug-in hybrid with third seating not usually seen in SUVs of this size. It is reliable and has been known to last for at least 15 years. It boasts a roomy cargo area and is one of the most fuel-efficient SUVs on the market.

Honda Accord

Courtesy of Car and Driver honda accord
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,542
  • Average Price: $24,074
  • Remaining Lifespan (Miles): 156,146
  • Remaining Lifespan: 69.1%

This sleek midsize sedan has long been one of America’s favorite cars. In 1989, it was the best-selling car in the US, a title it held until 1991, and by 2020, an estimated 18 million had been sold. It’s fuel efficient, designed well, and built to last — many Accords boast over 300,000 miles.

Honda CR-V

Courtesy of Honda honda cr-v
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,588
  • Average Price: $25,434
  • Remaining Lifespan (Miles): 160,207
  • Remaining Lifespan: 70.8%

This compact SUV boasts a lot of power for its size. Available in both front and all-wheel models, CRVs are known for their responsiveness, reliable performance, and fuel economy. Some models have a standard wireless charging pad, and the entertainment system is compatible with both Android and IOS systems.

Honda Ridgeline

Courtesy of Honda Honda Ridgeline
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,647
  • Average Price: $30,026
  • Remaining Lifespan (Miles): 182,288
  • Remaining Lifespan: 71.2%

The Ridgeline is a midsize pickup truck known for its reliability. The interior is plush and has tri-zone automatic climate control, smartphone integration, and no-nonsense fuel economy.

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Toyota Avalon

Courtesy of Toyota toyota avalon
  • Price per 10K Miles: $$1,694
  • Average Price: $29,118
  • Remaining Lifespan (Miles): 171,839
  • Remaining Lifespan: 73%

The nicely designed full-size sedan has a roomy, luxurious interior with easy-to-use controls. It offers a smooth ride and has a fuel-saving start/stop mode that automatically shuts off the engine when the car is idling. There are gas and hybrid models available.

Jeep Renegade

Courtesy of Jeep Jeep Renegade
  • Price per 10K Miles: $1,716
  • Average Price: $20,026
  • Remaining Lifespan (Miles): 116,728
  • Remaining Lifespan: 65.6%

The sporty, subcompact SUV is loaded with safety features and is available in two- and four-wheel drive. It handles well in tight turns and offers ample headroom for a subcompact, but the backseat legroom might be a squeeze for an adult. The dashboard is thoughtfully laid out and interfaces with both Android and iOS devices.

The top 10 five-year-old cars to purchase

Kadmy/Adobe cars standing in rows for sale at showroom during day time
Rank Model Price per 10 Miles Average Price Remaining Lifespan (Miles) Remaining Lifespan (%)
1. Chevrolet Trax $1,442 $17,274 119,833 64.9%
2. Honda Fit $1,473 $19,049 129,319 67.7%
3. Honda Insight $1,485 $22,109 148,885 68.8%
4. Buick Encore $1,492 $18,632 124,852 67.6%
5. Mitsubishi Outlander Sport $1,498 $17,188 114,789 62.9%
6. Honda Accord $1,542 $24,074 156,146 69.1%
7. Honda CR-V $1,588 $25,434 160,207 70.8%
8. Honda Ridgeline $1,647 $30,026 182,288 71.2%
9. Toyota Avalon $1,694 $29,118 171,839 73.0%
10. Jeep Renegade $1,716 $20,026 116,728 65.6%

Bottom line

Artem Varnitsin/Adobe african american female driver looking out

Between inflation and high interest rates, if a new car is off the table, it’s a good idea to look at used cars. Late model used vehicles from Chevrolet, Honda, Jeep, Mitsubishi, and Buick all offer a reasonable sticker price and reliability that you can count on for years to come. 

When you expand your buying options, you can find a good deal on a car or SUV that still has plenty of life left in it and keep more money in your wallet.

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Author Details

PJ Gach PJ Gach is a professional writer who has over a decade of experience covering the fashion, beauty, and lifestyle beats. Her writing credits include Shop TODAY, GoBankingRates,, Reader's Digest, The New York Post, Rolling Stone, and more.