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All Contents © 2020The Kiplinger Washington Editors
By Jessica L. Anderson, Associate Editor
| November 4, 2013
When it comes to choosing a car, there’s no one-size-fits-all. Each car buyer has a different style and a different set of criteria for what’s important -- not to mention a different budget.
We’ve picked six 2014 models plus two used cars that fit the bill for major categories of buyers and their wallets. They’re all exceptional values. Prices come from Kelley Blue Book.
Courtesy of Ford
Sticker price: $22,695 (Fusion S)
Invoice price: $21,217
KBB Fair Purchase Price: $21,265
NHTSA Safety Rating: 5 stars
MPG (city/hwy): 22/34
The slick-looking Ford Fusion was redesigned for 2013 and features knee airbags, a roomy interior and strong resale values. Two optional EcoBoost engines give you the choice of more power or fuel economy.
Courtesy of Cadillac
Sticker price: $55,380 (Premium)
Invoice price: $51,840
KBB Fair Purchase Price: $54,283
MPG (city/hwy): 18/28
One of our 2013 Best New Car picks, the XTS packs power and value. It produces 304 horses, sports superb handling and the base model starts at less than $50,000.
Courtesy of Tesla Motors
Sticker price: $71,070 (60 kWh)
Invoice price: NA
KBB Fair Purchase Price: $71,070
MPG (city/hwy): 94/97 (electric equivalent)
The Model S’s price tag is hefty even before you add options, but this super-luxe electric vehicle has a 200-mile-plus range and is eligible for a $7,500 federal tax credit.
Courtesy of Toyota
Sticker price: $25,010 (Two)
Invoice price: $23,558
KBB Fair Purchase Price: NA
NHTSA Safety Rating: 5 stars (2013 model)
MPG (city/hwy): 51/48
The ubiquitous Toyota Prius is the best-selling hybrid worldwide for a reason: You can’t get a greener car for the money without making a serious trade-off in space. Toyota’s compact Prius c is the only model with a lower price tag that comes close on fuel economy.
Courtesy of Kia
Sticker price: $16,700 (LX, manual)
Invoice price: $16,390
KBB Fair Purchase Price: $15,729
NHTSA Safety Rating: 4 stars
MPG (city/hwy): 25/37
The Kia Forte compact is among the cheapest to own over five years and gets extra points for power, fuel economy and technology. Redesigned for 2014, the Forte gains rear legroom, and cargo spaceand a higher resale value.
SEE ALSO: SLIDE SHOW: 10 Cheapest Cars to Own, 2013
Courtesy of Subaru
Sticker price: $21,090 (2.0i Premium, automatic)
Invoice price: $20,110
MPG (city/hwy): 27/36
All-wheel drive, Bluetooth audio streaming and five-star safety are standard on the Subaru Impreza, and at around $20,000, it won’t bust the budget. Steering wheel controls for phone and audio keep kids’ hands on the wheel.
SEE ALSO: SLIDE SHOW: 10 Best Cars for Young Drivers, 2013
Courtesy of Honda
Dealer price: $19,048 (EX V6)
KBB Fair Purchase Price: $18,198
Certified price: $19,473
Private party price: $16,248
MPG (city/hwy): 20/30
The safety, comfort and solid handling of the 2011 Accord EX V6 complement Honda’s stellar rep for reliability. Kiplinger’s has named the sedan Best in Class four times in the past six years.
SEE ALSO: SLIDE SHOW: Best Values in Used Cars, 2013
Courtesy of Mazda
Dealer price: $9,402 (i Sport, manual sedan)
KBB Fair Purchase Price: $9,027
Certified price: NA
Private party price: $7,427
NHTSA Safety Rating: NA
MPG (city/hwy): 24/32
Starting at less than $10,000, the 2008 Mazda3 i boasts sporty packaging, handling that mimics more-expensive European cars and decent fuel economy. Get your zoom-zoom in a sedan or hatchback.
SLIDE SHOW: 6 Tips to Get the Best Price on a New Car
SLIDE SHOW: 10 Best Cars for Young Drivers, 2013
SLIDE SHOW: 10 Cheapest Cars to Own, 2013
SLIDE SHOW: Best Values in Used Cars, 2013
SLIDE SHOW: 9 Ways to Get Your Car to 200K Miles (or More)