These Are the 10 Cheapest Cars You Can Buy in 2021
Inexpensive cars have never been so good.
If affordability is your priority in a new vehicle, cars—as opposed to trucks or SUVs—are your best option. The popularity of trucks, SUVs, and crossovers have tied their prices to their heights—meaning even the least expensive SUVs are pricier than equivalent entry-level cars. Yet while shoppers eyeing the cheap end of the car market may miss out on SUVs' adventurous image, these days, they'll miss out on little else save for ultimate size. That's because inexpensive modern cars are still modern cars, equipped in many cases with the latest safety gear and comfort and entertainment features. While some cheap cars are tiny subcompacts, others are usefully sized compacts—see Volkswagen's Jetta sedan or the new Nissan Sentra, the latter a finalist for MotorTrend's 2021 Car of the Year award.
So read on for the 10 cheapest cars you can buy in 2021, listed here in descending order to least expensive. Once you're done, be sure to check out our Ultimate Car Rankings covering the subcompact and compact-car segments represented here.
10. 2021 Hyundai Elantra | $20,645
Even at its $20,645 base price, the all-new Hyundai Elantra will look like a showstopper. Okay, so it'll ride on smaller and dorkier looking wheels than the models you'll see in flashy ads and in reviews elsewhere on this site, but the broad strokes—or should we say broad slashes, will be there. Hyundai's style roll continues, with the new Elantra picking up some of the larger Sonata's adventurousness but with a harder, sharper edge to the look. Inside, the compact Hyundai sedan has a techy but upscale style, and standard equipment is generous. Even the entry-level model gets blind-spot monitoring, automated emergency braking, an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and an automatic transmission.
9. 2021 Nissan Sentra | $20,335
Nissan's Sentra has made a stunning turnaround, with its 2020 redesign handily erasing the underwhelming previous-generation model from our collective memory. Gone is the dowdy styling, cheap interior, and stumbly handling—in its place are snappy new duds inside and out and an altogether transformed driving experience. So improved is the Sentra that it elbowed its way into the finalists' circle during our 2021 Car of the Year competition—and considering the Mercedes-Benz E-Class ultimately won, the Nissan was among heady company. That the Sentra is one of the most affordable cars on the market is merely a bonus.
8. 2021 Volkswagen Jetta | $19,990
Looking for a roomy compact sedan with mature big-car driving manners and a handsome, upscale interior? You're looking at it. The Volkswagen Jetta delivers strong value, offering standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, full-LED headlights and taillights, and 16-inch aluminum wheels for just under $20,000. For only $500 more, VW will throw in blind-spot monitoring, automated emergency braking and forward collision warning, and heated side mirrors as part of its affordable Driver Assistance package. A six-speed manual is standard, and an eight-speed automatic transmission is optional.
7. 2021 Subaru Impreza Sedan | $19,720
Meet the only all-wheel-drive entry on this list, the Subaru Impreza. Not only is it the only car here to offer all-wheel drive, but the feature is standard even at the Impreza's sub-$20,000 starting price. That MSRP covers the Impreza sedan; a hatchback model is available for slightly more money. Every Impreza also comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, and if you opt for the $1,300 automatic transmission option, Subie throws in its EyeSight active-safety features, too. That translates to adaptive cruise control, lane-keep assist, automated emergency braking, and lane-departure warning.
6. 2021 Kia Forte | $18,855
As with most compact sedans these days, the Kia Forte comes standard with a litany of active safety features, including automated emergency braking, lane-keep assist, lane-departure warning, and forward collision warning. Automatic headlights are also in the mix, along with an 8.0-inch touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay, remote keyless entry, and power locks and windows. An automatic transmission adds $900 to the base Forte FE trim's bottom line, keeping the whole shebang under twenty grand.
5. 2021 Kia Rio Sedan | $17,015
The Kia Rio is being updated for 2021, with a fresh face outside and a newly standard 8.0-inch touchscreen inside. Neither upgrade should impede on the Rio's general agreeableness. The suspension delivers a refined, comfortable ride, and the engine is quiet so long as you don't dip too far into the throttle. If you're looking to spend as little as possible, the Rio sedan undercuts the smartly styled Rio hatchback by a few hundred dollars.
4. 2021 Hyundai Accent | $16,390
The entry-level Hyundai Accent is unexpectedly good. In fact, the base Accent SE is the only Accent to come standard with a manual transmission, a decent-to-use six-speed that, along with the surprisingly strong engine, make for a fun driving experience. Besides being quick (models with the automatic are slightly less so), the Accent has a nicely assembled interior, attractive looks, a comfortable ride, and a killer warranty. The upper trims are nice but begin to overlap on price with larger compact cars. So, stick near the bottom, have more fun, and keep a few bucks in your pocket.
3. 2021 Nissan Versa | $15,855
The Nissan Versa used to be the butt of many an automotive joke, and for a time it held the title of cheapest car available in the U.S. However, a total redesign for 2020 turned that reputation upside down, bringing the Versa snazzy looks, a nicer interior, and more refined driving manners. It's still among the least-expensive new cars you can buy—but it no longer looks or feels like it.
2. 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage Hatchback | $15,565
When most people think of a cheap car, something sized and shaped like the Mitsubishi Mirage likely comes to mind. Indeed, the Mitsu is powered by a dinky 76-hp three-cylinder engine, and its wheels are small. However it is a real car, and includes automated emergency braking, lane-departure warning, and automatic high-beam control as standard along with a 7.0-inch touchscreen with Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, and it's recommended for getting the most from the sub-100-hp engine; a continuously variable automatic transmission (CVT) is optional. A quick note: The Mirage is also available as a sedan, dubbed the Mirage G4, which costs slightly more than the price-leader hatchback version.
1. 2021 Chevrolet Spark | $14,395
Chevrolet's tiny Spark is so adorable, you might consider giving it a nickname. Maybe "Sparky?" The sub-subcompact hatchback is quite small, but it's also very, very cheap. How cheap? At just over fourteen grand, it's the cheapest new car for sale in America. It also isn't crushingly bland or boring. Chevy sells the Spark in a number of bright, funky paint colors, and its standard 7.0-inch touchscreen includes Apple CarPlay and Android Auto phone integration software. A five-speed manual transmission is standard, and likely a favored tool for extracting the most performance, such as it is, from the 98-hp 1.4-liter engine. A continuously variable automatic (CVT) transmission is available, but rest assured: No Spark sells above $20,000.
The 10 Cheapest Cars You Can Buy In 2021
- 2021 Hyundai Elantra | $20,645
- 2021 Nissan Sentra | $20,335
- 2021 Volkswagen Jetta | $ 19,990
- 2021 Subaru Impreza | $19,720
- 2021 Kia Forte | $18,855
- 2021 Kia Rio | $17,015
- 2021 Hyundai Accent | $16,390
- 2021 Nissan Versa | $15,855
- 2021 Mitsubishi Mirage | $15,565
- 2021 Chevrolet Spark | $14,395
Be Smart, Check in Advance. CARFAX — Your Vehicle History.
CARFAX — Your Vehicle History Expert
Sometimes what you don't know can't hurt you, but that's not the case when buying a used car. As an independent vehicle history provider, at CARFAX we've made it our mission to tell you everything you need to know by uncovering as many events as possible from the previous life of a used car. Our primary goal is to help you get to know your next car from the inside out before deciding to make an investment that will be part of you and your family's everyday life. We believe your next car shouldn't be hiding anything from you.
CARFAX Vehicle History Reports contain over 28 billion historical records from 20 European countries, the US and Canada, which are updated daily with new information.
Even if you live in a country we don't collect vehicle data from, it's still always worth checking the Vehicle Identification Number without obligation. The used car import and export market is booming and many owners would be surprised to find out exactly what happened to their vehicle during its previous life abroad.
Privacy for Customers — Transparency over Vehicles
Let's be clear: Although we strive to find every detail of a vehicle's life so far, we are focused only on the vehicle's history, and do not collect any information on previous owners. The information we provide relates solely to the vehicle, its odometer reading, any accidents that have been covered up, where the vehicle comes from and much more — it never gets personal. We've uncovered irreparable damage several times in the past, but other times our vehicle history checks draw a blank — and sometimes that's actually a good thing.
Second Hand — Not Second Best
Did you know that considerably more used cars are sold than new cars? We think this second-hand system is nothing short of fantastic. However, it goes without saying that it gives rise to different methods and tactics: Some sellers will disguise a car that's been in an accident under a fresh coat of paint, tamper with the odometer or conceal theft. This is one of the less appealing aspects of buying second hand. Our goal is to establish trusting relationships between buyers and sellers, since this is the best way to help customers make the right decision. Your new car should be reliable and make you feel safe, as well as make you feel like you haven't paid too much.
But more than anything else, we don't want you or your family unknowingly sitting behind the wheel of a vehicle that isn't 100% safe. This is why we strive to take these vehicles off the road, which not only makes the used car market safer but our streets safer too.
CARFAX — 35+ Years of Experience in Vehicle Histories
CARFAX was founded in the US in 1984 and expanded into Europe in 2007. Around 100 team members spread across six European offices process vehicle information from 22 countries.
Fostering strategic partnerships with registration authorities, law enforcement agencies, government departments, insurance companies, inspection centers and numerous other leading companies around the world has enabled us to compile a unique international database for vehicle histories. We use this database to help make the used car market more transparent. We give everyone in the process of buying a used car access to what is currently the world's most comprehensive source for vehicle history reports, and is growing day by day.
We remain neutral and independent despite our partnerships — our sole purpose is help customers make an informed choice and ensure their safety and the safety of their family. This includes never collecting any personal details — we do not accept any PII from data sources amongst the information we provide about a vehicle. We ensure that data protection laws are observed at all times. Furthermore, we always collect our data in compliance with legal and regulatory frameworks — in all the countries in which we are active. We expressly distance ourselves from illegal activities such as data theft, scraping and hacking.
25 Affordable Cars That Can Make Anyone Look Rich
Wealth has always been used as a symbol of status in society and even in life, with the richest people in the land driving around in the best buggies adorned with nice clothes. And one of the easiest ways to show off wealth is with the new age equivalent of the buggy, otherwise known as a car.
Now of course, sometimes you have to fake it 'til you make it, and these cars are just the way to do that. We are looking at 25 of the most luxurious and sleek vehicles that the average, every day Joe can afford. While they are very nice, especially for the price they go for, they do look even better than they are. At times it is due to branding, like for example, everyone knows Audi and Mercedes are synonymous with expense and luxury. But as we'll see with some of the vehicles here today, they just look more expensive than they are, with either an updated and smooth design or a knock out interior that would put other cars in the dust.
Whatever the case is, we'll figure it out and figure out just what it is that makes these affordable cars look so nice and expensive. Some of the cars may be a bit of a surprise, while others are kind of obvious if you know luxury vehicles. We have found that these are 25 of the absolute nicest and expensive looking cars that can be purchased at an affordable price.
25 Buick Encore
Buick has been known for a long time as a good mixture of luxury and affordability, and the new Encore is no exception. It comes with built-in Wi-Fi which is just about the most modern thing you can get out of a car.
It, of course, comes with all the other upgrades we expect in 2018 like heated seats and dual climate control, and the best thing is that it comes with a pretty low price tag. It starts at $22,990 for the base model.
24 Maserati Spyder
Typically, a Maserati will put a pretty large dent in anyone's bank account, but with a used Spyder that typically sells for about $18,800, it is much more affordable than anticipated.
Of course, with a used vehicle there will be maintenance, but that is a small price for the heads that will turn for a Maserati.
It is from one of the most luxurious brands out there, and it has a design that looks too expensive to even touch. The Spyder may be older but it still holds up to today's standards of luxury.
23 Chrysler 200
Chrysler is another name in the mid-class luxury car game, and a big name at that. The Chrysler 200 is one of the cheapest Chrysler models there is, but it has a new and much more stylish design to it that makes it look a lot more expensive than it is.
It starts at a clean $22,000, which is one of the most affordable models on our list, and that is the price for a new one, which is even better because new sends a message of wealth more than a used car does.
22 Fiat 124 Spider Abarth
Fiat is one of the more affordable car brands on the market today, but the cars have left a little to be desired, with their small and odd designs. But now, with the 124 Spider Abarth, that has changed.
It has a sleek design that is almost like the new Miata but with a lot more class.
This thing just looks expensive with that modern design and sleek trim. It may not have a ton of power but it will draw attention. It starts at $23,000, which is a steal for how expensive this little thing looks.
21 Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution X GSR
The Lancer may not be what it used to be, which was one of the tuner legends. While the Evo has lost some of its power, it has gained a new style that makes it look like a much more expensive sports car.
It still has the same basic shape as it did, but it has a lot of new sharp edges in the design and a lot of clean accents like the front diffuser and spoiler. It has also gone down in price over the years and is now available for only $25,000.
20 Lotus Elise
The Lotus Elise is between a sports car and a luxury car, and it manages to pack a lot of luxury into such a small body.
The Elise was pretty expensive when it came out, which is evident just by looking at how mean and aggressive it looks, but now they can be found for a much more affordable price, even as low as $28,000.
While that may be the price of some of the new models on our list, few look as good or as expensive as this car does.
19 Buick LaCrosse
Buick has been trying to find a comfortable place between luxury and affordability for a while, and they have it finally figured it out. The LaCrosse is a four-door sedan and just by looking at it, no one would ever guess that it was a Buick, besides the giant logo on the front.
But it looks and feels like it would be quite an expensive vehicle, but Buick stayed true to their reputation with a price tag of only $29,565. The new direction Buick is heading in may make them a force to reckon with in the near future.
18 Mini Cooper Clubman
Mini Cooper has a reputation for cheap vehicles, and pretty small ones at that. But the newer Clubman has started to change that ideal, with a new modern design that looks very clean and expensive.
However, as obvious as it may be now, the Clubman has a much lower price than one would guess.
It has a selling price of only $24,100, making it one of the most affordable models on our list, and yet it still has all the class and expensive design that we are looking for.
17 BMW 2 Series
The BMW 2 Series continues to be a fan favorite and is still one of the most affordable models offered. It does also come with all of the style and class that BMW is known for, and looks like it would cost a lot more than it really does.
The 2 Series sells for $34,800, which is a steal for the classic BMW class and design that has been long associated with top-tier luxury. The 2 Series may not have the power of more expensive models, but they sure look good and making nice looking cars is one of the things that BMW is best at.
16 Volvo V60
Volvo wasn't always known for luxury, actually quite the opposite. Volvo was really known for their reliability and affordability, which is not a bad reputation to have.
However, it seems they got tired of being joked about and came up with an all-new redesigned V60, the classic hatch they are so well known for.
While it does not have much power, you can only ask for so much, and as if reliability and a luxurious and expensive looking design were not enough, it is also affordable with a price of $36,150.
15 Chevrolet Volt
The Chevy Volt is one of the most efficient hybrid models available on the market today, and it has a sleek and edgy design that is a little uncommon for Chevy.
While they have been working on it over the years under the hood, they have also been able to lower the price over the years. The Volt has a starting price of $33,220, which is pretty cheap for a brand new hybrid, especially one this efficient.
14 Cadillac ATS
Cadillac is still up to their same old gig, having some of the most affordable luxury vehicles on the market. The only difference is, they have upped the luxury part of their game plan, which is evident in the new ATS.
It is still a larger vehicle which already makes it look really expensive, but it also has a modernized design that is sure to turn heads.
The best part obviously is the price, which is only $35,495. The new ATS is surely a force to be reckoned with and is out to set a new name for itself in the luxury auto world.
13 Acura RDX
The Acura RDX may just be a re-designed CR-V, but the new designs really separate the men from the boys on this one. The RDX has a sleek and modern design with a healthy mix of curves and sharp angles, which are both in style right now.
It also features a V6 motor that pushes out 279 horsepower which is more than enough for a crossover. The RDX has a starting price of $35,800, which may be one of the more expensive cars on our list today, but it is worth the price.
12 Infiniti QX30
Infiniti is the luxury wing of one of the most famous car brands, Nissan, which is already known for being quite luxurious. But with Infiniti, they step the game up even more, and the QX30 is evidence of that.
This crossover is one of the sleekest ones on the market today, and the best part, as with all of the models today, it is affordable.
The QX30 starts at $29,950 for the base model which is more than stylish enough to look way more expensive than it is.
11 Jaguar XE
Jaguar is one of the kings when it comes to luxury automobiles, and they've been known as such ever since they came on the market. But they have always been known as expensive as well, until now.
The new XE comes with all of the luxury and expensive style as other Jaguar models, but it does not come with the hefty price. The XE sells for $35,725, which is more affordable than most other models. Besides that Jaguar logo, it just looks like it costs a lot of money with its size and design.
10 Lexus IS
When you think of semi-affordable luxury cars, one name that comes to mind is Lexus. It is the luxury line of Toyota, and they come with more class and more, well, everything.
They may have a higher price than your run of the mill Toyota but they are still a steal for the luxury that they come with.
The IS has sleek angles and an aerodynamic style that makes people immediately think of an expensive price. The IS is more affordable though, with a price tag of only $36,210.
9 Mercedes-Benz CLA Class
Mercedes-Benz is synonymous with luxury and wealth, and the CLA class holds up to all the standards set by previous models. While it does have only over 200 horsepower, it does get great gas mileage and it looks amazing, and of course, has the comfortable ride Mercedes is known for.
The CLA is cheaper due to its lack of power, and it is the more everyday model for Mercedes. It comes with a price tag of only $32,700, which is way cheaper than the average model.
8 Audi Q3
Audi is another big name when it comes to luxury, and everyone knows just how expensive they are. Or they think they do. The Audi Q3 is one of the more affordable models but it looks like it would be really expensive, and maybe it is because of those four rings, but it could also be that modern and powerful visual design that it has.
While the car looks expensive and certainly looks great, the price tag looks just as good, starting at only $32,900. The Q3 will certainly turn heads and it drives smoothly and elegantly the entire time.
7 Mercedes-Benz GLA Class
We already know that Mercedes is just an expensive brand, but they have recently decided to make more affordable models that still feature the great designs we all know and love from the luxury powerhouse.
The GLA class Mercedes is certainly one smooth looking crossover and is actually pretty quick as well. But we are looking at the design that just looks like it would take two incomes to pay for. However, it is more affordable than it looks, starting at $32,850.
6 Lexus NX 300h
Lexus shows the world with that a hybrid car can still be luxurious, on both the inside and the outside, with the NX 300h.
It has a more modern style to it than even some of the nicest Lexus models, and it does it all with a hybrid style and an affordable price tag.
The NX 300h sells for $38,335, which is a bit steep but still in the realm of affordable by today's auto standards. And the best thing is that it looks like it would cost even more than that, especially considering it is a hybrid.
The Acura Integra might be heading our way soon.
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Cars nice cheap
.5 CHEAP Luxury Cars That LOOK EXPENSIVE... But You Can Afford!
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