Report: Best Used Car Bargains Under $15,000


Money expert Clark Howard’s general rule on purchasing a car is to buy a two or three-year-old vehicle. That’s because new cars start losing their value the moment they’re driven off the lot. Used car buyers don’t have to eat that depreciation.

A new study from car research site supports Clark’s rule by identifying models that lost the most value after three years — all now priced under $15,000.

Let’s look at the top 10 used cars based on their three-year depreciation percentage and other factors:

Best Used Car Deals Under $15,000

VehicleAvg. 3-Year-Old Used Price% 3-Year Depreciation$ Savings Over New Car Price
Ford Fusion Hybrid$13,56554.9%$16,480
Ford Fusion$14,66344.7%$11,834
Volkswagen Passat$14,47843.2%$10,996
Kia Optima$14,61342.7%$10,907
Nissan Altima$13,71842.5%$10,148
Hyundai Sonata$14,86942.0%$10,785
Chevrolet Trax$14,79338.5%$9,253
Hyundai Elantra$12,36938.3%$7,666
Nissan Sentra$11,85938.0%$7,271
Kia Soul$13,33637.4%$7,969
Average for Similarly Priced Cars39.4%

See’s full study, which also features the best used cars deals across all segments.

Final Thought

Although $15,000 is less expensive than the average price of a used car ($20,556), many people are struggling financially due to the havoc created from the coronavirus pandemic

Clark says you should be extra careful about making major purchases right now. If you’re considering buying a car, he recommends that you do so only if:

  1. You were already planning on buying a vehicle because you need one.
  2. Your job and financial prospects are stable.

If you’re thinking about buying a car right now, here are some other things to consider.

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