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Most Reliable Used Vehicles

A black 2016 Ford Expedition is driving past red rocks.

 

Checking out used cars for sale isn’t as bad as it may seem, especially if you value experiences over material objects. While there are some great luxury used cars for sale, there are plenty of affordable options that will help you get to and from where you’re going with little to no issues. When you look around, many of them are still in great shape, even without being a Certified Pre-Owned model. Although I will say that not all used cars for sale are equal, but after a bit of research, I have made a list of what I believe to be the most reliable used vehicles.

Toyota Avalon

According to my research, the Toyota Avalon has proved to be one of the most reliable cars you can find on the market. It has been praised for having a roomy and comfortable interior that rivals luxury vehicles from its first model year.

Right now, there are five generations of this car to choose from since its introduction in early 1994 for the 1995 model year. The first generation lasted up until 1999 with a 3.0L V6 engine and 4-speed automatic transmission. For the first generation, you could find the vehicle for under $3,000.

The second generation was produced from 1999 to 2004 for the 2000 to 2005 model years. If you purchase a vehicle from these model years you will be spending on average $3,000 to $4,500 depending on mileage and condition. A great deal if you are a new driver or if you just need something to get around. At this point, the same powertrain from the previous generation was used on these models, but they included new technologies and exterior improvements.

A blue 2017 Toyota Avalon, popular among used cars for sale, is driving with desert shrubs behind it.

From 2005 to 2012 was the third generation of the Toyota Avalon. The powertrain was upgraded to a 3.5L V6 engine and two automatic transmission options which were a 5-speed and a 6-speed transmission. These models go for $5,500 to $12,000, affordable prices for a used vehicle that has many luxury features. It is important to note that this generation did have a few recalls from 2009-2010 on the seats and accelerator pedal so you should make sure that all recalls were addressed. However, Toyota made safety a top priority, as shown by the models impressive ratings.

The fourth generation of the Toyota Avalon was sold from 2013 to 2018, and with the new generation came a full redesign, and the Avalon became available as a hybrid. The hybrid’s powertrain consisted of a 2.5L engine and CVT transmission, whereas the Avalon’s powertrain on non-hybrid trims didn’t change from the previous generation and had a 6-speed automatic transmission. The third generation is more expensive than the last with some early models going for $12,500 and the more recent models having a price of $28,500.

Honda Ridgeline

I figured when I first thought of most reliable trucks I’d be writing about the Chevy Silverado or Ford F-150 as they well-loved and are everywhere, but nope! If you’re looking for a used truck for sale, the Honda Ridgeline is almost guaranteed to last and with very few problems occurring along the way. The Ridgeline tows up to 5,000 lbs and has a seating capacity of 5. It has the capability of being a light-duty work truck or being a family vehicle.

In what is considered the early years of the Honda Ridgeline, the truck was sold from late 2004 to early 2015. You can find used models of the Honda Ridgeline available for $6,500 to $25,000. These models all came with a variable torque management four-wheel drive system and a 5-speed automatic transmission. From 2006 to 2008 the engine was a 3.5L V6 with 247 horsepower, and from 2009 to 2014 had an upgraded 3.5L V6 engine with 250 horsepower.

The second generation of the Ridgeline started in 2017 and is still going. Honda completed significant upgrades to the brake system, safety, and overall technology features. This generation of the Ridgeline has a bigger bed, more cargo space, and even more equipment. Its engine is a 3.5L V6 that produces 280 horsepower with a 6-speed automatic transmission. These models are still newer, so it will set you back at the same cost as a brand new car with a minimum price of $22,000. That being said, you could easily find a CPO model, so you get the added benefits of a used truck with new model warranties.

Ford Expedition

The Ford Expedition is a full-size SUV that will always have your back. There are four generations of the Ford Expedition, the first being from 1997 to 2002.

Production began in 1996 for the 1997 model year and continues through to today. It had two engine options, a 4.6L V8 and a 5.4L V-8. You can find the first generation of the Expedition for $2,000 to $4,000.

The second generation of the Ford Expedition had a complete redesign, major technology upgrades, and improvements with safety and convenience. The powertrain remained the same, just with one less transmission option. This generation has a broad price difference starting at $3,000 and stopping at about $7,500.

Production for the third generation began in mid-2006 and ended in 2017. There are three engine types and three transmission types, making for a good selection when it comes to the powertrain. The available engine options include a 5.4L V8, 5.4L V8, and a 3.5L DOHC Ti-VCT EcoBoost V6. You can find earlier models in this generation available for about $5,000 and later model years for $28,000.

So far, the last generation of the Ford Expedition is the fourth. Production began in September of 2017 for the 2018 model year and continues through the present. The engine is a 3.5L EcoBoost V6 with a 10-speed SelectShift automatic transmission, though there is a 2-speed BorgWarner transmission option as well. These models start at $18,000 and currently can cost up to $80,000 depending on trim level and year.

Toyota Sequoia

A tan 2012 Toyota Sequoia is driving at sunset.

Not only was the Toyota Sequoia the most reliable SUV, but the most reliable vehicle overall. It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking at new or used cars for sale, the Sequoia will be the top dog among its competitors, specifically the Ford Expedition and the Chevrolet Tahoe.

Production started in 2000, for the 2001 to 2007 model years which marked the first generation. From 2001 to 2004, the Sequoia came with a 4.7 L V8 engine with a 4-speed automatic transmission that had 240 horsepower. For 2005, the same engine was used but had an impressive 282 horsepower. For these model years, the price ranges from $4,000 to $11,000.

The second generation began in 2008 and continues to the present with quite a few changes and improvements with every new model year. There are three engine options, which are the 4.7L V8 with 381 horsepower, 5.7L V8 with 381 horsepower, and a 4.6L V8 with 310 horsepower. Models in the second generation start at an average of $12,000, but you can be spending up to $68,000 if you get a higher trim level on the newest model.

Conclusion

There’s no doubt that all of these vehicles are great, and I’m sure there are other hidden gems out there, but my honorable mention goes to the Chevy Suburban. It’s clear from my findings, and findings of others, that when looking for used cars for sale, you might want to consider an SUV because the majority of them will last at least another decade. You always want to make sure that the specific used car you’re looking into is in proper condition. If it wasn’t previously taken care of, it won’t run at its full potential.

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