A red 2019 Ford Explorer is shown driving on a highway after visiting a used car dealer.

Spend Less, Worry Less: Low Maintenance Used Cars for Smart Buyers

When purchasing a used car, there are some compelling advantages to consider. First and foremost, buying a used vehicle is frequently far less expensive than buying a new one. This initial cost savings might be especially alluring because it enables you to purchase a higher-end car that you might not have been able to afford if you bought it new. Additionally, compared to new cars, used cars usually have lower depreciation rates, which means their value decreases more slowly. This will help you save even more money when you eventually sell or trade in the vehicle.

However, maintenance costs will still be associated with your purchase, which might be one of the most significant factors to consider when buying a used vehicle. After all, just because you saved on your purchase from a used car dealer doesn’t mean you want to use all your savings on repairs. Continue reading to learn about used cars that keep more money in your pocket and some things to consider before shopping.

A gray 2017 Subaru Outback is shown driving off-road.

General Things to Consider When Purchasing a Used Car

Some general things make a car easy to maintain. The vehicle’s dependability and general condition are of utmost importance. Models from reliable automakers with solid reputations make excellent choices. A used car with a solid track record for reliability and durability will probably need fewer maintenance and repair procedures.

A pre-owned car with a detailed service history is also simpler to maintain. Maintenance records offer helpful information about the vehicle’s prior maintenance and any past problems that have been resolved. Ask the dealership for maintenance records before buying a secondhand automobile. With this information, you can be sure the car has received the required maintenance and can better anticipate your future maintenance requirements. Many dealerships also provide a multi-faceted vehicle inspection on their used cars before placing them on the lot. Asking the dealership about their inspection process gives you peace of mind knowing that the vehicle you choose has been assessed by knowledgeable technicians.

In addition, it’s essential to consider the cost and availability of replacement parts when maintaining a used car. Choosing a well-known make and model like a Ford Escape can improve your chances of locating parts quickly compared to something like a Suzuki SX-4. Factory and aftermarket replacement parts will be available in a greater variety for cars with substantial aftermarket support. This availability makes repairs easier and lowers overall maintenance expenses.

Easy accessibility to the vehicle’s engine for routine maintenance and repairs is another factor. User-friendly vehicles that have easily accessible critical systems and components frequently have lower labor costs for maintenance. Maintenance tasks, for instance, are simpler in vehicles with well-organized engine compartments, easily accessible filters, and quickly changed consumables.

It is a good idea to research and find reputable technicians or repair facilities with knowledge in maintaining the specific make and model of the secondhand car you are considering. A network of skilled mechanics or authorized repair locations knowledgeable about the particular make and model can substantially simplify maintenance. They will have the skills and information to identify and resolve problems accurately. Considering these elements increases your chances of purchasing a used vehicle that is easy and efficient to maintain.

A red 2017 Honda CR-V is shown parked near the ocean.

4 Used Cars That Save You Time and Money

When shopping, add these vehicles to the top of your list. They offer the dependability and low-cost maintenance you want while providing you with the connectivity, comfort, and safety features you expect.

#1 – 2019 Ford Explorer

If you need more space for your passengers and your cargo, consider a 2019 Ford Explorer. The Explorer offers a comfortable interior with a lot of flexibility, a third row that passengers will enjoy, a quiet interior, and plenty of storage to keep your belongings organized. The Ford Explorer is one of the most popular three-row SUVs, backed by the reliability and history of the Ford brand. For most trims, you get a 3.5L V6 engine with a smooth six-speed automatic transmission that makes you feel like you’re driving a car rather than an SUV.

Ford is all about innovation, and the 2019 Ford Explorer comes with SYNC 3, an infotainment system that gives you optimum connectivity, an intuitive design, ease of use with voice control, and a seamless connection. You can increase your cargo space to 81.7 cu.ft. by folding down the 60/40-split second row and 50/50-split third row. Owners give high marks for acceleration and handling, decreased road noise, and comfortable seating.

#2 – 2017 Subaru Outback

Customers rank the 2017 Subaru Outback at the top of the list in both reliability and customer satisfaction for not just 2017 but overall. When it comes to reliability, Subaru, in general, is hard to beat. Not only do its models come with a long list of safety features, but their average repair costs are some of the lowest in the industry. The Outback provides a sense of adventure for drivers with its rugged appearance and spacious cargo area.

Its design provides more interior space for passengers while also giving you good visibility as the driver. You’ll enjoy the standard all-wheel drive and ease of operation when it comes to the infotainment center, not to mention some of the best safety ratings in the industry. Overall, the Outback is an excellent choice for room and reliability. Customers love the handling, as well as decreased road noise, comfortable seating for five, and value.

A black 2017 Subaru Outback is shown driving on a dirt road.

#3 – 2016 Kia Soul

The Kia Soul is another used car to consider with its unique design and fresh take on an SUV. It is the perfect mix of car, SUV, and hatchback, plus customers say it’s fun to drive. The 2016 Soul offers you and your passengers minimal road noise and expansive visibility. Its optional 2.0L four-cylinder engine has a six-speed automatic transmission that shifts smoothly and delivers an EPA-estimated fuel economy of 27 MPG combined. The 2016 Kia Soul also gives you plenty of interior space with generous room for four passengers or five with a tighter squeeze.

Kia Soul owners are die-hard fans who love the ease of entry and exit, the quirky styling, and the roomy interior. The car’s compact size makes it fun to drive and easy to maneuver, no matter where you are. Additionally, the dash is intuitive and designed with the driver in mind, putting everything you need at your fingertips. When looking at the 2016 Kia Soul, consider the mid-trim Plus version, which can be outfitted with push-button start, an automatic climate control system, a heated steering wheel and seats, a panoramic sunroof, and more.

#4 – 2017 Honda CR-V

The Honda CR-V is one of the most popular used SUVs you can own. It’s an affordable vehicle from a reputable manufacturer. The 2017 Honda CR-V, in particular, won a top spot for the most reliable vehicle. Not only that, but this model offers excellent fuel efficiency, a roomy interior, and responsive handling, and it’s well-equipped for the price. Additionally, the Honda CR-V provides comfortable seating for five, but it’s easy to navigate on winding roads or in tight parking spaces. Owners state the car is fun to drive with smooth transitions from highway to town. Safety features like Forward Collision Warning and a Collision Mitigation Braking System on the EX trim increase satisfaction. Plus, you can enjoy an EPA-estimated fuel economy of 30 MPG combined.

Focus On Reliability and Choose Used

The fact that many automobiles today are made to survive longer than ever due to developments in manufacturing and engineering is a great benefit of buying secondhand. This reduces the likelihood of unplanned breakdowns or unforeseen repair expenditures and means the vehicle you choose will give you dependable transportation for years.

When shopping for a used vehicle, know what you need and pay attention to the vehicle’s maintenance history to get the best value for your money. Additionally, the availability of third-party vehicle history reports and manufacturer-backed Certified Pre-Owned programs give consumers more assurance and transparency regarding the condition and previous maintenance of the vehicle. Knowing the facts will help you choose a used car that will last longer and provide you with satisfaction and peace of mind.