12 Best First Cars Under 10,000 (for Teens & New Drivers) – RIDE DRIVE

Cars under 10k for teens

$10k is a reasonably good price range for a used first automobile, with many wonderful mainstream fashions of cheap age and powerful reliability to your choice.

first cars under $10k

Good First Automobiles Beneath $10k (Sedan)

#1 Toyota Corolla

If you would like essentially the most sturdy first automobile for $10,000, choosing the well-known nameplate, famed for its rock-solid reliability, is smart.

After greater than half a century of serving budget-minded drivers and dominating the American roads with report numbers, the Toyota Corolla stays a strong alternative for youngsters and the freshly licensed.

The Corolla’s enduring first-car qualities are reassuring:

  • Robust gas economic system – as the newest gasoline fashions inch in direction of the mid-30s-mpg common, older Corollas are nearly as thrifty; 29-mpg mixed is the bottom determine among the many fashions of the previous 20 years.
  • Snug trip – the Corolla is likely one of the softer-riding economic system compacts.
  • Good visibility – essential for security and ease of driving.
  • Many security options – the choices differ relying on the mannequin 12 months, however it’s sometimes on par with class leaders.
  • Strong reliability – with the variety of generations that stretches into the double-digit, you already know it’s reliable.
  • Wonderful security rankings – it’s an impeccably protected first automobile.

Corollas sometimes don’t have essentially the most highly effective engine within the phase, however it shouldn’t concern most first-time drivers.

Attributable to their sturdiness, used Corollas – so long as you confirm the situation earlier than shopping for – are cheap and can proceed to be reliable:

  • A ten-year-old customary Corolla sells for round $10,000 – these in wonderful situation and low mileage could value a few 1000’s extra.
  • A 15-year-old mannequin prices underneath $7,000.

#2 Hyundai Elantra

It isn’t as well-known because the Toyota Corolla or the Honda Civic, however the Hyundai Elantra has many robust factors that may match its Japanese rivals for much less.

These Elantra qualities make the automobile a wonderful value-for-money buy:

  • Excellent gas economic system – the newest era leads the phase in effectivity, though the sixth and fifth generations are a lot frugal.
  • Giant cabin and trunk – frequently class-leading in each areas.
  • Good stability between trip high quality and dealing with.
  • Numerous tech and security options for the cash.
  • Lengthy guarantee – though prolonged protection could also be crucial when shopping for a used mannequin.

A used Elantra is marginally cheaper than a Corolla of comparable age:

  • You will get a ten-year-old Elantra for lower than $9,000 – even much less is feasible, relying in your location.
  • A $7,000 price range could suffice for a fifteen-year-old mannequin – however with the caveat under.

If gas economic system is your prime precedence, select a used Elantra from the sixth era (2017-2020) or the fifth (2011-2016) as prior fashions’ gasoline consumption is larger than main rivals.

Elantras of the previous decade are among the many most fuel-efficient first vehicles with distinctive styling.

#3 Honda Accord

The Honda Accord is constantly a robust contender for the king of the midsize class title, providing compelling efficiency, high quality, and economic system in a sturdy package deal.

The Accord’s robust fits will please new drivers needing a midsize sedan for his or her first automobile:

  • Highly effective but fuel-efficient engine – 25 to 33 mpg total, relying on the mannequin 12 months of the previous fifteen years.
  • Sporty dealing with – supplies a greater really feel of the street.
  • Class-leading inside and cargo house – helpful for faculty college students, the occasional street journeys, or in the event you do common grocery buying.
  • Many driver security aids.
  • Good visibility – older fashions rating excellently on this side.
  • Close to flawless reliability – a completely reliable first automobile.
  • Excessive resale worth – good news for a used Accord in the event you maintain your automobile in good restore and promote after a number of years when upgrading.

A $10k price range cap can get you:

  • A ten-year-old (or barely older) customary Honda Accord.
  • A twelve-year-old Accord with a V6 engine – sacrifices 2 to three mpg in comparison with the bottom mannequin.

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The Honda Accord’s lack of serious drawbacks makes it a simple suggestion for younger drivers on the lookout for a roomy, comfy, and environment friendly four-door sedan.

#4 Mazda 6

If you wish to trip at school in comparison with different mainstream sedans with out spending a premium, the midsize Mazda 6 is a charismatic choose that oozes an abundance of inside high quality.

Its sporty driving dynamics provide a composed trip and boundless enjoyment behind the wheel.

Though 2021 is the ultimate mannequin 12 months, a used Mazda 6 continues to be a stand-out alternative for a number of causes:

  • A singular mixture of fashion and efficiency – smooth design, robust engine, and athletic dealing with.
  • Loads of grip – the communicative steering supplies a reassuring really feel of the street.
  • Premium-quality inside.

Some options it lacks embody a hybrid mannequin for larger effectivity and all-wheel-drive for drivers in cold-weather climates.

Nonetheless, a $10k used Mazda 6 is a strong first automobile for many who get pleasure from driving.

The Mazda 6 proves that sensible needn’t be synonymous with boring.

#5 Nissan Maxima

The Nissan Maxima is value contemplating for younger male drivers who need a four-door automobile with sports activities sedan qualities for an inexpensive value.

It has a 300-hp V6 powertrain, sharp dealing with, and a horny cabin that rivals luxurious sedans.

Contemplating the engine specification and energy output, the low 20s-mpg common gas consumption is affordable. Nevertheless, the usage of premium gasoline could nudge younger fans in direction of a much less highly effective V4 in a Toyota or a Honda.

A $10k price range can purchase a used Nissan Maxima of ten or twelve years previous.

Good First Automobiles Beneath $10k (SUV)

#6 Subaru Forester

Educated automobile buyers acknowledge Subaru’s distinctive proposition with the usual all-wheel-drive (AWD) provision of their automobiles, bar the rear-wheel-powered Subaru BRZ coupe.

Apart from AWD, the Forester has:

  • Spectacular gas economic system regardless of the four-wheel energy supply – between low-20s-mpg and 29 mpg mixed, relying on the mannequin 12 months.
  • Wonderful visibility – relevant to all mannequin years, particularly the older, boxier ones.
  • Spacious inside and storage.
  • Good trip consolation.
  • Immaculate crash security report – the most secure first automobile amongst SUVs.

Underwhelming engine energy is Forester’s solely notable flaw in an in any other case strong SUV.

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With a $10,000 allocation, a ten-year-old standard-trim Subaru Forester is inside attain, though choosing a two-year-older mannequin can prevent an extra couple of thousand {dollars}.

The Forester is straightforward to drive, and the controls are easy to make use of.

#7 Honda CR-V

The Honda CR-V has staked the declare because the king of compact SUVs for a number of years with its all-around compelling efficiency, utility, and effectivity package deal.

Honda CR-Vs – new or used – sometimes have these attributes:

  • Highly effective but thrifty engine – count on mid to high-20s-mpg in decade-old fashions.
  • Roomy inside with excessive cargo capability – usually the biggest in its class.
  • Handles athletically, but the trip stays composed and cozy.
  • Good visibility.
  • Wonderful security rankings.
  • Prime-notch reliability.
  • Loads of customary options.
  • Tremendous-popular first automobile.

Attributable to CR-V’s substantial resale worth, a $10k price range means you have to to accept a twelve-year-old mannequin – or probably older.

Nonetheless, they’re extremely sturdy automobiles, so a used CR-V previous the decade-old mark ought to current no important reliability worries.

#8 Toyota RAV4

As Toyota Corolla and Honda Civic compete within the compact sedan phase, the RAV4 contends with the CR-V as essentially the most competent and best-selling small SUV.

Whereas the RAV4 isn’t as sporty because the CR-V, the previous has loads of different first-car qualities to supply new drivers:

  • Excessive gas effectivity – on par with rivals from Honda and Hyundai.
  • Giant and versatile cargo space – neck-and-neck with the CR-V; it’s probably the most spacious within the phase.
  • Clean trip and cozy for lengthy journeys.
  • Many superior security and driver aids are customary.
  • Prime security rankings.
  • Excessive reliability – backed by Toyota’s low upkeep prices.

Just like the CR-V, the RAV4 holds its worth nicely, so $10,000 can internet you a twelve or thirteen-year-old mannequin, condition-dependent.

#9 Hyundai Tucson

Hyundai automobiles are good first vehicles as a result of they provide wonderful worth for cash.

The compact Hyundai Tucson SUV isn’t any totally different, with a feature-rich providing and industry-leading guarantee protection to enrich its first-car qualities.

They embody:

  • Robust gas economic system – a match for the category leaders just like the CR-V and RAV4.
  • Prime security scores – it received many IIHS security awards, apart from a number of years.
  • Snug trip, even on tough surfaces.
  • Mediocre cargo capability – lower than most rivals.
  • Characteristic-packed.
  • Beneficiant guarantee size.

As Hyundai automobiles’ resale values aren’t as excessive because the Toyotas and Hondas, you may get a 9 or ten-year-old Tucson for $10,000.

Good First Automobiles Beneath $10k (Hybrid)

#10 Chevrolet Volt

Hybrid automobiles are perfect for teenagers and new drivers as a result of they bridge the effectivity hole between gasoline engines and all-electric energy items, however with out the latter’s larger preliminary outlay.

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Though discontinued after the 2019 mannequin, the first-generation Volt (2011-2015) is a superb purchase for budget-conscious younger drivers, because of its near-100-mpg-equivalent mileage.

With a most price range of $10,000, you may get a 2012 or 2011 Chevy Volt.

Alternatively, suppose you could possibly afford an even bigger price range; the second-generation Volt (2016-2019) is exclusive as a result of its hybrid drive system can run on electric-only energy, not like different hybrid powertrains that use gasoline+electrical full-time.

With over 50 miles of all-electric vary, the automobile can function on battery energy alone earlier than switching to gasoline.

In case your every day commute is shorter than that, it can save you massively on gas prices.

#11 Honda Perception

The Honda Perception is a compelling alternative in order for you a cheap used hybrid automobile – a succesful rival to the Prius.

Its gas effectivity is aggressive amongst hybrids, and the automobile meets the first-time driver’s wants:

  • Spectacular gas economic system – over 50 mpg mixed within the newest mannequin, though decade-old Insights can nonetheless return above 40 mpg.
  • Roomy and refined inside.
  • Good visibility.
  • Excessive security rankings.

The second-generation Perception (2010-2014) is a superb purchase, though the sooner fashions of that era will higher fit your $10k price range.

#12 Toyota Prius

The Toyota Prius is the go-to alternative in order for you essentially the most fuel-efficient hybrid to your first automobile.

With decade-old Prius fashions, you continue to get 50-mpg total (or extra), class-leading effectivity, and a strong efficiency even by right this moment’s requirements.

Crucially, Prius fashions of that age match properly inside your $10,000 price range.

Apart from the excellent gas economic system, the Toyota Prius is:

  • Straightforward to drive,
  • Snug to trip in a quiet cabin,
  • Sensible with its hatchback-like physique, and
  • Has good outward visibility.

A used Prius is cheap and can prevent more cash than you’ll in any other case spend on a gas-powered automobile.

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