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Why These ‘Boring’ Cars Are Great for Your Wallet

Andrew Lisa
·10 mins read

Corvettes and Camaros turn heads on the highway. Porsches and Mercedes stir adoration and envy. That envy, however, would probably dry up pretty quickly if anyone saw the bills associated with buying and owning an undeniably awesome car.

For the budget-minded buyer, boring is sometimes better.

GOBankingRates researched dozens of cars, trucks, vans and SUVs that aren’t particularly sexy but are incredibly forgiving to owners’ checking accounts. The study identified and ranked these so-called “boring” cars by analyzing U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Car Rankings for 2020” data. GOBankingRates found the starting MSRP, overall safety ranking out of 20 stars and gas mileage for each vehicle. Vehicles are ranked in ascending order from least great to best.

The result is a list of affordable vehicles in a variety of categories that are good on gas, safe to drive and/or hold their value well. The first 31 cars on the list, for example, boast MSRPs below the national average.

From hatchbacks and pickups to sedans, coupes and SUVs, there’s something for everyone on this list. All of them are fairly vanilla, but none will break the bank for drivers who value substance over style. If that sounds like you, and you’re in the market for a new car, this list is a great place to start shopping.

Last updated: Sept. 17, 2020

54. 2020 Chevrolet Suburban

  • Starting MSRP: $51,700

  • City mpg: 15

  • Highway mpg: 22

  • Combined mpg: 18.5

  • Safety rating: 16

  • 5-year depreciation: $29,753

53. 2020 Nissan Armada

  • Starting MSRP: $47,100

  • City mpg: 14

  • Highway mpg: 19

  • Combined mpg: 16.5

  • Safety rating: 15

  • 5-year depreciation: $27,106

52. 2020 Chevrolet Tahoe

  • Starting MSRP: $49,000

  • City mpg: 15

  • Highway mpg: 22

  • Combined mpg: 18.5

  • Safety rating: 16

  • 5-year depreciation: $28,200

51. 2020 Ford Expedition

  • Starting MSRP: $52,810

  • City mpg: 17

  • Highway mpg: 23

  • Combined mpg: 20

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $30,392

See: 16 Unexpected Car Costs and How To Prepare For Them Now

50. 2020 Toyota Avalon

  • Starting MSRP: $35,875

  • City mpg: 22

  • Highway mpg: 32

  • Combined mpg: 27

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $20,646

49. 2020 GMC Sierra 1500

  • Starting MSRP: $31,195

  • City mpg: 16

  • Highway mpg: 21

  • Combined mpg: 18.5

  • Safety rating: 17

  • 5-year depreciation: $17,953

48. 2020 Mazda CX-9

  • Starting MSRP: $33,890

  • City mpg: 22

  • Highway mpg: 28

  • Combined mpg: 25

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $19,504

47. 2020 Honda Ridgeline

  • Starting MSRP: $33,900

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 26

  • Combined mpg: 22.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $19,509

46. 2020 Chrysler Pacifica

  • Starting MSRP: $34,045

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 28

  • Combined mpg: 23.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $19,593

45. 2020 Ram 1500

  • Starting MSRP: $32,145

  • City mpg: 20

  • Highway mpg: 25

  • Combined mpg: 22.5

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $18,499

Check Out: 30 Cars With the Highest Resale Value

 

44. 2020 Kia Telluride

  • Starting MSRP: $31,890

  • City mpg: 20

  • Highway mpg: 26

  • Combined mpg: 23

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $18,353

43. 2020 Toyota Sienna

  • Starting MSRP: $31,640

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 27

  • Combined mpg: 23

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $18,209

42. 2020 Chevrolet Silverado 1500

  • Starting MSRP: $28,500

  • City mpg: 16

  • Highway mpg: 21

  • Combined mpg: 18.5

  • Safety rating: 17

  • 5-year depreciation: $16,402

41. 2020 Nissan Maxima

  • Starting MSRP: $34,250

  • City mpg: 20

  • Highway mpg: 30

  • Combined mpg: 25

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $19,711

40. 2020 Hyundai Palisade

  • Starting MSRP: $31,975

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 26

  • Combined mpg: 22.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $18,402

39. 2020 Chrysler 300

  • Starting MSRP: $30,040

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 30

  • Combined mpg: 24.5

  • Safety rating: 17

  • 5-year depreciation: $17,288

Looking for a New Car? 50 Cars That Are Better To Lease Than Own

38. 2020 Chevrolet Impala

  • Starting MSRP: $31,620

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 28

  • Combined mpg: 23.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $18,197

37. 2020 Toyota Avalon Hybrid

  • Starting MSRP: $37,000

  • City mpg: 43

  • Highway mpg: 44

  • Combined mpg: 43.5

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $21,294

36. 2020 Honda Odyssey

  • Starting MSRP: $30,790

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 28

  • Combined mpg: 23.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $17,720

35. 2020 Ford F-150

  • Starting MSRP: $28,745

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 25

  • Combined mpg: 22

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $16,543

Read: 18 Reasons Car Buying Will Never Be the Same Again

34. 2020 Toyota Tacoma

  • Starting MSRP: $26,050

  • City mpg: 20

  • Highway mpg: 23

  • Combined mpg: 21.5

  • Safety rating: 17

  • 5-year depreciation: $14,992

33. 2020 Kia Sedona

  • Starting MSRP: $27,600

  • City mpg: 18

  • Highway mpg: 24

  • Combined mpg: 21

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $15,884

32. 2020 Volkswagen GTI

  • Starting MSRP: $28,595

  • City mpg: 24

  • Highway mpg: 32

  • Combined mpg: 28

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $16,456

31. 2020 Ford Ranger

  • Starting MSRP: $24,410

  • City mpg: 21

  • Highway mpg: 26

  • Combined mpg: 23.5

  • Safety rating: 16

  • 5-year depreciation: $14,048

30. 2020 GMC Canyon

  • Starting MSRP: $23,395

  • City mpg: 20

  • Highway mpg: 26

  • Combined mpg: 23

  • Safety rating: 16

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,464

 

29. 2020 Chrysler Voyager

  • Starting MSRP: $26,985

  • City mpg: 19

  • Highway mpg: 28

  • Combined mpg: 23.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $15,530

28. 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe

  • Starting MSRP: $26,275

  • City mpg: 22

  • Highway mpg: 29

  • Combined mpg: 25.5

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $15,121

27. 2020 Kia Sorento

  • Starting MSRP: $26,990

  • City mpg: 22

  • Highway mpg: 29

  • Combined mpg: 25.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $15,533

 

26. 2020 Kia Sportage

  • Starting MSRP: $23,990

  • City mpg: 23

  • Highway mpg: 30

  • Combined mpg: 26.5

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,806

25. 2020 Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

  • Starting MSRP: $28,350

  • City mpg: 41

  • Highway mpg: 38

  • Combined mpg: 39.5

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $16,315

Want a Little More? 25 Things You Should Always Do Before Buying a Used Car

24. 2020 Mazda CX-5

  • Starting MSRP: $25,190

  • City mpg: 25

  • Highway mpg: 31

  • Combined mpg: 28

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $14,497

23. 2020 Ford Escape

  • Starting MSRP: $24,885

  • City mpg: 27

  • Highway mpg: 33

  • Combined mpg: 30

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $14,321

22. 2020 Honda CR-V

  • Starting MSRP: $25,050

  • City mpg: 28

  • Highway mpg: 34

  • Combined mpg: 31

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $14,416

21. 2020 Ford Escape Hybrid

  • Starting MSRP: $28,265

  • City mpg: 44

  • Highway mpg: 37

  • Combined mpg: 40.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $16,267

 

20. 2020 Chevrolet Equinox

  • Starting MSRP: $23,800

  • City mpg: 26

  • Highway mpg: 31

  • Combined mpg: 28.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,697

19. 2020 Mazda Mazda6

  • Starting MSRP: $24,100

  • City mpg: 26

  • Highway mpg: 35

  • Combined mpg: 30.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,870

18. 2020 Volkswagen Golf

  • Starting MSRP: $23,195

  • City mpg: 29

  • Highway mpg: 35

  • Combined mpg: 32

  • Safety rating: 18

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,349

17. 2020 Kia Optima

  • Starting MSRP: $23,390

  • City mpg: 24

  • Highway mpg: 32

  • Combined mpg: 28

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,461

Gas Savers: 35 Ways To Slash Your Car Costs

16. 2020 Hyundai Sonata

  • Starting MSRP: $23,600

  • City mpg: 28

  • Highway mpg: 38

  • Combined mpg: 33

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,582

15. 2020 Mazda CX-30

  • Starting MSRP: $21,900

  • City mpg: 25

  • Highway mpg: 33

  • Combined mpg: 29

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $12,603

14. 2020 Toyota Camry

  • Starting MSRP: $24,425

  • City mpg: 29

  • Highway mpg: 41

  • Combined mpg: 35

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $14,057

13. 2020 Honda Accord

  • Starting MSRP: $24,020

  • City mpg: 30

  • Highway mpg: 38

  • Combined mpg: 34

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,824

12. 2020 Hyundai Kona

  • Starting MSRP: $20,300

  • City mpg: 27

  • Highway mpg: 33

  • Combined mpg: 30

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $11,683

 

11. 2020 Mazda Mazda3

  • Starting MSRP: $21,500

  • City mpg: 26

  • Highway mpg: 35

  • Combined mpg: 30.5

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $12,373

10. 2020 Kia Soul

  • Starting MSRP: $17,490

  • City mpg: 27

  • Highway mpg: 33

  • Combined mpg: 30

  • Safety rating: 17

  • 5-year depreciation: $10,065

9. 2020 Toyota Camry Hybrid

  • Starting MSRP: $28,430

  • City mpg: 51

  • Highway mpg: 53

  • Combined mpg: 52

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $16,361

8. 2020 Honda Accord Hybrid

  • Starting MSRP: $25,620

  • City mpg: 48

  • Highway mpg: 47

  • Combined mpg: 47.5

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $14,744

7. 2020 Kia Forte

  • Starting MSRP: $17,890

  • City mpg: 31

  • Highway mpg: 41

  • Combined mpg: 36

  • Safety rating: 17

  • 5-year depreciation: $10,296

Read: 13 Cars That Are Bad News for Tesla

6. 2020 Honda Civic

  • Starting MSRP: $20,650

  • City mpg: 30

  • Highway mpg: 38

  • Combined mpg: 34

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $11,884

5. 2020 Chevrolet Sonic

  • Starting MSRP: $16,720

  • City mpg: 26

  • Highway mpg: 34

  • Combined mpg: 30

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $9,622

4. 2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid

  • Starting MSRP: $23,100

  • City mpg: 53

  • Highway mpg: 52

  • Combined mpg: 52.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,294

3. 2020 Honda Insight

  • Starting MSRP: $22,930

  • City mpg: 55

  • Highway mpg: 49

  • Combined mpg: 52

  • Safety rating: 20

  • 5-year depreciation: $13,196

2. 2020 Honda Fit

  • Starting MSRP: $16,190

  • City mpg: 33

  • Highway mpg: 40

  • Combined mpg: 36.5

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $9,317

1. 2020 Toyota Yaris

  • Starting MSRP: $15,650

  • City mpg: 32

  • Highway mpg: 40

  • Combined mpg: 36

  • Safety rating: 19

  • 5-year depreciation: $9,007

More From GOBankingRates

Methodology: In order to find “boring” cars that are the best for your wallet, GOBankingRates looked at U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Car Rankings for 2020” data, excluding all cars in the “luxury” and “sports” categories. Once top-ranking models were identified, GOBankingRates found each car’s (1) starting MSRP from the manufacturer’s official website; (2) overall safety ranking out of 20 stars (overall, frontal crash, side crash, rollover) as sourced from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration; and (3) combined (city and highway) miles per gallon for each vehicle as sourced from U.S. News & World Report data. Factors No. 1-3 were then scored and combined with the lowest score being best. Factor No. 1 was weighted three times and factor No. 2 was weighted 1/2 times in final calculations. For supplemental data, GOBankingRates used the Navy Federal Credit Union’s car depreciation calculator to determine five-year depreciation costs for each car. All data was collected on and is up to date as of June 15, 2020.

This article originally appeared on GOBankingRates.com: Why These ‘Boring’ Cars Are Great for Your Wallet