The first car. After you get your license, the search for the perfect first car is on. Let’s just say in a perfect world, you have around a $20,000 budget to purchase a new vehicle, as your first vehicle. What are the best choices for you? Keep in mind, high performance cars and the majority of large SUVs and crossovers would be well above your budget and insurance costs would be super-high for these vehicles. Without further ado, here are seven great choices for your first car!
Toyota Corolla/iM– The Corolla is not flashy or large, but it is definitely good for someone just starting out. Regardless of size, the Corolla/iM is roomy. Someone in the six foot height range would comfortably fit in the rear seats. The Corolla/iM perfect for someone who is just learning how to drive. Let’s not forget to mention it’s low entry level price and it’s amazing fuel efficiency.
Honda Civic (Sedan, Hatch or Coupe)– Just like the Corolla, the Honda Civic is another low-priced, starter car with decent gas mileage. You have the option of a coupe, hatchback or sedan which gives you options to choose from. The Civic Si would be an option for those with a $30,000 budget, but might not be good for a first time driver.
Jeep Renegade- If size matters, but you don’t want something too large, the Jeep Renegade is your choice. It’s not the typical Jeep, howeverm it’s size is perfect for navigating through the city or parallel parking on campus. Unlike some of the others on this list, you can fit the contents of your dorm room in it, when traveling back home for break. Spend a little more money, you can get the “Trail Rated” version!
Nissan Versa/Note – The main reason why the Nissan Versa/Note is on this list, is because it’s price point. The base model Versa is the lowest priced car on this list. The standard transmission is a straight drive, so that would be a great way to learn how to drive stick. That would come in handy when you decide to purchase a 370z, down the road. The added benefit of the Versa Note is the hatchback, which gives you a touch more space.
Ford Focus ST– If you want something that is a bit sportier, the Ford Focus ST is a decent choice. Not only do you get some room to move stuff, you also get a semi-hot hatch, that is subtle at best. It combines the versatility of a hatchback, with sporty looks and performance to boot. It can get a little pricey, but is still not too unreasonable for someone starting out.
Chevy Equinox- If the smaller Chevrolet Trax is too small and you have a couple thousand dollars more, the Equinox is a solid offering. The only issue with the Equinox would be the underpowered 2.4 L four cylinder engine, however, gas mileage is decent for a vehicle of it size. It’s also very comfortable for road trips as well.
Toyota 86/Scion FRS/Subaru BRZ- If you really just don’t care about insurance cost and mommy and daddy are fronting a few grand for the purchase, the Toyota 86/Scion FRS/Subaru BRZ would be perfect. These are definately good drivers cars and they are vehicles that you can mod to your liking. These are super-powered as the stock 86/FRS/BRZ have been known to be on the slower side. If you’re fortunate to have parents who can afford something around $26k take advantage.
Fiat 500- A micro car with a low entry level price. If you need a little more speed, the Abarth is your choice.
Chevrolet Sonic- Roughly $15k gets your a subcompact sedan or hatch. It’s turbo too!!
Toyota Yaris- Options of two doors or four doors. Spring for the SE, which starts around $17k.
Chevrolet Trax- A tick north of $20k gets you a barebones compact SUV.
Chevy Colorado- You may not get four wheel drive or a crew cab, but atleast you will have a truck.