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The 10 best and worst used cars, trucks and SUVs you can buy in 2024

Buying a used car instead of a new vehicle can be an intelligent financial decision. However, doing so comes with its own set of challenges. The used car market is enormous, with so many cars, trucks, and SUVs that it can overwhelm your decision-making.  

To help you navigate the process, we’ve compiled a list of the ten best and worst used cars to buy in 2024. We’ve made our selections based on a combination of factors, including reliability, maintenance costs, resale value, and overall owner satisfaction, supported by data from J.D. Power, Consumer Reports, and Kelley Blue Book. 

Toyota Camry (2017-2021) 

The Camry has long been known for its exceptional reliability and longevity. In fact, J.D. Power consistently rated it high for dependability. Toyota’s large sedan is reliable and economical, with low annual maintenance costs, a comfortable ride, a spacious interior, and significant resale value. 

Honda Civic (2016-2021) 

A perennial favorite among used car shoppers, the Civic stands out for its excellent fuel efficiency and substantial resale value. Kelley Blue Book highlights its low cost of ownership, and Consumer Reports praises its reliability and performance. Its advanced safety features make it an attractive choice for compact car shoppers. 

Mazda CX-5 (2017-2021) 

The stylish Mazda CX-5 offers an engaging driving experience and a strong reliability record. Consumer Reports ranks it high for owner satisfaction and dependability. With advanced safety features, a high-quality interior, and solid fuel economy, the CX-5 is a compelling choice.  

Subaru Outback (2017-2021) 

The most popular car among dog owners, the Subaru Outback is versatile and dependable. It is renowned for its standard all-wheel drive and excellent safety ratings. The IIHS consistently awards it high marks for durability and off-road capability.  

Toyota Corolla (2017-2021) 

Toyota’s Corolla is synonymous with affordability, reliability, and fuel economy. J.D. Power rates it highly for dependability, and RepairPal notes its low annual maintenance costs. Its straightforward design and user-friendly features make it a practical choice for buyers. 

Lexus RX 350 (2016-2020) 

The luxurious Lexus RX 350 SUV offers outstanding reliability and high resale value, as reported by Kelley Blue Book. Its plush interior, smooth ride, and advanced technology features make it a desirable option for those seeking a premium used SUV. 

Honda CR-V (2017-2021) 

The Honda CR-V compact crossover offers style, reliability, and impressive fuel efficiency. Consistently ranked high by Consumer Reports, the CR-V offers a balanced mix of comfort, utility, and advanced safety features, making it a popular choice among used compact SUVs. 

Ford F-150 (2015-2020) 

America’s best-selling truck, the Ford F-150, is known for its versatility. Kelley Blue Book lists it as a top truck for resale value, and RepairPal reports moderate maintenance costs. The F-150 is a reliable choice for those needing a durable and capable used pickup. 

Chevrolet Tahoe (2016-2020) 

Chevy’s Tahoe is a robust and powerful full-size SUV with a reputation for reliability and spaciousness. J.D. Power gives it high marks for dependability, and Kelley Blue Book highlights its above-average resale value.  

Hyundai Elantra (2017-2021) 

The Elantra is known for its affordability, reliability, and excellent warranty coverage. Consumer Reports highlights its low ownership costs, making it an excellent choice for budget-conscious buyers. The Elantra’s modern design and fuel efficiency add to its appeal. 

The 10 Worst Used Cars to Buy in 2024 

Fiat 500 (2012-2019) 

Consumer Reports ranks the Fiat 500 low for dependability, and RepairPal reports frequent maintenance problems. While it may be cute and fun to drive, its mechanical issues and costly repairs can pose a significant risk for used car buyers, highlighting the importance of caution and thorough research. 

Jeep Renegade (2015-2020) 

The Renegade shares a platform with Fiat models 500X and 500L. This small Jeep has low reliability scores and subpar fuel economy. J.D. Power rates it low for dependability, and Consumer Reports cites frequent mechanical issues. Its high maintenance costs and reliability concerns outweigh its benefits. 

Chrysler 200 (2015-2017) 

Kelley Blue Book reports low resale values and frequent complaints about the Chrysler 200 sedan’s mechanical reliability are common. Reported issues include excessive oil consumption and transmission failure. Its costly repairs and low owner satisfaction make it a poor choice for a used car. 

Nissan Pathfinder (2013-2018) 

Consumer Reports highlights frequent problems with its Continuously Variable Transmission (CVT), and J.D. Power scores the Pathfinder low for dependability. Despite its spacious interior, mechanical issues make it less desirable than other SUVs in its category. 

Dodge Journey (2009-2019) 

The Journey fits somewhere between a minivan and an SUV. It’s been criticized for poor performance and reliability. RepairPal reports high maintenance costs, and Consumer Reports cites low owner satisfaction. Its outdated design and frequent mechanical problems make it a poor choice. 

Land Rover Discovery (2017-2020) 

While it may impress your neighbors, this Land Rover has high maintenance costs and frequent repairs. Kelley Blue Book lists high ownership costs, and J.D. Power gives it low reliability scores. Despite its luxurious interior, mechanical issues make it a risky choice. 

Chevrolet Spark (2013-2018) 

The tiny Spark has poor safety ratings and reliability issues. The IIHS gives it low safety ratings, and Consumer Reports ranks it low for dependability. Frequent mechanical problems and safety concerns make this subcompact less desirable. 

Ford Fiesta (2011-2019) 

Ford’s subcompact Fiesta is known for transmission problems and low resale value. Consumer Reports and RepairPal report frequent transmission issues, and Kelley Blue Book notes its low resale value. Despite its sporty design, reliability issues make it a risky purchase. 

Volkswagen Jetta (2011-2018) 

This VW has mixed reliability and high maintenance costs. J.D. Power gives the Jetta average dependability scores, and RepairPal reports higher-than-average maintenance costs. Frequent mechanical problems and costly repairs are significant drawbacks to ownership. 

Mini Cooper (2012-2019) 

The stylish Mini Cooper is known for high repair costs and frequent issues. Consumer Reports lists it as unreliable, and RepairPal reports high ownership costs. Costly repairs and mechanical problems overshadow its engaging driving experience. 


When considering a used car, it’s crucial to look beyond the purchase price and consider factors such as reliability, maintenance costs, and resale value. This underscores the importance of thorough research and professional inspections, empowering you to make an informed decision and feel in control of your purchase.  

The best cars, trucks and SUVs on this list offer a combination of these factors, making them intelligent choices for used car buyers. Conversely, the worst cars often have high maintenance costs, frequent reliability issues, and poor resale value, making them riskier choices. Conduct thorough research and consider professional inspections to make the most informed decision possible. 

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Arthur Michalik
Arthur Michalik
Arthur Michalik: Even before graduating with a degree in Journalism, Art was already contributing to the automotive industry. He’s worked as a freelancer, staff writer, magazine editor, ad agency exec and Tier 1 marketing leader. Art focuses on developing engaging, informative content for several automotive-specific sites.

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