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Edmunds Best cars of 2019

You probably already know that a new car begins to lose value the minute you drive it off the dealer's lot. So why would you buy one, anyway? There are some good reasons, of course. Maybe you want the latest safety and connected technology, or you just like the idea of a new product with no unknown history. Maybe you revel in that new-car smell and the joy of driving off in a whip you've researched, compared, desired, and worked hard to own.

But make no mistake: A new car's value plummets in the early days and years of ownership. Savvy buyers know that there's money to be saved — often nearly 50% or more — by choosing a used car that's just a few years old.

If that sounds like your style, you're in the right place. We've compiled a list of today's best used cars, broken down into specific categories. It's important to note that we focused on models sold new in the 2016 model year since these vehicles are likely to be coming off lease today and entering the used-car marketplace.

How did we pick them? To make the cut, each of our used cars needed both a strong rating from our test team experts and a solid consumer rating based on our plentiful consumer reviews. We also combed through Edmunds' robust nationwide transaction data to determine how much you can expect to save by buying used compared to a new model of the same vehicle. Because let's be real — when it comes to used-car shopping, price is paramount. But saving less up front generally means a better resale value down the road, so that's another factor to consider.

Best Used Cars
Utility vehicles have become so popular that it's easy for regular used cars to get lost in the shuffle. That's a shame, because cars have so much to offer, whether you're looking at tried-and-true family sedans or versatile hatchbacks and wagons. You can even opt for a hybrid, plug-in-hybrid or fully electric used car, and there are plenty of used luxury cars that might now be in your price range. It's a great time to be a used-car shopper, so let's get started.

Best Used Sedans
Forget what you've heard. Sedans aren't dead; they're not even dying. They're just no longer the shiny new objects thanks to today's countless SUV variants. But really, a lot of drivers don't like to sit so high. And a lot of them still like trunks.

Used Nissan Maxima

2016 Nissan Maxima
2016 Nissan Maxima exterior
2016 Nissan Maxima
2016 Nissan Maxima interior

The Maxima's dramatic design and punchy six-cylinder engine make it a strong choice among used sedans. Its high-quality interior also rivals those of luxury sedans. A new Maxima is priced like similar full-size sedans from Toyota and Buick, which may give some buyers pause. But grab a 2016 Maxima and you'll save an average of 46%, making it a top value for a big, bold family car.

Average 2016 Nissan Maxima transaction price: $21,123
Savings vs. new: 46% 
Edmunds rating: 7.6/10
Average consumer rating (2016): 4.4/5
Used Nissan Maxima years for this generation: 2016 | 2017 | 2018

Shop all used Nissan Maxima models

Used Mazda 3



2016 Mazda 3
2016 Mazda 3 exterior
2016 Mazda 3
2016 Mazda 3 interior

The Mazda 3 has long been a staff favorite thanks to its dynamic handling and sophisticated style. But it's not just us. Consumers love it, too, and it also might just be the best used car you can buy. That's a bold claim, but it's backed up by the numbers. The average 2016 Mazda 3 buyer gets nearly 50% off the price of a new one. What's not to like?

Average 2016 Mazda 3 transaction price: $14,064
Savings vs. new: 47% 
Edmunds rating: 7.9/10
Average consumer rating (2016): 4.5/5
Used Mazda 3 years for this generation: 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018

Shop all used Mazda 3 models

Used Toyota Avalon

2016 Toyota Avalon
2016 Toyota Avalon exterior
2016 Toyota Avalon
2016 Toyota Avalon interior

Looking for a family sedan with loads of room, a large trunk, comfortable seats and an interior ideal for long-haul driving? Look no further than the Toyota Avalon. A quiet cabin and optional luxury touches such as rear-seat climate control make the Avalon perfect for road trips. Although the ride sometimes isn't as smooth as we'd like, this big Toyota comes with a muscular V6 engine that really hauls the mail while returning good fuel economy. It's also quite rare to find a well-regarded Toyota model that depreciates this quickly, so the Avalon should be especially appealing to used-car shoppers.

Average 2016 Toyota Avalon transaction price: $22,176
Savings vs. new: 42%
Edmunds rating: 7.6/10
Average consumer rating (2016): 4.6/5
Used Toyota Avalon years for this generation: 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018

Source: Edmunds.com

Edmunds Best cars of 2019

You probably already know that a new car begins to lose value the minute you drive it off the dealer's lot. So why would you buy one, anyway? There are some good reasons, of course. Maybe you want the latest safety and connected technology, or you just like the idea of a new product with no unknown history. Maybe you revel in that new-car smell and the joy of driving off in a whip you've researched, compared, desired, and worked hard to own.

But make no mistake: A new car's value plummets in the early days and years of ownership. Savvy buyers know that there's money to be saved — often nearly 50% or more — by choosing a used car that's just a few years old.

If that sounds like your style, you're in the right place. We've compiled a list of today's best used cars, broken down into specific categories. It's important to note that we focused on models sold new in the 2016 model year since these vehicles are likely to be coming off lease today and entering the used-car marketplace.

How did we pick them? To make the cut, each of our used cars needed both a strong rating from our test team experts and a solid consumer rating based on our plentiful consumer reviews. We also combed through Edmunds' robust nationwide transaction data to determine how much you can expect to save by buying used compared to a new model of the same vehicle. Because let's be real — when it comes to used-car shopping, price is paramount. But saving less up front generally means a better resale value down the road, so that's another factor to consider.

Best Used Cars
Utility vehicles have become so popular that it's easy for regular used cars to get lost in the shuffle. That's a shame, because cars have so much to offer, whether you're looking at tried-and-true family sedans or versatile hatchbacks and wagons. You can even opt for a hybrid, plug-in-hybrid or fully electric used car, and there are plenty of used luxury cars that might now be in your price range. It's a great time to be a used-car shopper, so let's get started.

Best Used Sedans
Forget what you've heard. Sedans aren't dead; they're not even dying. They're just no longer the shiny new objects thanks to today's countless SUV variants. But really, a lot of drivers don't like to sit so high. And a lot of them still like trunks.

Used Nissan Maxima

2016 Nissan Maxima
2016 Nissan Maxima exterior
2016 Nissan Maxima
2016 Nissan Maxima interior

The Maxima's dramatic design and punchy six-cylinder engine make it a strong choice among used sedans. Its high-quality interior also rivals those of luxury sedans. A new Maxima is priced like similar full-size sedans from Toyota and Buick, which may give some buyers pause. But grab a 2016 Maxima and you'll save an average of 46%, making it a top value for a big, bold family car.

Average 2016 Nissan Maxima transaction price: $21,123
Savings vs. new: 46% 
Edmunds rating: 7.6/10
Average consumer rating (2016): 4.4/5
Used Nissan Maxima years for this generation: 2016 | 2017 | 2018

Shop all used Nissan Maxima models

Used Mazda 3



2016 Mazda 3
2016 Mazda 3 exterior
2016 Mazda 3
2016 Mazda 3 interior

The Mazda 3 has long been a staff favorite thanks to its dynamic handling and sophisticated style. But it's not just us. Consumers love it, too, and it also might just be the best used car you can buy. That's a bold claim, but it's backed up by the numbers. The average 2016 Mazda 3 buyer gets nearly 50% off the price of a new one. What's not to like?

Average 2016 Mazda 3 transaction price: $14,064
Savings vs. new: 47% 
Edmunds rating: 7.9/10
Average consumer rating (2016): 4.5/5
Used Mazda 3 years for this generation: 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018

Shop all used Mazda 3 models

Used Toyota Avalon

2016 Toyota Avalon
2016 Toyota Avalon exterior
2016 Toyota Avalon
2016 Toyota Avalon interior

Looking for a family sedan with loads of room, a large trunk, comfortable seats and an interior ideal for long-haul driving? Look no further than the Toyota Avalon. A quiet cabin and optional luxury touches such as rear-seat climate control make the Avalon perfect for road trips. Although the ride sometimes isn't as smooth as we'd like, this big Toyota comes with a muscular V6 engine that really hauls the mail while returning good fuel economy. It's also quite rare to find a well-regarded Toyota model that depreciates this quickly, so the Avalon should be especially appealing to used-car shoppers.

Average 2016 Toyota Avalon transaction price: $22,176
Savings vs. new: 42%
Edmunds rating: 7.6/10
Average consumer rating (2016): 4.6/5
Used Toyota Avalon years for this generation: 2013 | 2014 | 2015 | 2016 | 2017 | 2018

Source: Edmunds.com