10 best values in new car models for 2014
To win Kiplinger's Best Value Award among new models, a vehicle must be a new introduction or fully redesigned. There are lots to choose from this year.
As automakers battle for market share, consumers are the winners -- with more choices in every segment, and better ones, at that. High-end carmakers are luring buyers with new lower-priced models, and mainstream brands are loading their vehicles with new features that used to be found only on luxury models.
American cars are back in a big way, with General Motors and Chrysler introducing impressive new models in an attempt to play catch-up with Ford and the foreign competition. And nearly every carmaker is offering a menu of green powertrains, from hybrid to electric to diesel.
Winners are picked based on value factors (such as fuel economy and resale values), performance and safety, plus our own driving impressions.
Cars under $20,000:Mazda3
Sticker price: $19,740 (i Sport hatch, manual)
Invoice price: $18,916
Kelley Blue Book Fair Purchase Price: $18,950
Resale value: 3-year: 59%; 5-year: 44%
MPG: City: 29; Hwy: 40
From design to driving dynamics, the new Mazda3 takes the compact upscale. The 2.0-liter engine delivers performance as well as fuel economy, managing 40 miles per gallon on the highway. Optional safety features include forward collision warning.
Sticker price: $23,490 (i Sport)