Buying & Leasing a Car


12 Best Resale Value Cars, 2012

Sports Cars: Ford Mustang

Sticker price: $23,105 (base coupe)

Invoice price: $22,040

TrueCar national average price: $20,974

3-year resale value: 63%, 5-year: 46%

City mpg: 19, Hwy: 29

Ford's classic pony car won Best New Car last year with a redesign that added more power (305 horsepower from the 3.7-liter V6 engine) but kept fuel economy a priority. One of its shining achievements is a stellar resale value: It’ll be worth 63% of the sticker price after three years.

Small Crossovers: Subaru Forester 2.5 XT Touring

Sticker price: $30,670

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Invoice price: $28,767

TrueCar national average price: $29,259

3-year resale value: 60%, 5-year: 46%

City mpg: 19, Hwy: 24

Kiplinger's Best in Class small crossover for the second year running, the Subaru Forester has sure-footed handling with the brand's standard all-wheel drive, loads of interior space and a speedy yet thrifty turbocharged engine.

Midsize and Large Crossovers: BMW X5 35i

Sticker price: $48,375

Invoice price: $44,575

TrueCar national average price: $45,706

3-year resale value: 62%, 5-year: 45%

City mpg: 16, Hwy: 23

With seating for up to seven passengers, German-engineered driving dynamics and high resale values, BMW’s X5 has always been appealing. For 2012, more standard features are added: roof rails and a cargo cover for added utility and an iPod/USB connection and Hi-Fi sound system for added enjoyment while driving.

Truck-based SUVs: Jeep Wrangler Sport

Sticker price: $22,845

Invoice price: $22,261

TrueCar national average price: $22,295

3-year resale value: 61%, 5-year: 46%

City mpg: 17, Hwy: 21

Jeep's classic go-anywhere off-roader stays ahead of the pack on value. It offers the best mileage in its class (outside of hybrid models), with 17 mpg in the city, and tops the resale charts.

Minivans: Toyota Sienna 7-Passenger V6

Sticker price: $27,110

Invoice price: $25,138

TrueCar national average price: $25,599

3-year resale value: 56%, 5-year: 42%

City mpg: 18, Hwy: 25

Redesigned last year, the Toyota Sienna is the only minivan to offer models with a four-cylinder engine and all-wheel drive. It seats up to eight passengers and features seven airbags, and its 3.5-liter V6 puts out 265 horses. It narrowly edges out the Honda Odyssey for Best Resale, and it receives a Worth a Look nod.

Wagons: Toyota Prius v Two

Sticker price: $27,160

Invoice price: $25,337

TrueCar national average price: $26,732

3-year resale value: 62%, 5-year: 48%

City mpg: 44, Hwy: 40

The Prius v wagon is the new, slightly bigger sibling of the ubiquitous Prius hatchback. Starting at just $2,400 more than the hatchback, the Prius v has 55% more cargo space -- a total 34 cubic feet -- and shares the family's top-notch fuel economy and resale values.

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