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Buying & Leasing a Car

Deal or No Deal in Today’s Market for 7 Categories of Used Cars

Find out which vehicles have attractive prices now.

The more used vehicles there are in a market segment, the better the potential values. For each category ripe for deals, we list three-year-old models that had higher-than-average sales when new and are in plentiful supply now.

Compact. Deal! More new-car choices in recent model years plus buyer interest in fuel efficiency mean more used choices -- and relatively attractive prices. Shop for: Toyota Corolla, Honda Civic

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Midsize. Deal! Lease returns this fall will boost models in the used market, and new-model sales will spur trades. Shop for: Toyota Camry, Honda Accord, Nissan Altima

Hybrid. No deal. Sales have been limited, and green vehicles hold their value well. You may be able to find a bargain on the ubiquitous Toyota Prius, but until there is an oversupply of other hybrid models, don’t expect to find savings.

Luxury. Deal! These automakers kept leasing through the recession, so there are plenty of cars to choose from. Shop for: BMW 3 Series, Mercedes-Benz C-Class and E-Class

Small crossovers. No deal. Folks transitioning from larger SUVs are seeking them out for more miles per gallon, so demand is high and supply is tight.

Midsize/large crossovers and SUVs. Deal! Larger crossovers and body-on-frame SUVs don’t enjoy the demand they once did, thanks to high gas prices. Shop for: Toyota Highlander, Honda Pilot, Ford Explorer

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Full-size sedans. Deal! Even though there aren’t a ton of choices in this category, demand is down due to their less-than-stellar fuel economy. Shop for: Chevrolet Impala, Ford Taurus, Nissan Maxima

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