Which used car is best to buy in 2021? With thousands of used vehicles on sale every day in the market, whittling down your shortlist can be challenging, and making sure you buy the best used car at the best price is even more challenging.
This article covers our top picks for great-value used cars in different categories of used vehicles in 2021, from small cars to luxury models and even used electric and hybrid cars. Let's get to them.
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7 Factors to Check When Buying Used Car
Which Used Car is Best to Buy in 2021
7 Factors to Check When Buying Used Car
Buying the right used car is a good option when looking for a quality vehicle at a reasonable price. While a used car can be a good option, buyers still need to make smart choices. Which used car is best to buy for a fair price?
There are many options to look for when buying a used car, but here are the seven most important points to help you choose the right used car.
1. Inspect the Entire Car
Inspect all interior and exterior of the vehicle. Check the car's body for scratches, rust, and dents. You probably shouldn't worry about small scratches, but more extensive damage areas may cause concern.
We recommend checking that body panels line up evenly, as uneven boards may accidentally show the car but not repaired well. It's also a good idea to carefully open and close the doors, trunk, and hood to see how easily they move.
Check also for paint overspray on the inside of the hood, trunk, and doors, and be sure the vehicle's color matches on all parts. If you notice overspray or mismatched paint, it's most likely that they repaired and repainted that part.
Check the interior by sitting in all the car seats and looking for any wear and tear. If the car's interior smells musty, check the carpet and floor mats for signs of a leak or water damage.
2. Check the Mileage
Low-mileage used cars are appealing, but it doesn't necessarily make them a good deal. Low mileage on a vehicle can undoubtedly mean less wear and tear and longer life. However, if the owner drives the car infrequently, the vehicle's plastic and rubber parts may dry out and get brittle all over it.
Make sure to check the mileage, or you may end up with a vehicle that needs a lot of repairs and reconditioning, which could cost you more in a long time.
Check the car mileage, but keep in mind that how the car has been maintained and used may be more critical than what the odometer says.
3. Inspect the Car for any Leaks
Any car leaking liquid is generally a red flag for a needed repair. Check under the vehicle to see if there's any fluid leaking. Black liquid might indicate leaking oil, while green, yellow or pink liquid may indicate a leak in antifreeze, and reddish fluid could spread in the transmission or power-steering fluid.
4. Determine a Fair Price
To get a fair price, compare prices for the same make and model with several sources. You can check the dealer prices online and decide which used car is best to buy based on merit.
You can use several online tools to compare prices, including KBB and National Automobile Dealers Association Guides. Even though condition and mileage will play an essential role in price, you can still get a ballpark figure of the car's market value.
5. Go for a Test Drive
A test drive can help you discover the car's condition and whether it's the right choice for you. It would help if you turned the car key to the accessory position before starting the engine.
It would help if you saw all the dashboard warning lights go on. If the lights do not light up or stay on when you turn on the ignition, make sure the problem is inspected. When you start the car engine, listen for tapping and clicking sounds, which could show a problem.
We suggest driving the car on different roads and at varying speeds to see if the transmission shifts smoothly. Make sure to note any unusual noises and whether all of the electronics are working correctly. Also, be sure the brakes function correctly and do not pull the vehicle to one side.
6. Inspect the Vehicle Identification Number
The Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) reveals a lot about a car. Checking a VIN decoder chart is an excellent way to see if a used car's VIN information matches up with what's in the title and records. Several VIN decoders are available online, including one from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).
You can also use the VIN to see if there are any recalls on the vehicle. You can look up a car by VIN on the NHTSA's Safety Issues and Recalls page to see if the car needs repairs due to a safety recall. However, keep in mind that there may not be information on an older vehicle, non-safety-related recalls, or recently announced recalls.
7. Check the Car History Report
A car history report can help you see title problems, ownership history, service points, and previous accidents. You can get a car history report online using the services available. You should pay a fee and enter the VIN or license plate number. If you're buying through a dealership, though, they may provide a history report for free.
Which Used Car is Best to Buy in 2021
There are various options in the used car world, from superminis to family cars and even executive ones. However, it isn't easy to choose between them. If you want to know which used car is best to buy in 2021, this section includes some of the market's best choices.
1. Skoda Citigo
Skoda Citigo is one of the best famous city cars ever. It provides big-car features in a small package. It's also cheaper than the equivalent Volkswagen and Seat models. If you're in the market for a small city car, you should take a good look at the Skoda Citigo.
2. SEAT Ibiza
This supermini is a great car, it is very comfortable and spacious for a small car, and the boot is a great size. Spanish car manufacturer SEAT manufactures this car since 1984. It is SEAT's best-selling car. The Ibiza is the second SEAT model to be named after a Spanish city, after the SEAT Ronda.
3. Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport
If you're looking for a family hatchback, Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport is for you. It isn't the best, but neither is it catastrophically wrong. Reliability Index gives Insignia a below-average score, although Vauxhall as a whole ranked pretty well in the most recent customer satisfaction surveys.
4. Citroen C3 Aircross
The Citroen C3 Aircross is a quirky family SUV with a stylish, spacious, and practical interior. It's a comfortable car, but large blind spots can make it tricky to maneuver in town.
5. Renault Kadjar
If you're looking for a mid-size SUV, take a look at Renault Kadjar. Once you've left the car park, you'll find the Kadjar is reasonably comfortable. You'll feel bumps more than in a Qashqai, but it's still more relaxing to drive than a Kia Sportage.
6. Kia Sorento
The Kia Sorento has an upscale interior with two comfortable rows of seats, plenty of easy-to-use features, and a decent maximum cargo capacity. This car has a perfect predicted reliability rating.
7. Jaguar XE
Jaguar XE is a five-seater sedan available in an acceptable price range. It is available in 2 variants, one engine option and one transmission option: Automatic. Other key specifications of the XE include a Ground Clearance of 125 mm, a Kerb Weight of 1639 kg, and a Boot space of 455 liters.
8. Volvo S90
This make and model of Volvo is an executive sedan for people who like these kinds. Swedish automaker Volvo Cars manufactures this car since 2016. Another variant is the Volvo V90.
9. Mazda MX-5
The Mazda MX-5 is a lightweight two-passenger sports car. Mazda manufactured and marketed this one with a front mid-engine, rear-wheel-drive layout.
10. Ford Fiesta ST
The Ford Fiesta ST is a unique party! Its forgiving chassis and seamlessly shifting manual transmission allow amateur drivers to flourish. The exuberant handling in this car quickly makes up for its shortfall in straight-line speed.
If you want to make sure you're buying a car you like, don't rush into buying the first used car you see. Take the time to research which used car is best to buy and negotiate on the price. Following the above points help you choose a used car that meets your needs and fits your budget. Knowing what to look for and consider enables you to make the right decision about your next vehicle and bring you a reliable one. Whether it's a used Toyota or a used Honda.