The Ten Cheapest Cars of 2012

With fluctuating gas prices and an uncertain economy, many people are ditching the gas-guzzling SUV or sports car for a more stress-free car owning experience. Kelley Blue Book recently released their ‘cheapest cars to own list’ which may help those still sitting on the fence when it comes to making a purchase.

So for 2012, here is the list for the cheapest cars to own & maintain.


Scion xD

The xD is the last car to make the top 10. While its styling has been touted as a standout in the subcompact market, it is the highest to maintain of this group, at just under $6,000 a year. Price is slightly higher at $16,075 MSRP. Gas mileage is acceptable, at 27/33 MPG for city/highway.


Kia Rio

The Rio is placed at number nine on KBB’s list. Similar to the Hyandai Accent on style and architecture, Kia’s Rio cost slightly more to maintain at roughly $5,972/year. Gas mileage and price are similar however, at 30/40/33 city/highway/combined and $14,150 MSRP.


Hyundai Elantra

A unique offering for this list, the Hyandai Elantra is the only compact car to make it into the top 10. It has been lauded for having a spacious interior and a great design for the price and its sedan class. Gas mileage is great, too. Maintainance per year is estimated at $5,900. MSRP $16,120. MPG 29/40/33 city/highway/combined.


Honda Fit

Like its counterpart Toyota, Honda has been a strong mainstay in the sub-compact car market for years. The Fit is not as new as some of the other cars in this list, but it still averages 28/35/33 MPG for city, highway, & combined respectively. This four-door hatchback has a MSRP of $15,945 and average maintainance costs of $5,875/year.


Ford Fiesta

Coming in at number six, the Fiesta is the only car from the US to make the top ten. Although slightly higher in maintainence costs averaging $5,725 per year, it can be had for a bargain price of $13,995. MPG stats are 29/40/33 for city/highway/combined.



Mazda 2

This car was introduced by Mazda to the US in 2010 with the hopes of taking a fair share of the subcompact market. It has done reasonably well and comes in at number five on KBB’s list. Its average gas mileage is 29 MPG in the city with 35 MPG on the highway; 33 MPG when combined. MSRP is $15,325.


Toyota Yaris

The Japanese auto giant has had its share of problems of late, but the Yaris is a strong offering from its small cars portfolio. Average ownership per year is slightly above $5,600, while the car maintains a combined MGP of 33 (30/38 city/highway). This reliable hatchback can be purcahsed for around $14,875 at MSRP.


Kia Soul

Kia’s radically designed Soul comes in at number three for those seeking a budget friendly car with some edgy styling. With an asking price of $14,650, this 4-door ‘sports wagon’ is supposed to appeal to a more youthul market. Gas mileage is 29/36 city/highway with 32 MPG combined.


Hyundai Accent

Available as a four-door sedan model, the Accent has been completely re-designed for the 2012 model year. Maintainence over the first five years averages slightly over $5,500/year. Although not the cheapest by price at $13,320, the Accent bests the Nissan Versa in fuel economy, with an MPG of 30/40 city/highway (33 combined).


Nissan Versa

This subcompact can be had for less than $12,000 and gets an astounding 30/38 MPG city/highway. Cost of ownership averages slightly over $5,000 per year for the first five years.


Source: Yahoo! Autos

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