10 best budget cars for first-time buyers

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Owning a car is a constant dream or achievement for most people. However, the exciting transition to car ownership isn’t always a walk in the park, given the various factors new car owners have to consider. Arguably one of the most important factors is your budget and financing options, which determine whether you buy a new or used car.

There is no one-size-fits-all answer to the price of a first car, as the amount is subjective to potential buyers. New car prices are certainly higher, but new car owners enjoy lower maintenance costs, extended warranties, and other dealer benefits compared to those on the used car market. Experts recommend that he spend from $10,000 to $25,000 on his first car.

Here are the best budget cars for first-time buyers in 2023.

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Ten 2023 Mazda3 – $22,550

Black 2023 Mazda3 Parked Outside
Mazda USA

mazda We designed the Mazda3 to compete with other luxury cars such as Audi and BMW while offering the same price as other compact cars. Available in sedan or hatchback body styles, the Mazda3 comes with two 2.5-liter four-cylinder engine options, including a punchy turbo with i-Activ AWD.

The 2023 Mazda3’s sharp design, upscale interior and beautiful driving dynamics will impress first-time owners. Choose a Mazda3 sedan and save thousands from $22,550.

9 2023 Toyota Corolla – $21,550

2023 Toyota Corolla - Front Quarter

of Toyota A staple in the compact segment, the Corolla is popular with families for its affordable combination of practicality, excellent fuel efficiency, comfort and a wealth of standard safety features. Plus, first-time buyers can enjoy Toyota Corolla’s legendary reliability and innovative technology.

The 2023 Toyota Corolla is available in sedan or hatchback body styles. Plus, Toyota can top it off with decent gas mileage with hybrid variants with AWD starting at $22,800.

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8 2023 Volkswagen Jetta – $20,655

Parked red Volkswagen Jetta

The front-wheel-drive Volkswagen Jetta is arguably one of the best compacts available today, with all the benefits that make driving a Golf fun. Following last year’s major overhaul, the 2023 Volkswagen Jetta carries on new styling, upgraded technology and more standard features.

Volkswagen has equipped the 2023 Jetta with a new 1.5-liter turbocharged TSI engine mated to a standard 6-speed manual or optional 8-speed transmission. The 2023 Volkswagen Jetta is available in S, Sport, SE and SEL trim levels, starting at $20,655 for the base model.

7 2023 Nissan Sentra – $20,050

2023 Nissan Sentra - Front Quarter

Despite its desirable low price, the 2023 Nissan Sentra’s looks and premium interior suggest it’s more expensive than it actually is. Although it offers a powerful and attractive engine, the Nissan Sentra’s 149-horsepower 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine is still a treat for first-time buyers.

Nissan sells the 2023 Sentra in three trim levels. S, SV, SR. His $20,050 starting price for the 2023 Nissan Sentra undercuts most offerings in its class, but the range of standard technology and safety features available make it an attractive value.

6 2023 Subaru Impreza – $19,795

2023 Subaru Impreza

The Impreza has built a strong position in the compact segment with its reliability and adventurous driving spirit. For 2023, Subaru will offer the Impreza powered by his 2.0-liter Boxer 4-cylinder engine with a standard symmetrical AWD system.

The 2023 Subaru Impreza is available in Base, Premium, and Sport trim levels for sedan or hatchback models, while Limited trim can only be ordered as a hatchback. The biggest highlight of the Impreza is its incredible price point, starting at his $19,795 for the base model.

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Five 2023 Kia Forte – $19,690

Gray 2023 Kia Forte Parked Outside

Kia has placed the Forte sedan between the Rio minicar and the midsize K5 sedan. His 2023 Kia Forte offers great fuel economy, a host of standard features and easy-to-use modern technology at a significantly lower price point than most competitors.

Kia offers the 2023 Forte in LX, LXS, GT-Line and GT, powered by a 147 hp 2.0 liter 4-cylinder engine or an optional 201 hp 1.6 liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine. Base models start at $19,690, but you can work up to top-of-the-line GT models starting at $24,390.

Four 2023 Hyundai Venue – $19,500

Gray 2023 Hyundai venue parked outside

The smaller venue is Hyundai’s smallest SUV, designed as a practical yet stylish city-friendly crossover. The strengths of the 2023 Hyundai Venue are its unique build quality, ample interior space, an impressive array of driver assists and an attractive starting price.

Trim options for the 2023 venue include SE, SEL and Limited, all available with the same 121-horsepower 1.6-liter DPI 4-cylinder engine. Pricing starts at $19,650 in base trim, but drops back to $22,900 in the top Limited.

3 2023 Kia Rio – $16,750

2023 Kia Rio 5-Door

With competitors like the Honda Fit and Toyota Yaris giving way to larger and more expensive crossovers, the Kia Rio remains one of the best options in the shrinking subcompact segment. Available in a four-door sedan or five-door hatchback body style, the 2023 Kia Rio offers most of the standard technical features and excellent fuel economy that first-time buyers will love.

Kia has equipped the 2023 Rio with a 1.6-liter straight-four engine that makes 120 horsepower, enough for urban commuting. The sedan is available in LX and S trim levels, while the five-door hatchback is available in S trim only.

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2 2023 Mitsubishi Mirage – $16,245

Yellow 2023 Mitsubishi Mirage on the Road
Mitsubishi Motors

Mitsubishi has mastered the perfect formula for bargain-priced transportation with its subcompact Mirage. Thanks to its reliability, long-term warranty, class-leading fuel economy and surprisingly practical cargo room, the 2023 Mitsubishi Mirage is arguably one of the best options for first-time owners.

Additionally, all 2023 Mirage hatchbacks have a 1.2-liter three-cylinder engine that puts out a decent 78 horsepower. Trim levels include ES, LE, SE, and BE and range from $16,245 to $17,445.

1 2023 Nissan Versa – $15,830

Red 2023 Nissan Versa parked outside

The updated 2023 Versa is a well-appointed yet affordable subcompact sedan that packs an impressive range of standard driver assistance features. Not particularly noteworthy, but impressive highway fuel economy is a trade-off.

Nissan offers the Versa in S, SV, and SR trim levels with a 1.6-liter DOHC four-cylinder engine producing 122 horsepower. The base model starts at $15,830, while the top SR is barely under $20,000.

Source: VW of North Tampa, Nissan News

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