You always want to get the best deal possible, but the price you pay for a new car is only the beginning. Fuel, financing and insurance are a few of the costs that add up every month, and the actual cost of the vehicle itself -- the amount you pay minus the amount you recover when you sell it -- is typically less than half of the total cost of owning a vehicle over five years.
The moral of the story? You can save a lot more money by simply choosing the right car than by working a great deal on the wrong car.
Keep reading for this year's list of 5-Year Cost to Own Award winners, counting down to the year's most affordable car.
Presented annually in conjunction with the Chicago Auto Show, KBB.com's 5-Year Cost to Own Awards this year honor individual winners in 22 different market segments, plus two overall brand winners. The comprehensive valuation criteria used to determine the most deserving cars, trucks, SUVs and minivans include their Kelley Blue Book Fair Purchase Price, projected depreciation, financing costs, insurance costs and state fees as well as the anticipated total cost of fuel, scheduled maintenance and repairs.
You might also want to know KBB.com's 5-Year Cost to Own projections are calculated at a granular vehicle level (e.g. 2013 Toyota Camry LE Sedan w/ V6). To obtain make-model level 5-Year Cost to Own projections, Kelley Blue Book averages the vehicle level ownership cost projections to the model level, using actual new-car sales figures. This has the effect of heavily weighting popular trims, for example a Honda Civic LX Automatic, while lowering the weight of less popular trims like the Honda Civic Si.