5-Year Cost to Own Awards 2013

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Overview

5-Year Cost to Own Awards 2013

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.

High-End Luxury Car Winner
5-Year Cost to Own:
$87,411 as of December 2012

Despite a large four-door hatchback design that accommodates four adults and their luggage, the Panamera drives with all the soul of a proper Porsche. The success of that formula is reflected in sales numbers rivaling the iconic Porsche 911.

Runners-Up: 2013 Mercedes-Benz CLS-Class2013 Audi A8

Luxury Full-Size SUV/Crossover
5-Year Cost to Own:
$60,250 as of December 2012

Boasting revamped styling and offering options that include a potent 365-horsepower EcoBoost V6 engine, the 2013 MKT has taken on a far more dynamic character that smartly complements its elegant, 7-passenger practicality.

Runners-Up: 2013 Audi Q72013 Mercedes-Benz GL-Class

Luxury Car Winner
5-Year Cost to Own:
$58,153 as of December 2012

The Lexus GS is now one of the boldest stylistic choices among midsize luxury sedans. Fashion aside, the GS charms with an optional hybrid powertrain, rear or all-wheel drive, a racy F Sport Package, and a wealth of high-tech features.

Runners-Up: 2013 Audi A52013 Audi A6

Speaking of Lexus, as a brand defined in large part by value and reliability, it's no surprise Toyota's luxury division would take home this year's 5-Year Cost to Own Award as the outstanding luxury brand. In addition to low maintenance costs and strong resale values, Lexus scores well in fuel costs, too, thanks in part to the most hybrid offerings of any luxury automaker. And on top of the financial advantages, Lexus also delivers what is often cited as the best ownership experience around.

Here's a quick look at the cars behind this year's luxury brand award winner.

2013 Lexus CT
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $40,507
The 2013 Lexus CT 200h is a tidy, upscale sports hatchback that shares the hybrid powertrain of the Toyota Prius. Acceleration is modest, but it blends willing road manners, sophisticated styling, a well-appointed interior and a prestigious badge with great fuel efficiency.

2013 Lexus IS
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $51,173
There's a new IS on the way for 2014, but the second-generation model still looks good and offers plenty of refinement. Owners will also appreciate this luxury sport sedan's strong residual values and solid reliability record long after signing on the dotted line.

2013 Lexus ES
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $46,266
For its 6th-generation debut, the 2013 Lexus ES has a slightly larger design with fresh sheet metal, more interior amenities, better fuel economy, and a hybrid model that uses a 4-cylinder gasoline engine and battery-powered electric motor to achieve up to 40 mpg.

2013 Lexus GS
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $58,153
New for the 2013 model year, the fourth generation of Lexus' mid-size luxury-sport sedan boasts bold styling and an even more luxurious interior. With a fresh emphasis on dynamics, the GS is now a more tempting option for driving enthusiasts.

2013 Lexus LS
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $88,543
Like Ben Stein dressed in Tour de France bicycle gear, the 2013 Lexus LS looks like a legitimate performer, but underneath beats a familiar conservative heart. The Lexus LS 460 F Sport is available for those desirous of more dynamic and visual aggression, if not horsepower, but overall the Lexus LS continues to deliver what its fans truly want: abundant luxury, an insulated ride and an unparalleled ownership experience.

2013 Lexus RX
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $53,027
Now in its third generation, the 5-passenger 2013 Lexus RX is the best-selling car for Toyota's luxury division, and it's easy to see why. The RX has the serene ride quality and superb interior craftsmanship long associated with Lexus sedans, yet has the storage capacity, seating flexibility and commanding view of an SUV. 

2013 Lexus GX
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $64,979
One of the few luxury SUVs utilizing a traditional boxed ladder frame, the 2013 Lexus GX 460 strikes an excellent balance between serious off-road capability and civilized daily driving manners. With standard full-time 4-wheel drive (4WD), exceptional ground clearance and many off-road tech features, the 2013 Lexus GX 460 is an enticing proposition for the adventurous luxury-SUV buyer.

2013 Lexus LX
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $87,021
Luxurious amenities and a comfortable ride meet true off-road capability in the 2013 Lexus LX 570. Meant to coddle up to eight passengers in rush-hour traffic and rugged terrain alike, the LX is Lexus' biggest and most powerful SUV. With a starting price of over $80,000 and a mighty thirst for fuel, the LX's abilities don't come cheap.

Continue the awards countdown

High-Performance Car Winner
5-Year Cost to Own:
$52,896 as of December 2012

Complementing its aggressive appearance and sport-tuned suspension, the 2013 Ford Mustang GT comes on even stronger thanks to a power boost that bumps output of its 5.0-liter V8 to a stout 420 horsepower.

Runners-Up: 2013 Chevrolet Camaro SS2013 Dodge Challenger SRT8

Luxury Mid-Size SUV/Crossover
5-Year Cost to Own:
$52,346 as of December 2012

The feature-rich 2013 Lincoln MKX matches a finely finished 5-passenger cabin and 305-horsepower V6 engine with standard premium amenities like MyLincoln Touch infotainment and heated/cooled front seats.

Runners-Up: 2013 Lexus RX2013 Buick Enclave

Hybrid SUV/Crossover Winner
5-Year Cost to Own:
$51,363 as of December 2012

Need a vehicle that can carry seven passengers and achieve up to 28 miles per gallon on the highway? The Toyota Highlander Hybrid can do that. Need it to last a long time with minimal maintenance costs? The Highlander Hybrid can do that, too.

Runners-Up: 2013 Lexus RX 450h2013 Audi Q5 Hybrid

Luxury Compact SUV/Crossover
5-Year Cost to Own:
$49,620 as of December 2012

The fully redesigned 2013 Acura RDX is slicker, quicker and far more sophisticated than ever before. Crisper styling, upgraded cabin appointments and a powerful yet fuel-efficient V6 engine further polish its formidable appeal.

Runners-Up: 2013 Mercedes-Benz GLK-Class2013 BMW X3

Full-Size SUV/Crossover Winner
5-Year Cost to Own:
$48,959 as of December 2012

With an available 350-horsepower EcoBoost V6, an advanced 4-wheel-drive system and comfortable seating for seven, the Ford Explorer can go just about anywhere an adventurous family would want to go.

Runners-Up: 2013 Ford Flex2013 Chevrolet Traverse

Full-Size Pickup Truck Winner 
5-Year Cost to Own:
$48,551 as of December 2012

There's a brand new Silverado 1500 on the way for 2014, but the 2013 is going out a 5-Year Cost to Own Award winner. Offered in countless configurations, the Silverado 1500 remains a reliable favorite of those who build our country.

Runners-Up: 2013 Toyota Tundra2013 GMC Sierra 1500

Full-Size Car Winner
5-Year Cost to Own:
$48,086 as of December 2012

Like the Silverado, the Chevy Impala will also be all-new for 2014. And just like Chevy's full-size truck, the automaker's large sedan is a cost-to-own champion for 2013.

Runners-Up: 2013 Ford Taurus2013 Dodge Charger

Mid-Size Pickup Truck Winner 
5-Year Cost to Own:
$42,282 as of December 2012

While it might not be able to tow a Space Shuttle like its Tundra big brother, only the Toyota Tacoma can boast of winning a 2013 5-Year Cost to Own Award.

Entry-Level Luxury Car Winner 
5-Year Cost to Own:
$41,233 as of December 2012

Given the Verano wears Buick badges, comfort and refinement are no surprise. But Verano breaks the mold with its tidy size, stylish design and overall value, all of which make it attractive to a new generation of Buick buyers.

Runners-Up: 2013 Volvo C302013 Acura TSX

Sports Car Winner 
5-Year Cost to Own:
$39,992 as of December 2012

With an expanded standard-feature set that now includes HID headlamps, an efficient 306-horsepower V6 and a host of styling upgrades that further bolster its curb appeal, the 2013 Ford Mustang - America's original pony car - defines the term "affordable fun."

Runners-Up: 2013 Mazda MX-5 Miata2013 Chevrolet Camaro

Mid-Size SUV/Crossover Winner 
5-Year Cost to Own:
$39,699 as of December 2012

Although it has a tendency to fly under the radar, the Mitsubishi Outlander distinguishes itself with a host of high-tech gadgetry, small but handy third-row seat and a lengthy warranty. 

Runners-Up: 2013 Toyota FJ Cruiser2013 Subaru Outback

Minivan/Van Winner 
5-Year Cost to Own:
$38,891 as of December 2012

Bigger is not necessarily better. Case in point, this mini-minivan offers many of the practical qualities one expects in a family hauler, but in a more affordable and fun-to-drive package. 

Runners-Up: 2013 Ford Transit Connect2013 Dodge Grand Caravan

The aforementioned Mazda5 brings us to this year's award for top brand. It turns out the Mazda lineup isn't just sporty, it's smart. Cars like the legendary MX-5 Miata, hot-selling new CX-5 crossover and all-new 2014 Mazda6 mid-size sedan carry on the brand's fun-to-drive spirit, while also offering an under-appreciated dose of fiscal practicality. So even if Zoom Zoom isn't your top priority, you should still consider Mazda for the Ka-Ching.

Here's a look at the models that earned Mazda this year's 5-Year Cost to Own Award for best non-luxury brand.

2013 Mazda MAZDA2
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $28,566
Small cars can be big news today thanks to their attractive looks, frugal fuel use and appealing features, and the 2013 Mazda2 hatchback is a fine case in point. While others may offer more horsepower and more modern automatic transmissions, they don't have the same fun-to-drive feel of the light and lithe 2013 Mazda2.

2013 Mazda MAZDA3
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $37,803
The 2013 Mazda3 sedan and hatchback stand out for their fun-to-drive nature, high fuel economy and overall value. It may not be as well-known as the Honda Civic and Toyota Corolla, but the Mazda3's more dynamic driving manners and strong resale value make it a smart choice among compact cars.

2013 Mazda MAZDA5
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $38,891
The 2013 Mazda5 is a miniature minivan with a flexible interior that can seat up to six passengers. Aside from its diminutive size and low cost compared to other three-row options, the Mazda5 uses a smaller engine that's fuel-efficient, if not all that powerful.

2014 Mazda MAZDA6
The Mazda6 is all-new since we handed out our 2013 5-Year Cost to Own Awards, and the changes are major. Embracing its comprehensive Skyactiv technology, Mazda has changed almost everything about the car with innovative engine and transmission technology leading the way to excellent fuel economy.

2013 Mazda CX-5
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $38,293
The 2013 Mazda CX-5 is a fresh player in the popular compact SUV segment, and one that deserves equal consideration among established rivals such as the Honda CR-V and Ford Escape. Fuel-efficient and available with impressive safety technology, the CX-5 also comes standard with a rare feature in this segment: a fun-to-drive nature.

2013 Mazda CX-9
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: N/A 
The 2013 CX-9 is Mazda's biggest vehicle, a 3-row, 7-passenger crossover SUV that competes well against rivals such as the Chevrolet Traverse, Ford Explorer and Honda Pilot. The CX-9 is distinguished by its sleek, curvaceous design and surprisingly sporty, car-like handling.

2013 Mazda MX-5 Miata
5-Year Cost to Own as of December 2012: $42,056
The 2013 Mazda MX-5 Miata convertible harks back to a simpler time when a 2-seat roadster with a small-displacement engine was all you needed to enjoy a day on the open road. Safer and more reliable than the roadsters of yore, the Miata nevertheless is about as pure and uncomplicated an automobile as you'll find.

Continue the awards countdown

Mid-Size Car Winner 
5-Year Cost to Own:
$38,232 as of December 2012

In addition to its appealing price and efficient powertrain choices, the Sonata's stylish design and class-leading warranty give it further appeal that goes beyond just dollars and cents.

Runners-Up: 2013 Nissan Altima2013 Honda Accord

Electric Vehicle Winner
5-Year Cost to Own:
$37,153 as of December 2012

Providing a captivating yet practical taste of green mobility, the plug-in electric Chevrolet Volt can travel up to 38 miles on pure electric power before its gasoline engine kicks in to extend the range an additional 342 miles. Farewell, range anxiety. 

Runners-Up: 2013 Toyota Prius Plug-in2013 Ford Focus Electric

Sporty Compact Car Winner

5-Year Cost to Own:
$35,607 as of December 2012

The biggest complaint leveled against the Hyundai Veloster when it debuted last year was a lack of alacrity. The turbo answers that charge with 201 horsepower and a signature look that mimics nothing else on the street.

Runners-Up: 2013 Ford Focus ST2013 Mazda MAZDASPEED3

Compact SUV/Crossover Winner 

5-Year Cost to Own:
$35,161 as of December 2012

Jeep's most value-oriented vehicle offers a taste of the adventurous lifestyle for which the brand is known, including a degree of off-road capability for when those adventures leave the pavement behind.

Runners-Up: 2013 Mitsubishi Outlander Sport2013 Honda CR-V

Hybrid/Alternative Energy Car Winner

5-Year Cost to Own:
$33,014 as of December 2012

Holding onto the title as the most affordable hybrid on the market, the Honda Insight presents an even stronger value proposition with the alluring mix of quality, reliability and fuel efficiency on which the Honda brand has built its reputation. 

Runners-Up: 2013 Ford Fusion Hybrid2013 Toyota Prius

Compact Car Winner 

5-Year Cost to Own:
$30,902 as of December 2012


There's a lot of style to love for well under $20,000 in the 2013 Hyundai Veloster. This eye-catching hatchback has three doors (one for the driver and two on the passenger side), technotainment galore, and a bounty of cargo room.

Runners-Up: 2013 Dodge Dart2013 Toyota Corolla

Subcompact Car Winner 

5-Year Cost to Own: 
$27,006 as of December 2012

Scion's 2+2 city car won't quite make 100 horsepower or 40 miles per gallon, but you could park in a phone booth and it's the most affordable car you can own over 5 years.

Runners-Up: 2013 Chevrolet Spark2013 Mazda MAZDA2

 

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