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When you’re car shopping, you’re usually looking for something that’s the right size for your needs, as well as suits your style and taste, all within your budget. When you think about how much that small SUV you’ve been eyeing will cost you, you might not think about its long-term costs. Not only do you pay upfront to buy a new car, but your SUV’s depreciation is a cost to consider. Whether you choose to sell your SUV or total it in an accident and get a check from insurance, your SUV depreciation is an important factor in car buying.

The Jeep Wrangler on a simulated off-road trail.
The Jeep Wrangler | Scott Olson via Getty Images

Which small SUVs hold their value?

Some of the small SUVs with the lowest depreciation may surprise you. They include five small SUVs from different manufacturers. However, Jeep is on the list of the top five small SUVs with little depreciation twice. There are also small SUVs from Honda, Mazda, and Toyota to round out the list of the top five.

The Jeep Wrangler has the lowest SUV depreciation

The average depreciation of a Jeep Wrangler is 9.2% over the course of five years. This is unbelievably lower than any other vehicle. The average rate for all vehicles, not just SUVs, is 40.1%, according to iSeeCars. The average cost of depreciation five years after purchasing a Jeep Wrangler is $2,796.

Karl Brauer, iSeeCars Executive Analyst, says there’s a good reason that Jeep Wranglers hold their value. “Jeep Wranglers are known for retaining their value due to their enthusiastic fanbase, as well as their durability and performance across all terrains, especially off-road.”

The Honda HR-V has one of the lowest small SUV depreciation rates

A blue Honda HR-V is parked in the rain.
The Honda HR-V | Honda

The Honda HR-V is another compact SUV with little depreciation. The average 5-year depreciation for the Honda HR-V is just 34.3%. Yes, that’s quite a bit more than the Jeep Wrangler’s 9.2%, but it’s still less than the average depreciation of 40.1%.

The Mazda CX-3 is one of the best compact SUVs with little depreciation

The Mazda CX-3 has pretty low depreciation for a small SUV. The CX-3 loses just 34.5% of its value over the course of five years. This is pretty close to the Honda HR-V’s depreciation and puts it solidly in the middle of the top five SUVs for depreciation.

The Jeep Renegade is an SUV with low depreciation

The Jeep Renegade is the second Jeep on the list of SUVs with little depreciation. It’s a compact SUV that loses just 34.8% of its value over the course of five years. That’s still more than three times what the Jeep Wrangler loses in five years, which demonstrates just how well the Wrangler holds its value.

The Toyota RAV4 is a compact SUV with little depreciation

2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime Plug-In Hybrid
2021 Toyota RAV4 Prime Plug-In Hybrid | Toyota

The Toyota RAV4 is the best-selling SUV. It’s also one of the small SUVs with the least depreciation. The RAV4 loses 35.8% in depreciation. This puts it at number five on the list of small SUVs with the least depreciation. If you’ve been thinking about buying a RAV4, you can rest assured knowing you shouldn’t lose a ton of money on the deal.

If you’re looking for a small SUV with little depreciation, you have some options. While the Jeep Wrangler may lose the least of any vehicle, that doesn’t necessarily make it the right SUV for you. With a Honda, Toyota, Mazda and another Jeep on the list though, you should be able to get something you’ll love without sacrificing your future budget.


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