As Americans have turned their attention to SUVs and trucks over the past decade, the average price that car buyers are paying for new cars has risen as well. According to Edmunds, the average price of a new vehicle is $40,000, which is an all-time high. But what if you don’t want to spend $40,000 on a new car, or even $30,000? Fortunately, you don’t have to.
Everyman Driver put together a lengthy list of 2021 models that are priced below $20,000 (before destination charges). And while many of the vehicles on the list are Hyundais, Kias, and Chevrolets, they do well in fitting almost anyone’s budget and can provide a sensible means of transportation for your daily commute. Who really needs to spend $40,000 on a car, anyway?
2021 Ford EcoSport – $19,995
First up is the Ford EcoSport, which offers up some SUV versatility but in a very compact package. This pint-sized crossover has seating for up to five, an available Intelligent AWD system, and is powered by a turbocharged 1.0-liter engine that produces 123 hp and 125 lb-ft of torque. There are four different trim levels to choose from, but if you want to keep it under $20,000, then you’ll have to stick with the base EcoSport S trim.
2021 Hyundai Elantra – $19,650
The all-new 2021 Hyundai Elantra recently won the coveted 2021 North American Car of the Year Award, and it’s no surprise considering how much it comes with for the price. The base SE trim level comes standard with a 147-hp, 2.0-liter engine, Apple Carplay, and Android Auto, in addition to a host of driver-assist features as standard equipment. For less than $20,000, the Elantra is definitely a bargain.
2021 Nissan Kicks – $19,500
The 2021 Nissan Kicks is a great solution if you want something that’s a little bigger than a compact car, but smaller than a genuine crossover. For less than $20,000, you can get into the base S trim that comes with a 7-inch touchscreen display, lane-departure warning, rear automatic braking, and automatic emergency braking with pedestrian detection.
2021 Chevrolet Trailblazer – $19,000
In case the Nissan Kicks doesn’t do it for you, then you can always opt for the Chevy Trailblazer, which starts at $19,000. In its LT base trim, you’ll get a host of driver-assist features, ample seating room for five people, and Apple Carplay and Android Auto capabilities.
2021 Nissan Versa – $14,930
No budget-minded car list is complete without the venerable Nissan Versa. The Versa held the title as the “least-expensive” new car for years, but it has since grown up a little. The Versa was recently redesigned and it now has a bolder and fresher look. If you opt for the base S trim level, then you will get a very rare five-speed manual transmission, a 122-hp four-cylinder engine, a 7-inch touchscreen display, and some standard driver-assist features. At the low price of $14,930, the Versa S is a pretty good deal considering it used to not even come with a radio in its base form.
2021 Chevrolet Spark – $13,400
Lastly, the least-expensive car on this list, and the cheapest new car that you currently buy, is the 2021 Chevrolet Spark. If you’re OK with just the basics and find a plucky hatchback to get around town a perfectly acceptable means of transportation, then the Spark should get your flame going. In it’s base LS form, the Chevy Spark comes with a turbocharged 1.4-liter engine, a five-speed manual transmission, Bluetooth, a seven-inch touchscreen display, and a four-speaker audio system.