The 3 Most Satisfying 10-Year-Old Compact Sedans According to Consumer Reports

Sometimes shopping for a used car is like choosing from a surprise grab bag. It may look ok on the outside, but you don’t know what’s inside until you open it. There are so many compact cars to choose from that it’s hard to tell which are the most satisfying by taking a quick test drive. So let’s look at three of the most satisfying 10-year-old compact sedans on the market.

The most satisfying used compact sedans

The team at Consumer Reports uses a database compiled from thousands of owner surveys to determine which used car models bring car owners the most satisfaction. The organization also factors in reliability ratings and how each compact sedan performed during road tests. Here are the three most satisfying compact sedans on Consumer Reports’ list: 

The 2012 Acura TSX is a fuel-efficient compact car

The 2012 Acura TSX gets around 26 mpg and costs between $11,700 and $14,000, depending on the car’s condition and accumulated miles. The TSX provides practical, fuel-efficient transportation with its base 201-horsepower four-cylinder, sporty handling characteristics, and ample braking system. For more performance, look for a model with the optional 280-horsepower V6 under the hood.

Consumer Reports reviewers found the front seats “roomy and comfortable” and noted that all 2012 Acura TSX trims include dual-zone climate control. In addition, the TSX received the highest possible marks for reliability and above-average scores during road testing. According to Consumer Reports, the most common owner-registered complaints relate to the exhaust system. 

The 2012 Toyota Corolla is a cheap used car 

A red 2012 Toyota Corolla compact car driving down a street
2012 Toyota Corolla | Toyota

The 2012 Toyota Corolla is a cheaper compact sedan than the 2012 Acura TSX, with a price range of $10,300 to $11,200. Its 29 mpg fuel economy is a little better, too. However, while the 2012 Corolla has a quiet, comfortable ride with good handling, its 1.8-liter four-cylinder engine with 132 horsepower and 129 lb-ft of torque isn’t going to inspire many people to call it “sporty.” 

Although Consumer Reports describe the compact car’s rear seat as “decent-sized,” the 2012 Corolla posts less-than-perfect scores for reliability, an average score for owner satisfaction, and average or lower scores in every category except fuel economy, where it shines brightest. The highest number of owner complaints involve paint and trim issues, problems with the electrical system, and fuel system failures ranging from fuel leaks to emission control devices. 

The 2012 Infiniti G Class is a fun-to-drive car

The 2012 Infiniti G Class boasts the lowest price range of the three compact sedans on our list. Its price ranges from around $9,500 to $10,500. In addition, 2012 Infiniti G Class buyers can choose between the G25 with a 2.5-liter six-cylinder that makes 218 horsepower or the G35, which coaxes 306 horsepower from its 3.5-liter six-cylinder. The G25 gets up to 21 MPG combined, while the G35’s more powerful engine gets a little less fuel economy. 

The 2012 Infiniti G Class performed well in the Consumer Reports road tests. The only below-average mark against it related to its sub-par amount of cargo space. The reviewers found the G Class “fun to drive” and commented on the Infiniti G’s “agile handling.” 

Overall, owner satisfaction is about average. However, a higher percentage of Acura TSX owners would buy the same car again compared to Infiniti G owners. The most common source of 2012 Infiniti G owner dissatisfaction is the lack of perceived value for an upscale car. 

These used compact sedans have plenty to offer 

If you’re shopping for a used car on a budget, Consumer Reports’ list of the most satisfying 10-year-old compact sedans presents several options. Whether it’s the 2012 Acura TSX, or Toyota Corolla, each of these used compact cars will be sure to satisfy.

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