Forbes.com Names Best, Worst Used Vehicles

By Auto News Log • December 27th, 2009

NEW YORK — Forbes.com published a list last week of what it considers to be the best and worst used vehicles, basing these rankings on reliability data from Consumer Reports and residual value information from Cars.com and Kelley Blue Book.

Dominating the list of best used cars were Japanese brands, which accounted for all five of the models Forbes.com listed.

Meanwhile, on the worst used vehicles list, four of the five were from either General Motors or Chrysler.

In addition to the residual info, Forbes.com looked at Consumer Reports’ Best and Worst Used Cars report, which includes reliability ratings from 1999 to 2008. The company used this to pinpoint the exact models rated as the most or least reliable.

“To pare down the list, we evaluated each 2009 model’s two- and five-year residual values … We then separated out our winners and losers by evaluating trade-in values for model years 1999 (unless a model debuted in a later year, which we used instead) and a middle year, such as 2004 or, if available, 2006,” Hannah Elliott, of Forbes.com, wrote in the report.

“That gave us a good idea of how the models during the 1999-2008 span fared for consistency of value, reliability and performance,” she further explained.

Specifically, listed as the best used cars were the Honda CR-V (two-wheel drive), Lexus ES, Subaru Impreza WRX, Toyota Prius and Acura TL.

On the worst list were the Dodge Grand Caravan (all-wheel drive), Pontiac G6 (V6), Kia Sedona, Jeep Grand Cherokee and the Chrysler Sebring.

However, Forbes.com emphasized that an entire brand should not be evaluated based on one vehicle or the other way around, for that matter.

“Keep in mind, some of the brands on our ‘worst’ list, such as Kia, have made high-quality vehicles that can be trusted to run for years,” Elliott wrote. “But the Kia Sedona, while having posted some improvement in recent years, suffered poor reviews of its electrical system, fuel system and engine.”

She continued: “And not every car made by Lexus or Acura — two brands mentioned on our “best” list — gets a positive review from Consumer Reports. Indeed, Jake Fisher, the senior automotive engineer at Consumer Reports, often advises buyers not to judge a single vehicle by its brand, or vice versa.”

The following is data provided by Forbes.com regarding its best and worst lists of used cars:

Best: Honda CR-V (2WD)

Segment: Small SUV

Residual value after two years: 58 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 35 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Honda CR-V: $10,600

Trade-in value for 1999 Honda CR-V: $3,950

Best: Lexus ES

Segment: Premium Sedan

Residual value after two years: 56 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 33 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Lexus ES 330: $16,365

Trade-in value for 1999 Lexus ES 300: $8,075

Best: Subaru Impreza WRX

Segment: Sport Compact

Residual value after two years: 59 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 36 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Subaru Impreza WRX: $9,750

Trade-in value for 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX: $7,300

Best: Toyota Prius

Segment: Mid-Size Sedan

Residual value after two years: 59 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 37 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Toyota Prius: $10,100

Trade-in value for 2001 Toyota Prius: $5,825

Best: Acura TL

Segment: Premium Sedan

Residual value after two years: 60 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 37 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Acura TL: $12,200

Trade-in value for 1999 Acura TL: $3,500

Worst: Dodge Grand Caravan (AWD)

Segment: Minivan

Residual value after two years: 36 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 18 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Dodge Grand Caravan: $12,255

Trade-in value for 1999 Dodge Grand Caravan: $5,995

Worst: Pontiac G6 (V6)

Segment: Mid-Size Sedan

Residual value after two years: 33 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 19 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2006 for Pontiac G6: $7,300

Trade-in value for 2005 for Pontiac G6: $6,175

Worst: Kia Sedona

Segment: Minivan

Residual value after two years: 33 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 16 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Kia Sedona LX: $3,025

Trade-in value for 2002 Kia Sedona LX: $1,650

Worst: Jeep Grand Cherokee

Segment: SUV

Residual value after two years: 31 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 17 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo: $6,175

Trade-in value for 1999 Jeep Grand Cherokee Laredo: $2,900

Worst: Chrysler Sebring

Segment: Convertible

Residual value after two years: 30 percent of MSRP retained

Residual value after five years: 15 percent of MSRP retained

Trade-in value for 2004 Chrysler Sebring Convertible: $3,550

Trade-in value for 1999 Chrysler Sebring Convertible: $1,675

Source: Forbes.com

 

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