Can I Buy A Good Used Car For Less Than $10,000?

2004 Toyota Camry

When funds are limited and you need a car, or a second or third vehicle to meet family driving needs, what are your choices? Is it possible to buy a reliable, good used car for less than $10,000?

The short answer is yes, although it will require some research and legwork on your part. You’ll also need to be willing to look at vehicles that are a few years old. Generally speaking, new cars will be out of the price range, except for certain compact cars or those that dealers are offering cheap to get them off the lot.

2004-2009 cars under $10,000

Scouring the used-car listings and reports from various media outlets, including Kelley Blue Book reveals a number of used cars from the 2004 through 2009 model years that qualify as good used cars – that cost less than $10,000. One caveat here is that these are fairly basic, but solid, cars. You do, however, get what you pay for: practical, reliable cars with good crash test scores and a fair amount of safety equipment.

  • 2004 Honda Element
  • 2004 Toyota Camry
  • 2006 Ford Escape
  • 2005-2006 Honda Civic
  • 2006 Hyundai Azera
  • 2007 Chevrolet Equinox LS
  • 2007 Ford Freestyle
  • 2007 Ford Fusion
  • 2007 Scion tC
  • 2008 Ford Focus
  • 2008 Kia Optima
  • 2008 Kia Soul
  • 2008 Mazda A5
  • 2008 Nissan Versa
  • 2009 Pontiac Vibe

What cars should you avoid? Consumer Reports has a listing of 2003 through 2012 used cars it recommends consumers steer clear of, ranging from the BMW 7-Series to the Volkswagen Touareg.

Ready to dive in? Check our used car listings to find just the right car to suit your needs – and your budget of less than $10,000.


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