Nationwide Releases 10 Best Used Cars To Buy In 2014

Buying a used car about a month ago has so far been my favorite financial decision of the last five years. I let go of my paid-for car that I’d bought new in favor of a new ride with Bluetooth capabilities and an air conditioner. The experience taught me the valuable lesson that even though someone else has owned the car before you, it can still feel like new or better depending on the features and dependability.

If you’re not sure where to start with your own used car search, Nationwide has just done you a huge favor by releasing its listing of the 10 best used cars for 2014. Each of the cars you’re about to see cost less than $8,000 and are reasonably priced on insurance. If you’re working with a limited budget, then any of these are worth considering.


2005 Toyota Camry

On a personal level, I’ve seen the longevity of a Toyota just by watching my family. Even though my recent car purchase broke rank and went the Hyundai route, my parents won’t buy anything but a Toyota and the one I owned many years ago would probably still be on the road had a kid not sideswiped me at an intersection. For this model of Camry, Kelley Blue Book gives it a 9.2 rating — the highest on this list — and fuel consumption is a reasonable 21mpg in the city and 31 on the highway.


2005 Honda Pilot

Another 9.2 rating puts this one right up near the top. Honda has a well-respected name in the automotive industry. While the 15/20 city/highway mileage may not be as good as the Camry, it’ll definitely give you longevity.


2004 Toyota Prius

For the more ecologically minded individual, the Prius is a great option. Not only does it bear the Toyota seal, it also possesses the stellar 9.2 KBB rating and produces 48/45 city/highway fuel economy, which means you’ll save big at the pump every time you go to fill it up.


2005 Honda Accord

The Accord is one of Honda’s finest cars, and that shows in the 9.1 KBB rating. Fuel-wise, it gets a very respectable 23/31 — quite good for an all-gasoline engine.


2007 Mazda3

While no other Mazda made the list, the 3 did because of its dependability, solid fuel economy, and well-documented customer satisfaction. It scored a 9.1 KBB rating while getting 24/32 city/highway.

Rounding out the top 10 were the 2007 Honda Civic (8.7, 26/36), the 2007 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 (8.7, 15/20), the 2007 Ford Escape (8.4, 21/27), the 2005 Volvo S60 (8.3, 19/27), and the 2011 Hyundai Accent (8.2, 28/34).


Before you head out to the dealership, though, make sure you keep these two things in mind:

One: Don’t fall in love with a single car, ever. Or if you do, don’t let it be known. It’s not as true with new cars, but with used, everything is negotiable, and you destroy your negotiating power whenever you go all-in on a vehicle and let the salesman know it.

Two: Don’t be pressured. There are car lots on every corner where I live, and I’d be willing to bet you have similar options. Losing out on one deal doesn’t mean you just lost the last great deal in the world. We recommend not talking numbers until you’ve got at least three serviceable options in your brain. It’s also wise to play dealers against each other, so if you do have a car in mind, check prices at multiple locations. It’ll pay off when the time comes to sign the papers.


In Summary

There may be a few more miles on the odometer, but that doesn’t prevent a used car from being a wise decision. Just make sure you do your homework ahead of time on budget and car, and show up ready to fight for the deal you want.

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