15 Least Expensive New Cars of 2015

Guide to Budget Rides
You’ve probably heard this before: Since a new vehicle loses so much value the moment it’s driven off a dealer’s lot, you’d be foolish not to buy a used model. Admittedly, that fact can be a strong, practical influence on your auto purchase decision. But if you slide behind the wheel of a fresh vehicle, the desire to possess a pristine car with its new-car warranty can be a big draw. What to do? Even if you’re on a tight budget, check it: Here are 15 new vehicles with starting manufacturer’s suggested retail prices at or below the $15,000 mark.

© Nissan North America, Inc.2015 Nissan Versa Sedan
Starting MSRP: $11,990
EPA fuel economy mpg: 26-31 city/35-40 hwy
As the lowest-priced new car for the 2015 model year, the Versa delivers on its intentions: great gas mileage, a comfortable ride, decent cargo space and rear-seat legroom at a bargain-basement price. It has some ground to make up in the handling department compared to rivals such as the Ford Fiesta, but it’s still a great value.

© General Motors2015 Chevrolet Spark
Starting MSRP: $12,270
EPA fuel economy mpg: 31 city/39 hwy
As Chevrolet’s most inexpensive vehicle, the diminutive Spark slots below the Sonic. It has a 1.2-liter 4-cylinder engine that puts out 84 horsepower. A highlight for the 2015 model year: standard OnStar with 4G LTE and Wi-Fi hotspot capability for up to seven mobile devices.

© Mitsubishi Motors North America, Inc.2015 Mitsubishi Mirage
Starting MSRP: $12,995
EPA fuel economy mpg: 34-37 city/42-44 hwy
The Mirage offers a lot of standard features for its price point, including keyless entry, automatic climate control and a USB port. However, its minimalist cabin and sluglike acceleration make it a tough sell in the competitive subcompact segment.

© Daimler AG2015 smart fortwo
Starting MSRP: $13,270
EPA fuel economy mpg: 34 city/38 hwy
What more can be said about this tiny 2-seat city car? It’s maneuverability in urban environs may be unsurpassed, but its performance is lackluster at 70 ponies, and gas mileage remains unimpressive for a vehicle this size. That said, the model gets an overhaul for 2016.

© Kia Motors Corporation2015 Kia Rio
Starting MSRP: $13,990
EPA fuel economy mpg: 27-28 city/37 hwy
Besides its stellar starting price, the Rio dazzles with some attractive styling and excellent 10 year/100,000-mile powertrain warranty. The upper trim levels are downright sporty, with better interior finishes and a host of options including push-button start and a rearview camera. That said, if budget is a concern go with the LX trim.

© Kia Motors Corporation2015 Kia Rio 5-Door
Starting MSRP: $13,990
EPA fuel economy mpg: 27-28 city/37 hwy
For a slight bump in base price over the standard Rio, the 5-door hatchback provides better utility and a downright sporty-looking package. Available with a 138-horsepower 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine, the Rios are among the most economical yet powerful vehicles of this Spartan segment.

© Nissan North America, Inc.2015 Nissan Versa Note
Starting MSRP: $14,180
EPA fuel economy mpg: 31 city/41 hwy
The 2015 Note is one of the roomiest small cars on this list. The hatchback has surprising rear-seat room, and the storage is decent as well. Performance of the 1.6-liter, 109-horsepower 4-cylinder engine is a bit mediocre compared to others in the segment. Bluetooth connectivity is standard on all trims for 2015, and heated seats are now an option.

© General Motors2015 Chevrolet Sonic
Starting MSRP: $14,245
EPA fuel economy mpg: 25-29 city/33-40 hwy
An agile player in the subcompact class, the Sonic has an attractive cabin layout and a comfortable driving position. The base 138-horsepower 4-cylinder engine provides decent acceleration, but the turbo has better pep and fuel economy. Standard features include Bluetooth connectivity and Wi-Fi capability. A 7-inch touchscreen infotainment system, a rearview camera and lane departure warning are among available features.

© Ford Motor Company2015 Ford Fiesta
Starting MSRP: $14,455
EPA fuel economy mpg: 27-31 city/37-43 hwy
From its sharp looks to sharp handling, Fiesta offers one of the most competitive packages of the segment. The 120-horse 4-cylinder engine provides adequate power, but the new optional turbo 3-cylinder EcoBoost unit in the ST is the one to spring for. Fiesta wins praise for an interior replete with soft-touch materials, but gets demerits for inadequate rear-seat legroom.

© Hyundai Motor America2015 Hyundai Accent
Starting MSRP: $14,745
EPA fuel economy mpg: 26-27 city/37-38 hwy
As Hyundai’s least expensive car, the fourth-gen Accent excels in occupant and cargo space, but suffers in the handling department. The 137-horsepower 4-cylinder engine earns decent EPA fuel economy numbers. Standard features on this solid performer include satellite radio, a USB port, keyless entry, a tilt steering wheel and power windows.

© Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.2015 Toyota Yaris
Starting MSRP: $14,845
EPA fuel economy mpg: 30 city/36-37 hwy
A solid performer in the subcompact class, the Yaris received a mid-cycle refresh for 2015. Fuel economy is decent for the class, storage is about average, and handling is about mid-pack as well. Standard features make it shine, including cruise control, remote keyless entry, Bluetooth, a USB port and Toyota’s Entune audio system with a touchscreen display.

© Kia Motors Corporation2015 Kia Soul
Starting MSRP: $15,100
EPA fuel economy mpg: 23 city/30 hwy
The funky Kia Soul is an all-around great performer in its segment. The 1.6-liter engine does not give it much in the power department; an optional 2.0 is available but of course you’ll have to pony up the bucks. Flush with value via standard features, Soul includes satellite radio, Bluetooth and a USB port, body-color mirrors and privacy glass.

© Honda North America2015 Honda Fit
Starting MSRP: $15,650
EPA fuel economy mpg: 29-33 city/37-41 hwy
A leader of the subcompact class, the 2015 Fit ticks most of the boxes for desirable traits in an affordable car: good fuel economy, a comfortable ride, decent standard equipment, and adequate cargo space, which is where the Fit shows its true colors. Honda’s Magic Seat allows for myriad cargo configurations.

© Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.2015 Scion iQ
Starting MSRP: $15,665
EPA fuel economy mpg: 36 city/37 hwy
The diminutive iQ gets stellar gas mileage and is a breeze to park. If those are your major requirements in an affordable car, then the iQ is for you. That said, the interior is a bit plasticky and the rear seat is children-only. If kids are onboard the iQ has practically zero cargo space. Standard features include Bluetooth, keyless entry, a 6-speaker Pioneer audio system, HD radio and a touchscreen infotainment system.

© Kia Motors Corporation2015 Kia Forte
Starting MSRP: $15,890
EPA fuel economy mpg: 25-26 city/36-39 hwy
Bumping the top of our price point, the Forte offers a lot of car for the money. The standard 1.8-liter 4-cylinder engine gets good gas mileage, and the cabin is a comfortable environment avoiding the low-end vibe of many in the segment. Standard features include Bluetooth, satellite radio, USB and auxiliary inputs and projector beam headlights.

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1 Comment

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