For many Americans, a new car will be the second-largest purchase of their lives — next to owning a home. For an acquisition this important, not only do shoppers want low prices, they want to know their new purchase will retain its value for years to come. Although most vehicles depreciate considerably the moment they’re driven off a dealer’s lot, Kelley Blue Book says the cars and trucks shown here will retain their value better than all others in their respective categories. Prices listed are base MSRP with no optional equipment.
Best Brands — Toyota, Porsche
When it comes to building vehicles that hold their value, Toyota returns to the top as Best Brand after relinquishing the title for the last two years. Fielding three best-resale vehicles of the top five, Toyota’s overall placement isn’t a big surprise. What was surprising to the folks at Kelley Blue Book was Porsche eclipsing Lexus to become the Best Luxury Brand.
Best Subcompact Car — Honda Fit
Value in 36 months: 46.8% of MSRP — $7,530
Value in 60 months: 28.8% of MSRP — $4,634
The Fit is a repeat winner, topping this category for the last two years. However, this entry-level Honda is not holding its value as well as it did in 2016. The Fit offers a surprisingly spacious interior with a versatile seating system that accommodates all sorts of cargo. With its small footprint and high level of utility, the Fit makes an excellent alternative to the typical large crossover.
Best Compact Car — Subaru Impreza
Value in 36 months: 54.9% of MSRP — $10,099
Value in 60 months: 36.1% of MSRP — $6,641
Another repeat winner, the Subaru Impreza is completely new for the 2017 model year. Built on an all-new global platform, the Impreza features fresh styling, new features and — of course — full-time all-wheel drive. This entry-level Subaru can be equipped with the brand’s high-tech Eyesight system, which provides a suite of high-tech safety features and makes Impreza one of the safest cars on the road.
Best Mid-Size Car — Subaru Legacy
Value in 36 months: 47.6% of MSRP — $10,470
Value in 60 months: 33.2% of MSRP — $7,302
The Honda Accord and Toyota Camry may be among the most recognizable names in the family sedan market, but with a competitive starting price and the added security of all-wheel drive, the Subaru Legacy could be considered the undiscovered gem of this segment. Legacy was all new for 2015, and this is its third year in a row at the top of the Mid-Size Car category. Look for an updated 2018 Legacy coming later this year.
Best Full-Size Car — Nissan Maxima
Value in 36 months: 42.8% of MSRP — $13,957
Value in 60 months: 30.8% of MSRP — $10,044
When Nissan launched Maxima in the 1980s, the automaker coined the phrase “4-Door Sports Car” to evoke the new car’s sporting demeanor. The moniker returned with the aggressive redesign of the 2016 Maxima. Featuring a 300-horsepower V6 and spacious interior, the Maxima is a great option as a performance/family sedan.
Best Sporty Compact Car — Subaru WRX
Value in 36 months: 55.2% of MSRP — $14,736
Value in 60 months: 45.4% of MSRP — $12,120
Returning one of the highest resale values of all vehicles available in the U.S., the Subaru WRX is one of the most fun cars on the road today. With 268 horsepower and all-wheel drive, the WRX offers excellent all-weather performance as well as the latest in high-tech safety features. In addition to AWD, the WRX features Active Torque Vectoring and sport suspension, which make this rally-bred car even more agile on winding roads.
Best Sports Car — Porsche 718 Cayman
Value in 36 months: 54.5% of MSRP — $29,376
Value in 60 months: 39.5% of MSRP — $21,291
In the 1950s and ‘60s, Porsche raced the legendary 718 lightweight mid-engine sports car. In the spirit of that original, Porsche has created the 718 Cayman. This updated sports car with a new naming designation is available with a newly-developed 2.0-liter turbocharged engine producing 300 horsepower, while the S upgrades to a 2.5-liter turbo producing 350 horsepower. Performance numbers are impressive — the Cayman S can reach 60 mph in 4 seconds with a top speed of 177 mph.
Best High-Performance Car — Ford Mustang Shelby GT350
Value in 36 months: 53.0% of MSRP – $29,068
Value in 60 months: 39.0% of MSRP — $21,390
Whenever the name Shelby gets put on a Mustang, it’s practically a guarantee that performance will be over the top. Similar to the original GT350 introduced in 1965, this modern iteration takes an everyday Mustang (which is an awesome car on its own) and turns it into a high-performance street-legal race car. At the heart of this transformation is the most powerful naturally-aspirated engine Ford has ever produced. The all-new 5.2-liter flat-plane crankshaft V8 is unique to the GT350, and puts out an impressive 526 horsepower and 429 lb-ft of torque.
Best Entry-Level Luxury Car — Lexus RC
Value in 36 months: 58.0% of MSRP — $23,290
Value in 60 months: 38.0% of MSRP — $15,259
All-new for 2015, the RC is designed as a sports coupe rather than a 2-door version of a sedan. With its signature large Lexus grille, the RC features a wide stance with rear- or all-wheel drive. A variety of engines offer differing levels of performance, ranging from the 241-horsepower RC 200t to the RC F with its 5.0-liter V8 putting out 467 horsepower.
Best Luxury Car — Lexus GS
Value in 36 months: 42.0% of MSRP — $26,860
Value in 60 months: 31.0% of MSRP — $17,598
Completely redesigned for the 2016 model year, the Lexus GS sports the brand’s new larger, bolder grille. The GS has several available powertrains, including the 450h high-performance hybrid that combines a 3.5-liter V6 gas engine and a water-cooled permanent-magnet electric motor for a total system output of 338 horsepower. But if more performance is required, the GS F boasts a 5.0-liter V8 that puts out 467 horsepower, making a sprint to 60 mph possible in a mere 4.5 seconds.
Best High-End Luxury Car — Porsche Panamera
Value in 36 months: 48.5% of MSRP — $48,495
Value in 60 months: 32.5% of MSRP — $32,497
It may not be one of the most attractive cars on the road, but the Panamera certainly delivers both luxury and performance. Passenger space is surprisingly roomy, and the hatchback design provides plenty of cargo capacity. And since it’s a Porsche, the Panamera is one of the best performing sedans on the road, making 330 horsepower in the base level up to the Turbo that puts out a whopping 550 horses.
Best Hybrid/Alternative Energy Car — Honda Accord Hybrid
Value in 36 months: 42.7% of MSRP — $12,641
Value in 60 months: 31.7% of MSRP — $9,385
Honda began developing its hybrid technology first with the Insight, then the Civic Hybrid and then the Accord Hybrid, which has had a few iterations since its North American debut in 2004. This latest version is the most impressive yet. The system features a 2-motor multi-mode powertrain that combines a 2.0-liter Atkinson-cycle 4-cylinder engine with two electric motors. It has 212 total horsepower yet still achieves an EPA combined fuel-economy rating of 48 mpg.
Best Electric Vehicle — Chevrolet Bolt EV
Value in 36 months: 29.5% of MSRP — $11,061
Value in 60 months: 17.5% of MSRP — $6,562
The newest electric car from General Motors, the Bolt EV promises a range of more than 200 miles, which exceeds almost every other electric car currently on the market. In addition to its impressive stats, this new EV is loaded with innovation. A Bolt-specific Bluetooth low-energy system connects to a smartphone as the driver approaches the car. A large 10.2-inch touchscreen display and rear camera mirror are available, and a dedicated EV nav system plans a route while considering terrain that will affect the battery’s depletion rate.
Best Subcompact SUV/Crossover — Honda HR-V
Value in 36 months: 50.7% of MSRP — $9,869
Value in 60 months: 35.7% of MSRP — $6,949
All new last year, the HR-V is the smallest of the Honda crossover lineup. With a surprisingly spacious interior, the HR-V can handle cargo of myriad shape and size with its configurable second-row “Magic Seat.” Power comes from a 141-horse engine teamed with a continuously variable transmission, offering reasonable performance in this very competitive market segment.
Best Compact SUV/Crossover — Jeep Wrangler
Value in 36 months: 60.6% of MSRP — $14,541
Value in 60 months: 47.4% of MSRP — $11,374
The Jeep Wrangler is one of the most recognized vehicles in the world — its basic shape hasn’t changed much since it was first introduced as the CJ in the 1940s. Although its features and amenities have been updated considerably over the years, the Wrangler’s legendary off-road capability remains true to form. With one of the highest resale values of any vehicle in America, the Wrangler is available in a variety of trim levels as well as with two or four doors.
Best Mid-Size SUV/Crossover — Toyota 4Runner
Value in 36 months: 64.3% of MSRP — $21,997
Value in 60 months: 54.5% of MSRP — $18,644
As one of the few remaining truck-based SUVs on the market, the 4Runner offers capability that can’t be found in most car-based crossovers. With a 270-horsepower V6 engine that can tow up to 5,000 pounds, 4Runner boasts a number of high-tech features in addition to its full-time 4WD system, making it one of the most capable SUVs available today. The 4Runner also has the distinction of having the second-highest resale value in America.
Best Full-Size SUV/Crossover — Chevrolet Suburban
Value in 36 months: 54.0% of MSRP — $26,954
Value in 60 months: 41.3% of MSRP — $20,615
An all-new version of the Suburban was introduced for the 2015 model year — 80 years after the first Suburban Carryall went on sale. One of the largest SUVs on the market, the 12th-gen Suburban can carry up to nine occupants with plenty of cargo room. The Suburban features a powerful V8 engine and plenty of available high-tech options, including 4G LTE connectivity with a built-in Wi-Fi hotspot, wireless phone charging, a rear-seat entertainment system with a Blu-ray player and up to six USB ports.
Best Luxury Compact SUV/Crossover — Porsche Macan
Value in 36 months: 62.5% of MSRP — $29,688
Value in 60 months: 40.0% of MSRP — $19,000
The fifth vehicle in the current Porsche lineup, Macan was a brand-new model for the 2015 model year. Styled after the larger Cayenne, the compact Macan still embodies all qualities expected from the iconic German sports car brand. Macan comes with full-time all-wheel drive, and is available with various powertrains, ranging from a 2.0-liter 252-horsepower 4-cylinder engine to a 440-horsepower V6 in the Macan Turbo with Performance Package.
Best Luxury Mid-Size SUV/Crossover — Lexus RX
Value in 36 months: 53.8% of MSRP — $23,199
Value in 60 months: 38.0% of MSRP — $16,386
Redesigned for the 2016 model year, the popular Lexus RX continues as the top-selling luxury SUV, outselling the second-best seller nearly two to one. One of the first luxury crossovers when it debuted as a 1998 model, the RX combines the utility of an SUV with the ride and comfort of a luxury sedan. The updated look features an aggressive grille up front, the overall design has more sharp angles, and the blacked-out C-pillars create a floating roof effect. Inside, the RX is optimized for five occupants, and the rear seating position is lowered to be more comparable to the flagship LS sedan.
Best Luxury Full-Size SUV/Crossover — Lexus LX 570
Value in 36 months: 56.0% of MSRP — $50,333
Value in 60 months: 40.0% of MSRP — $35,952
The largest vehicle in the Lexus lineup with a grille to match, the LX 570 is known for its luxury features, although many consumers don’t realize the LX offers extreme off-road capability. A lockable center differential and 2-speed transfer case are standard, as are Crawl Control, Hill-Start Assist Control, Multi-Terrain Select and Active Height Control that can raise the ground clearance by up to 3 inches. Inside, the LX 570 has seating for eight in extremely luxurious surroundings. There’s also a power-sliding second row and a power-folding third row.
Best Mid-Size Pickup Truck — Toyota Tacoma
Value in 36 months: 71.8% of MSRP — $17,462
Value in 60 months: 58.4% of MSRP — $14,203
Not only is the Toyota Tacoma the most popular midsize truck on the market, it holds its value better than any other vehicle in America. All new for the 2016 model year, Tacoma is offered as an Access Cab with rear-hinged doors to access the storage area behind the seat, as well as the 4-door Double Cab. Both cab styles are offered in 4X2 and 4X4. The 3.5-liter V6 engine provides plenty of power and actually achieves better fuel economy than the lesser-powered 4-cylinder option.
Best Full-Size Pickup Truck — Chevrolet Silverado HD
Value in 36 months: 61.8% of MSRP — $20,586
Value in 60 months: 52.2% of MSRP — $17,388
When consumers climb into the heavy-duty truck market, their choices narrow considerably. The Silverado HD combines impressive capability with a comfortable cabin and driving ease. The latter is further improved with Chevrolet’s New Digital Steering Assist power steering — designed to make hauling and trailering more manageable via electronic controls that enhance road holding and stability on the highway. Silverado HD can tow as much as 23,300 pounds when properly equipped.
Best Minivan/Van — Toyota Sienna
Value in 36 months: 45.6% of MSRP — $13,566
Value in 60 months: 32.5% of MSRP — $9,669
As one of the top-selling minivans on the U.S. market, Sienna comes well equipped with features including 3-zone climate control and Toyota’s Entune audio system with applications including Yelp, iHeartRadio, OpenTable and Pandora. Although other minivans have offered all-wheel drive over the years, Sienna is currently the only AWD minivan on the market — perhaps making it even more appealing to those desiring a crossover.