The average price of a new car in the United States has risen to just above $30,000. This is two full thousands of dollars more than it was five years ago. These escalating prices are largely due to safety, performance and ecological impact targets that are higher than ever before.
Having an average car cost at $30,000, of course, means that there are a great number of vehicles that are available for lower than this price. A quick look at the spec sheets and market share, moreover, shows that the under 30k category is a good place to be in.
The Best Cars Available New For Under $30,000
• The Mazda MX-5 Miata – At $24,515, this car adds up all of the right elements and provides an excellent level of user satisfaction for its owner, for years. This car has earned its place as one of America’s most beloved automobiles, with nearly 400,000 U.S. sales since its introduction.
The Miata benefits from excellent engineering and thoughtful design. Drivers are consistently impressed by its handling and the level of comfort that it provides. A 167-horsepower, 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine geared to a five- or six-speed manual transmission or a six-speed automatic transmission offers enough power to take advantage of its wonderful steering.
• The Hyundai Genesis 2.0T R-Spec – Drivers who are looking for a sporty rear-drive car for under $30,000 are encouraged to take a look at the Genesis Coupe. At $28,095, the R-Spec model adds in limited-slip differentials, 19-inch wheels and more to an already bulked-up spec chart.
Key to the Genesis’s success is that it is one of the only cars in the price range that can qualify as a serious muscle car. This is thanks to its turbocharged 274-horsepower, 2.0-liter four-cylinder, though it can be customized further with a direct-injected 348-horsepower V-6 for those who want to maximize their power.
• The Volkswagen GTI – Volkswagen drivers are entitled to certain privileges of design. This is no truer than it is with the GTI, the interior of which seems more carefully poured over than any other design element of any other car in its price class. At $25,215, it is the kind of car that will make you feel like you paid double, thanks to the numerous tiny details that combine to ease your ride.
The GTI is now in its seventh generation, and has made it to this venerable age thanks to the public’s support of such a well-designed automobile. The base engine is a 210-horsepower, 2.0-liter direct injected turbo four-cylinder, and can be outfitted with additional options, such as a limited slip differential, a dual-clutch automatic transmission and more.
When it comes to purchasing new cars, often, the $30,000 mark is one where luxury features begin to appear. Thanks to the buyer’s market we are experiencing right now, many of these previously unreachable features are making their way down to the $25k mark, as companies compete to offer the best driving experience at the lowest price.