“Don’t mention the priorities. Show how the cash is spent and the outcome will be open for all to see.” —James W. Frick
According to a report on Consumer Expenditures in September 2018, released by the U.S. Department of Labor's U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average car costs $9,576 per year to own and operate. The breakdown of the cost comes to $4,054 for buying the vehicle, $1,968 in gasoline and motor oil cost, and $3,554 in other vehicle-related expenses.
By the above records, we deduced that many in the US pay more attention to the cost of purchasing a car than the actual value needed to maintain the vehicle every year, which is not bad. However, they end up paying far more than they bargained to retain the car every year. Over the long haul, they get tired of the expensive maintenance and sell the car for a lower price. A new buyer purchases the vehicle and repeats the cycle.
Most people believe the best way to avoid all the extra maintenance costs is to opt for a new car, instead of an old one; after all, it comes with an extended warranty that covers the repair within the first years of purchase. What they don’t realize is that not all required service is covered. The oil changes, inspections, change of brake pads, hoses, batteries, and belts are not included in the warranty.
So, how can we curtail these extra car expenses? Get information on websites like these to ascertain which cars are super cheap to maintain and the ones that will drain your wallets quick.
25 Super Cheap: 2012 Honda Civic
For some, the Honda Civic is the perfect foundation to build a tuner dream car. While some see it as a sensible car best-suited for those that want reliable transportation. Of course, the most populated group is the buyers that see it as the perfect economy car with an affordable price.
Therefore, with $55 every month, you’d be able to maintain your Honda Civic, which is the older brother to the Honda Accord, according to Car Throttle.
24 Super Cheap: 2010 Ford Fusion
In 2006, the Ford Motor Company launched the Fusion to show the automotive world the “the renewed Ford.” Along with the redesigned Ford Taurus and Edge, the new design team aimed at showing the world something new. They wanted to prove that Ford could be fresh, relevant and reliable.
Thanks to the restructuring, the company was one of the few manufacturers that didn't need a financial bailout during the global meltdown. Produced to compete with the Accord and Camry, the Fusion’s base price is always in line with its competitors, and it costs $55 per month maintenance, according to Motor 1.
23 Super Cheap: 2006 Ford Mustang
It may be surprising to see the Ford Mustang in this list as one the cars that are super cheap to maintain, considering it’s a sports car—which we know could be expensive to own when managed and kept in good condition.
That’s what makes the Mustang a good bargain these days, especially when you compare its performance figures to other regular sedan cars. According to Motor 1, the Ford Mustang is the perfect car for people looking for a cheap sports car, and it has monthly maintenance of $60.
22 Super Cheap: 2010 Honda Accord
The Accord is Honda’s special weapon used in giving other Japan-made vehicles a run for their money. No doubt, the Accord is the best thing that ever happened to the Japan car manufacturer with its cool features, durability, and affordability.
Also, its practicality, beautiful interior, easy handling, and enough pep to feel nimble, makes it an excellent choice for the average Joe who likes to keep it simple. According to Motor 1, the Honda Accord has proven to be a dirt cheap car to own and manage with its $55 cost per month.
21 Super Cheap: 2016 Nissan Titan XD
The Nissan Titan gives an excellent first impression anytime it’s compared with other Japan-made trucks. With one test drive, you’d notice its flexibility, easy handling, and capability. According to Car and Driver, the Titan has a high towing capacity alongside a big engine, superb ride height, and remarkable transmission.
Many truck enthusiasts admire the truck because of its affordable cost of maintenance. Your Mechanic reported that the Nissan Titan XD costs less than $8,000 to maintain in 10 years, which means it will only take $66 from your monthly wages.
20 Super Cheap: 2012 Nissan Pathfinder
It was a day after Christmas when the manufacturer, Nissan, celebrated its 85 years since it started production in Yokohama, Japan. Over the years, it has experienced some level of growth and succeeded in becoming a household name across the globe.
The Nissan Pathfinder, in particular, is one model that enjoys a lot of patronage from many consumers around the world. Why is this so? The vehicle is reliable, rugged, and affordable to own. Your Mechanic reports that it costs $570 to maintain the car in a year.
19 Super Cheap: 2011 Toyota Camry
Ever since Toyota introduced the Camry in 1982, the vehicle hasn't failed to live up to many consumers expectations. Over the previous years, it has gained a top spot in the list of most affordable, economical and reliable cars to maintain year after year.
According to Your Mechanic, Camry is an excellent choice for consumers who are on a budget, with an annual expenditure of $520 every year. Even though the Camry may not be able to see the license plate of a supercar; it will get you to your endpoint in good time without breaking the bank.
18 Super Cheap: 2015 Nissan Versa
This car had a unique ad campaign when Hiro Nakamura, one of the stars of the TV series Heroes, repeatedly mentioned the car’s name “Nissan Versa” as he was compelled to speak English for the first time in the show.
Of course, it did a lot to the car’s branding, putting its name in the limelight. According to Car and Driver, the Versa is not only one of the cheapest cars to buy at $12,000 (tax, license, and title inclusive), it also has a yearly maintenance cost of $590.
17 Super Cheap: 2014 Toyota Corolla
According to Motor 1, the Toyota Camry, spoken of earlier, may be cheaper than the Toyota Corolla, but it’s a bit more expensive to maintain. By a bit, it means you may have to ditch some trips to McDonald's every month if you have to stick to the Camry maintenance cost.
However, with a budgeted cost of $341 or less for the Toyota Corolla, you may be visiting McDonald's often without thinking twice, according to Clark.com. Whether it’s a Toyota Camry or Corolla, you can expect to get a good number of miles and years worth your buck.
16 Super Cheap: 2012 Kia Optima
In 2001, Kia released this vehicle with the name Optima to the global market, except in Europe where it was called Magentis. After four generations, the car has succeeded in riding on the coattails of other strong Japan-made car brands like Toyota, Nissan, and Honda. Due to the increased patronage of the Optima in the mid-sized sedan market, it has been able to carve its niche.
According to Motor 1, Kia may be a strong competitor to the Toyota Camry, but it has a higher maintenance cost. With an average of $690 per year, you can get things done.
15 Super Cheap: 2012 Toyota Yaris
The Yaris is yet another Toyota car that passed the initial sniff test of an economy car, with its maintenance cost on a cheaper side. However, the car appears to be on several lists of most erratic vehicles on the road. The first-generation of the Yaris enjoyed some level of reliability, until its remodeling in 2012, according to Consumer Reports.
Even though there are bad reports of the vehicle regarding its uncomfortable noise, Repair Pal and Forbes listed the Yaris as one of the most durable cars on the road today with an average maintenance cost of $600 every year.
14 Super Cheap: 2013 Nissan Sentra
The Nissan Sentra made its debut in 1982, which was the same year with the Toyota Camry. According to Car and Driver, the car has a base price of $16,999, and it has modest maintenance of $60 per month. Until 1986, all the Nissan Sentras were sold under the umbrella of Datsun outside Japan. If you plan to use this Nissan Sentra, you can be sure that you won’t be entering into any financial hole.
Of course, a Sentra may not be as reputable as a Civic, but it sure does have some street credibility.
13 Super Cheap: 2014 Kia Soul
If you’re particular about cars with low fuel consumption, the Kia Soul would be an excellent option for you. According to Kia, the car can do 30 mpg on the highway and deliver a combined highway/city rating of 27 mpg. It also comes with a 201 hp turbocharged model for an extra buck.
Even though it is a good thing to pay attention to its fuel economy, it’s also good news to know that you’d only be spending $40 on the car to keep it in shape every month.
12 Super Cheap: 2016 Hyundai Sonata
The Hyundai Sonata is the perfect car for anyone that’s on a strict budget. The model isn't just cheap to purchase, but according to Your Mechanic, it costs less than $10,000 to maintain the car for ten years, making it $83 per month for its maintenance.
The Sonata is also a fantastic option for those that have decided to avoid the stress that comes with purchasing a second-hand Europe-made sedan. With the Sonata, you are safe from any expensive maintenance over the long haul.
11 Super Cheap: 2007 Jeep Patriot
If you take out time to rate Jeeps on a scale of one to ten for reliability, you may notice that they end with anything less than five—which means that it’s not your go-to-car if you’re keen about reliability.
However, it’s a good option if you can’t afford the likes of Buick and Land Rover. According to Your Mechanic, it costs about $8,200 to maintain the Jeep Patriot for ten years. As long as you pay less attention to the Patriot’s unreliability, you’ll be fine with the cost of owning and maintaining the model.
10 Will Drain Wallets: 2016 BMW 328i
When you purchase an expensive car like the BMW 328i, it’s only reasonable to see the cost of maintenance shoot through the roof. However, not all BMWs are like that. With the right model and proper maintenance, you may end up with fewer maintenance bills cost every month.
Nevertheless, the 328i belongs to the class of unreliable models that would drain your wallets over time. According to Your Mechanic, it would cost you an average of $1,780 a year to keep the car running.
9 Will Drain Wallets: 2010 Chrysler Sebring
From a distance, the Chrysler Sebring subtly resembles a vehicle that can’t put you through hell, with regards to expenses, until you purchase it. The Sebring is one of the most impractical cars that exist. It’s funny how the car survived in the US market all these years.
To bolster the point stated earlier, the Sebring is expensive to maintain even if it doesn't look like it—thanks to its frequent repairs. In other words, the model spends more time in the garage than on the road. According to Your Mechanic, the Sebring costs $1,710 a year to maintain.
8 Will Drain Wallets: 2016 Ram 3500
If you compare the cost of maintaining the Ram 3500 to other options, like the Dodge Ram in its class, you’d observe that it’s expensive to maintain. The Ram 3500 is costly to keep due to its unreliability.
One of the significant issues the model faces is with the gear transmission, which causes it to break down more often than usual. When a car has transmission issues, it translates to a high cost of maintenance. According to Clark.com, the Ram 3500 will cost you over $1,300 to maintain in a year.
7 Will Drain Wallets: 2017 Mazda 6
The Mazda 6 has a way of making you visit the mechanic more often than usual, even though the sedan goes for a juicy price when compared to its competition.
It’s a good buy if you consider that the model has better options and features than other sedans within the same price range. It’s obvious the Mazda 6 is a good deal on the surface that comes with issues wrapped-in. According to Clark.com, it will cost you $1,270 a year to maintain the model.
6 Will Drain Wallets: 2017 Dodge Grand Caravan
If you enjoy having extra cash stashed in your piggy bank, the Dodge Grand Caravan will put an end to this dream. When it comes to its initial retail price, it’s interesting to find the mini-van near the low end compared to the Toyota Sienna, and Honda Odyssey. However, it’s on the high side when it comes to maintenance.
Even though the Caravan comes with exciting features that make it versatile, it costs about $1,450 a year to maintain, according to Clark.com. It’s best to opt for the Toyota or Honda minivans that have fewer features.
5 Will Drain Wallets: 2017 GMC Canyon
Being in haste to purchase this small truck is like signing a contract with the devil without reading the terms. It’s easy to choose the Canyon because it’s less expensive to buy when compared to the Murano.
However, when you purchase the Canyon, you should be prepared to spend a lot of money to keep it in good condition. The Canyon is one of the most expensive maintenance packages that exist in the market. According to Car Throttle, it would cost about $140 a month to maintain the Canyon.
4 Will Drain Wallets: 2017 Chrysler 300
The company shows off the Chrysler 300 model as one that doesn't just define luxury and style but combines a unique lineage of power. The fun part of the Chrysler 300 is the fact that it offers luxury at a low price.
Also, it comes with whistles, bells, and fancy features that define luxury. Despite all the luxury, the model scored two stars out of five for reliability, according to Consumer Affairs. It shows that the model is unreliable which means that the cost of maintenance is expensive at $145 per month.
3 Will Drain Wallets: 2018 Ford Focus
When Ford first released the Focus, it made history by breaking a long-standing record for the most remembered vehicle in Ford. The model has improved over the years, but the company didn't work on the model’s reliability which makes it difficult to maintain. However, Ford claimed that the 2018 model was designed to increase fun factor for entry-level drivers who need a vehicle through school before they get off their parents budget.
According to Clark.com, the Focus costs $1,710 a year to maintain. It’s evident that the company did an excellent job of focusing our attention on the fun part.
2 Will Drain Wallets: 2018 MERCEDES BENZ E350
The Benz E350 is a beautiful car that comes with expensive issues. According to Clark.com, it could cost you about $15,000 in 10 years. It also translates to spending $1,500 every year which is on the high side.
It’s almost impossible to avoid spending this amount as long as you plan to keep the car running and alive. Instead of buying this model, it’s best to use the yearly maintenance fare for purchasing good, fairly used vehicles that don’t require too much money to maintain.
1 Will Drain Wallets: 2018 PORSCHE CAYMAN
The name Porsche has a lot of luxury that comes with it. Asides that, owning a Porsche is a beautiful idea, that’s if you can afford it. When you purchase a brand new supercar like the Porsche, you get a high expectation of fun, sporty, fast, and other nice features. But this doesn't mean that none of the models fall short of reliability.
Oh yes! The Cayman happens to be one of those models in this category. According to Motor 1, it will cost you $2,370 to maintain this model annually.
Sources: Motor1, Car and Driver, Car Throttle, Your Mechanic