For many decades of Toyota’s existence, they have absolutely dominated the affordable car market. They have the exceptional ability to make economical / fuel efficient vehicles while simultaneously producing the greatest sports cars known to man (i.e. Toyota Supra Mark IV).
To this day, Toyota remains a powerhouse in the global auto industry, however, their grip has slowly slipped over time. So many of their competitors jumped at the chance and met or exceeded Toyota’s standards. Thanks to the diversity of the market and a free economy, more and more cars have reappeared as economical alternatives and alternatives to Toyota (more than ever before).
To illustrate this point and show some options, here are fifteen cheap cars you should buy instead of a Toyota …
15. 2019 Dodge Charger
Dodge, and Fiat Chrysler more broadly, have not always had the most fluid record in terms of vehicle reliability and robustness. Yet that has started to change with Dodge’s latest versions of their various models, especially the 2019 Charger. Previously, the Charger was just a bad attempt at a restart, but now it’s a nice car and can be fuel efficient or fast (depending on the package chosen by the customer).
14. Ford Fusion Hybrid
Just like with Dodge, Ford has also been in the spotlight as a poorly established manufacturing company. Unlike Dodge, however, Ford still persists today with many of their models considered “below par.” However, there are sometimes rough diamonds; that’s what the Ford Fusion Hybrid is. In the end, Ford has managed to make a good hybrid that is affordable and won’t break down after 10,000 miles!
13. 2019 Dodge Challenger
As mentioned above, Dodge is kind of a winning streak with their cars, especially their muscle / sports cars. Sitting with the Charger is its big brother: the 2019 Dodge Challenger. Both of these vehicles can deliver extreme power, but don’t cost a fortune to repair or maintain. To admit, though, fuel efficiency has never been the Challenger’s strong suit.
12. Buick Regal
Buick can be thought of as a “senior citizen’s car,” however, they began to break with this stereotype. Examples include the new Regal, which is a Chevrolet Malibu-style sedan that offers acceptable safety standards and repair costs. Buicks generally cost a lot, but can be found for a lot less used (if that’s your style).
11. Lexus GS series
Before we say anything, yes, we do know that Lexus is (partly) owned by Toyota. In this case, however, Lexus stood out as a successful brand in its own right and made some good cars in the process. The new Lexus GS series follows the trend of sharp looks that could cut a diamond and high build quality. To add to that, since there is still a bit of Toyota out there somewhere, the reliability of Lexus is as good / better than that of Toyota!
10. Chevrolet Cruze
Chevrolet didn’t just kill it in the supercar department with the Corvette C8, they also cornered a significant chunk of the U.S. vehicle market: environmentally conscious urban commuters. The smallest alternative in their line is the Cruze; available as sedan and hatchback. These vehicles are everything you would expect from a new small car: high MPG, low price, cheap repairs, and above average aesthetics.
9. Kia Forte
One brand that too many consumers and enthusiasts seem to forget too often is Kia. Of course, not all of their trials yielded results, but when they do, you have to be reckoned with. Take a look at the Kia Forte, a sleek and surprisingly fast sedan designed to compete with Honda and Toyota. For racers, the Forte is of additional interest for track testing and as a boosted GT version.
8. Mazda 6
The Mazda 6 is what happens when a company like Mazda senses the fire of the competition below it. Using technology and knowledge from their racing department and other models, Mazda unveiled its revised Mazda 6. The difference between the standard and new version is (obviously) better fuel economy, more horsepower, additional features and (most importantly) looks that follow the rest of Mazda’s current lineup. Hoping they keep the style …
7. Nissan Altima
Nissan has made great cars throughout its history, however, one thing has plagued almost all of its new vehicles: CVT transmissions. Fortunately, Nissan has started to break that chain by making transmissions and components that don’t deteriorate after a few years, as seen in cars like their luxurious Altima.
6. Hyundai Elantra Eco
Coming in from the background is an automaker some neglect to mention: Hyundai. Lately, they’ve been doing a pretty good job of keeping up with Toyota and Honda in terms of fuel economy and low prices. Their Elantra Eco embodies all of these features, however, has received some criticism for a lack of features. If that doesn’t bother you, then Hyundai may be the way to go.
5. Kia Soul
As previously reported, Kia has had a lot of momentum in recent years with its new (and improved) line of cars. Their best, arguably, is the compact Kia Soul. At present, it ranks among the greats in terms of fuel economy and reliability. The best part, however, is the savings!
4. Honda Fit
If you are not going to go for a Toyota, but still want something this good and so recognizable, then Honda is the perfect choice. To combat vehicles like the Toyota Yaris, Prius, and Kia Soul, Honda created their own version called Fit. This is, basically, all you can expect from an urban compact sedan; including civic-type aesthetics.
3. Hyundai Accent
When comfort, luxury and excessive features are important to the driver, the Hyundai Elantra Eco can be a drag. Their counter to this is the new Accent: a vehicle that looks like the Chevrolet Cruze, the Honda Civic and the Nissan Versa had a child. It’s better than the Elantra, however, a little behind the others. Nonetheless, the Accent is still a suitable daily driver.
2. Honda Civic
What’s the obvious choice millions of consumers have made when they don’t want a Toyota? If you didn’t say Honda and its Civic, you might be shocked that the Civic is one of the best, most affordable, and best-built economy cars on the market. They rarely suffer from breakdowns, their components are solid and are perfect for modifications and city walks!
1. Chevrolet Malibu
GM (General Motors) does not have a reputation for making good cars in its decades of operation. This has started to change recently, with new direction and a better understanding of both the market and customer desires. The Chevy Malibu is a prime example of their recovery; featuring good looks, a stunning MPG and a car that spends more time on the road than in a mechanic’s garage.
NEXT: Move Over Tesla Fans, Porsche Taycan Worth Buying
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