Cars, Trucks, and SUVs With the Best Resale Value

Vehicle Value


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Vehicle Value

Buy Back Bargains

If you're buying a new car, chances are good you're trading in an old one. If that's the case, the value of your trade-in will determine how much you'll have to borrow to drive away with a new set of wheels. All cars depreciate in value, but not at the same rate — far from it, in fact. To find the cream of the resale value crop, Cheapism profiled the winners of the Kelley Blue Book 2021 Best Resale Value Awards: Top Cars, Trucks and SUVs, an annual award honoring the vehicle that retains the largest percentage of its value over five years across all 22 major vehicle categories. All vehicles are from model year 2021.

Related: 14 Important Things to Consider When Selling a Used Car

Subaru Crosstrek

Subcompact SUV: Subaru Crosstrek

Projected five-year resale value: 50.4%

The mighty little Crosstrek is more or less an Impreza hatchback with some extra muscle for life on the trails. It's got everything offered in the bigger Forester and Outback, such as on-road/off-road versatility, good ground clearance, and that legendary Subaru reliability and standard all-wheel drive. It's also one of the last great passenger vehicles with a transmission you shift by hand. It's one of just five vehicles to hold more than half its value over 60 months.

Related: 50 of the Smallest Cars Ever Made

Subaru Forester

Compact SUV: Subaru Forester

Projected five-year resale value: 45%

Like the smaller Crosstrek, the Subaru Forester is no stranger to topping the list of cars that age well — they're both the defending champs in their respective categories on this list. Also like the Crosstrek, its 182 horsepower isn't breaking any records, but it certainly gets the job done. The Forester earns top safety scores in all the important categories.

Related: These Are the Least Expensive Cars to Own

2020 Subaru Outback

Two-Row Midsize SUV: Subaru Outback

Projected five-year resale value: 41.3%

Locking up the third of the three most popular types of SUVs is Subaru once again, this time with its flagship Outback. Like its smaller kin, it has a sufficient 182 horses in its stable, which is good. Everything else is excellent, including its decades-long record of reliability, safety, and comfort on the road, and 4x4 readiness when the pavement turns to dirt or is covered in snow.

Related: 22 Least Expensive SUVs to Own

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Kia Telluride

Three-Row Midsize SUV: Kia Telluride

Projected five-year resale value: 47%

Although it just joined the three-row SUV category, the Kia Telluride is already at the top of the pack, and not just in terms of holding onto its value. KBB also named it the overall best buy in its class last year and this year — its first and only two years on the road. Even the base model has been lauded for its impressive list of safety, tech, and driver-assist features, its powerful V6, and its luxurious interior.

Related: 30 "Foreign" Cars That Are Made in America

2021 GMC Yukon AT4
2021 GMC Yukon AT4 by General Motors (CC BY-SA)

Full-Size SUV: GMC Yukon

Projected five-year resale value: 46.4%

The already impressive GMC Yukon got a variety of upgrades that give it top billing in 2021, including state-of-the-art infotainment and safety features, a better suspension, and a roomier third row. If you're in it for the size, the Yukon won't let you down. Despite all the extra room and a makeover that goes well beyond cosmetics, it's still priced about the same as last year's model.

Related: These Cars Are the Most Likely to Surpass 200,000 Miles

Best Off-Road SUV/Crossover: Jeep Wrangler Unlimited

Off-Road SUV: Jeep Wrangler 4-Door

Projected five-year resale value: 55.8%

Not even the lineup of Subarus can compete with the incredible resale value delivered by the average Jeep Wrangler after five years. The Wrangler, of course, needs no introduction. Its ability to vanquish the trails and transition to the highway is the stuff of legend. What people might not know about the latest lineup, however, is the depth of its bench in terms of engine options. There's a turbocharged four-cylinder, a bigger V6, a really big 392-cubic-inch V8, and a diesel option.

Related: 24 Timeless Jeeps Everybody Still Loves

Volvo Xc40
Volvo Cars

Subcompact Luxury SUV: Volvo XC-40

Projected five-year resale value: 37.3%

Like the Wrangler, the Volvo XC-40 offers something-for-everyone powertrain options. Volvo's legacy as a synonym for safety and reliability continues on in the XC-40, which is also available as a fully electric SUV. Its driver-assist and safety features, including semi-autonomous driving, are cutting-edge even by the standards of the luxury segment.

Related: 10 Useful Car Features You Probably Didn't Notice Before

Porsche Macan

Compact Luxury SUV: Porsche Macan

Projected five-year resale value: 42%

One out of every three Porsches sold is a Macan SUV. The brand's most popular model by far, it's a familiar face at the top of the resale value winners list. A smaller version of the Cayenne, the Macan is big where it counts — under the hood — just as you'd expect from a Porsche. There are several options, one of which is a 434 horsepower turbo V6.

Related: 20 Reliable Cars You Can Drive Into the Ground

Range Rover Sport
Land Rover USA

Two-Row Midsize Luxury SUV: Range Rover Sport

Projected five-year resale value: 37.8%

In between the bigger flagship Ranger Rover and the cushier Velar is the Range Rover Sport, a truly off-road capable luxury SUV. Its terrain-management and four-wheel-drive systems are among the most advanced on the market, but its rugged capabilities are camouflaged by a quiet ride, space-age tech, immersive sound, and top-shelf craftsmanship.

Related: 30 Most Iconic SUVs of All Time

Modern BMW X7

Three-Row Midsize Luxury SUV: BMW X7

Projected five-year resale value: 37.8%

The biggest vehicle in the BMW lineup is the sleek but imposing X7. It has been lauded for performing well even at high speeds, in terms of handling, interior noise, and ride comfort. With the options of a turbocharged inline-six or a twin-turbo V8, it's simply not possible to go wrong under the hood.

Related: Porsche 911, VW Beetle, and Other Iconic German Cars That Changed the Game

Mercedes-Benz G-Class

Full-Size Luxury SUV: Mercedes-Benz G-Class

Projected five-year resale value: 48%

Thanks to its boxy and military-inspired design, the Mercedes-Benz G-Class could not be mistaken for any other SUV on the road. KBB calls it a "durable mountain goat" in reference to its hard-terrain capabilities. But it's as luxurious, comfortable, and well-built as you'd expect from a Benz that starts above $135,000. Its projected resale value would be impressive even if it didn't make its living in the stingy luxury segment.

Related: 50 of the Biggest Cars Ever Made

2018 Subaru Impreza

Compact Car: Subaru Impreza

Projected five-year resale value: 43.1%

The Subaru Impreza is so dominant in this category that 2021 is the seventh time in eight years this trusty sedan/hatchback has topped the list. It's the cheapest Subaru you can buy, but it delivers the same reliability, safety, and dependability that the brand's loyalists have come to expect.

Related: Most Popular Car in Every State

Toyota Camry

Midsize Car: Toyota Camry

Projected five-year resale value: 40.9%

Although Toyota is a Japanese automaker, the Camry is, and has for a long time, been America's sedan. The sedan segment as a whole is being eviscerated by the country's conversion to crossovers, but commuters and families who love sedans love the Camry best of all — and for good reason. It's not just resale value. The Camry is a perennial contender for the title of the most reliable car on the road as well as the segment's best buy overall. It remains one of the bestselling vehicles of all time across all categories.

Related: The Bestselling Cars From the Past 40 Years

Corvette Cruising by the Beach

Sports Car: Chevrolet Corvette

Projected five-year resale value: 49.5%

The first mid-engine Corvette represents everything that's good and right about U.S. sports cars. It's beautiful, it's powerful, and it's affordable. A true supercar for the common driver, the 2021 'Vette can be had for half the cost of a comparable Porsche 911. With a lineage dating back to 1953, its legacy is as proud and nearly as old as Porsche's and it greedily hoards almost half its value for 60 months.

Related: 14 Things You Didn't Know About the Chevrolet Corvette

Lexus IS 250

Entry-Level Luxury Car: Lexus IS

Projected five-year resale value: 38.4%

Lexus dominates the luxury sedan segment every year as thoroughly as Subaru rules over small crossovers and SUVs. The Lexus IS is stunning even at the base level, and all trims are highly customizable. Refined and elegant inside, it's crafted with high-quality and often exotic materials, and its engines range from powerful to beastly.

Related: Luxury Cars Under $50K That Are Totally Worth Owning

Lexus LS500 2018 Test Drive Day

Luxury Car: Lexus LS

Projected five-year resale value: 33%

Since its inception, Lexus has been in direct competition with legacy German automakers whose full-size sedans defined luxury, refinement, and power for generations. Toyota's flagship Lexus LS undercuts its European counterparts on price while matching and often outmatching them on substance.

Related: Japanese Cars That Changed the Game

2018 Toyota RAV4
Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

Hybrid Vehicle: Toyota RAV4 Hybrid

Projected five-year resale value: 48.6%

The RAV4 Hybrid clings to nearly half its worth over five years, but it's the best it's ever been for reasons beyond just resale value. There's a wide range of options, but even the sub-$30,000 entry-level trim punches above its weight; the upper echelon packages border on luxurious. It's powerful and roomy and good for 41/38 mpg.

Related: 20 Cars You Can Keep for More Than a Decade

Tesla Model X

Electric Vehicle: Tesla Model X

Projected five-year resale value: 47.3%

Elon Musk is facing stiff competition, as 2021 brought a bunch of impressive new EVs from a bunch of automakers. The Tesla Model X, however, holds its value better than all of them. It's not cheap and it's no longer eligible for federal tax breaks — one of the biggest incentives for buying — but it does seat seven and vaults from zero to 60 mph in less than four seconds. Plus, gullwing doors.

Related: Bestselling Electric Cars in America

2018 Toyota Sienna SE
Toyota Motor Sales, U.S.A., Inc.

Minivan: Toyota Sienna

Projected five-year resale value: 44.7%

The Toyota Sienna faces tough competition from the venerable Honda Odyssey, but it still managed to claim the top spot on the resale value list four years straight while dethroning the Odyssey as KBB's best buy overall. The Sienna is practical, efficient, easy to drive for a big vehicle. It keeps families safe while delivering Toyota's trademark dependability and low ownership costs.

Related: The 16 Best, Worst, and Weirdest Minivans of All Time

Toyota Tacoma

Midsize Pickup Truck: Toyota Tacoma

Projected five-year resale value: 55.8%

To say that the bestselling Toyota Tacoma holds its value over time would be an understatement. Remarkably, the rugged and reliable Tacoma has taken the top spot on this list every single year since KBB started keeping track in 2003. It has made the top 10 in terms of best resale value across all vehicles for 10 years straight. It's tied with the Jeep Wrangler for the top spot overall on this list — so far.

Related: 32 Most Reliable Trucks of All Time

Toyota Tundra

Full-Size Pickup Truck: Toyota Tundra

Projected five-year resale value: 59%

With a five-figure towing capacity and family vehicle comfort on the inside, the Toyota Tundra delivers real luxury and otherworldly power in the higher-trim models. No other half-ton pickup comes with a standard V8. In terms of resale value, it muscles out the beloved Ford F-150 with a whopping 59% over five years, the best of any vehicle in any category.

Related: 19 Most Trusted Toyotas of All Time

2019 GMC Sierra 1500
2019 GMC Sierra 1500 by GMC Sierra 1500 (CC BY-NC)

Heavy-Duty Pickup Truck: GMC Sierra HD

Projected five-year resale value: 56.8%

Part of the reason trucks are so popular is that they hold their value so well — and if nothing but the biggest, brawniest, and most capable pickups will do, you can't do better than the GMC Sierra HD. For context as to just how capable the Sierra HD is, try to wrap your head around a 36,000-pound towing capacity and a 6,600-pound payload capacity. In the top configuration, that's the kind of numbers this tugboat on wheels can deliver.

Related: 33 Greatest American Trucks of All Time