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Which Car Brands Have the Best Resale Value?

Education | 05/04/2023 21:45

When you are thinking about getting a new car, it’s important to think about your long term plans for your new set of wheels. Is this the type of car you plan on driving until the wheels fall off? Is it a car you might want to pass down to your kid one day? Or will you, more than likely, want to sell it in the future to help pay for a new car? For many, this last option is best. Selling your car allows you to get an upgrade while also giving you some cash to do so. And because of this, resale value is very important. 

Here are the car brands that have the best resale value.

release value

What affects car value the most?


When it comes to resale value, the brand and model are incredibly important. After all, the bones of the car are what people truly look at. If it’s not a very dependable car in the first place, not many people are going to want it (even if it is in pristine shape). A car’s reliability ranking, popularity image, and brand popularity are three of the most important factors that affect resale value. 

But it’s important to note that it’s not the only important factor. There are many other factors that will affect the resale value of your car, such as your mileage, condition, and accident history. Additionally, there are factors that are outside of your control that affect resale value, like market conditions and the price of fuel.


Dealer helping a family to choose a car

Which car brands keep their value best?


Certain car brands hold their values better than others. And by that, we mean that they depreciate at a slower rate than other brands. Broadly speaking trucks and SUVs tend to hold their value the most, while luxury sedans tend to lose their value the most.


Every year Kelley Blue Book ranks which cars have the best resale values. They look at the resale value over a 5 year period, where the average new car will be worth 45% of its original sticker price. But the following 10 cars have all depreciated by less than 40%, which is really notable in today’s car market. Here is the Kelley Blue Book Best Resale Value list for 2023:


#1: 2023 Toyota Tundra, 73.3% 5 year resale value

#2: 2023 Toyota Tacoma, tied, 66.0% 5 year resale value

#2: 2023 Tesla Model X, tied, 66.0% 5 year resale value

#4: 2023 Ford Bronco, 65.4% 5 year resale value

#5: 2023 Chevrolet Corvette, 65.3% 5 year resale value

#6: 2023 Toyota 4Runner, 64.4% 5 year resale value

#7. 2023 Honda Civic, 62.5% 5 year resale value

#8. 2023 Ford Maverick, 61.7% 5 year resale value

#9. 2023 Subaru Crosstrek, tied, 61.0% 5 year resale value

#9. 2023 Jeep Wrangler (tie) 61.0% 5 year resale value


Brand reliability is one of the biggest considerations for resale, and Toyota, Honda, Ford, and Subaru are all very consistently ranked high on this list. While BMW and Lexus are also considered to be near the top of the list in terms of reliability, luxury cars do not have high resale values, as we mentioned before, so they are not considered to be contenders in terms of resale value. In fact, when an iSeeCars study looked at which cars lose their value the most, eight out of ten cars on the list were luxury sedans. The BMW 7 Series sedan had the highest depreciation, losing 72.6% of its value in just five years (which is a whopping $73,686).


Ultimately resale is dependent primarily on brand reliability and model practicality. An SUV is usually a more practical option than a high end luxury car. 

What adds resale value to a car?

Whatever brand car you have, whether it is considered reliable or not, there are steps you can take to bump the resale value even higher. A little attention to detail and a few upgrades can make a huge difference in how fast you can sell your car and how much money you can get.


Give it a thorough cleaning.

It may seem obvious, but giving your car a good cleaning is a great first step to increasing its resale value. And we don’t just mean vacuum the seats (although you should do that too)! But giving each panel a polish and paying attention to door jams and every nook and cranny will help your car to look its best. It will also help to neutralize any odors that may be lingering. A bad smell can seriously tank your resale value.


Touch up paint where you can.

After a thorough exterior cleaning you will be able to tell if there are little scratches and dings that could use some touch up paint. Most auto body shops will be able to do this, but if you want to do it yourself you can pick up paint that matches and test in an inconspicuous area to ensure that it will blend. Polishing your headlights and mirrors can also make a huge difference.


Pay attention to your tires.

If your tires are in good shape, a good cleaning and polish can substantially increase your resale value. If your tires are worn, it’s a good idea to replace them which will increase your resale value considerably. 


Have a mechanic give it a once over.

It’s a good idea to have your car looked at by a mechanic as well (unless you are mechanically inclined yourself). This will help give you confidence when negotiating, as you will know exactly what type of shape your car is in. Someone may be able to convince you there is something wrong with your car even if there isn’t, so being armed with knowledge will help you. If you need any quick fixes, your mechanic can make them or schedule them. 


Owner's car for sale

Those are the brands that have the highest resale value (and how you can increase the resale value of your car no matter what the brand is).


Resale value is an important consideration when buying a new car. Brand reliability is one aspect of this (and a big aspect at that) but it is not the only thing that affects resale value. Taking good care of your car, avoiding accidents, and keeping it well maintained will help you to increase the value. 


If you have a car that is financed there is a good chance you are overpaying every month. But Auto Approve can help. Contact us today to see how much money you could be saving!



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