Let’s face it: most of us don’t hold on to our cars forever, and selling your used car is probably the biggest hassle involved with buying a new car. You may think your blown Mustang GT is the very definition of cool, but the guy who offers you fifty cents on the dollar (well below your advertised price) probably doesn’t agree. Sure, you can trade your old ride in at the dealership, but that will put even less money in your pocket. What if you knew the projected resale value of a car before you signed the paperwork? It probably wouldn’t change your mind if you’re dead set on one make and model, but it would probably help if you were trying to decide between two or more choices.
Below are the ten 2011 vehicles with the highest projected resale value, according to Kelley Blue Book. The list seems heavily weighted towards crossovers and SUVs, so you need to take that into consideration; it may be the best data available today, but if gas prices keep climbing don’t be surprised to see a 2012 list that’s heavily populated with fuel efficient compacts and hybrids.
2011 Audi A5
Good looks count for a lot, and Audi’s A5 coupe is a stunner.
2011 BMW X5
The original BMW X5 combined sport, luxury and utility like no other SUV when it was launched in 1999. Twelve years later, it still does.
2011 BMW X6
This entry surprised me quite a bit, as BMW has taken more than a little heat for the quirky styling of the X6 crossover.
2011 Honda CR-V
One of the best selling compact crossovers, Honda’s reputation for bulletproof reliability means that the CR-V retains its value well. “Worn out” for other cars typically means “broken in” for Hondas.
2011 Jeep Wrangler
The ultimate blank canvas for those seeking fun on and off road transportation, there will always be strong demand for both new and used Wranglers
2011 Lexus GX
The luxury version of Toyota’s famed Land Cruiser, the GX is at the “expensive” range of the price scale. My guess is that Toyota’s less expensive Land Cruiser would fare almost as well in resale value, and will certainly cost you less to buy new.
2011 Lexus RX
The poster vehicle for suburban soccer moms, the Lexus RX enjoys a rabid following in both the new and used market.
2011 Toyota FJ Cruiser
I’ll second KBB’s pick of the FJ. In fact, my 2008 FJ Cruiser is worth (on paper, at least) about the same as I paid for it three years ago. Why does it have such a high residual value? As far as I can tell, it’s supply and demand. Toyota imported too many into the U.S in 2007 and 2008, and sales were slow to ramp up. By 2009, demand was high and supply was low, escalating prices for clean used FJs. I’ve owned a lot of cars and trucks over the years, and the FJ is, hands down, the most versatile vehicle I’ve ever owned. It’s the one ride I can’t ever see myself selling.
2011 Toyota Tacoma
The truck that Top Gear couldn’t kill, almost everyone has a story about a Toyota pickup. Even high mileage Tacomas sell for surprisingly high prices, which helps justify their relatively high purchase price.
2011 Subaru Outback
If you live where it snows, the Subaru Outback may be the most practical four-person hauler on the planet. It’s cheaper to buy and own than most SUVs, and doesn’t drive like a truck.