A good road trip car combines value, economy, and reliability. It’s more than a way to get you from point A to point B; rather it is where you will be spending the majority of your time while on the road. The following are a few options that tick all the boxes, in a range of sizes and starting prices.
More affordable than a Jeep yet offering many of the same amenities, the Subaru Outback is nearly synonymous with road trips. This rugged vehicle is ideal for mild off-roading, taking you up mountainsides or down dirt trailheads with ease. It also boasts strong resale values and 29 MPG on the highway, which for a used SUV is not too shabby. The combination of utility and amenities makes this a winner for any epic road trip.
The 2013 version of the ever-reliable Kia Optima was recently voted “car of the year” by Road and Travel Magazine. The 2012 design has already pushed to the front of Kia’s fleet of models, as its best-selling option. You can easily find Kia cars at Carsales and a number of other international listings sites for an affordable price. This mid-sized sedan walks the line between the handling of a smaller car and the spaciousness of a larger crossover, making it suitable for solo road trips or to transport the whole family. Features like Bluetooth, dual-zone climate control, and parking sensors help give you even more value for your money.
Running costs tend to be first and foremost in a traveller’s mind, comprising a major percentage of any road trip’s budget. It makes sense to look at hybrid vehicles like the Prius for your travels. By purchasing a used model, you can save on the sometimes hefty price tag carried by new electric vehicles. Yet you still reap the benefits of higher efficiency. The Prius gets you 48 mpg on the highway, with 21.6 feet of cargo capacity to fit plenty of gear.
For longer journeys or larger groups of travellers, it’s hard to beat the appeal of a classic minivan. The Honda Odyssey offers space, high resale values, decent fuel economy, and a whopping 15 cup holders to keep the whole crew refreshed on the journey. The Odyssey also has the benefit of holding the lowest overall insurance rates in the minivan class, which helps cut running costs even further. If you have a bit of cash to spare, the Touring Elite package includes a built-in navigation system and a rear monitor to keep backseat passengers happy.
Although a supermini might not be the ideal road trip vehicle that springs to mind, if you’re looking for something budget-friendly a small car like the Toyota Yaris can be ideal. The used Toyota Yaris up on Carsales features a low starting price and economic running costs. If your itinerary involves city driving, you’ll be happy to have a zippy little car like this to navigate unknown corners and slide into tight parking spaces. The Yaris is also easy to repair, so if you have a breakdown in the middle of nowhere you should have no trouble locating a knowledgeable mechanic to help.
There’s certainly no shortage of economic used cars that could be used for your next road trip. The best option will depend on how much space you need, how far you’re travelling, and what type of terrain you’re covering. This diverse range of vehicles is a good start.