Sunday, October 7, 2007

Auto Industry's 10 Best and Worst Cars for Depreciation

Cars, unlike parcels of land, do not appreciate in value over time. They normally depreciate. Moreover, vehicle owners have to know the cars that hold value best. Which cars do not easily depreciate? According to the Consumer Reports' depreciation ratings, import brands lead in car resale value while the domestic models are on the adverse position.

It was found out that those affordably priced cars like the Toyota Prius hybrid, Scion vehicles and Mini Cooper hold their value better than sports and luxury vehicles in the market. The best cars are made by either Japanese or European nameplates. On the other hand, the worst cars with high depreciation are mostly domestic brands, which are commonly used by rental companies and fleets.

The best and worst cars in depreciation are rated by Consumer Reports based on the difference between the MSRP of a 2004 model when new and its present retail value. The average depreciation was approximately 45 percent over the first 3 years. Those cars that belong to the top 10 are above average while those at the bottom are below average. The Manufacturer Suggested Retail Prices (MSRP) of the cars were rounded to the nearest $500.

The best car depreciating rating was given to Toyota Prius. As a fact, there is an overwhelming demand for this particular car. Toyota parts for Prius were further improved by several upgrades that include extra batteries, stealth mode, chargers and solar panels. A used Prius can be had at approximately $22,000. The top 10 best cars for depreciation are Toyota Prius, Mini Cooper ($17,500 to $25,500), Scion xB ($14,000 to $15,000), BMW M3 ($49,000 to $56,500), Lexus RX ($36,000 to $46,000), BMW 6-Series ($72,000 to $79,000), Lexus GX ($46,500), Acura TSX ($30,000), Scion xA ($13,000 to $13,500), and Honda Civic & Civic Hybrid ($14,500 to $24,500).

The worst car in depreciation is Ford Freestar, which has replaced Ford Windstar. Last year, the sales figure of the car was down by 20 percent. Now it has a depreciation value of $19,500 to $29,500 far below the average. Next to Ford Freestar are Ford Crown Victoria ($24,500 to $27,500), Buick Rainier ($31,500 to $33,500), Lincoln Town Car ($42,000 to $50,500), Dodge Caravan/Grand Caravan ($18,500 to $27,500), Mercury Grand Marquis ($25,000 to $29,500), GMC Envoy ($26,500 to $37,000), Ford Explorer ($26,500-$36,000), Buick Rendezvous ($25,000 to $28,500), and Chrysler Town & Country ($21,500 to $36,000).

Mark Clarkson is a 35 year old marketing consultant for a leading auto parts store. This native of Denver is also an offroad enthusiast. You can visit Toyota parts for Prius for more information.

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