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If you are looking to buy a car, you may be thinking of the future … what are the least expensive cars to maintain?  And the most expensive?  Your car is a huge part of your life and you want to be smart about your choice.

The most economical manufacturer is Toyota.  Scion and Lexus come in as second and third least expensive vehicle brands to maintain.  The most expensive are luxury brands such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and Cadillac.  Maintenance costs also increase as the car ages.   We looked at a few different cars and here are our choices for the most and least expensive cars to maintain.

The 5 Least Expensive Cars to Maintain

  1. Toyota Corolla– Toyota’s compact sedan is not only a reliable ride, it’s the least costly vehicle to service. There is a reason why the Corolla is so popular!
  2. Toyota Prius– Unless you have to replace the battery, Toyota’s hybrid has very little maintenance needs. An added bonus is the 50-plus miles per gallon of gas.
  3. Honda Accord– The Honda Accord has been one of the best selling cars for decades. Honda has a reputation for quality and reliability and in general, their repairs cost less than other types of vehicles.
  4. Kia Soul– The Kia Soul gets its low maintenance from its excellent reliability. Most new models do not need any unscheduled maintenance for several years!
  5. Honda Fit– The Honda Fit has a great combination of quality and value and has a good reliability rating as well.

The 5 Most Expensive Cars to Maintain

  1. BMW 328i– The BMW 3 Series is known for performance but is the most expensive car to maintain in the industry.
  2. Nissan Murano– The Murano is one of Nissan’s best selling cars but is the least affordable Nissan to maintain.
  3. Mercedes-Benz E350– Mercedes-Benz is known for its luxury, power, innovation, and … high maintenance costs.
  4. Dodge Grand Caravan- The Grand Caravan may be a great choice for the family but be prepared to spend more in maintenance than an average Dodge vehicle.
  5. Chevrolet Cobalt– The Chevrolet Cobalt replaced the Cavalier in 2005. The maintenance costs are quite a bit higher than the average Chevrolet maintenance costs.

As you read over our lists, keep in mind that used car maintenance is about more than the cost.  You also have to look at how well a car has been maintained, how and when it was driven, and its mileage.  If you are ever in doubt, be sure to take the vehicle to your trusted mechanic to get an expert’s opinion.