Are you on the market for a new car and you are looking for new cars under 20000? If that is the case, then you are at the right place because we are going to cover the best options that you have in this price range.
Buying a new car is nice, but what is better is to get yourself properly informed when it comes to buying this product. There is always a better deal out there that is waiting for you and you are not aware of. That’s why you need to learn all the best models that are out there right now and their specs.
Knowing this will make your buying experience much easier and more pleasing because you will know what is the best out there when it comes to the offerings available on the market. That’s why we are going to help you out by listing the best new cars under 20000. After reading this article, you will make an easy decision in which car you should invest your money in.
In this article, we are going to learn what are the top new cars under 20000. Then we will also go into detail when it comes to their specs and other aspects like safety and fuel economy. Then we will give our verdict of how good of a product is that specific car. So, let’s dive into it.
How To Get The Best New Cars Under 20000?
Buying a car on a limited budget is not quite easy since you have to make some compromises. And in life, everything is about making compromises. But even when you are making compromises you can still get a good deal for yourself.
It isn’t all black and white as, in reality, there are some good deals as well. A ton of great bargains are waiting for you. Some carmakers are budget-friendly oriented and they know to offer quite a lot for what you pay for. Brands like Hyundai, Kia, and other Korean and Japanese brands are focusing precisely on this segment and can offer excellent deals for new cars under 20000.
It’s up to you to look and make proper research of their inventory and their models that are out there for under 20000. There is also a good offering by American brands like Ford and Chevy when it comes to new cars under 20000 as well.
Everything is in the little things that set these cars from the competition. They offer quite a bit for what you pay. Today, you don’t have to pay a whole fortune for a new car. The competition is thick in each segment. As well as in the new cars under 20000 segment. Which is quite good for the buyers who want to snatch a good deal. You will have to make small compromises but nothing significant.
Getting the best new cars under 20000 can still be tricky. But we are going to help you out with that. In the following sections of this article, we are going to share the best options that are out there when it comes to getting a car in this price range.
Top New Cars Under 20000
As we mentioned above, in the following chapters we are going to list the top new cars under 20000. There will be cars for everyone’s budget. We are going to focus on the specs as well as other aspects like safety and equipment, fuel economy, and most importantly the price. So, let’s jump into our list.
1. Hyundai Veloster 2021- New Cars Under 20000
The Veloster is a 3-door hatchback produced by Hyundai and is one of the best examples that there are a lot of good new cars under 20000. The Veloster is manufactured in Ulsan, South Korea, and is one of the best models that Hyundai can offer.
This 3-door hatchback will be perfect if you are young and you don’t need a spacious vehicle. The Veloster is perfect for people who want a sporty hatch at a reasonable price.
At the moment of writing the Veloster is in its second iteration which means that it is a model with a good rating from the buyers. People love it and want more of it.
Engine And Transmission
The engine that is used in the Veloster is a 2.0L naturally aspirated engine that is outputting 147hp and 132 lb-ft of torque. Which is plenty to move this Veloster without any problems.
When it comes to transmission, the Veloster uses a 6-speed manual as a standard. But if you pay $1,000 extra, you will be able to get the 6-speed automatic transmission.
The fuel economy of the Veloster is quite good. It comes with a gas tank size of 13.2 gallons and the EPA numbers are 27 mpg in the city, 34 mpg on the highway, and 30 mpg combined. Which is quite respectable for a vehicle like this.
When it comes to safety, the Veloster has scored good scores on most of the tests performed by the IIHS.
2. 2022 Kia Forte – New Cars Under 20000
The Kia Forte is also known as the Kia K3 in Korea. The Forte is a sleek-looking compact car that was firstly introduced in 2019 for the US market. Making it a fairly new model and one of the most attractive offers that are out there when it comes to new cars under 20000.
It comes in two variants, a 4-door sedan, and a 5-door hatchback. This makes it perfect for those who need bigger practicality than the one with the Veloster that we reviewed previously.
The North American model comes in four different trim levels. The base is the FE and LX. Then there is the S and the top of the line trim the EX. But since you look for a car under $20,000, you are probably interested in the FE.
Engine And Transmission
The base engine on the Kia Forte is the 2.0L straight-4 engine that is outputting 147hp and 132 lb-ft of torque. This engine is then paired with either a 6-speed manual or a 1-speed CVT automatic transmission. The manual is slightly cheaper than the CVT. Both of them are under $20,000 but more on that in a bit.
The Forte comes with a 14-gallon fuel tank. The fuel economy is quite good. It easily gets 27 mpg in the city, 31 mpg on the highway, and 37 mpg combined. Making it a good option for those who want a good and fuel-efficient vehicle.
The safety ratings of the Kia Forte are good. But not good as the Veloster. It lacks protection in some areas like the passenger side where it only got 3 stars at the NHTSA testing lab. For the driver’s side, it got a 4-star rating. With an overall rating of 4 stars.
The price for the base model with manual transmission is $18,885 while the base model with a CVT transmission comes at $19,785. Making it an excellent deal. This is frankly one of the best new cars under 20000.
3. 2021 Chevrolet Spark – New Cars Under 20000
A list of the best new cars under 20000 would not be complete without the Chevrolet Spark. The Spark simply sparks when we discuss cheap and affordable cars that are actually quite good.
Anyway, the Spark is a 5-door hatchback that is produced by GM and sold under the Chevrolet badge. The present Chevy Spark generation was unveiled in 2015 for the 2016 year model.
There are three trim levels. The base LS trim, then there is the 1LT and the 2LT trim. And presumably, if you have a $20,000 budget, you can get a decently well specked out Chevy Spark.
Engine And Transmission
All Chevrolet Spark models come with the same 1.4L engine that is outputting 98hp and 94lb-ft of torque. Which is not a lot, but also not too little.
In terms of transmissions, the Spark is equipped with a 5-speed manual for the base model. Or if you want to go for something better, you can get your Spark equipped with a CVT transmission.
The fuel economy of the Spark is quite good. It comes with a 9-gallon fuel tank. Since it is a small car it is quite economical as well. It gets 30 mpg in the city, 38 mpg on the highway, 33 mpg combined.
Safety is not something that the Spark is proud of. Since it is a small vehicle, it doesn’t offer much protection. So, please consider this aspect if you are on the market for a new Chevy Spark
The base price of the Spark manual transmission is $14,595. The CVT is a bit more expensive $15,595. But if you are looking for the best new cars under 20000, you can also spec one with all the bells and whistles for $19,095.
4. 2021 Nissan Versa – New Cars Under 20000
The Versa is a compact 4-door sedan produced by Nissan for the US market. The Versa implements a 4-door sedan body style which makes it a competitor to the Kia Forte that we previously covered. It is also slightly more affordable than the Forte. But more on that in a bit.
There are three trim levels. The base trim level is the S, then there are the SV and SR trims. What is excellent is that all these trims are below 20k. Which makes the Versa one of the best new cars under 20000.
Engine And Transmission
The engine used in the Versa is a 1.6L straight-4 engine that is producing 122hp and 114 lb-ft of torque. Not a powerhouse, but it makes decent numbers.
In terms of transmissions, there are two options. A 5-speed manual in the base model and CVT transmission in the better-equipped versions of the Versa.
Similar to other cars in this segment, the fuel economy is also quite good. The Versa is getting 27 mpg in the city and 35 on the highway. The combined fuel economy is 35 mpg.
According to the IIHS, the Versa delivers a good level of safety. They crash-tested it and they concluded that the Versa performs well. Except in the head and neck injuries where it got an acceptable rating.
The Nissan Versa is also quite affordable to purchase. The base model with manual transmission starts at $15,900 which is extra good. The CVT model costs $1,500 more than the base. While a fully specked out model, you can get for $19,000. Which is a steal of a deal, to be honest.
5. 2022 Subaru Impreza – New Cars Under 20000
When we talk about new cars under 20000, we just cannot avoid talking about the Subaru Impreza. The Impreza is simply one of the best and most well-established models when it comes to price and quality.
The quality to price ratio of the Impreza is better than most of the competition and they manage to deliver a good product for a reasonable price.
For those who are not familiar, the Impreza is manufactured by Subaru. The Impreza comes in two variants. A 5-door hatchback or a 4-door sedan version.
In terms of trims, there is the base model and also two more upscale trims that are the Premium and Sport for those who want some sportiness.
Engine And Transmission
The engine option for the Impreza is a 2.0L 4-cylinder boxer engine that is outputting 152hp and 145 lb-ft of torque.
When it comes to transmissions, there are two available. One of them is a 5-speed manual transmission, while the other is a CVT transmission.
The fuel economy is good. Not excellent like the Spark or the Kia, but it’s well enough to make you buy the Impreza. The Impreza delivers 23 mpg in the city, 31 mpg on the highway, and 26 mpg combined.
The 2021 model was tested by IIHS and delivered good results. Which according to IIHS is their highest score. And for this price tag, the Impreza delivers the most of all cars we reviewed until now.
The prices for the Impreza start at $19,500 for the base model with a manual transmission (just like a manual transmission RAV4). If you want to go for the CVT, you will have to pay $21,000. A grand more for the automatic, but I think it’s worth it.
6. 2021 Volkswagen Jetta – New Cars Under 20000
When we talk about new cars under 20000, we cannot avoid the Germans. Specifically. Volkswagen with their Jetta. This car delivers quite a lot for what you end up paying.
The Jetta is one of the models that have built a big legacy when it comes to sales in the US market. In terms of trims, there are four trims in total. The S is the base, then there is the SE and SEL. The R is the performance trim.
These models always deliver excellent fuel economy along with sweet comfort. But is this the case with the new Jetta? Let’s find out.
Engine And Transmission
The base engine is a 1.4L turbocharged straight-4 engine that is producing 147hp and 184lb-ft of torque. Which isn’t a lot, but it’s enough to keep you going.
In terms of transmissions, there are two options. A 6-speed manual and an 8 speed automatic. The 8-speed will cost you $1,000 more but it is worth it.
The fuel economy on the automatic is excellent. Best of all of the cars in our list that we covered by now. It delivers 29 mpg in the city, 39 mpg on the highway, and 33 mpg combined. Which is respectable and if fuel economy is your goal. Then getting the Jetta will be the way to go when it comes to new cars under 20000.
The VW Jetta got a good grade in most of the categories when it was tested by the IIHS. Which is quite respectable. As we all know the good grade by IIHS is the highest rating.
The price of the Jetta starts right below $20,000 and for this price you will get the 1.4L with a 6-speed manual. If you want the automatic you will have to pay $1,000 extra. Which is worth it since this transmission delivers excellent fuel economy.
7. 2021 Chevy Trailblazer – New Cars Under 20000
The Chevy Trailblazer is another good product by GM that delivers quite a lot for what to pay and is among the best new cars under 20000. Fun fact, also go check out our guide on the Trailblazer bolt pattern.
The Trailblazer is a cute subcompact SUV that looks extremely good. And from all of the cars that we covered by now. I think the Trailblazer looks the best. It has sharp aggressive lines that make its appearance extra appealing.
There are a couple of trim levels on the Chevy Trailblazer. These are the L, LS, and LT. All the L models are FWD while the RS and Activ are 4WD.
Engine And Transmission
The base L model that we are interested in offers only one engine and that is a turbocharged straight-3 engine that is making 137hp and 162 lb-ft of torque.
There is only one transmission and that is a CVT automatic transmission.
The fuel economy is good. The Trailblazer gets 28 mpg in the city, 31 mpg on the highway, and 29 mpg combined fuel consumption.
According to the NTHSA, the Trailblazer was awarded a 5-star rating. Which is quite good. The IIHS also awarded the Trailblazer with a good score on the tests. Overall the Trailblazer is the safest vehicle that we reviewed until now.
The prices for the Trailblazer start slightly below $20,000. And I think it is a good deal since you get automatic transmission as a standard, unlike other models that include manual transmission on the base models. Overall, the looks also go for the Trailblazer and make it one of the best new cars under 20000.
8. 2022 Hyundai Accent – New Cars Under 20000
And we save the best for last in our list of new cars under 20000. And that is the Hyundai Accent. The Hyundai Accent is a 4-door sedan manufactured by the Korean manufacturer Hyundai and is one of the most popular vehicles that are out there.
There are three trim levels when it comes to the Accent. These trim levels are the SE, SEL, and the Limited, which is top-of-the-line trim. And imagine, the Limited only costs $600 more above your budget and will be a no-brainer to go after this trim level if you are on the market for a Hyundai Accent. But what about the other specs? Let’s find out.
Engine And Transmission
The same engine and transmission are included in the whole lineup. The engine is a 1.6L straight-4 naturally aspirated engine that is outputting 120hp and 113 lb-ft of torque.
The transmission is a CVT automatic transmission. Making it the perfect option for this application.
The fuel economy is excellent with the Accent. The Accent delivers 33 mpg in the city, 41 mpg on the highway, and 36 mpg overall. Making it one of the best performers in our list of new cars under 20000.
The Accent has scored “Good” scores in the IIHS tests. The overall safety of this vehicle according to these tests is good, except in small overlap on the front passenger side.
The price of the Hyundai Accent starts at $17,670 for the base model. The fully specked one starts at $20,625. Which is quite affordable and you get a lot for what you pay if you purchase this car. Excellent fuel economy with good build quality. Here we end our list of new cars under 20000.
Cheapest New Cars with Automatic Transmissions – Facts
- The sub-$10,000 new car is no longer available, and sub-$20,000 new cars are becoming scarce.
- There are still many affordable cars that get good gas mileage, keeping ownership costs low.
- The 10 least expensive new cars are presented in order of base price, including destination charge, but not taxes and fees.
- All prices include an automatic transmission, even though some models offer a manual option that is cheaper.
- The EPA-estimated combined mpg rating is for the automatic transmission version of the cars.
- The most affordable new car on the list is the 2023 Mitsubishi Mirage ES, priced at $17,600.
- The Kia Rio LX, Hyundai Accent SE, and Nissan Versa S are also priced under $19,000.
- The Kia Forte LX, Hyundai Venue SE, Nissan Sentra S, Kia Soul LX, Hyundai Elantra SE, and Subaru Impreza Base complete the list.
- The Mitsubishi Mirage and Hyundai Accent will not return for the 2023 model year, so shoppers need to act fast.
- The cars have different features, but all have standard safety and driver-assist technologies, such as automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning, and lane departure steering assist.
Conclusion – New Cars Under 20000
In this article, we learned a lot when it comes to what are the new cars under 20000. We learned why you should get a budget car and that there are a lot of hidden gems between these cars. Even if you make small compromises sometimes it’s worth it. Because you get really affordable vehicles when it comes to owning in the long run. They are cheap to buy and they are also quite affordable to fix when they break.
In our list, there is an option for everyone. It doesn’t matter if you want to spend the whole $20,000 or you just want to spend less. But when it comes to picking a car it is not a simple decision, it’s not grocery shopping. That’s why studying the offerings and test drive the cars in order to make the best decision possible. We really hope that you enjoyed it.