USED CARS: Top 10 in Resale Retention Value

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FJ headerIt almost seems somehow counterproductive to entertain the possibility that the vehicle you want to purchase right now could become redundant and need to be sold, later. However disconcerting the idea of resale is, it is a necessary consideration that must be taken into account prior to any late model used auto purchase. Just because a particular vehicle is cute and sporty doesn’t mean that they will bode well when it comes time to sell. Check out used car websites like for a huge selection of late model used vehicles in a wide variety of categories.


Here is a list of top 10 best vehicles for resale retention value.


  1. Toyota FJ Cruiser

fj cruiserThe Toyota FJ Cruiser is based on a time tested juggernaut of off-roading ingenuity called the Land Cruiser. It has more than its fair share of off-road prowess but it really excels in the area of resale value. The FJ Cruiser is known for a powerful engine with a rugged drivetrain and simple controls. While it is certainly no luxury SUV, it offers the driver comfortable seating and a focused driving experience. The available exterior colors are interesting to say the least and it has an aesthetic that is well suited for larger off-road tires. It claims the top spot on this list handily, for the second year in a row.

Resale Value at 36 months: 81.0% at 60 months: 70.0%

2. Toyota Tacoma Pickup

tacomaThis compact pickup truck is a legendary workhorse known for reliability and fuel efficiency. What is perhaps unknown is that it is almost unbeatable when it comes to long-term utility per dollar. Whether you need a compact pickup for work or play, the Tacoma is available in two of four-wheel drive configurations, as well as regular cab, extended cab, and king cab, with long bed or short. The possibility of either an inline four-cylinder engine or a V6 engine combined with your choice of a manual or automatic transmission will greatly affect the overall degree of resale value but this is what also makes the Tacoma one of the most diverse compacts on the market.

Resale Value at 36 months: 73.7% at 60 months: 61.9%

3. Jeep Wrangler

wranglerIt is no coincidence that two of the top three standouts in resale value are perennial off-road all-stars. The sporty Jeep Wrangler has made its bones for many years as a vehicle that is at home on the side of a mountain or in the middle of a major metropolis. It is available in two or four-wheel drive and earlier models (2006 and older) were offered with either an inline four-cylinder or inline six-cylinder engine. Trim levels range from sparse to very comfortable and aftermarket accessories are readily available. After the Wrangler is tricked out to your tastes – and you are ready to start over – you will be pleased with the value retention.

Resale Value at 36 months: 70.3% at 60 months: 59.1%

4. Toyota 4Runner

4runnerAs SUVs go, the Toyota 4Runner could be a founding father. It is known for rugged reliability, ample passenger amenities, outstanding longevity, and above average resale value. While the 4Runner is available in two or four-wheel drive, it is often overlooked when it comes to off-road prowess partly because it is so comfortable on the highway. Trim levels range from comfortable to luxurious for this mid-size SUV that was initially introduced as a Toyota pickup with a camper top attached.

Resale Value at 36 months: 66.6% at 60 months: 56.2%

5. Chevrolet Corvette

corvetteThe Corvette is more frequently associated with a mid-life crisis than outstanding resale value but the figures do not lie. This sporty “two-seater” is actually a great value in the supercar category, with some late models serving up globally ranked horsepower-to-weight-ratio numbers, with a price tag that is around $100,000. If you are forking out those kinds of green-backs, then you ought to know that you are investing in a stable commodity.

Resale Value at 36 months: 67.5% at 60 months: 53.5%

6. Toyota Tundra

tundraWhat the late model Tundra lacks in new sales numbers it makes up for in retention of resale value. Granted, low sales figures could have skewed the math on this full-size pickup truck’s overall resale value but (once again) the numbers do not lie. This is a truck with a face that only a mother could love but it offers trim levels that range from basic to “Cowboy-Cadillac.” These trucks are large and powerful but new sales numbers have been hindered by fuel economy numbers that are less than efficient.

Resale Value at 36 months: 63.7% at 60 months: 52.3%

7. Chevrolet Camaro

camaroLike a real American hero the Camaro has come back from the dead with a vengeance. With trim levels and power train choices that range from timid to tremendous, the Camaro can be purchased for under $25k or over $70k. It is available in an assortment of colors and the wheel possibilities are pretty great, too. This car offers drivers an emotional driving experience combined with excellent reliability and outstanding resale value.

Resale Value at 36 months: 63.7% at 60 months: 51.9%

8. Honda CR-V

cr vThis class leading compact SUV offers consumers a spacious cabin are with plenty of cargo room combined with the driving experience of a sedan. It has been in production since 1995 and for sale in North America since 1997. If you are looking for a reliable late model compact SUV that has had time to “work the bugs out” then the CR-V is just right for you. Although only one engine option is available for the CR-V, a vast array of interior comfort items and technological items keeps it out front in the compact SUV class.

Resale Value at 36 months: 63.0% at 60 months: 50.7%

9. Chevrolet Silverado 1500

silveradoAs the second-best-selling vehicle in the country, the Chevrolet Silverado is in high demand in the late model used market. Trim levels range from entry level work trucks, with V6 engines, rubber floor mats, and regular cabs, to four-door models with opulent trappings and powerful 6.2-liter V8 engines. It is available in two and four-wheel drive configurations in a wide array of color and style choices to please the most discerning automotive consumer.

Resale Value at 36 months: 59.0% at 60 months: 50.6%

10. Dodge Challenger

chalengerAs the most loyal interpretation of a classic muscle car, the retro-Challenger offers a more powerful and durable powertrain, more comfortable cockpit, cutting edge technological innovation, and excellent resale value. Ranging from the entry level 300-horsepower 3.6-liter V6 engine to the high-flying 470-horsepower SRT-8 V8 engine, the Dodge Challenger caters to so many different driving demographics that you are bound to like one of them.

Resale Value at 36 months: 60.8% at 60 months: 50.5%

S.M. Darby

S.M. Darby

I am a freelance author with over 25 years of experience as a professional, ASE certified automotive technician and shop owner, muscle car enthusiast, avid street racer, and classic car restoration specialist.

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