Cites Used Car Recommendations logo

Reuters - March 11, 2013

The edi­tors at have released their list of the top 10 used cars that they rec­om­mend for shop­pers who are look­ing to spend around $10,000.

Find out which brands and mod­els they recommend.

  • 2006 Ford Escape: Ford’s first gen­er­a­tion crossover had truck-like styling but car-based under­pin­nings, and the dri­ving expe­ri­ence com­bined han­dling and ride com­fort in a way that few car-based crossovers of the Escape’s era could match.
  • 2008 Ford Focus: The Focus comes with safety fea­tures like side cur­tain airbags and also Blue­tooth and USB/iPod inte­gra­tion, both of which were ahead of the curve for 2008. The car’s sharp han­dling dis­tin­guished it from many rivals, and it is offered in three body styles, pro­vid­ing an option for everyone.
  • 2007 Ford Freestyle: This budget-friendly fam­ily hauler comes with spa­cious seat­ing for seven pas­sen­gers and impres­sive cargo storage.
  • 2007 Ford Fusion: A respon­sive V-6 engine option and decent han­dling chops dis­tin­guished Ford’s mid­size fam­ily car. So did trunk room, which remains spa­cious even by today’s family-car standards.
  • 2006 Honda Civic: The beloved eighth-generation Civic’s inte­rior qual­ity, fuel effi­ciency and over­all dri­vabil­ity impressed so much that they still hold up today.
  • 2006 Hyundai Azera: A full-size sedan with upscale fea­tures, a big engine and big back­seats, the Azera packed a com­fort­able ride.
  • 2007 Hyundai Sonata: A fam­ily sedan with roomi­ness, safety fea­tures and value in spades. Years later, a used exam­ple should still suit any shop­per well. Find one with the optional 3.3-liter V-6 for mus­cu­lar pass­ing power.
  • 2008 Kia Optima: A cousin to the Hyundai Sonata, the Optima had more avail­able lux­ury fea­tures, but less styling and a smaller engine. How­ever, a roomy back­seat and decent stan­dard safety fea­tures round out a car whose suc­ces­sor won’s Best of 2011 award.
  • 2008 Nis­san Versa: Nissan’s unex­pect­edly roomy Versa slips into tight city park­ing spots like any proper sub­com­pact should. A respon­sive trans­mis­sion com­bined with a larger four-cylinder engine than most com­peti­tors’ pro­vides impres­sive power.
  • 2007 Scion tC: Strengths included rich cabin mate­ri­als and a respon­sive four-cylinder engine; look for the avail­able five-speed man­ual for more fun.