10 great first cars

With prices under $25,000 (some way under) these cars make excellent choices for those shopping for their first new set of wheels.

Toyota Rav4
If you're looking for an SUV:
Toyota Rav4
Base prices: $21,000 to $26,500

Engine and transmission: 166 horsepower, 2.4-liter 4-cylinder with 4-speed automatic transmission or 269 horsepower, 3.5-liter V6 with 5-speed automatic transmission. Available with front-wheel or all-wheel drive.

Fuel economy: 24 mpg city, 30 highway, 26 combined with 4-cylinder and FWD; 21/28/24 with 6-cylinder and AWD

When the Rav4 was redesigned last year, it got longer and took on an optional third row of seats.

It also has excellent fuel economy for an SUV and decent performance even with the standard 4-cylinder engine. With the V6, the Rav4 borders on sporty.

Its looks may not please everyone - to me, it always looks like it's melting - but it's hard to deny that the Rav4 is perhaps the most purely sensible choice in a small SUV.


Fusion

Aura

Rondo

Lancer

Fit

Versa

Cooper

Escape

SX4

Rav4
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Most stock quote data provided by BATS. Market indices are shown in real time, except for the DJIA, which is delayed by two minutes. All times are ET. Disclaimer.

Morningstar: © 2014 Morningstar, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Factset: FactSet Research Systems Inc. 2014. All rights reserved.

Chicago Mercantile Association: Certain market data is the property of Chicago Mercantile Exchange Inc. and its licensors. All rights reserved.

Dow Jones: The Dow Jones branded indices are proprietary to and are calculated, distributed and marketed by DJI Opco, a subsidiary of S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC and have been licensed for use to S&P Opco, LLC and CNN. Standard & Poor's and S&P are registered trademarks of Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC and Dow Jones is a registered trademark of Dow Jones Trademark Holdings LLC. All content of the Dow Jones branded indices © S&P Dow Jones Indices LLC 2014 and/or its affiliates.