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Personal Finance > Autos

Top resale-value cars
Exclusive: CNN/Money and Kelley Blue Book tell you the cars that hold their value best.
September 9, 2004: 2:14 PM EDT
By Peter Valdes-Dapena, CNN/Money staff writer

NEW YORK (CNN/Money) - If there's one thing every car does fast, it's lose value. The average new car will lose 65 percent of its value over 5 years of normal driving.

But the 2005 vehicles featured in our photo gallery are depreciation slow-pokes, according to experts at Kelley Blue Book. They hold their value better than other 2005 models, retaining about half their value over five years.

Some vehicles retain their value better than others simply because of supply and demand.

There are a host of other factors, however, that also can affect how much you'll get for your used vehicle.

"A highly popular or desirable car with limited availability will depreciate more slowly than a car that is in sufficient supply or less desirable," said Charlie Vogelheim, executive editor of the Kelley Blue Book.

Some of the factors that can hurt a car's resale value are a design that looks dated quickly, high maintenance cost and high availability.

Some of the cars that lose value most quickly, according to KBB, are the Pontiac Aztek, Chrysler Sebring sedan and Jaguar X-type.

How to ruin your resale value

If you personalize your vehicle with after market add-ons and fancy paint, don't think you're increasing the car's value. Customizing a car will usually reduce its value.

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CNN/Money's Peter Valdes-Dapena talks about top resale-value cars.

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"Sometimes we see people putting upwards of $10,000 worth of after market options and personalization into a vehicle and it's likely they'll never get it back," said Vogelheim.

Other things that can hurt resale value are garish colors, custom modifications and lack of popular options.

Don't try to save money on your new car by not getting things like power windows and door locks, cruise control or an adjustable steering wheel.

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"These items don't add value to your car, but value is actually deducted if they are not there," said Vogelheim.

Other high-value options include leather interior surfaces, sun/moon roof, anti-lock brakes and a premium sound system. Also, cars with more powerful engines generally hold their value better.

Kelley Blue Book
Personal Finance

When it comes to the car's wheels, spend the extra money and get something nice. Ugly wheels hurt a car's value while premium or alloy wheels can really help, said Vogelheim.

When it comes to paint colors, its best to stay conservative.

Colors like black, white and silver hold their value well. Colors like orange, green, purple and yellow will reduce your chances of getting a good price for the car later.  Top of page

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