By on March 6, 2019

VW Passat GTThough much of the luxury vehicle segment is immune from the depressingly practical concept of “good value,” the less aspirational vehicles of the proletariat are not so fortunate.

Today we discuss overpriced non-luxury vehicles for sale in 2019.

We’re only concerned with brand new vehicles; those offered for the 2019 model year. Perhaps another day we can consider overpriced vehicles of the Seventies or Eighties and have a couple of time warp editions of this question.

Think about value, entry-level pricing, features and equipment, and quality for the money. How does your selection hold up against its competitors in the segment? Today’s suggestions should be lacking in some pretty key areas. I can tell you’re ready for an example.

Here it is, the Ford Ranger. This new (to North America) midsize truck starts at $24,000, and asks over $38,000 for a fully loaded example. All Rangers have the same 2.3-liter four-cylinder engine, with varying levels of gingerbread on top. Adding options to the base model raises the stakes rather quickly, and you’ll spend over $28,000 for four-wheel drive in the smaller Super Cab style. For the price, the interior does not impress — which makes more sense when one considers the T6 Ranger has been on sale around the world since 2011. Talk around the TTAC Slack room regularly brings the Ranger to the surface as one of the worst values in the pickup segment. The comparative lack of incentives on the Ranger means it’s into full-size truck pricing pretty quickly. The rent is too damn high.

Let’s hear your selections for overpriced vehicles hailing from basic brands. Are any other new offerings priced like the Ranger?

[Images: VW, Ford]

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145 Comments on “QOTD: What’s the Most Overpriced Non-luxury Vehicle in 2019?...”


  • avatar
    Hummer

    Suburban/Tahoe come to mind, basic work trims need to be brought back that are in line with the truck prices. Fortunately for GM, as long as the Suburban/Tahoe retain the solid rear axle they have very little real competition.
    I also think the Stinger is priced about $10k too high for a V6.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      I will say that the “fleet” version of the Tahoe/Suburban need to be more readily available to the American public.

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        Yes, especially the HD Suburban. Never understood why they canceled that for consumers, I would think it’s even higher margins for GM than the 2500 crew cab they would presumably prefer you purchase instead.

        • 0 avatar
          NormSV650

          When a $38K Honda CR-V exceeds a $35K Tahoe AWD you know something is not right.

          • 0 avatar
            LeMansteve

            Norm – are you saying the CR-V is a much nicer place to be than a Tahoe?

            Or are you saying it’s even more overpriced?

            Note: the CR-V Touring AWD with all the bells and whistles tops out at $35k MSRP. A BASE Tahoe 4WD with not a single bell or whistle starts around $50k MSRP.

          • 0 avatar
            Carrera

            Norm, I bet that $ 35,000 Tahoe gets 55mpg too.

          • 0 avatar
            DenverMike

            A $35K Tahoe with steel wheels, rubber floor, vinyl seats, would further increase the insult factor. But around $45K would be what GM would demand for a stripper Tahoe, “retail” minimum, I hate to say.

    • 0 avatar
      labelnerd

      Ummm, you can get a V6 Stinger for around $40k with still a lot of the bells and whistles. Name another near luxury vehicle with 365hp and the design and ratings of the Stinger for that amount. Yes, the top end $52k is a bit much though.

      Other than that, any new truck or SUV. The manufacturers ADMIT this themselves since we all seem to know how much margin they make on these vehicles. You can’t buy a “basic” truck anymore for much less than 25-30k.

      • 0 avatar
        ahintofpepperjack

        Dodge Charger/Challenger. Reliability is absolutely fine on the LX platform, and for $40k you can have a Hemi.

        • 0 avatar
          R Henry

          After a week with a rented Charger R/T, I would lay down my $35K in a heart beat. What a fantastic value! That hemi V8 is fantastic…the exhaust note addictive, and the 8-speed auto is also wonderful. If only I could justify doubling my annual gasoline spending…….

      • 0 avatar
        Hummer

        GM had multiple 20% off sales on the SS sedan, read $38k-$40k brand new 6.2L auto or manual with much better tuned suspension. Even at $48k-$50k full price it’s hard to make an argument in favor of the Kia, knowing full well the SS will hold its value significantly better than the Kia and brings a lot more to the table while doing so.
        Granted it is gone now but it shows just how ridiculous Kia is to charge what they do for a puny V6 that should be the base engine.

        • 0 avatar
          ajla

          “Granted it is gone now”
          “it’s hard to make an argument in favor of the Kia”

          I think that’s a pretty good argument for the Stinger. I can’t buy what no longer exists for sale.

          • 0 avatar
            Hummer

            The point is they did exist together in a short time frame, GM even had one of their 20% off sales in that time frame – the Stinger was simply over priced, not just for the brand name on the front, but also for what you got for your money. I don’t think I need to wait to see which car was the better buy.

            Kia treats the Stinger like it’s a special car, and after selling FWD crap for decades, I suppose it is to them. GM treated the SS as a premium option in a sea of options but it had attributes that made it better than simply a premium car.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            “The point is they did exist together in a short time frame”

            At most you’re talking a few weeks of overlap. The Commodore ended production in October 2017, the Stinger was released nationwide on December 2017 (they sold 15 in Nov 2017).

            The SS inventory was blown out in November 2017. There were about 40 cars left in 2018 and they were all gone by March (when the last 6 were sold).

            The SS was an awesome car, and you’re very fortunate to have one, but for shoppers in 2018 and 2019 it just isn’t an option unless you want to pay the high resale on a used one.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            @ajla…

            Psssssssssss… Hummer hates V6s. Period. End of story. Close book.

            Don’t try to reason with him about it.

  • avatar
    DenverMike

    Tahoe, Suburban and Expedition. Then their resale value drops like a rock (or diesel BMW).

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      A Tahoe is $15K off MSRP on autotrader and quite a deal at $35K. You would have the best residuals with that discount.

      • 0 avatar
        SSJeep

        Norm, where are you finding a new Tahoe for $35k? Autotrader doesnt have any truly new Tahoes at that price, or anywhere near it.

        • 0 avatar
          gtem

          I saw a few RWDs when searching cars.com nationally, but didn’t check whether those were with every possible discount qualification applied. Likewise saw 4WD LS trucks for $37k, if those are legit, hey that’s not so bad! I like the smaller wheels on them, just need the Z71 bumper on the front and you’re good to go. That and some heated leather seats, actually.

          • 0 avatar
            PrincipalDan

            I don’t know what the price would be but for the GMC “cousin” to the Chevy Silverado you can get heated cloth seats with a package on the SLE models. (Even with bench seat.)

            God there’s still part of me that wants a crew cab 1/2 ton 4×4 just so I can have honest bench seats front and rear with no console.

    • 0 avatar
      Kyree S. Williams

      It actually doesn’t, though; they keep their resale value better than any new BMW.

      • 0 avatar
        DenverMike

        Ten or 12 years later? My friend the handyman always owned midsize pickups, always loaded down with every (construction) tool you could think of 100% of the time (under camper shell). And he was constantly burning through trucks, average age 12 years old, 150K miles. It was either a bad transmission (manual and automatics), or blown head gaskets, and he would simply ditch the pickup for another.

        So with a $5,000 budget, I suggested getting off that merrygoround and get an Expedition or Tahoe, in the same age/mileage group. Same thing as a fullsize 1/2 ton crew cab pickup with a camper shell, basically, for around half the price.

        That was 10 years ago and he’s on his 3rd Expedition. He sells them in good running condition, but looking real shabby, banged around, for a newer, clean model.

        • 0 avatar

          There is a regional thing with SUV vs truck pricing here in the Northeast they tend to be similar on resale for a while SUV’s actually had higher resale but they seem to be slightly lower again now.
          That said there are exceptions to that and one is the Expedtion which is always way cheaper then the same Tahoe or Suburban at least around the North East.

  • avatar
    Mike Beranek

    Pretty much everything above 25k. We need more cloth seats, more manual transmissions, less chrome, and less fake plastic NACA ducts that don’t do anything. Smaller grilles would be nice too.
    There’s just too much nonsense “stuff” on modern cars. I don’t need a heated steering wheel because I have assimilated glove technology. I don’t want a sunroof because they don’t do anything for me and always end up leaking when the car gets old.
    I do want bigger brakes and tires. I do want A/C. But a lot of the junk they slather on the middle and higher trim levels is just to pad the margin.
    Now get off my lawn!

    • 0 avatar
      jh26036

      We are probably at the crossroads where a manual transmission may actually cost more than an auto to manufacture.

      As for expensive non-premium cars, everything over $25k for a Nissan is already too much…minus GT-R. This is especially for the Frontier which has been out since I was in undergrad! I am old!

      • 0 avatar
        FerrariLaFerrariFace

        @jh: We’ve already hit that point. See the new Mazda3. Manual transmission on available as an $$$ option on higher trim levels. Base trim is auto only.

      • 0 avatar
        LeMansteve

        If a manual transmission ever costs more to manufacture than a comparable automatic transmission, it probably has everything to do with economies of scale.

    • 0 avatar
      seth1065

      Mike,
      The auto buying public has spoken they do not want cloths seats, sticks, small wheels …
      There are some still out there and they generally do not sell very well at all.

    • 0 avatar
      JimZ

      “Pretty much everything above 25k.”

      translation: “I want all car companies to go out of business.”

    • 0 avatar
      sportyaccordy

      No thanks. More bells and whistles please. I spend 10 hours a week in my car; if it’s a nice place to be I am happier and more relaxed. Driving a basic car (which is still available in abundance by the way) doesn’t make you tough or cool.

    • 0 avatar
      hpycamper

      Mike, I agree with your sentiment and add to your list; I don’t need infotainment and prefer manual steering.

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      I want all the nannies be banned.

  • avatar
    cgjeep

    Kia Sorrento. Doesn’t that top 50k. Also the Ford expedition is ridiculous, 55k for a base model with like a 3 inch info screen. At 55k it is a premium vehicle, give it some premium features standard. economy cars have 7-8 inch screens.

    • 0 avatar
      gtem

      Yeah basically any top-trim crossover, truck, sedan, you name it is vastly overpriced these days IMO, at least the MSRPs are wildly inflated. Take that Sorento for example. A 2 year old used LX AWD with the heated seat option package gets you all of the functionality and a few key niceties of the $48k top trim new one, for $17k if you look around. That’s insane. That 2 year old Sorento is an excellent used buy IMO, but man it’s horrifying to think how many Americans are getting soaked on $500 a month payments (the national average) just to drive a new spiffed up crossover or truck with extra gingerbread.

      • 0 avatar
        sportyaccordy

        A brand new fully loaded version of a car is more expensive than a used base trim version? Ya don’t say.

        • 0 avatar
          gtem

          Yeah, I’m saying it’s crazy how many people are lining up to pay these prices given the state of wages/savings in the country.

          • 0 avatar
            sportyaccordy

            Yes, some people have more money spend on cars than others… as has always been the case. There is also inflation. Cars are actually cheaper than they’ve ever been in real terms.

          • 0 avatar
            gtem

            I’m saying there are more people than ever in precarious employment situations (“gig” economy, low paying retail and temp-status jobs in manufacturing) signing up for leases and financing terms that put them in vulnerable positions. Defaults on car loans are spiking at the moment.

            https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/2019/02/12/record-million-americans-are-months-behind-their-car-payments-red-flag-economy/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.8130fbddd65b

    • 0 avatar
      NormSV650

      But a $40K Camry is ok?

  • avatar
    vvk

    Average new car price is something like $35k. This is absolutely insane! People buy millions of pickups every year with base models starting at almost $30k. Lunacy!

    • 0 avatar
      gtem

      Yep I’m right there with you vvk. I’m in a higher income bracket but cannot fathom dropping $35k on a car. It’s insane.

      • 0 avatar
        jack4x

        As always, this is just a rant against inflation.

        $35K in 2018 dollars in:

        2008 – $29K
        1998 – $22K
        1988 – $16K
        1978 – $9K
        1968 – $4800

        Average new car price in those years:

        2008 – $31K
        1998 – $23K
        1988 – $17K
        1978 – $9500
        1968 – $5000

        There has never been a time in American history where new cars were easily affordable to someone making the average income.

        • 0 avatar
          gtem

          “There has never been a time in American history where new cars were easily affordable to someone making the average income.”

          And yet we see many (most?) Americans climb willingly into that needless debt cycle.

          • 0 avatar
            jack4x

            No argument here. I’m all for buying what makes you happy, but be responsible and don’t go upside down on a loan.

          • 0 avatar
            sportyaccordy

            Also not true… most Americans don’t buy new. 1/3 of car sales are new, 1/3 are used and finance, 1/3 are used and cash. Interest rates are at record lows as well.

            Another point is cars are more durable than they’ve ever been with the average age of a car on the road approaching 12 years (and rising). A basic car today can probably go 300K miles without issue. A 5, 6 or even 7 year loan against a car that will probably last at least 10 or so years isn’t that crazy. And being upside down on a loan only matters when it’s time to sell.

          • 0 avatar
            MRF 95 T-Bird

            Growing up in a middle class suburb of New York City in the 60’s and 70’s I would notice what my teachers drive. Many plebeian Darts, Valiants and Novas but more than a few 356/911 Porsche’s and Volvo 1800’s. You figure the Porsche drivers one of whom was my teacher just went for it because it was an upgrade from a VW at the same dealer.

          • 0 avatar
            jack4x

            “And being upside down on a loan only matters when it’s time to sell”

            Or when the car is totaled.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            “And being upside down on a loan only matters when it’s time to sell.”

            Or if your finances hit some turbulence.

          • 0 avatar
            Scoutdude

            “but be responsible and don’t go upside down on a loan.”

            With the low interest rates on auto loans, lower than just about any other loan out there the smart thing to do is be upside down on your loan. Of course you need to be able to afford to pay it off if you total it and smart enough not go out and roll that negative equity into a new loan.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @ Scoutdude, I purchased a new car with a 7 year, zero interest loan. First negotiated my trade-in’s value, then the purchase price, then informed them that I wanted the zero interest option with the agreed upon purchase price. Got $5k for the trade-in. Took a cheque for the trade-in value and put zero down on the new car. Took the $5k trade-in cheque and deposited it to my Retirement Savings Plan (RSP) which I believe is like a 401k in the USA. The RSP is invested for my retirement. The RSP contribution triggered an income tax credit/return of approximately $2k which was used for purchases rather than putting them on a credit card.

            That ‘new’ vehicle is now paid off, and I hope to be able to continue driving it for an extended period.

            Perhaps what I did is not the best financial move for many people, but I came out ahead financially by in effect using the manufacturer’s money.

          • 0 avatar
            ajla

            “Of course you need to be able to afford to pay it off”

            Yea, that’s the part most people don’t have.

          • 0 avatar
            mikey

            @Arthur Daily….Okay so the dealer cut you a cheque for 5 K . You put the 5 K into an RRSP to lower your taxable income by 2K. Okay I got that, and it does make sense .

            What you neglected to mention was the $ 650 in after tax money , you paid in HST.

            For the benefit of our American friends HST is the 13% tax you pay on the “difference” price.

        • 0 avatar

          Looking at the St louis fed data it looks like cars were most affordable based on family income in the 70’s to early 80’s they then became less affordable until peaking around 1999. Since then the have wavered up and down but are generally tracking less affordable again over the last 3 years. Now cars have tracked below the general inflation rate since 1999 so that’s good but the middle class has stagnated since then so it really doesn’t show up as affordable on the median household income (it would on average income but that’s because the 20% are basically seeing all the growth that used to be better divided among the whole middle class.

      • 0 avatar
        slavuta

        gtem,
        I am same way. I want that Jeep GC but my brains tell me – do not do it. Look what dealer gave me
        MSRP $40,930
        . . . .
        Total Savings $5,278 off MSRP
        $629.90 x 72months with no money down, payment includes tax and tags.

        Let me translate – car price is 35,652, with tax 37,791
        629.90 x 72 = 45,352

        And the car will worth about $16K. Am I stupid? In 6 years, according to his plan, I will spend $29,352 on a JGC. NO F.WAY. This is nearly 5K per year. My current highlander is $1800 per year.

        I mean, I might still want it and I will finance it differently. But I might just go with my latest find – 2017 CX5 GT 15K miles and asking price 25K.

        • 0 avatar
          Vulpine

          Pay cash if you can (no interest payments) or finance through a credit union (2%-3% APR typical and usually willing to compete with lower interest rates elsewhere.)

          Personally, I’m no fan of paying on time, though until recently it was either buy used or finance. But leasing is pure loss, with nothing to show for money spent other than a few years of highly-restrictive driving.

          • 0 avatar
            slavuta

            yea… I can’t lift my hand to sign that sheet. Under 30K – yea, for SUV. If my choice only, I would get 3yo Sorento v6 well under 20K. But wife doesn’t want any of that (cheap Korean [email protected]). She will not sit in it.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @ Mikey, Yes, but that $5k in the RSP should more than double before I retire. So I am still ahead by approximately $6,500. Which represents more than 25% of the total transaction cost. If I was younger, the amount that it would appreciate would be even greater.

  • avatar
    Dan

    The higher trims of the new Ranger are mind bogglingly expensive for how little you get. It’s a ten year old work truck from the third world. $40,000 makes a Colorado seem like a good deal, never mind the half tons!

  • avatar
    PrincipalDan

    Lexus ES 350 (the current one) the current Avalon is so good there’s no reason to pay more for a Lexus badge.

    (Several reviewers have agreed with me.)

    Heck if you want an ES F-sport you can always get an Avalon Touring and let Toyota pipe fake engine noise into the cabin.

    • 0 avatar
      jh26036

      The extra money is for the ability to drive your car into Lexus service than Toyota’s. That free car wash and cup of Joe is expensive.

    • 0 avatar
      brn

      I don’t trust reviewers in areas like this. I can’t speak for Avalon/ES350, but a few years ago, I cross shopped the Fusion with the MKZ. The reviewers claimed that a loaded Fusion gave you everything the MKZ did, but at a lower price. The reviewers were wrong. Not only did the base MKZ comes with features that were not available in the Fusion, but… The MKZ had better materials. The fit-n-finish was better. It was quieter. Even things like the power seats were smoother.

      I stopped trusting reviewers. Wound up buying a vehicle that was generally hated by reviewers and it’s been great.

  • avatar
    watersketch

    Just saw a Chrysler Pacifica Hybrid minivan stickered for just over $50k. I would love a minivan with good fuel economy but paying an extra $15k to get it doesn’t make a lot of sense.

  • avatar
    jack4x

    Ford GT! $500K and I don’t even get a luxury badge???

    More seriously, subcompact CUVs. Some of these approach $30K for a vehicle with no utility, no sport, much worse gas mileage than the cars they are based on, and weak sauce AWD systems that can barely handle a decent midwestern snowstorm. Where is the value in that?

  • avatar
    seth1065

    I was gonna say almost any pickup you could walk into a store and buy off the lot, yes I know there are fleet trucks but most dealers do not stock them.
    I think one of the writers here reviewed a RAM truck this week and loved it, sh*t it was 66k all loaded up you should love it.
    My other suggestion would be top trim mini vans from Honda and Toyota, holy crap are they pricey.

    • 0 avatar
      PrincipalDan

      I can think of one dealer in NM that does a ton of fleet business and if you really want an F150 XL he’ll have at least a dozen to choose from. Generally he also has about 50 XLT’s in stock at any given time.

    • 0 avatar
      SD 328I

      The issue with that is their resale value. Pickup trucks, regardless of gas prices have had historically high resale value, something that really improves their value in the long term.

      Factor in no one pays sticker price, especially for a RAM and you can see why it wasn’t included in this story.

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    Jeep, Wrangler and Unlimited. Considering how old the tech and mechanicals are they should be free. Just kidding, I do like the way they keep tweaking the improvements without killing the concept

    • 0 avatar
      JMII

      I’ve never understood why Wranglers cost so much. Granted its a go-anywhere, popular vehicle that people love to death, but at its core its a very basic, small vehicle that rides badly with tons of noise. You don’t even get a real roof or decent storage space. Clearly I’m not a Jeep guy. Just still amazes me nobody has attacked this market… maybe the new Bronco will change that? The Wrangler is kind of like the Miata – a vehicle so perfect at its mission that nobody else even tries to compete against it. Guess that is why they charge silly money for it.

      • 0 avatar
        PrincipalDan

        How does the Wrangler do against the CAFE rules?

        If every Wrangler sold means that they have sell extra Renegades to make up for it maybe they want to sell Wranglers but not TOO MANY Wranglers.

        • 0 avatar

          I honestly think that’s one of the reasons on the pricing. Keep it high enough to limit sales while keeping the factory busy and profit per vehicle high enough CAFE fines are easy to handle.

    • 0 avatar
      SSJeep

      Huh? The 2019 Wrangler is an entirely new vehicle, frame and all. I will agree that it is overpriced, but the tech and mechanicals are 100% up to date.

  • avatar
    RangerM

    “Here it is, the Ford Ranger.”

    Admittedly, I haven’t priced a Toyota Tacoma lately, but the last time I did, the sticker shock was every bit as strong as the case being made for the Ranger.

    And before anyone says “Legendary Toyota reliability”, I’ll happily put my 1993 Ranger and my current 2013 F150 against the comparable Toyota. They have been (or were) easily every bit as reliable.

    • 0 avatar
      Carrera

      A Tacoma is just as outrageous when it comes to price and it isn’t any more reliable than any other midsize. They rest on their 1990-2000 laurels. Anyone I know with a new Tacoma isn’t too happy. Last time I was getting an oil change at the Toyota dealership I was looking at prices and couldn’t believe. $32,000 for a basic extra cab with a V6? No thanks.

      • 0 avatar
        MBella

        The Tacoma reseal values are more insane than the price new. In most areas, you can buy a new Tacoma for the same or a bit less than for the same truck 2 years old an 30 thousand miles on the clock. Used car prices have become insane, and the Tacoma and Wrangler take the cake.

  • avatar

    Any vehicle with the word “Acura” attached to it.

  • avatar
    Carrera

    Totally agree with other posters who said Chevy/GMC/Cadillac SUVs. Back in 2008-2010 a Rwd Suburban LT brand new was selling for 29,000-32,000. Now they want 50,000-55,000 for same vechile. Yes I know government mandates, technology, inflation, blah-blah. I think only back up camera was mandated since 2010. Does a back up camera add 20,000?
    Now of course all other manufacturers jumped up too but these are probably the most egregious that come to mind.

    • 0 avatar
      gtem

      Consider too though the state of the market in ’08-’10. If you look at the mid $30k prices people used to pay for an Explorer XLT or Grand Cherokee, current inflation adjusted prices make a lot more sense. Although I agree, on the higher-trim Tahoes/Suburbans, once you get into the $65-70k range, that’s crazy. Wage stagnation kind of throws a wrench in the spokes of my inflation argument as well I will admit.

      • 0 avatar
        Carrera

        True GTEM, the market was crap at that time I admit. Housing crisis was starting to rear its ugly head too. I bought a brand new Pilot in 2006 for 21,000. Same vehicle now with back-up camera/Android auto and blind spot monitoring is 32,000.

  • avatar
    Carrera

    How about a FWD Honda Pilot LX with a bed in the back ( oh I forgot, that’s a Ridgeline). Starting at 32,000?

  • avatar
    Arthur Dailey

    Perhaps the problem is that the same reviewers and ‘enthusiasts’ who complain about high vehicle purchase costs, also tend to ‘trash’ those vehicles that offer the most per dollar.

    Dodge Caravan.
    Dodge Journey.
    Nissan Rogue.
    Nissan Sentra.
    Kia Forte.

    Just a couple of examples of vehicles that offer more interior volume, and some added creature comforts, at a lower price point than other vehicles in their ‘category’.

    Yet how often do we read/hear complaints about them because they don’t provide ‘excitement’. Yeah, like how often does the average driver, push their car to the maximum, or take it along a switchback road to practice their manual shifting skills????????

    • 0 avatar
      jack4x

      Even more egregious than the “excitement” is the scourge of the “hard plastic”, clearly the worst sin a vehicle can commit in the eyes of a reviewer.

      Guess what is cheap, durable, easy to clean, and will look the same in 10 years as it does now? That’s right, hard plastic. No, I don’t necessarily want it where I’m sitting or interacting with the car on a daily basis. But I don’t spend my days fondling the dashboard or the lower door panels. From the tone of what they write, I’m not sure I can say the same about auto reviewers.

      • 0 avatar
        ajla

        I’ve had issues with hard plastics in cars there either crack/shatter or squeak/rattle as they age.

        Of course “soft touch” material tends to warp over time so that’s not a panacea either.

        • 0 avatar
          jack4x

          Yeah, I too have experienced both good and bad leather, foam, plastic, cloth, etc. And you can tell which manufacturers take more pride in their interiors, regardless of the materials. At this point to me though, the hard plastic complaints in reviews have really gone overboard.

    • 0 avatar

      I think the Soul is a good value buy. Forte is okay as well, and I’ve no problem with the Rogue for a value for dollar item.

    • 0 avatar
      King of Eldorado

      A recent QOTD asked about vehicles we were surprisingly impressed with. I didn’t reply to that one, but I second your mention of the Sentra, which reviewers tend to treat as a prime example of a “meh” car. I had one as a rental recently and, because the agent had mentioned both the Altima and the Sentra, at first thought, “OK, so he gave me the Altima,” but it seemed a bit small. I had to check the badge on the rear to verify that it was a Sentra. I have no idea what that particular trim level lists for or typically sells for, but it was a roomy, quiet, reasonably peppy driver that would satisfy the needs of 90% of Americans who don’t really need something larger.

    • 0 avatar
      tonycd

      Arthur, the problem is compounded by the fact that all five vehicles you named are not only unpleasant, they’re unreliable as well. Even at their low prices, they’re no bargain. Only exception might be the Forte, for which you can’t get half the parts.

      • 0 avatar
        gtem

        “not only unpleasant, they’re unreliable as well”

        Ehh, in the grand scheme of things not really on both fronts. The CVT Nissans in 4cyl guise still seem to live up to 180-200k miles fairly consistently, and outside of that generally seem to hold up very well, although a coworker with a 2014 Sentra had a wheel bearing and shock replaced at very low mileage.

        The 5th gen Grand Caravans are likewise a mixed bag, and even as a Toyota homer I couldn’t resist the value for money and features. Yes things go wrong, but mostly non-critical ones it seems (outside of the early head recall and a few freak valvetrain issues, some transmission flex plates). Stuff like cheap Chinese blend door actuators failing, or in my case a squeaky blower motor (replaced inside of the 36k bumper to bumper that transferred over to me as a used buyer). TIPM is a known weak point, as are rear A/C lines. And yet inspite of all that, I see loads and loads of them on the roads, people putting serious miles on them. My brother’s friend runs a ’12 cargo van variant, 200k hard Staten Island city miles and many hours of idling, original engine/transmission, although it finally got a noisy lifter and the TIPM has an issue with the fuel pump relay not shutting off.

        I’d still unequivocally call the Caravan platform a bargain, but it is no doubt a cheaper/older feeling vehicle going down the road. Suspension motion is noisy, some creaks are the norm. I will say both my wife and I prefer the dash layout and interior features as a whole more in our T&C than we did when test driving Odysseys and Siennas.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        @tonycd: thanks for proving my point. You posted a purely subjective comment. An umbrella statement.

        Unpleasant? How? Why? Compared to what? Some would say that a Miata or an AMG tuned Mercedes is unpleasant. In reality having behind the wheel time in all but one of the vehicles listed, I would say that they are just fine for their class. And perhaps more than one would expect for their cost.

        What statistics prove them all to be unreliable vehicles? Well true the Journey is to an extent. But what of the others? And what is the cost of maintenance plus purchase (operating costs) compared to other more expensive vehicles?

        • 0 avatar
          gtem

          Arthur see my response above. The comment is not without merit or historic precedent. Siennas and Odysseys have statistically been notably more reliable than the Chrysler vans, but the Chrysler vans aren’t total dumpster fires these days either. I’ll keep the B&B posted as the miles wear on in my T&C.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            @Gtem, Yes to a large degree. The Sienna in particular is regarded as a long lived vehicle. However there was the Toyota sludge problem and the Honda transmission problem if we want to go far back enough in regards to reliability issues.

          • 0 avatar
            gtem

            That’s older historic data going back almost 2 decades at this point. I’m talking about the ’11-’16 time frame. The Odysseys have supposedly been rock solid 2012-2016, a few oil burning complaints maybe, but ’14-’16 is apparently nothing short of stellar. Sienna likewise after the first year of the new generation, ’12-’16 with the port injected V6 and 6spd auto are very safe bets. In comparison, the Caravan/T&C are undeniably somewhat spotty, but again by no means catastrophic and serious engine/transmission issues are fairly rare.

          • 0 avatar

            I think the basic point on Minivans is it’s Likely the QC failings of the GC won’t ad up in dollars to the price premium required to jump to H or T

          • 0 avatar
            gtem

            mopar that was basically the motivation for my purchase. $18.5k for what would have been $24-25k for one of the Japanese options that we didn’t quite like the features of as much. We’re covered zero deductible bumper to bumper for 4 years and out to 85k, we’ll see how it holds up.

          • 0 avatar
            Arthur Dailey

            And would you refer to your T&C as either ‘unpleasant’ or ‘unreliable’?
            I think not. Which is what was alleged, regarding the non-Pacifica FCA minivan platform.

            But then I suppose that ‘pleasant’ or ‘comfortable’ is largely subjective.

    • 0 avatar
      nrd515

      A friend of mine just loves his Journey. I don’t hate it, but I don’t really get the loving it. Kind of like I don’t get my cousin and his wife’s love of Subaru.

    • 0 avatar
      Raevoxx

      My issue with the now last-gen Forte, aside from subjectively liking the Hyundai Elantra interior more, is that the SX Turbo still somehow kept the beam axle out back. Whereas it’s platform mate Elantra Sport got the independent rear. In addition, Hyundai dealers in the SF Bay Area tend to stock anywhere between 1-5 Elantra Sport, whereas most KIA dealers didn’t have any Forte SX… or only had one. Persistently. Same with the Forte5

      So the suspension was technically inferior to the Elantra Sport, and that was a dealbreaker for me, interior be damned. I viewed the Elantra as the better value of the two, even in lower trims.

      Now, it’s looks have improved, but it remains to be seen if the forthcoming turbo trim keeps that same basic suspension. Nevermind that KIA is trying to slap a performance image on these vehicles now, but saddling them with a CVT.

  • avatar
    volvo

    Just a little tongue in cheek.

    What is overpriced pseudo luxury?

    Any MBZ without the S designation
    Any Lexus without the LS designation
    Any BMW below the 7 series

  • avatar
    Ryoku75

    Frankly theres too much to list, but I find most CUVs overpriced. Often you’re paying mid sized prices for a sub compact under the pretensions of snow safety and grocery space.

  • avatar
    asphaltcowboy

    The vehicle that comes to mind immediately is the —- Honda Ridgeline!

    Starts at $29,990 USD
    Tops out at >$45,000 USD!!! For a small truck!!!

    It is also the worst selling truck in NA AFAIK. Not surprising as there aren’t too many buyers (suckers) that bite, as it is one of the worst values on the planet.

    I would say the Tahoe, too. But huge discounts off MSRP on these.

  • avatar
    carguy

    Too many to list.

    – All small CUVs but the CX-3 stands out for a $27K price tag for a lifted, under powered sub-compact hatch. It’s amazing how much that plastic cladding and 2″ lift add to the price.

    – The Chevy Blazer. $50k+ for a well equipped V6 model for what is ultimately a mid-sizer with limited off-road capability, lousy visibility, a non-luxury interior and only average performance.

    – Any non-HD truck over $50K.

    • 0 avatar
      Hummer

      Jeez the new Blazer can go over $30k? it’s like a New Beetle on a estrogen induced roidrage.

      • 0 avatar
        Dan

        “… estrogen induced roidrage.”

        Love it!

        Admire the “I was crystal clear” coat finish over the paint.

        Control vehicle settings through the instrument panel’s intuitive, touch-based “Bring me your manager!”

  • avatar
    Vulpine

    “QOTD: What’s the Most Overpriced Non-luxury Vehicle in 2019?”

    Any pickup truck priced over $32,000

  • avatar
    Prado

    Toyota Sequoia… starting at 50k.

  • avatar
    DEVILLE88

    BMW AND Mercedes!!

    • 0 avatar
      slavuta

      Dude, this is NON-luxury discussion

      • 0 avatar
        DEVILLE88

        i’ve owned a few of both…………….and other than an s model or 7 series…………….i’ve had Cadys,Buicks and Oldsmobiles more luxurious than both. Also keep in mind that you buy a5 to 10 year old s series for less than 20% the original cost.

        • 0 avatar
          slavuta

          I am with you. Are you with us? Here we’re talking of over-priced NON-luxury cars.

          • 0 avatar
            volvo

            I think what he is saying and I was saying is just because it has a BMW or MBZ badge on it does not make it a “luxury” car. IMO only the 7 and S series are true luxury cars. The others are just overpriced.

          • 0 avatar
            DEVILLE88

            Thank you Volvo, we are on the same page!!!

        • 0 avatar
          slavuta

          Ah, Ok. In this case, this similar to “American democracy”. For some reason, “democracy” in US does not go beyond electoral process.

          Same thing with BMW. BMW is historically a performance brand. MB was going after luxury. But with them striving to attract broad band of consumers, they started to make cars that don’t satisfy luxury definition. At this point they pretty much selling badges on most cars, while M and AMG sell performance. Yea, luxury is mostly a keyword these days. For example, what Luxury is in base Lexus? It has no leather, no special radio or upgraded sound system. You can put sunroof into Yaris. Yes, this is phony luxury. So, what they should really call these? – badge brand. Yep – they are selling the badge.

  • avatar
    slavuta

    Jeep Grand Cherokee is way overpriced. May be, this is why you can always get 5K off of it

  • avatar
    SunnyvaleCA

    People always assume my 2008 Porsche Cayman S is a “luxury” vehicle until they ride in it! In that same vein, I bet nobody would consider a brand new $200k Porsche GT2 to be “luxury.” Especially if you get the fixed bucket seats, 5-point seatbelts, and a whole bunch of “delete” options.

  • avatar
    SPPPP

    Ford Ecosport.

  • avatar
    Higheriq

    This article has a couple of problems: 1) It is purely subjective as far as “value”; 2) The Ranger can top at ~$45,000, not $38,000.

  • avatar

    1) Of course it is, it’s a QOTD.
    2) The top trim starts at $38,000, which is why it says “over $38,000” in the text. Is $45,000 more than $38,000?

  • avatar
    Lightspeed

    Lexus NX, starts at CAD$44K for a warmed up Rav4.

  • avatar
    DEVILLE88

    i’ve owned a few of both…………….and other than an s model or 7 series…………….i’ve had Cadys,Buicks and Oldsmobiles more luxurious than both. Also keep in mind that you buy a5 to 10 year old s series for less than 20% the original cost.

  • avatar
    bumpy ii

    Lol that we got this war without a #EverythingTeslaMakes. The trolls must have slept in late today.

  • avatar
    JohnTaurus

    So, since the Ranger is priced very near the Toyota Tacoma, yet offers more power, capability and fuel mileage, its overpriced.

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