The Most Satisfying 10-Year-Old Sedans

CR identifies the reliable, fuel-efficient used cars you’ll love

2012 Acura TSX
2012 Acura TSX
Photo: Acura

Used cars are expensive right now, but deals can be found—especially if you’re looking among older models. Although the price of a 1-, 2-, or even 3-year-old used car can be close to (or in some cases more than) what it cost new, models in the 6- to 10-year-old range tend to have more competitive pricing. Be sure to look beyond just the price, though, and consider a model with a track record for reliability and proven safety performance. And take your research a step further to emphasize models that are likely to make you happy, based on the experiences of CR members.

Because most buyers today prefer SUVs, you’re more likely to score a deal on a less-sought-after sedan. There are advantages to owning a sedan, among them better fuel economy for a given size of vehicle, lower purchase price, and in many cases, a more comfortable ride and more responsive handling. It’s important to note that most older models didn’t offer active safety features like forward collision warning (FCW) and automatic emergency braking (AEB) like newer models do; you’ll need to confirm that the specific car you’re considering is equipped with the safety features you want.

More on Car Buying

All of the models listed here come standard with side-impact airbags. See how the model you’re interested in buying performed in crash tests performed by the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration when it was new by checking the vehicle’s model page at CR.org/cars.

There are many sedans to choose from. To help guide members in their selection, we balance our own extensive testing with surveys in which we ask members to share their experiences with their cars. Many cars beguile when new, but will they hold that charm after several years of ownership? Reliability, comfort, and ease of use of the controls play a big role in how someone regards a car over time.

We combed through our data to find the 2012 models most people said they would buy again, including models in the small, midsized, and large sedan and SUV categories. We picked models known for strong reliability and fuel economy—models that are the most likely to provide years of relatively trouble-free service.

Some of these models carry our Green Choice designation, which highlights the vehicles with the cleanest emissions.

If you’re a Consumer Reports member, the list below is available to you. CR members also have full access to the results of our Annual Auto Surveys; first-drive reviews of the newest cars, SUVs, and trucks; our full road-test results; and exclusive ratings for each vehicle we buy and test.

If you’re not a CR member, click below to become one for access to this list and all our exclusive ratings and reviews for each vehicle we buy and test. Joining also gives you full access to exclusive ratings for the other products our experts evaluate in several categories, including electronics and home appliances.

Compact Sedans

Midsized and Large Sedans


Head shot of CR Autos Editor, Benjamin Preston

Benjamin Preston

My reporting has taken me everywhere from Baghdad, Iraq, to the Detroit auto show, along the U.S.-Mexico border and everywhere in between. If my travels have taught me anything, it's that stuff—consumer products—is at the center of daily life all over the world. That's why I'm so jazzed to be shining light on what works, what doesn't, and how people can enrich their lives by being smarter consumers. When I'm not reporting, I can usually be found at home with my family, at the beach surfing, or in my driveway, wrenching on my hot rod '74 Olds sedan.