Best New Cars & SUVs under $25,000 for 2021
Just because you’re trying to stretch your budget doesn’t mean that you have to make compromises on value, technology, safety, or efficiency when you begin to shop for your next new car or SUV. If you’re looking to spend $25,000 or less on your next vehicle, you’ll have a variety of excellent options to choose from. Basil Family Dealerships has assembled this helpful guide which lists our top picks for the best cars and SUVs for $25,000 or less, listed alphabetically for the sake of fairness.
J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study Small SUV Segment Winner
Offering the versatility of an SUV with the compact footprint of a small sedan, the Buick Encore has remained a hit with drivers looking for an excellent value. Every Encore comes standard with a responsive yet efficient 1.4-liter turbocharged engine and you can also opt for the confidence of intelligent All-Wheel Drive with StabiliTrak. It’s easy to stay connected to your social circle while on the go thanks to its standard Buick Buick Infotainment System featuring Apple CarPlay and Android Auto smartphone integration. You’ll also enjoy a comprehensive collection of driver-assistive technologies included as standard on the Encore. These include a Rear Vision Camera, Side Blind Zone Alert, Rear Cross Traffic Alert, and OnStar® Emergency Services. In addition to room for up to 5 passengers, you can also lower the standard 60/40 split folding rear seat to create a cavernous 48.4 cubic feet of cargo space. Still not convinced that the Encore is right for you? The Buick Encore was chosen as the winner in the Small SUV segment in the 2020 J.D. Power Vehicle Dependability Study, highlighting its outstanding build quality and reputation for reliability.
- Starting at $23,200 MSRP
- 1.4L DOHC turbocharged 4-cylinder engine with 138 horsepower and 148 lb-ft of torque and available All-Wheel Drive with StabiliTrak
- Buick® Infotainment System with 8-inch diagonal color touchscreen
- OnStar® and Buick® Connected Services capable
- Available Remote Start System
- 18-inch machined-face alloy wheels with Light Argent Metallic pockets
J.D. Power Quality Award Winner
When shopping for a midsize sedan, it’s only natural that you’d focus your attention on a model with a proven reputation for quality, outstanding value, and a balance of style and tech found both inside and out. Fortunately, the Chevrolet Malibu is an exhibition in exactly what drivers crave from the ultimate midsize sedan. Choose the value-packed L or LS to receive a standard 1.5-liter turbocharged engine paired to a responsive CVT. Craving a little more excitement on your daily drive? Malibu RS models come equipped with dual exhaust outlets and exclusive exterior design enhancements. For the ultimate Malibu experience, Premier grades are powered by a potent 2.0-liter turbocharged DOHC 4-cylinder engine with 250 horsepower and a 9-speed automatic transmission with overdrive. Groundbreaking safety features available on the Malibu include Forward Collision Alert, Adaptive Cruise Control – Advanced, Intellibeam Headlights, and a standard Rear View Camera. With the Chevrolet Infotainment 3 system, you’ll have access to available Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ compatibility inside your Malibu. Better still, the Malibu has been named a 2020 Quality Award Winner by J.D. Power.
- Starting at $22,140 MSRP
- Standard 1.5-liter turbocharged engine (163 horsepower) with CVR or available 2.0-liter turbocharged 4-cylinder engine (250 horsepower) with 9-speed automatic transmission
- Chevrolet Infotainment 3 system with 8-inch diagonal color touchscreen
- Available Bose premium 9-speaker audio system
- Optional Lane Keep Assist with Lane Departure Warning
- Available leather-appointed seating surfaces with heated/ventilated front seats
IIHS Top Safety Pick Award
Smart, stylish, and ready to help take your adventures to the next level — the dynamic Ford Escape remains the top choice for crossover shoppers looking for maximum value. To suit the needs of all types of drivers, you’ll have your choice of a standard 1.5L EcoBoost®, available 2.0L EcoBoost with Auto Start-Stop Technology, and even an optional 2.5L iVCT Atkinson-cycle hybrid engine for maximum efficiency. Customizable drive modes and available all-wheel drive allow the Escape to go where other models fear to tread. Available SYNC 3 lets you bring along the power of your smartphone for the journey thanks to Apple CarPlay™ and Android Auto™ smartphone integration. Luxurious amenities available inside the cabin include leather-trimmed upholstery along with a power sunroof. Since even the best drivers can use a helping hand from time to time, the Escape comes standard with some of the most comprehensive driver-assist technologies in its class. Standard Ford Co-Pilot360™ technology features include Pre-Collision Assist with Automatic Emergency Braking, Auto High-Beam Headlamps, Lane-Keeping System and Rear View Camera. This helps illustrate how the Ford Escape has been named a 2021 Top Safety Pick from the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS).
- Starting at $24,885 MSRP
- Choice of a standard 1.5L EcoBoost® engine with 181 horsepower, optional 2.0L EcoBoost® with 250 horsepower, or 2.5-Liter Atkinson Cycle I4 Hybrid Powertrain
- Standard SYNC® Voice Recognition Communications and Entertainment System with 4.2-inch color LCD screen
- Optional Panoramic Vista Roof®
- Ford Co-Pilot360 Assist
- Available Bang & Olufson 10-speaker Sound System
Car & Driver Editors’ Choice Award
It’s certainly no secret that the Toyota Camry has remained the perennial favorite among midsize sedans for decades. Now bolder and more expressive than ever before, the sharp exterior appearance of the Camry helps you make a memorable first impression. Drivers have the ability to choose from an economical 2.5-Liter 4-Cylinder Engine with 203 horsepower or an exhilarating 3.5-Liter V6 Engine with 301 horsepower. Inside the cabin, you’ll have access to an array of cutting-edge tech features such as Android Auto™, Apple CarPlay®, and Amazon Alexa integration. With available Wi-Fi Connect, you can turn the vehicle into a hotspot virtually anywhere you go with support for up to 5 devices. Personalize your comfort with optional heated and ventilated leather-trimmed front seats. Giving you a helping hand when you need it the most, every Camry comes equipped with Toyota Safety Sense 2.5+ (TSS-2.5+) — a groundbreaking collection of driver-assistive safety features. With such a compelling list of standard features, it’s no surprise that the team of experts at Car & Driver have awarded the Toyota Camry with their Editors’ Choice Award.
- Starting at $24,970 MSRP
- 2.5-Liter 4-Cylinder Engine with 203 horsepower or 3.5-Liter V6 Engine with 301 horsepower
- Standard 7-inch touch-screen with Android Auto™ & Apple CarPlay® & Amazon Alexa compatibility
- Bi-LED combination headlights with auto on/off feature
- Integrated backup camera with projected path
- Standard Toyota Safety Sense™ 2.5+ (TSS-2.5+)