Best value cars of year 2013

Kiplinger’s Best in Class win­ners top the rank­ings in each of our 12 categ­ori­es. The rank­ings are bas­ed on per­for­mance, value and safety, as well as dri­ving imp­r­es­sions from our own road tests. The Best in Class win­ners are our top picks among models that have a track record of at lea­st one year or rede­sign­ed vehic­les with powert­ra­ins substan­ti­ally the same as the pre­vi­o­us gene­ra­ti­on.

Ford Focus
Ford Focus

All except two of our Best in Class win­ners also earn Top Safety Pick desig­na­tions from the Ins­urance Ins­ti­tu­te for High­way Safety (no sports cars or truck-based SUVs made the IIHS Top Safety Pick cut this year).

Volkswagen’s com­pact sedan is firing on all four cylin­ders. It has gene­rous inte­ri­or room (38 inches of rear leg­room) and car­go space (its 16 cubic feet rivals the space in mid­si­ze models), high resale values, and Ger­man dri­ving dyna­mics. The TDI’s 2.0-liter tur­boc­har­ged diesel engi­ne gets stel­lar fuel eco­nomy and pro­du­ces 236 pound-feet of tor­que to get you off the line fast.

Gett­ing 41 miles per gal­lon in com­bi­ned city and high­way dri­ving and pri­ced less than $27,000, the Camry Hybrid gives other mid­si­ze cars a les­son in value. It has 200 hors­es under the hood, a roomy back­se­at that can be fol­ded down (unli­ke in many hybrids), and ten air­bags, inc­lu­ding side air­bags for the rear pas­sen­gers and knee air­bags for the dri­ver and front pas­sen­ger.

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