Ranked: 20 best-selling new cars in the U.S. in 2021

The Kia K5 was added to the automaker's lineup last year.

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

Dealerships are welcoming 2021 and 2022 models to their lots while some 2020 versions still remain. Before the pandemic, car sales were slumping. What lies ahead for 2021 is anyone's guess.

Below is a list of the best-selling SUVs through May 3, 2021. Many automakers report their sales results quarterly. These rankings have been determined using sales numbers provided by the individual automobile manufacturers.

The vehicles on this list are bound to change order as new information becomes available. Stay tuned!

To see the 20 best-selling new cars in the U.S. in 2019 click here and to see 2020's results click here.

No. 20 - Mazda Mazda3 (13,786 sold)

2021 Mazda Mazda3 Hatchback Photo courtesy of Mazda North American Operations

The Mazda3 comes in two varieties: sedan and hatchback. With those two, there are several trim level and engine offerings including a new 2.5-liter turbo-four that delivers zippy power to the small car.

No. 19 - Dodge Challenger (15,096 sold)

2020 Dodge Challenger

Photo courtesy of Stellantis

The Dodge Challenger hasn't changed too much over the years, but it has been continuously updated. For the 2021 model year, Challengers are more available as widebody models. The Dodge's powerful engine lineup and spacious cabin carry over into the new model year.

No. 18 - Dodge Charger (19,740 sold)

2020 Dodge Charger The Dodge Charger is one of the most stolen vehicles in the U.S. Photo courtesy of Stellantis

The 2021 Dodge Charger SRT Hellcat Redeye is new for the 2021 model year but most everything else is a carryover from the 2020 version. Like the Challenger, the Charger is spacious and can get where it's going in a hurry.

No. 17 - Nissan Versa (22,394 sold)

2020 Nissan Versa

Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The Nissan Versa may be small but it has a lot for customers to like from its low price tag to its well-appointed interior. The Versa continues to be a compelling choice that doesn't feel cheap.

No. 16 - Toyota Prius (22,402 sold)

2021 Toyota Prius Prime

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

The Toyota Prius family of vehicles is mostly unchanged for the 2021 model year. The Prius Prime, a plug-in version of the car has had its safety technology upgraded to Toyota Safety Sense 2.0 for 2021 and added an estimated 25 miles of all-electric range.

No. 15 - Volkswagen Jetta (22,714 sold)

2021 Volkswagen Enthusiast Fleet: Jetta GLI Photo courtesy of Volkswagen AG

The Volkswagen Jetta is mostly a carryover from the 2021 model year. It features a power-adjustable driver's seat in more trim levels, a new infotainment system, and wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay. Also, the GLI Autobahn model got more active safety features.

No. 14 - Kia Soul (23,961 sold)

2021 Kia Soul

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The Kia Soul was completely redesigned for the 2020 model year and for 2021 it is mostly a carryover. The Kia Soul GT-Line Turbo model has be renamed the Soul Turbo and as such it gets new badging. Remote start has been added to the key fob of Soul EX and Turbo models. Rear occupant alert is now standard.

No. 13 - Ford Mustang (25,274 sold)

2021 Ford Mustang Mach 1

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

For the 2021 model year, Ford has introduced the Mustang Mach 1. This track-centric car is designed to sit at the intersection of performance and a reasonable price point, giving buyers more of what they want under a historic Ford-related "Mach 1" name.

No. 12 - Chevrolet Malibu (26,987 sold)

2019 Chevrolet Malibu Photo courtesy of Chevrolet

The fuel-efficient, smooth-riding 2021 Chevrolet Malibu is basically the same as the 2020 model. It's ditched the cord and gotten wireless Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Additionally, the Buckle to Drive safety system is available.

No. 11 - Kia K5 (30,004 sold)

2021 Kia K5 EX 1.6T FWD

Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

The Kia K5 replaced the Optima in the company's lineup for the 2021 model year. It features Stingler-like design DNA while riding on a platform that is stronger, longer, wider, and lower than the Optima. The midsize car is filled with the latest Kia technology and is made at Kia's West Point, Georgia plant.

No. 10 - Hyundai Sonata (30,773 sold)

2021 Hyundai Sonata N Line Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai's midsize car received a complete redesign for the 2020 model year bringing a long roster of high-tech features and premium level appointments to the mix. For 2021 a new, sporty Sonata N Line model makes its debut offering unique design elements and stronger driving dynamics.

No. 9 - Nissan Altima (32,017 sold)

2020 Nissan Altima Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The 2021 Nissan Altima is a fuel mileage champion. It offers a lot of bang for the buck as well, but Apple CarPlay and Android Auto are no longer standard equipment.

No. 8 - Nissan Sentra (37,238 sold)

2020 Nissan Sentra Photo courtesy of Nissan North America

The Nissan Sentra most offer the most bang for your buck of any car at its price point. Nissan has changed it up a bit for the new model year making Android Auto and Apple CarPlay standard and offering a newly available Wi-Fi hot spot.

No. 7 - Kia Forte (37,354 sold)

2021 Kia Forte Photo courtesy of Kia Motors

In its third year since its generational redesign, the Kia Forte is a carryover for the 2021 model year. The car is competitively priced, starting at just $17,890.

No. 6 - Hyundai Elantra (40,451 sold)

2021 Hyundai Elantra

Photo courtesy of Hyundai Motor America

Hyundai has introduced a new generation of Elantra for the 2021 model year giving the compact car a lot of bang for the buck. There's also a new Elantra N model.

No. 5 - Honda Accord (67,626 sold)

2021 Honda Accord Hybrid Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

The Accord has been given a proper mid-generation refresh for the 2021 model year include new tech and fresh fascia. The Accord Hybrid has also been updated and wireless Android Auto and Apple CarPlay are available.

No. 4 - Honda Civic (84,317 sold)

2020 Honda Civic

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

The 2021 Honda Civic is a carryover from the 2020 model year. Honda will debut a next-generation version of the car this spring that will go on sale later in the year.

No. 3 - Toyota Corolla (103,742 sold)

2021 Toyota Corolla

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

The 12th generation Corolla has been kept mostly the same for the 2021 model year (it was redesigned for 2020). The car now comes in an Apex Edition model that combines a body kit with slightly sharper handling. All Corollas get Android Auto for the new model year.

No. 2 - Toyota Camry (108,090 sold)

2021 Toyota Camry XSE Blueprint

Photo courtesy of Toyota Motor Sales U.S.A. Inc.

The Toyota Camry turns 37 years young this year and to celebrate it's gotten an upgraded safety system - Toyota Safety Sense 2.5+ - for the 2021 model year. Each model has also gotten interior and exterior upgrades including fresh fascia, new wheels, and a floating multimedia screen.

No. 1 - Tesla Model 3/Y (180,780 sold)

Tesla Model 3 Photo courtesy of Tesla

Tesla continues to sell gobs of Model 3 and Model Ys. The company doesn't split their sales in their reporting, but even split, the Model 3 and Model Y are likely to have both made this list.

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Research and development

Ford names site for battery development facility

Ford's new facility will house battery research and development.


Ford is in the news again for its electrification efforts, this time with the confirmation of a Michigan location for a new battery research and development facility in Romulus, Michigan. The facility may eventually help Ford in-source much of its EV supply chain, a shift that could prevent or mitigate the challenges presented by parts and technology shortages.

As part of its electrification initiative, the automaker plans to build a new research and development facility, called Ford Ion Park. The facility will house new tech research, pilot programs for new manufacturing techniques, and will help give Ford more control over its supply chain.

Ford Ion Park Once complete, the facility will initially house 200 engineers.Ford

The price tag for the new facility and related efforts lands at $185 million, which sounds like chump change for a global automaker until we consider that Ford has committed $30 billion to electrification by 2025. The automaker says that its new facility renews its dedication to Michigan as its home base for EV development, a promise it originally made back in 2010. The company's new electric F-150 Lightning pickup truck will be built in Dearborn, which will add 500 jobs. An additional 225 jobs will be retained at Ford's Dyke Electric Powertrain Center.

As part of Phase One of the project, Ford plans to hire 200 engineers within 18 months of the 270,000-square-foot facility's opening. Ironically, the site was previously owned by A123 Systems, a battery manufacturer that closed the facility in 2017 due to low demand for batteries.

Ford Ion Park Ford has committed $185 million to the new facility and related efforts.Ford

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This car's auction price is already well past $100,000.

Bring a Trailer

The Toyota Supra is a car whose legend has grown, thanks in part to an appearance in a cult classic movie. Enthusiasts were already obsessed with the cars before 2001's Fast & Furious, but the Supra's leading role as a world-beating Japanese supercar cemented its place at the top of the automotive pyramid. Prices for the cars have been out of this world for years, but this 1995 Supra Turbo up for auction on Bring a Trailer might just take the cake as one of the most expensive ever sold.

The Renaissance Red Supra is absolutely mint, and shows just 7,000 miles on the clock. This fourth-generation Supra is powered by a twin-turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-six that was rated at 320 horsepower and 315 pound-feet of torque when new. Unlike so many of the unfortunately-optioned cars seen for sale today, this one has a six-speed manual gearbox. The car is rear-wheel drive and features a limited-slip differential.

1995 Toyota Supra The Supra has grown in value significantly in recent years.Bring a Trailer

Inside, this car is every bit as nice as we'd expected a one-owner, 7,000-mile example to be. The ivory leather upholstery looks new, as does the dash and carpeting. The driver-focused center console has a factory CD player – a big deal in 1995 – and a cassette deck.

These cars are great, no doubt about it, but six figures (or likely way more, in this case) is a crazy number for someone to pay. We'll be watching the auction, though, and so should you. There are four days left for the already silly $136,000 bid to grow – substantially.

1995 Toyota Supra The car's ivory leather interior looks brand-new.Bring a Trailer

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