Buying Advice

Ranked: Best used SUVs under $15,000

The Toyota Highlander is just one of the vehicles on this list.

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

It's not just new cars that people are after. The used car market is full of good cars, trucks, SUVs, and vans that are available at prices far lower than a brand new car.

iSeeCars, a car search engine, analyzed over 6.1 million cars from model years 2011 and newer to determine the used cars that demonstrated long-term reliability and have an average safety rating of at least 4 stars out of 5 from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Shoppers with a budget of $15,000 can purchase the following reliable SUVs that are less than 10 years old.

2013 Honda CR-V

2013 Honda CR-V

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Average Used Price: $13,469
Honda redesigned the CR-V for the 2014 model year. The fourth-gen model got fresh styling, improved fuel economy, and a long list of standard and available features. It was named an IIHS TOP SAFETY PICK and earned a NHTSA 5-star Overall Vehicle Score.

2012 Honda Pilot

2012 Honda Pilot

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Average Used Price: $13,925
Honda refreshed the Pilot for the 2012 model year. It got a new face, a redesigned center stack, simplified climate control layout, and new available infotainment technology. The 2012 Pilot is also more fuel efficient than the 2011 model.

2012 Ford Expedition

2012 Ford Expedition

Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company

Average Used Price: $14,232
The 2012 Ford Expedition is powered by a standard 5.4-liter V8 that achieves 310 horsepower and 365 pound-feet of torque. It can tow up to 9,200 pounds when properly equipped. A voice-activated SYNC infotainment and navigation system and automatic 4x4 drive mode was available when new.

2012 Dodge Durango

2012 Dodge Durango

Photo courtesy of FCA US LLC

Average Used Price: $14,528
The Dodge Durango was redesigned for the 2011 model year and it's mostly a carryover for 2012. It's powered by either a 290-horsepower V6 or 360-horsepower V8. The Durango came standard with a front-passenger fold-flat seat, steering wheel audio controls, a tilting/telescoping wheel, SiriusXM satellite radio, an audio jack, six-speaker sound system, and trailer sway control.

2012 Acura MDX

20212 Acura MDX

Photo courtesy of American Honda Motor Co., Inc

Average Used Price: $14,662
The 2012 Acura MDX was mostly carried over from the 2011 edition, bringing with it a strong powertrain and sleek (for its time) looks. It has a flat load floor with its seats stowed, making it easy to carry cargo, and a list of high tech features that includes Bluetooth, tri-zone climate control with humidity control, navigation with voice recognition, a 10-speaker premium audio system, and a rear entertainment system.

2011 Toyota Highlander

2011 Toyota Highlander

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

Average Used Price: $14,900
Toyota upgraded the Highlander for the 2011 model year, giving it revised front and rear fascia, hood, and fenders. It also now came standard with three rows of seating and rear climate controls. When new, the Highlander was offered with either a four-cylinder or V6 powertrain. It also got tech upgrades for 2011 including a standard USB port, SiriusXM radio capability, and Bluetooth connectivity.

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Nuts & Bolts


The car rides on new alloy wheels.

Photo courtesy of MINI

MINI has given the Cooper Countryman a facelift for the 2021 model year refining the subcompact crossover's space, functionality, and ride comfort. The model will be available later this year.

In the US, the MINI Cooper Countryman remains one of the brand's most popular models, accounting for close to 40 percent of all MINIs sold in 2019.

The car gets a new grille with a chrome frame and standard LED headlights and fog lights up front, newly designed front and rear bumper coverings, now entirely in body finish, lend a more refined appearance. The radiator grill of the MINI Cooper S Countryman has a bold hexagonal grid pattern with a red "S" and a single chrome strut.

2021 MINI Cooper Countryman MINI has given the model a fresh front and rear look.Photo courtesy of MINI

In the back are LED rear lights in a Union Jack design and a fresh bumper design. MINI will offer the model with an available Piano Black exterior trim joining the new White Silver metallic and Sage Green metallic paint jobs. The model will ride on standard 17-inch light alloy wheels. Buyers can opt for 17-inch light alloy wheels in Channel Spoke Black design or 19-inch light alloy Turnstile Spoke two-tone wheels.

The Countryman will continue to be offered in a variety of models from the plug-in hybrid MINI Cooper SE Countryman ALL4 to the high performance MINI John Cooper Works Countryman ALL4. The base Cooper Countryman will still come with a turbocharged 1.5-liter three-cylinder engine under the hood that generates 134 horsepower.

The next tier up, the Cooper S Countryman gets the same engine, tuned to put out 189 horsepower. The John Cooper Works model, with its standard all-wheel drive, has a 301-horsepower version of the power plant. All-wheel drive is available on the other two vehicles.

AN electrified version of the powertrain is available in the Cooper SE Countryman. It pairs a 1.5-liter engine with a 7.6-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery and an electric motor. The plug-in hybrid model has 17 miles of all-electric range.

2021 MINI Cooper Countryman The interior of the model has been given a facelift, just like the exterior of the car.Photo courtesy of MINI

The cabin of the car features a new cockpit display with an available 5-inch color screen. MINI is offering the 2021 Countryman with a new list of leather trim and interior surfaces. MINI is offering a new option for the Yours Interior Style package - Shaded Silver.

MINI offers the vehicle with new Chesterfield Indigo Blue and Chesterfield Matt Brown leather in addition to the 2020 model year roster of upholstery colors and finishes.

The MINI Cooper S Countryman and MINI Cooper SE Countryman ALL4 models now come as standard with Piano Black interior surfaces for the cockpit and door bezels. These are combined with accent strips in the variant British Oak dark.

At the center is an 8.8-inch touch screen. Signature and Iconic trim levels have navigation. MINI has refined the look of the audio control panel, buttons for hazard lights, and driver assistance systems. Amazon Alexa integration is available.

2021 MINI Cooper Countryman There's an 8.8-inch touch screen in the middle of the car.Photo courtesy of MINI

For the new model, there is a longer list of available MINI accessories from the manufacturer. The selection ranges from a roof box, molded luggage compartment mats and all-weather floor mats, to individual MINI LED door projectors from the MINI Yours Customized program, and of course, John Cooper Works performance products designed for extreme driving fun.

The 2021 MINI Countryman is expected to arrive in U.S. showrooms later this summer. Pricing will be available closer to the model's on-sale date.

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Travis Pastrana will return to Ken Block's popular "Gymkhana" stunt series.

Photo courtesy of Subaru of America Inc.

Gymkhana GRiD is back. Ken Block's popular video series will be making a return in 2020 with Travis Pastrana behind the wheel of a specially configured Subaru.

The news comes just two days after Pastrana, a full-time member of the 2020 Subaru rally team, and Block (and Subaru) agreed that they would be willing try to make it happen. Here's how it went down.

Pastrana and Block have been staying at home with their families during the COVID-19 crisis but they haven't been idle. The longtime friends and former teammates have been competing to produce at-home stunt videos for their fans. Block's "Gymkhana GRiD: Stay at Home Edition" called out the Pastrana family, challenging Pastrana to film a better version at his home in Maryland. Pastrana's rebuttal featured big dirt jumps, driving on two wheels and donuts around his personal WRX STI. Both drivers encouraged their fans to vote on who made the better video.

Then, on Tuesday's "Hoonigan Tangents Live" show, the talk turned from friendly jabs between the two into Block offering Pastrana the chance to film his own Gymkhana installment in 2020 with Subaru and the Hoonigan Media team. Pastrana and Subaru immediately agreed to the challenge, marking the first time in 11 years that Subaru will be a part of the series.

"What Ken has done with 'Gymkhana' over the years has really been amazing," said Pastrana. "But I think he made a big mistake giving me a shot at doing one of my own! I've got some ideas that I think can blow Ken's videos out of the water, and Subaru is on board to provide a car to do it. One thing's for sure, it's going to be unlike any 'Gymkhana' you've ever seen before."

This won't be Pastrana's first trip around the "Ghymkana" block. The five-time U.S. rally champion, freestyle motocross pioneer, action sports icon and stunt expert has made cameo appearances in the fifth and tenth installments of the series.

More details of the location and release timing of the special video will be announced at a later date.

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