May 30, 2023

Best cars for collegiates, compared by cost, quality

As we know, money makes the world go around, especially for college students. 

However, most of us need a car to get around, whether it’s commuting to and from school, to work, or just going home or occasionally leaving campus. 

The problem is that cars are not particularly cheap, especially if you want to buy new. This can be especially scary if you just wrecked your car, it broke down, or if cars are something you’re into. 

You also might just be downright desperate for a change. 

No need to fret though, your resident car nerd is here to help! Here is a compiled list of some of the best cars for college students strapped for cash. 

Ford SVT Focus 

This is an excellent option as some are available around Columbus for under $4 thousand. The Focus just about does “being a car” better than anything else, especially since this is the particularly fun SVT model. 

The main difference here is the jump in power and handling tweaks to make it all around a more fun experience. It’s a Focus so it will be cheap, in both good and bad ways, efficient, practical, and if you take care of it, reliable. 

Hyundai Sonata SE 

The Sonata will most likely run forever and will definitely be excellent on gas. Hyundais are famed for being relatively fun to drive and how well their interiors are, and the Sonata is no exception.

It may seem a little boring, but it is an excellent choice.

Honda Accord EX Coupe

Hondas are always a safe bet when shopping used. They are astonishingly reliable, fun to drive, and efficient. Accords can offer good looks and a sporty feel. You can find one in Columbus for just over $5 thousand, so the price seems pretty good too. 

Volkswagen Jetta 

The VW Jetta is a classic and an excellent car, while it may not be as fun to drive as some of its competitors, you do get a lot back in return. It has excellent German build quality, reliability, world renowned practicality, and exclusivity. However, make sure to buy one that’s been well-maintained as damages to German cars can be pricey to fix.

Hyundai Genesis 

Hear me out! For some models the price is steep, but there is reason to my madness of potentially spending nearly $10 thousand on an old Hyundai. 

The Genesis was created as a sort of budget luxury car to rival Mercedes-Benz and BMW, and rival them the Genesis does. The interior is great, as is the build quality and reliability. It looks expensive too, which it is. The point of this is to get 95 percent of what one of its rivals offers for a quarter of the cost, if you just happened to win the lottery that is.

On top of these, there are endless other normal Ford Focuses, Fiestas, Honda Civics, Mini Coopers, and Fiat 500’s if you want to play it safe and stick to something everyone knows.

  • Josh Conturo is a reporter for the Chimes and a fourth-year studying Emerging Media with an emphasis on journalism, and loves all things related to cars, coffee, and comedy.

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