Think Twice Before You Buy: The Most Expensive Vehicles To Maintain

The cost to drive your brand new car off the lot is just the beginning of vehicle ownership. After paying the sticker price, you need to prepare to spend extra cash on annual maintenance and basic repairs. When it comes to these vehicles, the costs are rather significant.

In most cases, high maintenance costs match the car’s sticker price. After all, a hefty bill to fix the transmission of a Ferrari shouldn’t come as a surprise. However, on some occasions, you may find yourself paying the equivalent of the car’s MSRP in maintenance costs!

Nissan Kicks

Inside Nissan Motor Co.'s Ginza Gallery
Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Kiyoshi Ota/Bloomberg via Getty Images

When it comes to pricey maintenance and repair costs, this Nissan SUV is one of the worst offenders within its price range. That’s because the owner of a Nissan Kicks would have to spend over $7,000 on maintenance and repairs within the first decade since driving off the lot.

Once you factor in the rapid depreciation, the Kicks becomes even less appealing. A 10-year old Nissan Kicks will only be worth around $6,000. That’s quite a drop from the $21,000 starting price, to say the least.

RAM 1500

dodge-ram
Dodge
Dodge

Pickup trucks are all about utility, hence their upkeep costs are relatively low to ensure they’re as efficient as possible. Sadly, this does not seem to be the case with the latest RAM 1500, which is infamous for having one of the highest maintenance costs in its price range.

The sub-$50,000 starting price is merely the beginning of the cost of driving a brand new RAM 1500. It costs around $1,800 every year to maintain this light-duty pickup truck. That is nearly twice as much as the similar GMC Sierra 1500!

Chrysler Voyager

Chrysler Voyager
Luftfahrrad/Wikimedia Commons
Luftfahrrad/Wikimedia Commons

The Voyager has become a vital part of Chrysler’s lineup ever since it first hit the market in the late 80s. The latest, sixth generation of the beloved minivan went on sale for the 2020 model year. It’s powered by a Pentastar 3.6L V6 that makes a little over 280 horsepower.

At first, many buyers are surely going to be attracted by the affordable price tag. After all, the average MSRP of around $27,000 is slightly less than most of its competitors. However, the 10-year maintenance and repair costs can quickly add up to over $10,500!

Hyundai Accent

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Matt West/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images
Matt West/MediaNews Group/Boston Herald via Getty Images

A cheap sticker price combined with good fuel economy and practicality all make the Accent a decent pick for economic car buyers. Until you factor in the costly maintenance costs along with the rapid depreciation on top of the $17,500 sticker price, that is.

The owner of a new Hyundai Accent should prepare to spend over $5,000 on maintenance within the first 10 years of ownership. What’s more, the seemingly affordable sedan also loses over half of its value within 5 years of driving off the lot.

Chevrolet Trax

2021-Chevrolet-Trax-005
Chevrolet
Chevrolet

The Chevrolet Trax is a small, fuel-efficient SUV that first hit the market for the 2015 model year. At first sight, you certainly would not expect this vehicle to cost so much to maintain. You may be surprised to hear that the 10-year maintenance and repair costs can add up to as much as 30% of the car’s $25,000 MSRP!

The flat-four powered-Trax gets good fuel economy, hence you might wrongfully assume that the maintenance costs would be similarly low. In reality, the owner of a Chevrolet Trax would have to spend around $8,500 on repairs during the first decade of ownership!

Audi Q3

Audi Launches All-New Version Of SUV Q3
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Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images

It should come as no surprise that an upscale SUV, such as the second-gen Audi Q3, is indeed going to cost lots of money to maintain and repair. Nonetheless, many owners may be surprised to spend over a third of the car’s sticker price on maintenance within the first decade of ownership.

Don’t let the fact that Q3s are assembled in China fool you, there is nothing cheap about owning one of these lavish SUVs. After 10 years of ownership, owners will spend an average of nearly $12,000 on maintenance.

BMW X3

Latest BMW X3 Variants For The Indonesian Market
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Dasril Roszandi/NurPhoto via Getty Images

The X3 is the entry-level luxury SUV offered by the German automaker. Some of its competitors include the Jaguar F-Pace, the Audi Q5, or even the base Porsche Macan. Despite being an entry-level model, the X3 is rather expensive to keep running.

The starting price of a brand new X3 SUV is a little under $50,000. Then, the average owner of the upscale SUV will have to spend around $1,700 per year on maintenance and repairs alone. That’s over 36% of the car’s value within the first decade of ownership!

Ford EcoSport

Hyundai Motor Co. Unveils The Creta Sports Utility Vehicle
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Udit Kulshrestha/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Don’t let the name of this SUV fool you. There is nothing economical about owning one of these. In fact, the Ford EcoSport is the most expensive vehicle to maintain out of any of its competitors in a similar price range.

Potential buyers may be attracted by the low price tag, as a brand new EcoSport starts at just around $25,000 before options. However, the average owner would have to spend over $8,500 on repairs and maintenance during the first decade of ownership. All of a sudden, the EcoSport becomes much less economic than you might expect.

Kia Soul

Red Kia Soul on the road
Dünzlullstein bild via Getty Images
Dünzlullstein bild via Getty Images

Many buyers who are in the market for an affordable subcompact SUV have probably considered the Soul at some point. The crossover is renowned for its exceptional fuel economy, plenty of room for passengers and cargo, as well as unique exterior design. Buyers can get all this starting at a little over $20,000 before extra options.

Unfortunately, the Soul is not particularly cheap to maintain. Owners might expect low repair bills, given the relatively affordable MSRP. In reality, however, they may have to spend as much as a third of the sticker price on maintenance and repairs, only within the first decade of ownership.

Jeep Renegade

Parco Valentino Motor Show In Turin
Stefano Guidi/Getty Images
Stefano Guidi/Getty Images

The Renegade is a stylish compact SUV sold by the American automaker since the 2015 model year. Despite bearing Jeep’s nameplate, the Renegade is in fact more of a Fiat. It shares the same platform as the Fiat Tipo, as well as the Fiat 500L. The vehicle is offered with either a flat-four petrol motor or a hybrid drivetrain.

The Renegade starts at around $27,000 before extra options. The owner, however, should also prepare to spend at least $10,000 within the next 10-year period on repairs and maintenance alone.

Porsche 911

Geneva Motor Show 2017
Gerlach Delissen – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images
Gerlach Delissen – Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images

Unsurprisingly, an exotic sports car such as the legendary Porsche 911 is indeed expensive to maintain. The latest generation of the 911 starts at around $100,000 for the base model, without any extra options. Don’t expect this to be the only cost, though!

The annual maintenance and repair bills can easily add up to over $2,000 during the first decade of ownership. Once you include the rapid depreciation, the Porsche 911 is not exactly a bargain.

Chevrolet Spark

2021-Chevrolet-Spark
Chevrolet
Chevrolet

This is yet another sneaky vehicle when it comes to high maintenance costs. After all, most owners probably don’t expect to pay much to maintain a small hatchback powered by a tiny flat-four motor. Sadly, the reality is quite the opposite.

The $16,000 starting price is far from the only cost associated with owning a Chevy Spark. The owner should prepare at least $600 to cover the annual repair bills. That adds up to over 36% of the car’s original sticker price after a decade of ownership!

BMW X2

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BMW PressClub
BMW PressClub

The X2 is one of the latest additions to the automaker’s SUV lineup. BMW offers five different trim levels of this SUV across different markets, along with 4 different diesel variants. In its most powerful configuration, the X2 can accelerate to 60 miles per hour in just 4.7 seconds!

Potential buyers should expect to pay a hefty price tag to become the owner of an X2 SUV. The base model starts at over $40,000. In addition, the annual upkeep costs can add up to as much as $1,800.

Audi A4 Allroad Quattro

The 18th Guangzhou International Automobile Exhibition
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VCG/VCG via Getty Images

Audi first introduced the Allroad nameplate back in 1999. The first vehicle to bear the A6 moniker was an A6 sedan modified to perform better off the beaten paths, creating an exciting alternative to large SUVs. Fast-forward to 2021, and the Allroad remains a part of the German automaker’s lineup. This time, however, The A4 wagon received the Allroad treatment.

An upscale off-roadish sedan is bound to be expensive to maintain, and the A4 Allroad Quattro is no different. The average repair costs can easily add up to over $1,400 per year during the first 10-year period.

Land Rover Discovery Sport

Land Rover Discovery being exhibited during the Turin Motor...
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Diego Puletto/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Let’s be honest, who wouldn’t want a lavish Land Rover SUV? Apart from the hefty price tag, potential buyers should get ready for equally expensive maintenance. The Discovery may not be the most expensive vehicle offered by the automaker, though its maintenance costs are simply through the roof.

The Discovery Sport starts at a little less than $50,000 for the base model. Don’t expect this to be the only cost associated with owning one, though. As an owner, you should prepare at least $16,000 for maintenance and repair costs during the first 10-year period.

Acura TLX

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Acura
Acura

This exciting 4-door sedan hit the market for the 2015 model year as a successor to the Acura TL. The latest, second generation of the automobile debuted in early 2021. The base model is fitted with an economical flat-four, though buyers can upgrade to the more powerful V6 drivetrain. No matter which variant they choose, the upkeep costs are through the roof.

The base TLX starts at $37,500, which can seem like quite a good deal at first. However, you have to consider the 10-year maintenance costs that can easily add up to over a third of the car’s MSRP, or $12,600 on average.

Dodge Grand Caravan

Dodge Grand Caravan
harry_nl/Flickr
harry_nl/Flickr

Unlike the previously mentioned Land Rover Discovery, the Dodge Grand Caravan is far from a classy vehicle. Though it’s a great pick as a reliable and practical daily driver, it’s not quite as luxurious as the British upscale SUV.

You may be surprised to hear that owning this minivan may turn out just as expensive as driving around in a brand new Range Rover. The owner of a brand new Grand Caravan should prepare at least $10,500 for the maintenance costs during the first decade of ownership, on top of the $30,000 MSRP. That’s nearly 35% over the car’s sticker price!

Mercedes-Benz GLA

98th European Motor Show
Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images
Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

Driving an upscale automobile does have a lot of perks, that’s for sure. These can include anything from a lavish interior packed with modern safety and comfort features all the way to superior performance. The cost of keeping a luxury vehicle on the road is much higher than a regular automobile.

The Mercedes-Benz GLa Class is no exception. Owners should expect to pay at least $1,300 in maintenance and repair bills every year, on top of the $35,000 sticker price. That’s just for the base model, too.

Jeep Compass

jeep-compass
Jeep
Jeep

The Compass is another small crossover SUV sold by the American automaker. Much like the previously mentioned Renegade, this compact crossover has more in common with a Fiat than a Jeep. Despite its starting price which is a little lower than the Jeep Renegade, both of the automobiles are very expensive to maintain.

The starting price of a brand new Jeep Compass is around $25,000. On top of that, however, you should expect to pay at least a thousand dollars in maintenance and repair costs each year for the next decade.

Ford Mustang

The 18th Guangzhou International Automobile Exhibition
VCG/VCG via Getty Images
VCG/VCG via Getty Images

The Mustang is more than just a powerful coupe. This iconic pony car has unarguably become a vital part of modern American culture. The legendary Mustang nameplate is desired around the world. As one might expect, maintaining one of these thrilling machines isn’t exactly cheap.

A brand new Ford Mustang would set you back at least $27,000 for the base model, before any options. The V8-powered GT variant starts at a little over $36,000. In addition, the annual maintenance and repair bills can quickly add up to over $12,500 in total during the first 10-year period.

BMW M4

Auto China 2020
VCG/VCG via Getty Images
VCG/VCG via Getty Images

The souped-up BMW M4 is all about performance. It packs a 473-horsepower twin-turbocharged flat-six motor beneath the hood, enabling the latest M4 to reach 60 miles per hour in only 4 seconds. The optional Competition package raises the power output to a little over 500 horses. As you may expect, maintaining this beast isn’t exactly cheap.

The $72,000 starting price is just a fraction of what BMW M4 owners have to pay. The 10-year maintenance and repair bills can easily add up to as much as $15,000.

Nissan Versa

Nissan Versa
Kevauto/Wikimedia Commons
Kevauto/Wikimedia Commons

The Versa is yet another vehicle that can easily lure in potential buyers, all thanks to its seemingly low cost. While the sticker price itself is indeed one of the best on the market, the same cannot be said about the sedan’s maintenance costs.

The new owner of a Nissan Versa would only have to pay around $15,000 to drive off the lot. Add in the hefty maintenance costs, and you’d be looking at another $5,000 just to keep the car on the road within the first decade of ownership. By the end of that period, the sedan will only be worth 30% of its original MSRP.

Chrysler Sebring

DaimlerChrysler introduced the 2007 Chrysler Sebring in Miam
Mark Elias/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Mark Elias/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The attractive styling paired with an affordable price tag can cause many potential buyers to consider the Chrysler Sebring. While it is far from a bad automobile, it is one of the most expensive vehicles in its price range when it comes to maintenance and repair costs.

You might want to rethink your decision, unless you’re prepared to spend thousands of dollars every year. One of the main reasons why Chrysler discontinued this model in the first place was because of its ridiculous upkeep costs, which can add up to over $17,000 during a 10-year period of ownership.

Dodge Journey

Dodge Journey
Mr.choppers/Wikimedia Commons
Mr.choppers/Wikimedia Commons

The Dodge Journey is a crossover SUV that’s very practical and gets relatively good fuel economy. What’s more, the attractive sticker price can make this Dodge SUV seem like a more economical pick among its competitors. That quickly changes once you factor in the tremendous maintenance bills, though.

It would cost at least $27,000 to drive off the lot in a brand new Journey. The owner should then expect to pay over $10,000 in repair bills within the first decade. Not to mention that the vehicle will only be worth 20% of its original price tag by then!

Hyundai Venue

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Hyundai Newsroom
Hyundai Newsroom

The Venue is a brand new subcompact SUV that first hit the market for the 2020 model year. Journalists quickly pointed out the automobile’s excellent fuel economy, as well as its modern infotainment system. The hefty upkeep costs are certainly not one of the Venue’s strong points, though.

While the starting price of around $20,000 is relatively low, things get a lot more expensive once you factor in the repair bills. On average, the owner of a Hyundai Venue would have to pay over $780 during every year of ownership.

Subaru Forester

subaru-forester
Subaru
Subaru

This flagship Subaru SUV has been a vital part of the Japanese automaker’s lineup ever since its initial debut in the late 90s. The latest gen is, much like its predecessors, powered by a flat-four boxer engine for the base model. Buyers can also pick up a hybrid version of the car.

This award-winning compact SUV starts at around $25,000 before options. Many owners will be surprised to hear that the average 10-year maintenance costs can add up to as much as half of the car’s original MSRP!

BMW X1

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BMW PressClub
BMW PressClub

The X1 is a fantastic pick for wealthy buyers. This lavish SUV offers the ideal mix of practicality, comfort, as well as fuel economy. What’s more, some of the more powerful trim levels offer outstanding performance too. The only issues are the car’s expensive price tag, as well as the hefty maintenance and repair costs that surpass any of its competitors.

The owner of a BMW X1 should expect to pay over 45% of the car’s MSRP on maintenance and repair bills alone, only during the first decade of ownership. Once you add the $40,000 starting price as well as the rapid depreciation, the X1 suddenly becomes the polar opposite of an affordable automobile.

Mercedes-Benz C63 AMG

Automobile Manufacturers Debut Latest Models At The New York International Auto Show
Drew Angerer/Getty Images
Drew Angerer/Getty Images

While the regular C-Class is already far from a cheap vehicle, the maintenance costs of its high-performance variant are a whole different ball game. Many potential buyers would rightfully expect this 500-horsepower beast, powered by a twin-turbocharged V8 with a throaty exhaust note, to cost a lot to maintain.

The $70,000 starting price is only the beginning of the spending. The owner of a brand new C63 AMG should expect to pay as much as $1,300 on maintenance every year during the first decade of ownership.

Mazda 6

2017 Mazda 6 2.2 Saloon Sport Nav. Diesel. Creator: Unknown.
National Motor Museum/Heritage Images via Getty Images
National Motor Museum/Heritage Images via Getty Images

The Mazda 6 is the perfect choice for families. The sedan is a lot more lavish than any of its direct competitors within the same price range. Many owners praise the car’s exceptional handling as well as a comfy, quiet ride.

Though not exactly a truly luxurious vehicle, the Mazda 6 does share one thing in common with its expensive alternatives: high maintenance costs. In fact, the owner of a Mazda 6 should prepare around $12,700 to cover the repair bills during the first decade of owning one of these.

Porsche 718 Cayman

98th European Motor Show
Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images
Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

When the Cayman first hit the market back in 2005, it was essentially a coupe version of the entry-level Boxster. Though the 718 Cayman may be called the poor man’s Porsche by some Porsche purists, there is no denying that it remains one of the best sports cars under $60 000.

While the starting price may be a little lower than $60,000, the hefty upkeep costs can quickly raise the cost to over $75,000. A decade of maintenance and repair bills for the 718 Cayman will set you back around $13,700.

Chevrolet Cobalt

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Chevrolet Pressroom
Chevrolet Pressroom

Back in 2010, the Cobalt was one of the most affordable American vehicles money could buy. As long as you’re only factoring in the MSRP and not maintenance costs or depreciation, that is. The mighty Cobalt is far from a high-performance machine or a luxurious landyacht, though it delivers more than one might expect for a starting price of $14,900.

Owners lured in by the low sticker price were probably quite disappointed. That’s because a 2010 Chevy Cobalt costs around $14,500 to maintain over a 10-year period. That’s nearly as much as its original MSRP!

BMW 6-Series

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BMW PressClub
BMW PressClub

The 6-Series is a fancy 4-door sedan that has been a part of BMW’s lineup ever since the 2003 model year. The latest, fourth generation of the 6-Series starts at around $70,000 for the base model before any extra options. Unsurprisingly, this upscale sedan costs a lot of money to maintain and keep running.

In fact, owners of a BMW 6-Series should expect to pay no less than $15,000 in maintenance and repair bills during the first decade of ownership. You may want to avoid this model if you’re not too keen to spend so much on maintenance.

Chrysler 300

2016 Chicago Auto Show Media Preview - Day 1
Raymond Boyd/Getty Images
Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

At first sight, it is quite easy to confuse a Chrysler 300 with an upscale Mercedes-Benz, or even a Bentley. Chrysler’s flagship automobile offers a similar design, as well as a high-quality finish paired with a comfy ride, for only a fraction of the price of its European rivals. Sadly, it can cost quite a bit to maintain.

Owning a Chrysler 300 for a decade can cost the owner up to $12,000 in repair and maintenance bills. Instead of spending that much on the upkeep, you could be better off with one of the 300’s European opponents.

Ford Focus

98th European Motor Show
Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images
Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

The Ford Focus may just be the American counterpart of the beloved Toyota Camry. Like the Camry, the Focus is renowned for its fuel economy and practicality. When it comes to reliability, this affordable automobile isn’t exactly the best in its class.

The 10-year maintenance and repair costs are higher than the average across all models, which is estimated at $8,800. The seemingly cheap Focus, however, costs as much as $11,600 to maintain over a decade.

Mercedes-Benz E Class

98th European Motor Show
Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images
Sjoerd van der Wal/Getty Images

It is no secret that upscale German automobiles are not the cheapest to fix and maintain. The E-Class, a lavish sedan/coupe sold by Mercedes-Benz, is no exception to this rule.

The starting price of a little less than $55,000 is only a fraction of the total cost. The owner of a luxurious E-Class should expect to pay almost $15,000 in repair bills over the first decade of ownership. You might want to rethink getting one of these. Unless the high upkeep costs aren’t an issue, that is.

Nissan Maxima

2016 BET Experience - FAN FEST Roaming ROAMING - Day 2
Araya Diaz/Getty Images for BET
Araya Diaz/Getty Images for BET

The Japanese automaker currently sells the ninth generation of the Maxima, a sedan that has first hit the market back in 1980. It’s come quite a long way since then, earning a reputation as one of the best luxury sedans in its price range.

As you may expect, luxury does come at a price. The owner of a Nissan Maxima should prepare to spend around $12,000 on maintenance during the first decade of ownership.

Lincoln MKS

A 2010 Lincoln MKS is driven at the Ford Motor Co. Dearborn
Mark Elias/Bloomberg via Getty Images
Mark Elias/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sadly, Lincoln does not offer the MKS anymore. 2016 was the final production year for this American sedan. Some of the MKS’ strong points include a spacious trunk as well as plenty of room for the rear-seat passengers. Many owners complain about the poor fuel economy and the questionable interior finish.

The original sticker price started at around $40,000, though it is far from the only cost you’d have to pay to daily-drive an MKS. After the first decade of ownership, the repair and maintenance costs can add up to as much as $15,000!

Volkswagen Passat

Small-10696-2020PassatSEL
Volkswagen US
Volkswagen US

The fact that a Passat isn’t cheap to maintain may come as a surprise to many petrolheads. Afterall, this reliable sedan is widely considered to be the German counterpart of the Toyota Camry, which is essentially bulletproof.

Unlike the Camry, however, the annual repair bills for a Volkswagen Passat can add up to thousands of dollars. As a result, owners should prepare at least $12,450 to cover the running costs during the first decade of ownership. That’s half of the $24,000 sticker price!

Nissan Murano

nissan-murano
Nissan
Nissan

In terms of sales figures across the globe, the Murano may be one of Nissan’s most successful vehicles ever made. The SUV was first launched back in 2003. The latest, third-generation hit the market for the 2015 model year, following a much-needed stylistic refresh. Despite its attractive price tag, the Murano is ridiculously expensive to maintain.

Owners can easily expect the annual repair bills to add up to over $1,500 every year during the first decade of ownership. Once you add in the rapid depreciation, the Murano is nowhere near as cheap as you would expect.

Chevrolet Impala

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Chevrolet Pressroom
Chevrolet Pressroom

The Impala is a spacious sedan that’s a great pick in its price range. Owners adore the comfy ride, as well as the roomy interior and the large trunk. Having the Chevrolet MyLink infotainment system is certainly another strong point of the Impala, unlike its high maintenance and repair costs.

Despite being considered one of the best cars in its class, the Impala does cost quite a lot to maintain. In fact, the 10-year repair bills can surpass $12,500. That’s quite a large amount on top of the $30,000 starting price.