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Buy Smart: These 2022 Vehicles Should Offer Best Resale Value

2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness2022 Subaru Forester Wilderness; (photo/Subaru)
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Does Kelley Blue Book have a crystal ball? Most likely not. But on the off chance that you don’t either, you can consult the bedrock auto appraiser’s awards for the best resale value cars.

Kelley Blue Book today announced the winners of its 20th-annual Best Resale Value Awards. The list identifies the standouts in multiple vehicle categories for projected resale value.

Projected? Yes. Each car, truck, or SUV on the 2022 list qualified for the award based on industry and economic analysis that seeks to determine how much it will be worth in 2027.

Before we get into the formula and caveats, here are 2022’s winners:

kelley blue book best resale value cars


The top 10 overall cars are listed in alphabetical order.

Toyota, as you might expect, is a repeat winner, having won in 2014, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2021, and now 2022. Sister brand Lexus secures its third all-time luxury brand win in 2022. Subaru also brought home a slew of individual category wins.

Vehicles that surprised us with category wins, but maybe shouldn’t have, include Mercedes-Benz GLB, Land Rover Range Rover Velar, and Kia Telluride. You don’t generally think of Mercedes, Land Rover, and Kia when you think great resale, but times are changing. The Tesla Model X even took home a category win, after the brand tanked in last year’s Consumer Reports Annual Automotive Reliability study.

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The Basis for KBB Resale Value Awards

But reliability is far from the only factor that affects resale value. The key factors in the study, Kelley Blue Book says, rely more on projected supply and demand. Cars with average or below-average resale value are generally easy to find — however, some hold their value better than others.

It said supply and demand control “much” of a vehicle’s resale value. To analyze market conditions, the company observes current market conditions and makes projections for the future.

One rule of thumb is that vehicles that tend to hold their value best come with few discounts off the lot and generate a lot of consumer interest.

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To get its results, the company leverages analysts that review statistical models built on “millions of transactions.” It evaluates each vehicle based on its value 5 years in the future, at a hypothetical auction where it goes on the block in average condition with 75,000 miles.

The Best Resale Value Awards express that projected value as a percentage of the original MSRP.

The efficacy of the awards, according to Kelley Blue Book, is also a percentage. The appraiser says that an average 2022 model-year car will retain about 43% of its MSRP after 5 years. By comparison, each vehicle on the 2022 Best Resale Value Top 10 looks to retain about 56% of its original price.

Looks like there’s one way to find out whether KBB’s statistical prophecies pan out; see you at the auction block in 2027.

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