A parked Telluride

Kelley Blue Book Names the ‘Best Buy’ 2020 vehicles

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Brent Campbell
November 27, 2019

When it comes to buying a new car, most of us are looking to get the best-value car in our price range. Kelley Blue Book released their top picks for 2020 model-year cars, which includes winners from BMW, Honda, Hyundai, Lexus and more. KBB’s top honor of "Best New Model" goes to the 2020 Kia Telluride.

There are more than 300 new 2020 models hitting the market from pickups to sedans and hybrids. In addition to naming “Best New Model,” Kelley Blue Book evaluated vehicles in 16 different categories and chose the model that delivers the best combination of quality, comfort, driving dynamics, dependability, low overall ownership costs and affordability. Total ownership costs include depreciation, auto insurance, maintenance, financing, fuel, fees and taxes.

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2020 Best Buy Award list

Here’s a roundup of the 2020 Kelley Blue Book Best Buy Award winners in each category.

Best New Model: 2020 Kia Telluride

The all-new Kia Telluride “wowed” KBB evaluators. The Telluride’s roomy interior (three rows), range of standard safety features and technology, plus an enjoyable driving experience earned it top honors for 2020.

Compact Car: 2020 Honda Civic

The Honda Civic remains one of the most popular cars among drivers of all ages. It’s sporty and practical, and drivers love the number of choices in terms of body styles, trim packages and engines. What’s more, 2020 Honda Civic sedan starts at just $20,550.

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Midsize Car: 2020 Honda Accord

Another winner for Honda, the 2020 Accord stands out for its comfortable ride and timeless design. It’s also roomy enough to make it a family car, and the Accord boasts an mpg of 30 city/38 highway.

Subcompact SUV: 2020 Hyundai Kona

Style and safety earned the 2020 Hyundai Kona a place on the Best Buy Award list for the second year in a row. It also comes in your choice of gasoline or all-electric powertrain, and remains a fuel-efficient choice.

Compact SUV: 2020 Honda CR-V

The Honda CR-V has been slightly revamped for 2020. The Honda CR-V is a great value thanks to its ease of handling combined with roomy interior and stylish exterior. 

Midsize SUV (2-row): 2020 Hyundai Santa Fe

The “smartly designed” Hyundai Santa Fe comes with two rows, an array of safety features and tech, plus driver-assist technology. The Hyundai Santa Fe is available in five different trims - SE, SEL, SEL 2.0T, Limited and Limited 2.0T.

Midsize SUV (3-row): 2020 Kia Telluride

The 2020 Kia Telluride earns another KBB Best Buy Award in the three-row midsize SUV category. Seating for eight, the Telluride’s interior also comes with an eight-inch touch-screen display, Apple CarPlay, three 12V power outlets and five USB ports. 

Full-Size SUV: 2020 Ford Expedition

The Ford Expedition has been a popular choice in the SUV category for years. Its truck-like capabilities combined with interior comfort make it a great value for business and pleasure. Though a full-size model, the Expedition has a fuel economy of 17 city/23 highway. 

Minivan: 2020 Honda Odyssey

Value is the name of the game when it comes to the Honda Odyssey, which is what makes it a frequent top pick for families. The Odyssey seats eight and is loaded with safety features. The low overall cost-to-own also makes Odyssey a top pick.

Pickup Truck – Midsize: 2020 Chevrolet Colorado

The 2020 Chevrolet Colorado comes not only with an attractive starting price, but it also has a best-in-class towing capacity. The Colorado has a high-strength steel frame and reinforced safety cage, and it’s available in three different engines.

Pickup Truck – Full-Size: 2020 Ford F-150

The best-selling vehicle in America, the Ford F-150 is one of the best full-size pickups on the market. Loaded with tech and safety features to make it a comfortable ride, the F-150 is also available in six different engine choices.

Electric Car: 2020 Hyundai Kona Electric

The easy-to-drive Kona Electric boasts a 258-mile driving range on a full charge. The lithium-ion polymer battery is covered by a 10-year/100,000-mile warranty. Bonus: the Kona Electric qualifies for the full $7,500 federal tax credit. Be sure to check for any state-specific and local incentives and/or rebates.

Plug-in Hybrid Car: 2020 Honda Clarity Plug-in Hybrid

The Honda Clarity has earned a Best Buy Award three years in a row now. It’s available in three variations - pure-electric, fuel cell and PHEV - and has an impressive fuel economy. The Honda brand also carries with it notable safety, reliability and resale values.

Subcompact Luxury SUV: 2020 Audi Q3

The 228-horsepower Audi Q3 features an upscale design that includes leather heated seats and a virtual cockpit. Available in two models, both come with LED interior and exterior lights. The Audi Q3 starts at $34,700.

Compact Luxury SUV: 2020 Audi Q5

The larger version of the Q3, the Q5 is a second-year Best Buy Award winner it its class. The Q5 has a sporty chassis and tech-filled cabin, and it is Audi's best-selling model.

Midsize Luxury SUV: 2020 BMW X5

The BMW X5 is one of the pioneers of the luxury SUV, and its stylish design keeps it at the top of the list. The newly redesigned X5 builds remains powerful yet easy to handle on the road. 

Luxury Car: 2020 Lexus ES

Offered as either a gasoline-only and gasoline-electric hybrid, the Lexus ES has earned KBB’s top honor in the Luxury Car class for two years in a row now. Comfort, luxury and innovative technology make it an overall amazing value.

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What is a subcompact SUV?

An SUV, or sport utility vehicle, is one of the most popular types of car on the market. An SUV uses the chassis of a truck and is typically larger than a CUV, or crossover utility vehicle. SUVs have become popular for their combination of easy-to-handle passenger car characteristics and off-road features. For instance, you can find many SUVs with four-wheel drive and a higher ground clearance. 

To meet more consumer needs, car manufacturers have varied sizes and specs on their SUV models to create compact and subcompact SUVs. While the compact and subcompact SUV models offer many of the same features as full-size SUVs, they are smaller in size and have a lower starting price point.

The subcompact SUVs are growing in popularity because of their fuel-efficiency and typically, an even lower starting price point. Many subcompact SUVs 

Compact SUV vs subcompact SUV models

Toyota compact SUV: C-HR

Toyota subcompact SUV: RAV4

BMW compact SUV: X3

BMW subcompact SUV: X1

Buick compact SUV: Envision

Buick subcompact SUV: Encore

Jeep compact SUV: Cherokee

Jeep subcompact SUV: Renegade

Mazda compact SUV: CX-5

Mazda subcompact SUV: CX-3

Subaru compact SUV: Forester

Subaru subcompact SUV: Crosstek

Mazda compact SUV: CX-5

Mazda subcompact SUV: CX-3

Mercedes-Benz compact SUV: GLC

Mercedes-Benz subcompact SUV: GLA