Which AWD car should I buy that isn't too expensive, big or a gas hog?

I live in western N.Y. and want to buy all-wheel-drive for the first time. I don’t want anything too expensive, big or a gas hog. What should I get?

Sashene G., Jamestown, N.Y.

This won’t be the first time we’ve recommended the Subaru Impreza as an entry-level AWD vehicle. It has excellent safety ratings and proven reliability, and it starts at $16,995 for the sedan and $17,495 for the hatchback. If you’re looking for an AWD car, the Impreza 2.5 should be added to your test-drive list.

You could also look at the Suzuki SX4 AWD hatchback and Dodge Caliber R/T AWD, which are also AWD compact cars that start at $15,270 and $20,495, respectively.

Gas mileage isn’t going to be stellar with these cars; the SX4 has the best combined city/highway mileage rating, at 24 mpg, compared to the Caliber and Impreza’s 22 mpg combined rating.

The Impreza is the only one to earn Cars.com Best Bet status, however. See related content on these three below.

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Answered by Joe Bruzek on March 31, 2008 in What Car Should I Buy? | Permalink

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