Used car prices have declined from record highs, but they are still significantly higher than they were a year ago as a result of the ongoing microchip shortage. Limited inventory of new cars has increased demand for used cars, and as fewer people are trading in used cars to buy new ones, used cars remain in short supply and command higher prices. 

Due to regional used car price variations, budget-minded used car shoppers who are willing to travel can increase their chances of getting a good deal. “When looking at the most popular cars on the market, used car prices can vary by as much as $14,166 between cities,” said iSeeCars Executive Analyst Karl Brauer. “In today’s market, deals on used cars are hard to come by, and even after purchasing a plane ticket or taking a road trip, consumers may find traveling to buy a used car in another state to be worth it for significant savings.”

iSeeCars analyzed the used car prices of the top 25 most popular cars to determine the cities where they are the most and least expensive.  

Used Cars With the Largest Price Disparities Between the Most and Least Expensive Cities

When examining local prices of the most popular cars, the vehicles with the largest price disparities had at least a 22 percent price difference between the cheapest and most expensive cities.
Popular Used Cars With the Largest Price Disparities Across the U.S. - iSeeCars Study
Rank Vehicle Cheapest City to Buy the Car Most Expensive City to Buy the Car % Savings  $ Savings
1 Nissan Rogue San Antonio, TX Fairbanks, AK 32.4% $10,738
2 Jeep Grand Cherokee Baton Rouge, LA Fairbanks, AK 27.8% $13,152
3 Ford F-150 Zanesville, OH Glendive, MT 26.8% $14,166
4 Honda Civic Lincoln & Hastings-Kearney, NE Harlingen-Weslaco-McAllen, TX 26.7% $8,514
5 Ford Escape Fresno-Visalia, CA Alpena, MI 26.4% $7,599
6 Ford Explorer Lafayette, IN Fairbanks, AK 25.8% $11,103
7 Subaru Forester Duluth, MN-Superior, WI Columbus-Tupelo-West Point, MS 23.5% $7,889
8 Toyota Tacoma Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL Anchorage, AK 23.5% $10,394
9 GMC Sierra 1500 Marquette, MI Casper-Riverton, WY 22.5% $12,144
10 Ram 1500 Lafayette, IN Anchorage, AK 22.0% $10,701
The Nissan Rogue is the vehicle that has the greatest price disparity between the most expensive and least expensive cities. “A used Nissan Rogue costs 32.4 percent or $10,738 less in San Antonio, Texas than it does in Fairbanks, Alaska,” said Brauer. “Even though these cities are nearly 4,000 miles apart, you could still save a considerable amount of money even after shipping costs, which would likely be less than $5,000.” 

The Subaru Forester provides the greatest savings with the shortest distance between its most expensive and least expensive city. “Shoppers in the Duluth metropolitan area can drive 17 hours to save nearly $8,000,” said Brauer. “Even factoring in gas for the round trip that would cost around $300, hotel costs at around $150 per night, or even a one-way plane ticket for under $500, traveling to purchase this vehicle can yield significant savings.” 

Best Cities to Buy Popular Used Cars at the Lowest Prices

iSeeCars found which cities offer the greatest savings on each of the most popular used cars when compared to the nationwide average.
Cities with the Best Prices for Popular Used Cars - iSeeCars Study
Rank Vehicle Cheapest City to Buy the Car Local Used Car Price National Used Car Price % Savings $ Savings 
1 Honda Civic Lincoln & Hastings-Kearney, NE $23,375 $28,169 17.0% $4,794
2 GMC Sierra 1500 Marquette, MI $41,886 $48,300 13.3% $6,414
3 Subaru Forester Duluth, MN-Superior, WI $25,648 $29,353 12.6% $3,705
4 Ram 1500 Lafayette, IN $37,890 $43,302 12.5% $5,411
5 Nissan Rogue San Antonio, TX $22,372 $25,353 11.8% $2,981
6 Ford Escape Fresno-Visalia, CA $21,147 $23,952 11.7% $2,805
7 Jeep Wrangler Springfield-Holyoke, MA $32,211 $36,359 11.4% $4,148
8 Toyota Tacoma Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL $33,880 $38,155 11.2% $4,275
9 Hyundai Tucson Elmira, NY $22,412 $25,126 10.8% $2,714
10 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 St. Joseph, MO $37,745 $42,242 10.6% $4,496
Honda Civics in the Lincoln, Nebraska metropolitan area tend to be priced 17 percent cheaper than the national average, for savings of $4,794. “The best places to buy popular used cars are all across the country,” said Brauer. “Even if car shoppers find a deal in their area, it’s worth comparison shopping in other areas to find an even better deal.”

Best and Worst Used Car Deals on Popular Cars in Major Cities

iSeeCars looked at the 50 most populous metro areas to determine the used cars that are priced the most above and below the national average.
Best and Worst Used Car Deals on Popular Cars in Major Cities
City Vehicle with Most Savings % Savings $ Savings Most Overpriced Vehicle % Overpriced $ Overpriced
Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM Toyota Corolla 0.8% $174 Jeep Wrangler 8.0% $2,902
Atlanta, GA Ford Explorer 1.3% $466 Ford Escape 2.6% $629
Austin, TX Jeep Grand Cherokee 3.3% $1,211 Subaru Outback 4.0% $1,231
Baltimore, MD Ford Escape 4.1% $987 Honda Pilot 2.0% $722
Birmingham, AL Jeep Grand Cherokee 4.6% $1,685 Honda Civic (hatchback) 4.6% $1,307
Boston, MA-Manchester, NH Jeep Wrangler 4.6% $1,678 Chevrolet Equinox 2.7% $678
Charlotte, NC Toyota Tacoma 1.0% $382 Honda Civic (hatchback) 4.4% $1,237
Chicago, IL Toyota Camry 2.4% $629 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4.6% $1,688
Cincinnati, OH GMC Sierra 1500 5.5% $2,662 Chevrolet Equinox 1.8% $454
Columbus, OH GMC Sierra 1500 4.6% $2,217 Honda Pilot 1.1% $382
Dallas-Ft. Worth, TX Toyota 4Runner 3.1% $1,326 Honda Civic (hatchback) 6.0% $1,678
Denver, CO Toyota Corolla 3.5% $758 Jeep Grand Cherokee 5.9% $2,176
Grand Rapids-Kalamazoo, MI Subaru Forester 9.0% $2,634 Honda Pilot 4.7% $1,687
Greensboro-Winston Salem, NC Honda Civic (hatchback) 3.2% $903 GMC Sierra 1500 1.9% $939
Greenville-Spartanburg, SC Ford F-150 2.0% $834 Honda Accord 4.4% $1,193
Harrisburg-Lancaster-York, PA Toyota 4Runner 1.6% $693 Nissan Rogue 6.9% $1,742
Hartford & New Haven, CT GMC Sierra 1500 6.9% $3,339 Hyundai Tucson 1.1% $277
Houston, TX Ford Escape 3.9% $926 Honda Civic (hatchback) 5.1% $1,442
Indianapolis, IN GMC Sierra 1500 2.7% $1,324 Hyundai Tucson 4.3% $1,088
Jacksonville, FL Toyota Tacoma 6.0% $2,278 Ram 1500 0.9% $395
Kansas City, MO Subaru Outback 5.1% $1,564 Honda CR-V 4.1% $1,218
Las Vegas, NV Ford Escape 1.5% $351 Jeep Wrangler 4.8% $1,727
Los Angeles, CA Toyota Highlander 2.5% $938 Toyota Corolla 4.1% $896
Louisville, KY Honda Civic (hatchback) 3.2% $896 Toyota Camry 3.4% $907
Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL Toyota Tacoma 11.2% $4,275 Subaru Forester 2.5% $740
Milwaukee, WI Honda Civic (hatchback) 5.4% $1,512 Jeep Grand Cherokee 4.4% $1,635
Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN Ford F-150 4.3% $1,830 Nissan Rogue 4.3% $1,099
Nashville, TN Ford Escape 1.8% $439 Toyota RAV4 4.1% $1,227
New Orleans, LA Ford Explorer 6.0% $2,122 Subaru Outback 3.6% $1,126
New York, NY Honda Civic (hatchback) 5.9% $1,669 Ford F-150 2.2% $919
Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News,VA Subaru Outback 2.6% $818 Honda Accord 3.3% $907
Oklahoma City, OK Ford Explorer 4.5% $1,600 Honda Civic (hatchback) 5.2% $1,475
Orlando-Daytona Beach, FL Toyota Tacoma 7.2% $2,733 Subaru Forester 1.7% $509
Philadelphia, PA Honda Civic (hatchback) 1.4% $388 Chevrolet Equinox 2.7% $682
Phoenix, AZ Nissan Rogue 2.0% $504 Jeep Wrangler 5.7% $2,079
Pittsburgh, PA Honda Civic (hatchback) 7.2% $2,029 Ford Escape 4.5% $1,079
Raleigh-Durham (Fayetteville), NC Toyota Tacoma 2.7% $1,027 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 2.1% $899
Sacramento-Stockton-Modesto, CA Nissan Rogue 0.6% $148 Jeep Wrangler 4.5% $1,621
Salt Lake City, UT Honda Civic (hatchback) 6.8% $1,920 Ford F-150 5.9% $2,497
San Antonio, TX Nissan Rogue 11.8% $2,981 Honda Civic (hatchback) 6.3% $1,783
San Diego, CA Ford Escape 5.2% $1,255 Toyota RAV4 2.9% $883
San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose, CA Hyundai Tucson 3.9% $978 Jeep Grand Cherokee 3.4% $1,259
Seattle-Tacoma, WA Honda Accord 0.0% $6 Toyota Tacoma 8.8% $3,347
St. Louis, MO GMC Sierra 1500 4.6% $2,239 Ford Escape 5.4% $1,301
Tampa-St Petersburg (Sarasota), FL Toyota Tacoma 7.1% $2,711 Jeep Wrangler 1.6% $589
Washington, DC (Hagerstown, MD) Ford Escape 2.0% $470 GMC Sierra 1500 3.2% $1,554
West Palm Beach-Ft. Pierce, FL Toyota Tacoma 6.7% $2,568 Subaru Outback 2.5% $762

The popular used car that provides the most savings across all cities is the Nissan Rogue in San Antonio, which costs 11.8 percent or $2,981 below average. The most overpriced popular used car across all cities is the Toyota Tacoma in Seattle, which costs 8.8 percent or $3,347 above the national average.

Bottom Line

It can be difficult to find a deal on a used car in today’s market, but expanding your search radius can provide consumers with the best chance to find more savings. “Even if you can’t travel to the city with the greatest savings on your car, you will probably find greater savings beyond your local area, making the travel worth it,” said Brauer.

Methodology

iSeeCars.com analyzed over 1.3 million 1-5 year old used cars from the top best-selling models sold between January and April of 2022. The average asking price of each model in each DMA was calculated, and the highest and lowest prices were compared to each other, as well as the nationwide average price. Model/city combinations with low inventory were excluded from the analysis.

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About iSeeCars.com

iSeeCars.com is a car search engine that helps shoppers find the best car deals by providing key insights and valuable resources, like the iSeeCars VIN check reports and Best Cars rankings. iSeeCars.com has saved users over $337 million so far by applying big data analytics powered by over 25 billion (and growing) data points and using proprietary algorithms to objectively analyze, score and rank millions of new cars and used cars.