The Cheapest Countries to Own a Car

A car is a big purchase. In the U.S., a brand-new small car costs about $9,659 a year to own and operate, including the price of the car, gas, insurance and other expenses. But in some countries, it costs a lot less, depending on the type of car. For example, Russia is the cheapest country to own an SUV and sports cars are cheaper to own in Canada than any other country, according to insurance data.

Looking at the costs of six different classes of cars - city cars, small cars, large family cars, SUVs, luxury cars and sports cars - around the world, Compare the Market, a U.K.-based price comparison site and insurance intermediary, detailed the costs of these types of cars in 24 countries to determine where it costs the least and the most to own and operate a vehicle. The costs include vehicle price, insurance, gas, road taxes, and road service for one year. Based on their data, these are the cheapest countries to own a car in each class, and some of them may surprise you.

City Car: India
City Car: India

City Car

Based on the cost of a Fiat 500, these are the cheapest countries to purchase and run a city car for a year:

1. India

  • Total price from new: $5,287
  • Percent of yearly wage: 7.42%

Above, traffic in Ahmedabad, India.

Kunal Mehta / Shutterstock

2. Poland
2. Poland

2. Poland

  • Total price from new: $7,300
  • Percent of yearly wage: 10.83%

Photo: Shutterstock

3. Romania
3. Romania

3. Romania

  • Total price from new: $7,370
  • Percent of yearly wage: 16.52%

A worker on the assembly line of the Dacia Renault factory in Mioveni, Romania.

Photo: punghi / Shutterstock

4. New Zealand
4. New Zealand

4. New Zealand

  • Total price from new: $8,857
  • Percent of yearly wage: 4.24%

Pictured is Makarora-Lake Hawea Road, New Zealand.

Photo: aiaikawa / Shutterstock

5. Belgium
5. Belgium

5. Belgium

  • Total price from new: $9,307
  • Percent of yearly wage: 5.4%

Photo: Shutterstock

Small Car: India
Small Car: India

Small Car

Based on the cost of a VW Golf, these are the cheapest countries to purchase and run a small car for a year:

1. India

  • Total price from new: $5,406
  • Percent of yearly wage: 7.14%

Pictured is Rashtrapati Bhavan, the president's residence in New Delhi.

Photo: Shutterstock

2. Canada
2. Canada

2. Canada

  • Total price from new: $9,666
  • Percent of yearly wage: 5.26%

Above, the Icefields Parkway between Banff and Jasper National Parks in Alberta, Canada.

Photo: Shutterstock

3. Romania
3. Romania

3. Romania

  • Total price from new: $10,052
  • Percent of yearly wage: 16.16%

 Photo: Shutterstock

4. Poland
4. Poland

4. Poland

  • Total price from new: $10,291
  • Percent of yearly wage: 10.05%

Above, Warsaw's Castle Square in Old Town.

Photo: MrMR / Shutterstock

5. Australia
5. Australia

5. Australia

  • Total price from new: $11,240
  • Percent of yearly wage: 3.6%

Photo: Shutterstock

Large Family Car: Greece
Large Family Car: Greece

Large Family Car

Based on the cost of a VW Passat, these are the cheapest countries to purchase and run a large family car for a year:

1. Greece

  • Total price from new: $12,623
  • Percent of yearly wage: 20.83%

A road winds through the mountains of northwestern Greece.

Photo: Shutterstock

2. Canada
2. Canada

2. Canada

  • Total price from new: $12,704
  • Percent of yearly wage: 6.01%

Pictured is the Lions Gate Bridge in Vancouver, Canada.

Photo: Shutterstock

3. Mexico
3. Mexico

3. Mexico

  • Total price from new: $12,820
  • Percent of yearly wage: 24.91%

Above, cars wait at the border crossing in Tijuana.

Photo: Chad Zuber / Shutterstock

4. Poland
4. Poland

4. Poland

  • Total price from new: $13,251
  • Percent of yearly wage: 11.6%

Pictured is Elblag, Poland.

Photo: Patryk Kosmider / Shutterstock

5. U.S.
5. U.S.

5. U.S.

  • Total price from new: $14,158
  • Percent of yearly wage: 7.06%

Above, a Volkswagen Passat is displayed at the 2015 Detroit auto show.

Photo: Ed Aldridge / Shutterstock

SUV: Russia
SUV: Russia

SUV

Based on the cost of a VW Tiguan, these are the cheapest countries to purchase and run an SUV for a year:

1. Russia

  • Total price from new: $12,887
  • Percent of yearly wage: 18.22%

Photo: Shutterstock

2. Mexico
2. Mexico

2. Mexico

  • Total price from new: $13,111
  • Percent of yearly wage: 27.85%

Above, the Museo Soumaya, a private, non-profit museum in Mexico City. 

Photo: Kamira / Shutterstock

3. Canada
3. Canada

3. Canada

  • Total price from new: $13,940
  • Percent of yearly wage: 6.35%

Photo: Shutterstock

4. U.S.
4. U.S.

4. U.S.

  • Total price from new: $15,098
  • Percent of yearly wage: 7.47%

Photo: PixHound / Shutterstock

5. Romania
5. Romania

5. Romania

  • Total price from new: $15,472
  • Percent of yearly wage: 19.07%

Above, University Square in Bucharest, Romania.

Photo: Shutterstock

Luxury Car: Mexico
Luxury Car: Mexico

Luxury Car

Based on the cost of a BMW 5 series (BMWYY) , these are the cheapest countries to purchase and run a luxury car for a year:

1. Mexico

  • Total price from new: $24,916
  • Percent of yearly wage: 47.54%

Pictured is downtown Mexico City.

Photo: Shutterstock

2. Russia
2. Russia

2. Russia

  • Total price from new: $26,372
  • Percent of yearly wage: 24.40%

Photo: Shutterstock

3. Canada
3. Canada

3. Canada

  • Total price from new: $28,981
  • Percent of yearly wage: 7.38%

Above, the border crossing to the U.S. on Blaine Hwy., Surrey, British Columbia, Canada.

Photo: Daniel Avram / Shutterstock

4. U.K.
4. U.K.

4. U.K.

  • Total price from new: $28,987
  • Percent of yearly wage: 7.01%

Photo: Christopher Lyzcen / Shutterstock

5. U.S.
5. U.S.

5. U.S.

  • Total price from new: $30,590
  • Percent of yearly wage: 6.94%

Photo: Diego Grandi / Shutterstock

Sports Car: Canada
Sports Car: Canada

Sports Car

Based on the cost of a Porsche 911, these are the cheapest countries to purchase and run a sports car for a year:

1. Canada

  • Total price from new: $47,294
  • Percent of yearly wage: 9.7%

Photo: Shutterstock

2. Mexico
2. Mexico

2. Mexico

  • Total price from new: $49,846
  • Percent of yearly wage: 95.88%

Photo: Art Konovalov / Shutterstock

3. U.S.
3. U.S.

3. U.S.

  • Total price from new: $52,273
  • Percent of yearly wage: 6.62%

Photo: Shutterstock

4. Ireland
4. Ireland

4. Ireland

  • Total price from new: $55,557
  • Percent of yearly wage: 18.12%

Photo: Shutterstock

5. United Arab Emirates
5. United Arab Emirates

5.  United Arab Emirates

  • Total price from new: $58,838
  • Percent of yearly wage: 3.4%

Photo: Shutterstock

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