5. 2014 Honda Civic
MSRP: $16,945

The Civic's combined 34 miles per gallon and nearly 40 miles per gallon on the highway make it a great car to grow into. It seats five with a surprising amount of space left over, is coated in airbags and has a new display that shows fuel efficiency, music info and photos. The utilitarian small sedan also tends to hold up well over the years, making it a gem for used-car buyers who aren't just waiting for a larger, far less efficient vehicle to get less expensive.

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