These are the cars with the best resale value in 2023

Wondering which new cars in Australia retain their value the best in 2023? Luckily for you, we've got data on that.

Resale value will likely be front-of-mind for any savvy car shoppers – regardless of whether you plan to keep your car for three years or 10.

Similarly, used-car buyers looking for a bargain will be hoping to steer clear of any models that show unusually high levels of value retention to avoid inflated pricing.

Unfortunately, resale value is a tricky thing to quantify because the parameters can change so much.

Some car owners resell their vehicle after three years, whereas others hold onto it for a decade or more, meaning the cars are in a drastically different condition when they're resold compared to when they were first purchased.

As a result, resale value is always going to be something of an imperfect measure, but it can serve as a helpful guide for new and used car buyers looking to improve their return on investment.

The 25 cars, utes and SUVs with the best resale value in Australia

As part of our exclusive Best Value Cars investigation, Drive sourced resale data from AutoGrab, an Australian automotive intelligence firm capturing used-car price data from marketplaces including CarSales, Facebook Marketplace, Autotrader and Gumtree.

To capture a snapshot of each model's resale value, AutoGrab used its pricing algorithm to ascertain the retail value of each model from 2020 to 2023 with an average kilometre interval of 15,000km a year.

That price was then compared to the manufacturer's listed retail price to determine the retained value. 

This list excludes anything priced over $120,000, because buyers at this level are less sensitive to running costs, and anything with niche appeal like coupes, convertibles and other two-door sports cars, because running costs are seldom a priority for these buyers. 

Additionally, this ranking excludes strictly commercial vehicles like vans, but includes 4x4 utes, because we wanted to focus on passenger vehicles we know Australians are buying for everyday use.

For what it's worth, van models like the Toyota HiAce and Volkswagen Transporter showed excellent resale value of over 80 per cent.

Finally, to figure out the overall performance of a particular model, we took an average of the resale value percentages of all of its specification grades – with some variants performing far better than others. 

With those parameters in mind, here are the passenger cars, utes and SUVs with the best resale value in Australia for 2023...

1. Nissan Leaf: 81.4 per cent

Nissan’s long-serving Leaf electric car is only available in two variants in Australia, but both of them show excellent value retention of 81.4 per cent on average.

The entry-level grade retains 81.4 per cent of its value after three years, while the more expensive Leaf e+ variant is close behind at 81.3 per cent resale value over the same period. 

Anecdotally, Nissan's National Manager for Electrification and Mobility, Ben Warren, told Drive that of the first-generation Nissan Leaf models that landed in Australia more than 10 years ago, “the overwhelming majority are still running around on their original batteries".

2. Tesla Model 3: 81.3 per cent

The Tesla Model 3 landed in Australia in 2019 and, since then, it has claimed almost one-quarter of the local electric vehicle market

The Model 3 Long Range AWD variant is the best performing specification grade, retaining an impressive 82.6 per cent of its resale value after three years, followed by the Model 3 RWD variant at 81 per cent and the Model 3 Performance AWD variant at 80.3 per cent. 

3. Toyota RAV4: 80.9 per cent

Unsurprisingly, Toyota's popular family SUV holds onto 80.9 per cent of its value on average across all variants. The surest bet, according to data, is the front-wheel-drive GX Hybrid, which retains a whopping 84.9 per cent of its value.

Meanwhile, the RAV4’s resale average was dragged down by the mid-spec XSE Hybrid variants, which show value retention around 75 per cent – possibly due to the fact they are newer in the market than other variants. 

=3. Suzuki Ignis: 80.9 per cent

Something of a dark horse, Suzuki’s Ignis micro SUV was a surprise entrant at number three on this list – possibly because it’s one of the few remaining cars in Australia available for under $25,000 drive-away.

The GL, GLX and recently launched Shadow variants all recorded value retention of 80.9 per cent.

5. Hyundai Sonata: 80.7 per cent

The Hyundai Sonata is currently offered in a single specification grade – the N-Line – and is priced from $52,065 plus on-road costs when purchased new.

As it turns out, the sole Sonata variant holds its own on the used-car market, retaining 80.7 per cent of its value three years after purchase. 

6. Toyota HiLux: 80.6 per cent

As Australia’s top-selling vehicle for seven years running, the dual-cab variants of the long-reigning Toyota HiLux continue to perform on both the new and used car market, retaining 80.6 per cent of its value on average after three years.

The range-topping Rogue 4x4 is the pick of the bunch, hanging onto 81.7 per cent of its value after three years.

7. Isuzu MU-X: 80.4 per cent

Isuzu’s seven-seat family hauler, the MU-X, is a consistent performer on the used-car market.

According to data, the variant to buy if you’re looking to resell later is the four-wheel-drive, mid-spec LS-U variant.

8. Toyota C-HR: 79.9 per cent

Yet another Toyota on the list – further cementing the brand’s reputation for reliability. The C-HR small SUV holds onto between 78 and 81 per cent of its resale value on average.

Interestingly, the variants with the best value retention are the all-wheel-drive, pure-petrol GXL and Koba grades, which both retain 81.5 per cent of their value, while the hybrid grades retain between 78 and 79 per cent of their value. 

9. Mazda CX-9: 79.8 per cent

Despite being almost at the end of its road – set to be replaced by the new CX-90 at the end of 2023 – the Mazda CX-9 is holding strong on the used-car market.

On average, the six or seven-seat SUV retains 79.8 per cent of its value after three years, with front-wheel-drive variants only slightly outperforming all-wheel-drive variants.

10. Skoda Kamiq: 79.7 per cent

The Skoda Kamiq continues the trend shown by other small SUVs like the Toyota C-HR and Suzuki Ignis, showing strong resale retention after three years. 

The top-performing variant is the base-grade 85TSI Style variant, which holds on to 80.3 per cent of its original value. 

11. Mazda CX-8: 79.6 per cent

In hot pursuit of its slightly larger sibling, the CX-9, is the Mazda CX-8, which retains 79.6 per cent of its value over three years.

Like the CX-9, used-car shoppers looking at the three-row CX-8 tend to favour front-wheel-drive variants over all-wheel-drive variants.

=11. Toyota Prado: 79.6 per cent

Toyota’s popular diesel-powered large SUV marks the fourth Toyota model on this list, with an average resale value retention of 79.6 per cent. 

The variant with the best resale performance of 80.4 per cent is the range-topping Kakadu, which is priced from $88,998 before on-road costs when purchased new. 

13. Volvo XC60: 79.3 per cent

Volvo’s all-wheel-drive XC60 medium SUV retains 79.3 per cent of its value three years on from purchase, on average.

In particular, the base-grade Plus B5 variant with mild-hybrid powertrain shows the strongest value retention of 79.8 per cent.

14. Isuzu D-Max: 79.2 per cent

The crew cab, or dual cab, variants of the D-Max have an average value retention of 79.2 per cent.

At the top of the pile, with 81.1 per cent average resale value, is the top-spec LS-U crew cab variant.

=14. Mazda BT-50: 79.2 per cent

Mazda’s BT-50 dual-cab ute – which shares its bones with the D-Max – shows strong resale value in line with its Isuzu sibling.

The strongest variant in the resale data is the second most affordable XT 4x4 variant, which retains 84.2 per cent of its value over three years.

=14. Toyota Yaris: 79.2 per cent

The smallest Toyota shows mighty resale value, with an average of 79.2 per cent of value retention across all Yaris variants.

The standout, however, is the base-grade Ascent Sport with resale value of 80.7 per cent.

17. Subaru Forester: 79.1 per cent

Trumping its larger sibling, the Subaru Outback, in the resale stakes, the Subaru Forester shows average value retention of 79.1 per cent.

The variant with the best resale performance appears to be the mid-tier 2.5i Premium grade with 80.8 per cent value retention. 

=17. Toyota Kluger: 79.1 per cent

If you’re keeping count, the Kluger marks the sixth Toyota model on this list, with average resale retention of 79.1 per cent.

The variants to pick are the base-spec GX or mid-spec GXL variants, in either front-wheel-drive or all-wheel-drive form, with an average resale value retention of 80.4 per cent.

While the hybrid variants show a lower value retention, this is likely due to the fact they are newer to the market and thus have less available data. 

=17. Toyota Camry: 79.1 per cent

The seventh Toyota on the list, the Camry, shows consistent value retention across the board, with an average of 79.1 per cent retained value.

In particular, the base-spec Ascent hybrid is a strong performer, with 81.4 per cent value retention after three years. 

20. Jeep Grand Cherokee: 79 per cent

Both the five and seven-seat versions of Jeep’s Grand Cherokee are strong performers on the used-car market, retaining a collective 79 per cent of their value on average. 

The top performer is the five-seat Overland variant, which retains 81.2 per cent of its original value over three years.

21. Nissan Qashqai: 78.9 per cent

Nissan’s small SUV is a solid performer in resale data, with an average of 78.9 per cent retained value after three years.

In particular, the ST-L variant, which is one step down from the top of the range, shows value retention of 80.6 per cent. 

=21. Toyota Corolla: 78.9 per cent

The eighth and final Toyota to feature on our top 25 list, the Corolla, has hung around on Australian roads since the 1960s and, to this day, the Corolla range has an average resale value retention of 78.9 per cent.

Both the hybrid and non-hybrid variants show similar value retention, so it's a safe bet across the range if you're planning to resell.

23. Hyundai Kona Electric: 78.7 per cent

The electric version of Hyundai’s Kona small SUV beats out the petrol version in the resale stakes, retaining 78.7 per cent of its value on average, compared with the petrol variants at 77.8 per cent value retention.

Both the Elite and Highlander electric variants performed strongly with 81.9 per cent value retention after three years.

=23. Mitsubishi ASX: 78.7 per cent

Mitsubishi ASX variants hold onto an average of 78.7 per cent of their value after three years, AutoGrab’s data shows.

The flagship Exceed variant, in particular, showed strong results with 81.4 per cent value retention.

25. Subaru Outback: 78.6 per cent

Subaru’s all-wheel-drive adventure wagon retains an average of 78.6 per cent of its initial value after three years. 

The Outback variant that attracts the highest resale prices, by a small margin, is the mid-tier Sport variant.

Disclaimer: Resale value can vary and this data should be used as a general guide only, not a guarantee.

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Susannah Guthrie

Susannah Guthrie has been a journalist for over a decade. Previously, she has been the digital director of both Harper's Bazaar and Elle, a senior editor at The New Daily, the host of 'A Taste of Travel' on Channel Ten and a motoring columnist for CarSales. Susannah holds a Bachelor in Media and Communications from the University of Melbourne and cut her teeth as an intern for Time Inc in New York City. She has also completed a television presenting course with the National Institute of Dramatic Art. She lives in Melbourne with her husband and her son.

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