The Best Used Cars to Buy For a Graduation Gift

Your little bundle of joy has grown up and on the cusp of entering adulthood. Graduating is a milestone, and you want to reward their hard work and show how proud you are. Buying a used car is a great idea but you’ll need to know the best used cars to buy for a graduation gift. Here’s a quick look at some of the top options available to you.

  • 2005 Ford Focus: The Focus is fun (at least the coupe version is) and surprisingly quick on the road for a four-cylinder. It’s also economical and not sporty enough that your grad might decide to drag race on the weekends. It’s basic, with few frills, but it definitely gets an important job –getting from point A to point B safely – done.

  • 2011 Honda Civic: Looking for reliability and fuel economy in a fun package? The 2011 Honda Civic might be the right fit. It’s available in both two and four-door formats, and the four-cylinder engine delivers more than enough performance for daily driving needs. The optional stability control system is a “must have” as well for additional safety on the road.

  • 2011 Honda Element: The second Honda to make this list, the Element isn’t in production anymore, but the final year of production (2011) makes a great graduation gift for anyone with a need for hauling space and good interior room. The 2.4-liter engine is the same one found in the Civic and the CR-V, as well.

  • 2005 Dodge Neon: Looking for something a little older but with good style? The 2005 Dodge Neon is a great choice. It offers fuel economy of 25/32 mpg and while it’s not a sports car, it has that certain stance that makes it stand out.

  • 2005 GMC Sierra: Does your grad need the ability to haul and tow? If so, the 2005 GMC Sierra is a good choice. The step sides are attractive, and the bed is long enough to accommodate a decent amount of cargo. Opt for the standard cab and you’ll save a little cash at the dealership as well.

There are plenty of other options out there that might be a good fit for your grad depending on whether he or she is going immediately to college and needs to get back and forth to home, or is starting a job right way. Regardless, a certified mobile mechanic from YourMechanic can provide a pre-purchase inspection on any used car you might be interested in.


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Recent Pre-purchase Car Inspection reviews

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4,847
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Attila

19 years of experience
906 reviews
Attila
19 years of experience
Cadillac SRX V6-3.6L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Edison, New Jersey
Attila was great! Very knowledgeable and actually detected a fault during a pre-purchase inspection that would have cost me later.
Lexus ES350 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Fords, New Jersey
He is very good—offered all the significant details we needed from the inspection. Helped us figure out what needed to be fixed.

Shawn

12 years of experience
285 reviews
Shawn
12 years of experience
Chevrolet Impala V6-3.6L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Lansdale, Pennsylvania
Shawn was prompt, professional, and delivered the promised service as expected. This was a used vehicle pre-purchase inspection. Shawn also had to drive to multiple locations to perform the inspection, as the address listed that I provided him with was not accurate, but he still made it to the correct location within his time window and completed the inspection.
Toyota Sequoia - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Akron, Pennsylvania
Shawn was very prompt in communicating with me and was good at helping me decide whether to purchase a used car. He help me avoid a car with a repaired rusted frame that could be a danger to my family's safety since we were planning on using the car to tow a travel trailer!

Luis

18 years of experience
320 reviews
Luis
18 years of experience
Honda HR-V L4-1.8L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Warren, New Jersey
Luis was great. He showed up on time, acted professionally, and gave me confidence with a pre-purchase car inspection.
Acura RDX - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - South Hackensack, New Jersey
Luis did a thorough pre-purchase inspection for me, and found several major issues that made me pass on buying the car. Had I purchased the car, I almost certainly would have ended up paying thousands in repairs down the road. Thanks Luis!

Robert

20 years of experience
1089 reviews
Robert
20 years of experience
Hyundai Elantra L4-2.0L - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Englewood, Colorado
He did a pre-purchase inspection for me. He was knowledgeable and fast, and knew what he was looking for. I really appreciate all the pictures and documentation he took of the state of the car before purchase. He noted potential issues with the car that I wouldn't have been able to notice. Would recommend.
GMC Savana 1500 - Pre-purchase Car Inspection - Golden, Colorado
I trust Robert. He gave me a list and we will take care of it the week of June 29. I will know then that my vehicle is ready for the winter and is safe to drive. I look forward to getting things ready for another winter of careful driving.

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