(iSeeCars) — Used car shoppers willing to look beyond their local market could save substantial money on their next purchase, depending on where they live and how far they can travel.

iSeeCars compared the average cost of used cars across the U.S. and discovered a wide spectrum of pricing among the top 50 markets. Between the most and least expensive markets, Cleveland-Akron versus West Palm Beach-Ft. Piearce, the price difference for the average one- to five-year-old used car was more than $6,100.


  • While the average price for a used car is $34,227, the price shifts $6,173 between the most and least expensive U.S. cities
  • Cleveland-Akron is the least expensive area to buy a used car, with an average price of $31,458, or 8.1 percent, below the national average
  • West Palm Beach-Ft. Pierce is the most expensive area to buy a used car, with an average price of $37,632, or 9.9 percent, above the national average
  • The Ram 1500 has the biggest price difference between the least and most expensive cities, costing $7,795 more in Denver than it does in Cleveland
  • The Chevrolet Malibu and Toyota Tacoma have the biggest percentage difference between the least and most expensive cities, with a more than 17 percent shift in how much a buyer can pay for these models

“Research and flexibility are two powerful assets for used car shoppers,” said iSeeCars Executive Analyst Karl Brauer. “Buyers in Cleveland and Cincinnati, the top two cities with the least expensive cars, are already living in the lowest-cost cities and can shop locally. But used car buyers in the most expensive cities like West Palm Beach and Denver might want to research bus and plane schedules as part of their shopping process.”

The Top 10 Least Expensive Cities To Buy a Used Car

Three markets in Ohio make the list of top 10 cheapest used car cities, suggesting used car prices are generally lower in the Buckeye State. Buyers in all 10 of the least expensive cities are likely to find attractive used car pricing in their local markets. The ability to save between $1,700 and $2,700 could still justify the time and effort to travel to the least expensive cities to buy used cars, especially for shoppers who live relatively close to them. 

“While these cities have attractive overall used car pricing, buyers in these markets still need to look at specific models to confirm they can’t find a better deal somewhere else,” said Brauer. “It’s easy to research car pricing, both locally and nationally, so there’s no reason not to look beyond your area to get a sense of how much prices vary for a given model.”

10 Least Expensive Cities To Buy Used Cars – iSeeCars Study
RankMetro AreaAverage Price of Used Cars% Price Difference from National Average$ Price Difference from National Average
1Cleveland-Akron (Canton), OH$31,458-8.1%-$2,769
2Cincinnati, OH$31,622-7.6%-$2,605
3Norfolk-Portsmouth-Newport News, VA$31,901-6.8%-$2,326
4Fresno-Visalia, CA$31,912-6.8%-$2,315
5Orlando-Daytona Beach, FL$31,971-6.6%-$2,256
6Detroit, MI$31,990-6.5%-$2,238
7Columbus, OH$32,177-6.0%-$2,050
8Pittsburgh, PA$32,286-5.7%-$1,942
9Indianapolis, IN$32,418-5.3%-$1,809
10Oklahoma City, OK$32,443-5.2%-$1,784
National Average$34,227

The Top 10 Most Expensive Cities To Buy a Used Car

The most expensive cities to buy a used car are widely scattered throughout the U.S., with West Palm Beach, Denver, Austin, and Seattle ranking in the top four slots. Florida and Texas each have two cities on the list, but cities in Colorado, Washington, Utah, North Carolina, California, Massachusetts, and New Hampshire also make an appearance. Paying between $1,000 and $3,400 above the average used car price is even more costly for buyers financing a used car purchase in this high interest rate environment.

“Used car buyers in the most expensive markets should look to nearby cities to save money on their next purchase,” said Brauer. “For instance, while West Palm Beach, Florida, has the highest average used car price, Orlando is one of the cheapest cities, and less than 200 miles away.”

10 Most Expensive Cities To Buy Used Cars – iSeeCars Study
RankMetro AreaAverage Price of Used Cars% Price Difference from National Average$ Price Difference from National Average
1West Palm Beach-Ft. Pierce, FL$37,6329.9%$3,404
2Denver, CO$37,2338.8%$3,005
3Austin, TX$36,8277.6%$2,599
4Seattle-Tacoma, WA$36,5936.9%$2,366
5Salt Lake City, UT$36,3566.2%$2,129
6Charlotte, NC$35,9765.1%$1,748
7Dallas-Ft. Worth, TX$35,7514.5%$1,524
8Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$35,4793.7%$1,252
9Los Angeles, CA$35,4203.5%$1,193
10Boston, MA-Manchester, NH$35,2683.0%$1,041
National Average$34,227

The Best and Worst Cities To Buy Top-Selling Used Cars

Looking at the nation’s 25 best-selling cars illustrates how much money can be saved – or “lost” – based on where a car is bought. The Ram 1500 has the biggest price difference of $7,795, ranging from a high of $47,159 in Denver, the most expensive city, to a low of $39,364 in the Cleveland-Akron metro area. 

“Imagine a Ram 1500 buyer in Denver who doesn’t know about the $7,800 savings available on the same truck in Akron, Ohio,” said Brauer. “Even with a $300 plane ticket, plus two days spent driving 1,400 miles, a Denver shopper gets ‘paid’ $3,750 a day traveling to Ohio to buy that vehicle compared to someone who buys it locally in Denver.”

Most and Least Expensive Cities To Buy Popular Used Cars – iSeeCars Study
ModelLeast Expensive Metro AreaAverage PriceMost Expensive Metro AreaAverage Price% Savings$ Savings
Chevrolet MalibuMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$18,417Dallas-Ft. Worth, TX$22,33917.6%$3,923
Toyota TacomaMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$32,373Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$39,16717.3%$6,794
Ram 1500Cleveland-Akron (Canton), OH$39,364Denver, CO$47,15916.5%$7,795
Jeep Grand CherokeeMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$31,742Seattle-Tacoma, WA$37,41915.2%$5,677
Ford F-150Columbus, OH$38,955Salt Lake City, UT$45,91015.2%$6,956
Toyota RAV4Jacksonville, FL$27,297Seattle-Tacoma, WA$31,93414.5%$4,637
Chevrolet Silverado 1500Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$36,523Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$42,62114.3%$6,097
Honda CivicMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$22,691Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$26,42214.1%$3,731
GMC Sierra 1500Cleveland-Akron (Canton), OH$44,208Greensboro-Winston Salem, NC$51,32413.9%$7,116
Ford ExplorerMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$32,143Seattle-Tacoma, WA$37,29313.8%$5,151
Subaru OutbackGrand Rapids-Kalamazoo, MI$26,944Austin, TX$31,15313.5%$4,209
Tesla Model 3Minneapolis-St. Paul, MN$36,156Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$41,80313.5%$5,647
Chevrolet EquinoxMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$20,581Milwaukee, WI$23,74213.3%$3,162
Hyundai ElantraSalt Lake City, UT$17,594Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$20,28613.3%$2,692
Subaru CrosstrekSalt Lake City, UT$24,689Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$28,29112.7%$3,601
Toyota HighlanderMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$34,222Seattle-Tacoma, WA$38,93312.1%$4,711
Nissan RogueSalt Lake City, UT$22,546Seattle-Tacoma, WA$25,51711.6%$2,971
Honda CR-VTampa-St Petersburg (Sarasota), FL$26,591Seattle-Tacoma, WA$30,02411.4%$3,433
Mazda CX-5Miami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$24,566Seattle-Tacoma, WA$27,65311.2%$3,087
Honda AccordMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$25,040Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$27,84210.1%$2,802
Toyota CamryMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$24,159Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$26,85810.1%$2,699
Jeep WranglerMiami-Ft. Lauderdale, FL$34,183Salt Lake City, UT$37,8429.7%$3,658
Toyota CorollaGreensboro-Winston Salem, NC$20,218Las Vegas, NV$22,3519.5%$2,133
Hyundai TucsonTampa-St Petersburg (Sarasota), FL$22,639Albuquerque-Santa Fe, NM$24,8248.8%$2,185
Tesla Model YHartford and New Haven, CT$48,510Oklahoma City, OK$52,6507.9%$4,140

With used car prices remaining near their record highs, and well above pre-COVID levels, used car buyers should be looking for every opportunity to save money on their next vehicle. The pricing disparity between major U.S. metro areas represents an excellent opportunity to enhance used car purchasing power in today’s market.

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iSeeCars analyzed over 6.5 million 1- to 5-year-old used cars sold from January through August 2023. The average listing prices of cars in each metro area were compared across the top 50 most populous markets, as well as the prices of top-selling models.

About iSeeCars.com

iSeeCars.com is a data-driven car search and research company that helps shoppers find the best car deals by providing key insights and valuable resources, including the iSeeCars VIN Check report and Best Cars Rankings. iSeeCars has saved users over $399 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.

This article, Most and Least Expensive Cities to Buy a Used Car, originally appeared on iSeeCars.com.