In most cases, a first-time car owner will find themselves in need of reliability, good gas mileage, an automatic transmission, etc. Lucky for us, these days, air conditioning and power steering come standard. Depending on the utilization, more carrying or storage space may be required.
At the end of the day, nothing fancy is absolutely “needed”. Your typical, first-time car owner normally doesn’t have a ton of money to play with, and will most likely – or should be – looking for something in the $10k-$20k range.
Contributor: Alex Lauderdale founder of educateddriver.org