The Nissan QR-series engine was the replacement for the beloved SR and the mediocre KA engines. It ranged in size from a 2.0L to a 2.5L, and was used extensively in Nissan’s global lineup. One of the variations was the Sentra SE-R Spec-V in the US market which showed a sign of weakness in its peak of popularity. The Sentra SE-R used the 2.5L variation common with the Altima 4-door sedan and featured an integrated catalytic converter that suffered from poor ECU tuning on Sentra models.
The Toyota Camry and legendary reliability are synonymous. Toyota has always equipped its mid-size family offering with tough, durable engines that have been known to last well past 300,000 miles. Add to that the highest safety ratings possible and you have one of the best cars under $5000 imaginable. To find a Camry under $5000, you do not have to stretch to the 300,000 mile mark, either. You should be able to find Camry that is less than 12 model years old and has fewer than 130,000 miles on it for the $5000 mark we have set.
Initially, the Germans will likely only offer conventional gasoline models, with a hybrid lurking around the corner. The GLE 550e plug-in hybrid currently makes 436 hp and 479 lb-ft of torque thanks to a 3.0L twin-turbo V6 mill and an electric motor. 21 mpg combined isn’t exactly leading the class in fuel economy, but the GLE 550e offers up to 19 miles of electric range as well.
The Chevrolet Cobalt is a compact car that was discontinued after the 2010 model year. The combination of being a compact car and having been discontinued makes it a good addition to our list of cars under $5000. In fact, you will find that a well-appointed 2010 Chevy Cobalt LT frequently retails for less than 5K. That is a great price for a car that can achieve 37 mpg on the highway.