Car owners spend more time inside their car than looking at it from the outside, so a car’s interior has to be a nice place to be.
Of course, luxury vehicles excel at making sure their drivers have a comfortable and pleasing place to spend time, but luckily for the rest of us, there are plenty of affordable cars that have surprisingly higher-end interiors.
Here are some vehicles with inviting premium-looking interiors despite their modest pricing.
Top 10 Affordable Cars with Surprisingly Higher-End Interiors
10. 2018 Honda Civic
Honda has recently undergone a styling revolution for its cars both inside and out. The 10th-generation Civic starts at just $20,125 in the U.S. ($21,512 in Canada), but the interior looks like it could be from a more expensive car. Well textured dashboard plastics, metal effect trim pieces, smart details, and a nicely integrated seven-inch infotainment touchscreen create a classy look. The new Honda Accord also has a premium-looking interior for its price.
9. 2018 Volkswagen Golf
Volkswagen has perfected the restrained but classy interior feel with its unmistakable Germanic ambiance. Its most popular model, the Golf, showcases this best. Quality interior trim pieces, a large eight-inch infotainment touchscreen, and drilled aluminum pedals help to create a sumptuous looking interior and everything is screwed together tightly, giving it a solid feel. At a $20,715 U.S. starting price ($22,249 in Canada), it’s like getting a deal on an Audi-like interior without actually getting an Audi.
8. 2018 Subaru Crosstrek
There are a few instances when an automaker makes drastic leaps in interior quality and we are forced to pay attention. Subaru wins the prize here. The 2018 Subaru Crosstrek’s redesigned interior is a pleasant surprise. From playful contrast stitching on the steering wheel and seats to tasteful splashes of piano black trim on the doors and around the infotainment touchscreen, this should be a shock to subcompact crossover fans expecting a predictably bland interior. Pricing starts at $22,710 ($25,745.50 in Canada).
7. 2018 Toyota Camry
Toyota used to make interiors that were about as exciting as reading your dishwasher’s instruction manual. Fast forward to 2018 and things have taken a turn. Despite prices remaining at a very affordable $24,895 U.S. ($28,105 in Canada), this Camry’s interior has the kind of quality usually found in higher priced vehicles. An intricately curvy dashboard, quality-looking metal trim pieces, and nicely textured leather seats create a confident-looking package. An even further highlight: Red leather seats!
6. 2018 Ford Mustang
The Mustang always had this knack for making retro-looking interiors that aren’t too kitschy. Everything in this interior pays homage to design themes of the past while still embracing a modern feel. It uses finely crafted cabin materials and a liberal use of distinctive metallic trim, which is what sets it apart from others in its segment. Pricing starts a surprisingly reasonable $26,085 U.S. ($30,638 in Canada).
5. 2018 Volvo XC60
Losing none of the Volvo XC90’s premium approach to interior design, the XC60 smartly copies major elements of the XC90’s interior while still retaining its own individual feel and a much lower price. We love the minimalist Scandinavian design and use of unique materials. Pricing starts at $42,495 U.S. ($47,915 in Canada).
4. 2018 Kia Rio
The subcompact hatchback class of vehicles is normally known for having simple interior designs that take a no-frills approach. The 2018 Kia Rio refuses to live up to that stereotype. Starting at just $14,795 U.S. ($16,594 in Canada), you don’t feel punished for buying an affordable car. Rather, you are greeted with quality seat materials, tastefully designed dashboard gauges, and a smartly placed infotainment touchscreen.
ALSO SEE: 2018 Kia Rio Review
3. 2018 Acura MDX
Just a feel of the soft-touch dashboard and a glance at the white contrast piping on the seats gets your attention with the Acura MDX. The MDX competes in a segment where competitors are priced about $10,000 to $12,000 higher, yet it never feels out of place when rolling with those more expensive cars. Pricing starts at $45,175 U.S. ($56,062.50 in Canada).
2. 2018 Genesis G80
If the Genesis G80’s interior quality is any indication, the company is taking luxury very seriously. It’s not that the G80’s interior is redefining the idea of the luxurious interior, but it’s the confidence it shows by putting all the right materials in all the right places. Pricing starts at $42,725 U.S. ($55,000 in Canada).
1. 2017 Mazda CX-5
The Mazda CX-5’s interior speaks for itself. Just sit in it, touch the vital surface points, and begin to wonder how Mazda got away with this level of quality at such an affordable price point. From the available white leather seats to the substantial-feeling buttons and knobs to the metal trim pieces, Mazda offers a more dignified interior experience than many of its competitors. Prices start from $24,985 U.S. ($26,795 in Canada).