Seven of the Most Comfortable Cars for Under $30,000
Whether on a daily commute or a long road trip, most car owners want to be sure their model is comfortable to ride in and drive. You don't have to pay luxury prices to get that comfort.
Kelley Blue Book has come out with its annual list of comfortable cars you can get for under $30,000. "Our choices include vehicles that offer a comfortable driving experience, a roomy interior and the modern technological conveniences of a luxury car yet at a more wallet-friendly price," said Jack Nerad, executive editorial director of the Kelley Blue Book website kbb.com.
Here's a closer look at seven of these 2015 cars -- not only for their comfort but for other driving qualities.
A perennial sedan favorite among U.S. car shoppers, the Honda Accord combines a pleasing, well-styled interior and roomy accommodation for rear-seat passengers. The base four-cylinder engine, which reviewers surveyed by U.S. News say has plenty of power, is EPA rated for 27 MPG in city driving and 36 on the highway. If you upgrade to the optional six-cylinder engine, the mileage rating is 21 and 34 for city and highway, respectively.
Reviewers also especially like the easy-to-use audio and information controls that come with an eight-inch display screen. List prices on the Accord sedan range widely from $22,105 to $33,630.
The Hyundai Sonata combines a pleasant, comfortable ride with impressive economics. Because of low long-term ownership costs, the 2015 Sonata is ranked the best midsize car for the money by U.S. News.
Rated for 25 MPG in city driving and 37 on the highway, the base four-cylinder engine has good acceleration from a standing start but lacks some oomph when it comes to passing at highway speed, reviewers say. The optional turbocharged four delivers more satisfying power and is rated for 23 MPG city, 32 highway.
Reviewers also praise the Sonata for precise steering and excellent brakes. List prices range from $21,150 to $33,525.
The Nissan Altima is one of the few brands to market the comfort of its seats. As the company is fond of telling you, its "zero gravity" seats were developed using NASA research into what's comfortable seating in a weightless environment.
The company says the seats, which mimic the relaxed shape of the human back, cut down on driving fatigue. In addition to its comfort, reviewers praise the Altima for its excellent handling and good acceleration when passing. The base four-cylinder engine is rated at 27 MPG in city driving and 38 on the highway.
List prices for the Altima range from $22,300 to $31,950.
The Outback garners praise for its substantial passenger and cargo space, and its great traction. The traction results from all-wheel drive -- standard on all Subarus.
The base four-cylinder engine comes with a continuously variable transmission and is rated for 25 MPG in city driving and 33 on the highway. These qualities combine for a U.S. News ranking of best wagon for the money.
List prices on the Outback go from $24,995 to $33,395.
Once again the best-selling sedan in America, Toyota's Camry boasts a quiet ride and a spacious back seat -- qualities often found in higher-priced luxury models.
Reviewers praise the handling of the Camry but wish it delivered more power with its base four-cylinder engine, rated at 25 MPG city, 35 highway. The optional V-6 has more kick, but is MPG rating drop to 21 city, 31 highway. Standard features include adjustable power seats and a rearview camera.
List prices on the Camry range from $22,790 to $31,370.
The Volvo S60 has the happy combination of powerful engines and very good gas mileage. The base turbocharged four is rated for 25 MPG in the city and 37 highway.
A comfortable ride and attractive cabin design add to the attraction for reviewers. Focusing on safety as always, Volvo has equipped the S60 with a system that can brake automatically at low speeds to avoid hitting pedestrians. For families, the S60 has an option for a dual-screen rear-seat entertainment system.
List prices for the S60 reflect Volvo's status as a borderline luxury brand: $33,300 to $47,200. But even though that puts it above our $30,000 threshold, it's worth considering for what that extra money gets you.
Reviewers praise the Passat for the combination of being comfortable riding down the highway but also fun to drive along winding, hilly roads.
The base four-cylinder engine with automatic transmission is rated for 24 MPG in city driving, 36 on the highway. The turbodiesel version, known as TDI, also boasts good acceleration and a whopping 44 MPG rating for highway driving (30 city). Kelley Blue Book describes the Passat as having limousine-like rear seat leg room.
The list prices for the Passat range from $21,340 to $35,995.
This article originally appeared on CBS News.