2015 Buick Encore
  • 2015 Buick Encore
  • Image Credit: Buick
2015 Chevy Trax
  • 2015 Chevy Trax
  • Image Credit: Chevrolet
2015 Honda Fit
  • 2015 Honda Fit
  • Image Credit: Honda
2015 Nissan Versa Note
  • 2015 Nissan Versa Note
  • Image Credit: Nissan
2015 Mazda3
  • 2015 Mazda3
  • Image Credit: Mazda
2015 Jeep Renegade
  • 2015 Jeep Renegade
  • Image Credit: Jeep
2015 Fiat 500
  • 2015 Fiat 500
  • Image Credit: Fiat
2012 Toyota Camry
  • 2012 Toyota Camry
  • Image Credit: Toyota
2013 Ford Fusion Energi
  • 2013 Ford Fusion Energi
  • Image Credit: Ford
2014 Lexus IS
  • 2014 Lexus IS
  • Image Credit: Lexus
Summer is here and the school season is winding to a close. That means millions of students will be graduating college and (hopefully) entering the workforce. For many, that will mean buying a new car suited to the new stage in life into which they will now be embarking. That can be a bewildering choice, especially for someone who's never bought a car before. Fortunately, Autotrader has come up with a short list of recommended cars – new and used – which it recommends to the graduating class of 2015.

Among the site's top choices are some compelling crossovers and hatchbacks, including the Buick Encore, Chevy Trax, and Jeep Renegade, as well as the Honda Fit, Nissan Versa Note, Mazda3 and Fiat 500. Can't stretch to buying new, or don't see the point? Autotrader has also identified the Toyota Camry, Ford Fusion and even the Lexus IS as smart buys in the certified pre-owned category.

"Any time someone goes through a major life change, such as graduating college, they need to determine if their current ride makes sense for their lifestyle, from both a financial and functional perspective," says Autotrader editor Brian Moody. "For example, while that hand-me-down SUV from your parents was nice when you turned 16, you may want to opt for a safer, more fuel-efficient car as you transition into the working world."
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Autotrader Names 10 Best Cars for Recent College Graduates

ATLANTA, May 28, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- For many, graduating college is a milestone like no other – it represents a new chapter, a proud accomplishment and, fortunately or unfortunately, financial independence. Luckily for graduates who are in the market for a new car to suit their post-college lifestyle, Autotrader's expert editors say now is a great time to make a purchase, as dealerships are flush with affordable models that are fun, fuel-efficient and thoughtfully designed.
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"Any time someone goes through a major life change, such as graduating college, they need to determine if their current ride makes sense for their lifestyle, from both a financial and functional perspective," said Brian Moody, site editor for Autotrader. "For example, while that hand-me-down SUV from your parents was nice when you turned 16, you may want to opt for a safer, more fuel-efficient car as you transition into the working world."

Autotrader's picks for best cars for recent graduates include models that are not only affordable and fuel efficient, but also have desirable technology features and stylistic appeal. The list includes:
- 2015 Buick Encore
- 2015 Chevrolet Trax
- 2015 Honda Fit
- 2015 Nissan Versa Note
- 2015 Mazda3
- 2015 Jeep Renegade
- 2015 FIAT 500
- CPO Toyota Camry
- CPO Ford Fusion
- CPO Lexus IS

Recognizing that some new graduates will be lucky enough to receive a new car as a graduation gift, Moody advises parents to be cautious when shopping for a car for someone else.

"Make sure you're buying your son or daughter the car they really need and want, not just the one with the best fuel economy or the safety features you desire," said Moody. "Rather than surprising them with the gift, let them test drive a variety of models so they can determine their must-haves, which may be different from yours."

For more information on the editors' picks for best cars for graduates, visit: http://www.autotrader.com/research/article/best-cars/239647/10-best-cars-for-recent-college-grads.jsp

About Autotrader
Created in 1997, Atlanta-based Autotrader is the Internet's ultimate automotive marketplace. As a leading resource for car shoppers and sellers, Autotrader aggregates millions of new, used and certified pre-owned cars from thousands of dealers and private sellers and provides expert articles and reviews. Autotrader, which also operates the AutoTraderClassics.com auto marketing brand, is wholly owned by Cox Automotive. Additionally, Cox Automotive owns Kelley Blue Book(KBB.com®), Manheim Auctions as well as companies that provide a full suite of software tools that help dealers and manufacturers manage their inventory and advertising online: vAuto®, HomeNet Automotive®, VinSolutions®, Xtime®, AIS Rebates™, Genius Labs® and Haystak® Digital Marketing. Cox Automotive is a subsidiary of Cox Enterprises. For more information, please visit http://press.autotrader.com.

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