Buying a car is not a one-time payment. Too often, people don't think about how much it costs to own a car over its lifetime. Between gas, depreciation, maintenance and other expenses, you'll continue to sink money into your vehicle for a long time after you pay for it at the dealership.

The reality is that you should absolutely factor these costs into you purchasing decision. After all, one car may seem affordable solely based on its sticker price. But taking these long-term costs into account could quickly make it a much more expensive piece of machine that you thought.

Consumer Reports recently released the results of a study that showed the cars that cost the least to own over time, factoring in depreciation, fuel costs, loan interest, insurance premiums, sales tax, and maintenance and repairs. Click through to see the cars that are the cheapest to own in their respective segments, according to testing, and find out which cars can save you money over the long term.
Sticker Price: $19,080 - $23,360
Invoice Price: $18,127 - $21,746
Fuel Economy: 53 mpg City, 46 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $24,600

The little brother of the Toyota Prius, the Prius c enjoys a very low cost of ownership, given its stellar fuel economy, reliability and low rate of depreciation. It may not be the most exciting car on the market, but it's not going to give you any problems and will take you a long ways on a single tank of gas.

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Toyota Prius c Overview
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Sticker Price: $24,200 - $30,005
Invoice Price: $22,748 - $27,930
Fuel Economy: 51 mpg City, 48 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $28,200

The Toyota Prius is essentially synonymous with the word "hybrid" these days, outselling every other green car by a huge amount. The Prius is super fuel efficient and versatile, making it a solid option for almost everyone, whether you're single and living alone or have a family. Low fuel economy costs and reliability help keep the cost of Prius ownership low.

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Sticker Price: $26,140 - $28,625
Invoice Price: $24,049 - $26,336
Fuel Economy: 43 mpg City, 39 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $31,800

Boasting the room and versatility of a midsize sedan in conjunction with great fuel economy and reliability, it's no surprise that the Toyota Camry Hybrid -- the variation of the best-selling passenger car in America -- doesn't cost much to own.

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Sticker Price: $35,555 - $41,400
Invoice Price: $32,000 - $37,260
Fuel Economy: 40 mpg City, 39 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $41,400

Seeing a pattern? Toyota vehicles are apparently the cheapest brand of vehicle to own in general. According to Consumer Reports, the Avalon Hybrid is the least expensive large car to own, due to its low fuel costs and reliability. The Avalon also has a great, quiet interior that can rival some luxury cars.

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Toyota Avalon Hybrid Overview
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Sticker Price: $39,500
Invoice Price: $37,000
Fuel Economy: 40 mpg City, 39 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $42,000

The Lexus ES 300h is the hybrid take on the successful Lexus ES 350. Fuel economy is great and deprecation is low, making this luxury hybrid easy to own. Buyers are also rewarded with a great interior that cuts out road and wind noise, even at highway speeds.

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Lexus ES 300h Overview
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Sticker Price: $22,790
Invoice Price: $21,174
Fuel Economy: 22 mpg City, 31 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $34,800

The Honda Civic Si is a super fun, affordable coupe. It also has the lowest cost of ownership in the sporty car category, according to Consumer Reports. The Si has some faults with its lackluster interior and rather loud ride, but its handling and acceleration is superb. Shoppers looking for an inexpensive thrill should give this a shot.

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Honda Civic Si Overview
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MSRP: $21,995 - $24,495
Invoice: $20,876 - $23,178
Fuel Economy: 23 mpg City, 30 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $34,200

The XV Crosstrek is an interesting vehicle in that it's kind of a souped up Subaru Impreza. With all-weather capability and very distinctive styling, this new small SUV may fly under the radar for many car shoppers, but we think it's a great choice. Subaru has a great track record for reliability and safety, making its cost of ownership quite low.

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Subaru XV Crosstrek Overview
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Sticker Price: $24,950 - $32,400
Invoice Price: $23,964 - $30,706
Fuel Economy: 20 mpg City, 27 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $36,600

The Hyundai Santa Fe Sport is one of our favorite crossovers on the market right now. It has a great interior, excellent styling and can be had for less than much of its competition. Its utility, safety and cheapness to own make and even stronger case for this vehicle.

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Hyundai Santa Fe Sport Overview
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Sticker Price: $30,795 - $43,255
Invoice Price: $29,563 - $40,660
Fuel Economy: 17 mpg City, 24 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $51,000

The Chevrolet Traverse is a nice eight-passenger large SUV, well-suited for active families. Cost of ownership in this category is generally quite high, given these big cars burn a lot of gasoline. The Traverse is the least objectionable, with a five-year cost of ownership of $51,000, according to estimates from Consumer Reports.

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Sticker Price: $22,100 - $34,950
Invoice Price: $20,330 - $32,155
Fuel Economy: 28 mpg City, 35 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $37,800

This not-so-mini Mini has the lowest cost of ownership in the compact luxury SUV segment, according to Consumer Repots. The Countryman is fuel efficient, comfortable and a blast to drive, though reliability tends to be an issue for the BMW-owned British brand. Trunk space is also cramped, limiting its versatility as a crossover.

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Sticker Price: $38,890 - $48,465
Invoice Price: $36,946 - $46,042
Fuel Economy: 17 mpg City, 24 mpg Highway

Cost Over First Five Years: $54,600

The Buick Enclave has the lowest cost of ownership out of all midsize and large luxury SUVs. Fuel efficiency is generally pretty bad in this category, but the seven-passenger Enclave gets a decent 24 mpg on the highway, which helps to keep costs down. This SUV is comfortable, roomy and comes with a very nice interior.

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