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Whatever your needs are for a vehicle, one aspect that's hard to compromise on is its appearance. There are too many cars that have excellent functionality or fun performance, but is a letdown when it comes to style. However, there's a car in every category that stands out from the competition solely by the way it looks. Whether you prioritize seating capacity, fuel efficiency, or off-road prowess, these cars are budget-friendly options that look more expensive than they actually are.
  1. 2016 Honda Civic – MSRP $18,640: 2016 Honda Civic Coupe The utilitarian Honda Civic has never been an example of modern, exciting styling – until now. Completely redesigned for 2016, the Civic maintains it's approachable starting price and legendary reliability, but wraps it all up in attractive new sheetmetal. A combination of sharp lines and rounded curves come together to form a sleek, fastback profile. LED headlights are functional and cool, with equally sharp-looking taillights out back. The Civic's styling has come a long way over its history, and the new sedan, coupe, and hatchback body styles are hands-down the best looking versions yet.
  2. 2016 Mazda CX-3 – MSRP $19,960: 2016 Mazda CX-3 Small in size but big on style, the CX-3 is one of the best examples of Mazda's "Kodo" design language. It's got great proportions that give it a muscular presence, but remains compact enough to fit into tight parking spots. The design is clean and simple, yet still packed with distinctive details like a wide chrome grille, fast-looking lines, and blacked out support pillars that create the look of wrap-around glass. If you're looking for a vehicle that's stylish, practical, and still fun to drive, the CX-3 offers all at a great price point.
  3. 2016 Chevrolet Colorado - MSRP $20,995: 2016 Chevrolet Colorado Trucks are great for their utility, but usually look like bricks on wheels – there's just not a lot going on in terms of style. Enter the Chevrolet Colorado, a compact truck that's as capable as it is good-looking. It's not as slab-sided as other pickups, with smooth wheel arches and sloping lines that give it a more refined appearance. But it's still tough: the Colorado's high ride height, knobby tires, and bold grille make you know it means business. And when business calls, there's a spacious bed for hauling everything you need to a job site or into the wilderness.
  4. 2017 Ford Mustang - MSRP $24,645: 2016 Ford Mustang The Ford Mustang is the quintessential pony car, and there's no question that the 2017 model is the best-looking version in decades. Even though it's been on the road for a few years, it still looks great, with styling inspired by great European sports cars. The Mustang still retains signature style elements like wide wheel arches, three-element taillights, and performance-enhancing vents galore. Power is sent to the rear wheels, independent suspension aids handling, and a variety of engine options provide brisk acceleration. But simply based on styling alone, the 2017 Mustang is set to be as much of a classic as the 1965 original.
  5. 2017 Toyota Prius - MSRP $24,685: 2016 Toyota Prius Put aside your pretenses for a moment and take in the styling of the new Toyota Prius. While it's up to you to decide if it looks futuristic or hideous, it's clear that Toyota designers made sure this is the most design-packed Prius yet. The body has complex surfacing going on at the end of the A-pillar, along the bottom of the doors, and above the rear wheel arches. The split headlights are very unique, and a bright curving strip of LEDs in the taillights catches your eye in the dark. While it's not a sports car by any stretch, if maximizing MPG is your goal, the 2017 Prius offers that in a unusual and style-packed body.
  6. 2017 Fiat 124 Spider - MSRP $24,995: 2017 Fiat 124 Spider Fiat revived their classic 124 Spider for 2017, and it shares a lot of the design cues that made the original great. It's got perfect sports car proportions with a long, low front end and shapely rear that suggest its rear-wheel drive layout. The double bulges on the hood are a nod to those on the 1970's original, and a wide mesh grille is aggressive and functional. Step up to the Abarth trim level and you'll get new bumpers, quad , and matte black body panels to push the sporty look even further. Other Italian sports cars run in the hundreds of thousands of dollars, but the Fiat 124 Spider offers an evocative look at a great price.
  7. 2017 Chrysler Pacifica - MSRP $28,595: 2017 Chrysler Pacifica Buying a minivan is usually a decision of necessity, not a pursuit of passion. However, if you have to drive one, the new Chrysler Pacifica is the most stylish option out there. While there's nothing svelte about it, the Pacifica has a modern design full of cohesive details. The head and taillights have prominent LED strips that stand out in the dark, and the mesh grille hints at a little bit of sportiness. A curved piece of chrome trim on the lower front bumper and sharp creases on the hood add some nice complexity. Overall the Pacifica is a classy van that would look just as good rolling up to soccer practice or the red carpet.
  8. 2017 Infiniti QX30 - MSRP $29,950: 2017 Infiniti QX30 Infiniti went to great lengths to make their new QX30 crossover look exceptional, going so far as to develop new manufacturing processes for the car's deeply recessed details. The car's body flows together, but the pointed headlights, chrome-trimmed grille, and subtle spoiler add aggression to the organic design. The trim around the windows ends in a kink, giving the XQ30 further distinction. The crossover segment is the fastest-growing in the automotive market, and the QX30 is one of the best-designed vehicles in its class.
  9. 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee - MSRP $29,995: 2016 Jeep Grand Cherokee Rugged and handsome, the styling of the Jeep Grand Cherokee is fitting for its off-road capabilities. It carries hallmarks of Jeep design like the seven-slat grille and still looks modern after a few years on the market. The headlights are lined by a strip of LEDs that add additional presence to the bold front end. It's clearly off-road focused, with squared wheel arches for plenty of suspension travel, and a high ride height to let it clear rocks and roots. While the Grand Cherokee would look great covered in dirt on a remote trail, low-key chrome trim all around the body give it flash that helps it stand out on city streets.
  10. 2017 Kia Cadenza - MSRP $32,000 (est.): 2017 Kia Cadenza Kia's Cadenza sedan has been completely redone for 2017, and seriously outshines its predecessor. Its understated look draws you further in the more you look at it, with cool details like Z-shaped elements in the head and taillights, plus additional LED light clusters on the lower bumper. The narrow grille's concave shape adds depth, while multi-spoke wheels give complexity to the otherwise simple design. The Cadenza's long, low proportions are amplified by a character line that runs down the side of the car, aided by the window line's tapering shape. If you're looking for a big, comfortable, reliable luxury sedan that won't force a second mortgage, the Cadenza is worth a look.
When it comes to style, it's usually the case that the better something looks, the more it costs. These cars prove that there are options out there that won't break the bank and still can turn heads. No matter what kind of vehicle fits your lifestyle best, there's something on this list that will fit your budget.

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