What you can drive for $23,000

7 great rides from sporty to practical

You crunch the numbers just like we suggest and discover you can only afford to spend $23,000 on a new car or truck. With the average transaction price for new vehicles running well over $30,000, you're worried that you're going to wind up with a cheap, disappointing ride. Well, stop.

There are lots of great new cars and trucks that fall within your budget. They range from sporty to practical and come packed with more features than you probably expect. Our seven favorites are within $500 of your $23,000 spending limit, based on the manufacturer’s suggested retail price for 2013 models, including destination fees.

You could easily wind up paying less by taking advantage of rebates or other discounts such as state and federal tax credits on hybrid models. So put one of these in your garage, and you'll have affordable transportation that fits your lifestyle.