For many people, the sedan is the perfect all-around car. A sedan will have enough room for a family of four, it will likely get good gas mileage, there should be plenty of space in the trunk, and the driving experience should be comfortable and relaxed.

Unless you have a specific reason to need a larger (or smaller) vehicle, you are unlikely to regret the decision to go with a sedan.

With that said, the decision of which sedan to choose is going to be slightly more complicated. As you already know, there are an incredible number of sedans to pick from today, each with its own combination of features and capabilities.

Most cars on the market today are built to a relatively high standard, so you don’t have to worry too much about picking a poor model. However, you do need to be concerned with finding something that is going to suit the needs of your family perfectly.

The Contenders

Following is a partial list of some of the top options on the sedan market in 2017. There are certainly more sedans available than just those listed below; however, these are some of the most-popular options that you will find as you browse local dealerships.

  • Toyota Camry
  • Honda Accord
  • Ford Fusion
  • Chevrolet Malibu
  • Mazda6
  • Nissan Altima
  • Audi A4
  • Mercedes Benz E-Class
  • Volkswagen Passat
  • Lincoln MKZ

Unless you would like to be shopping for a sedan for the next several months, you are going to want to pare down your list of options significantly before you ever head out to take some test drives. Fortunately, it should be relatively easy to cut down your list based on price and a couple of other important points. Once you have a list in hand of a few cars that you are considering, you can then get out in the ‘real world’ to see them for yourself.

The Safe Bets

If you are looking to purchase what most people would consider to be a ‘standard’ sedan – that is, one that has all the features you need, with practicality and reliability put above all else – you will likely want to pick one of the leaders in this segment. By opting for one of four cars – the Ford Fusion, the Honda Accord, the Toyota Camry, or the Chevrolet Malibu – you will pretty much be able to know exactly what you are getting. Incredible numbers of these vehicles are sold each year, and you don’t have to travel far down pretty much any road across the country to find one.

When you go in this direction, you will be getting a quality sedan for a fair price. The MSRP for the base model of all four of these cars comes in right around $22,000, give or take a few hundred bucks. Are you going to stand out on the road when you pick one of these popular options? No, not really – but that isn’t the point. These cars are all about getting the job done, and each can do that nicely.

Moving Up to First Class

You don’t have to break the bank these days in order to own a quality sedan – and that’s a good thing, to be sure. Any of the models in the previous section are likely to give you solid performance across the board, and each comes with a modest price tag in the lower trim levels. However, if your budget allows, you may wish to look for something a bit more luxurious. There are plenty of sedans offered today which fall into the category of a luxury car, including names like the Mercedes Benz E-Class, the Audi A4, and the Lincoln MKZ.

Of course, the word ‘luxury’ means different things to different people, and there is a wide range within this category as well. For instance, the Mercedes E-Class can easily run as much as $20K more than the Audi or Lincoln.

If you decide that you are going to be looking at the higher end of the market for your sedan, you will have to determine first where your budget is going to land before you can figure out which cars are within reach. In addition to the models listed previously, other luxury sedan contenders include options from BMW and Lexus.

Another Direction

If you would like to break away from the crowd that is the owners of Ford, Toyota, Chevy, and Honda sedans, but you don’t want to move your budget up into the stratosphere, it might be the Mazda6 that ultimately wins you over. Many car buyers agree that the 6 has the looks of a luxury vehicle, with a price tag that remains down in the low $20K range. Sure, this isn’t a luxury car in terms of the materials used or the features it includes, but it does have an appeal to the eye that isn’t commonly found in a standard sedan.

The other selling point for the Mazda6 that is worth your attention is the sporty way that this car drives. Nearly every Mazda model is complimented for its handling abilities, and this one is no different. Driving the Mazda6 just might make you feel like you went ahead and busted the budget on your sedan purchase, when you in fact made a perfectly reasonable and rational choice.

It is an exciting time to buy a new sedan, as there are plenty of worthy contenders vying for your money. If you want to pick up something affordable and reliable, you can do that with ease. Rather find a little more luxury and excitement in your driving experience? That is available as well – as long as you are willing to write the check.

As mentioned above, take some time to review the specs and prices of a number of sedan options in order to narrow your list before you hit the dealerships. After just a few test drives and some chatting with the sales people, you should have a great idea of which sedan it is that will earn your business.