Back in the days of KList I always used to say: unless you're a car dealer who buys and sells vehicles for a living, mambo ya resale wachana nayo. Simply go out there and buy the car that (you believe) best meets your needs.
Investing your half million without an exit strategy is blind investing. We have all had issues with cashflow and what comes to mind is what you can sell fast or use to secure a substantial loan. Thus, resale value counts a lot.
Again, you don't intend to drive your entry-level car for the rest of your life. You will to upgrade at some point. Resale value minimises your loss at that point.