New Cars vs. Used Cars – Which Is Right for You?
Everyone wants to be able to head to a dealership and drive off with a brand new car. Buying new has become incredibly popular, thanks in large part to savvy marketing campaigns on the part of today’s automakers. However, new cars are certainly a significant investment and will cost you a lot more than a used vehicle. Which is right for your needs – a new car or a used car? Actually, this can be a pretty complicated question. Let’s look at some of the factors you’ll need to consider when you start car shopping.
First, we’re going to look at the benefits of buying a new car. Heading down to the dealership and financing that shiny new vehicle gives you quite a few advantages, including the original manufacturer’s warranty, which is usually much more comprehensive than aftermarket warranties (though this is not always true). You’ll also find that buying new ensures that you have less maintenance to worry about, at least right off the bat. While you’ll have to deal with oil changes and tire rotations, those will likely be all you need to concern yourself with for some time.
Of course, buying a new car also offers some significant peace of mind. After all – it’s a new car. That means you don’t have to worry that you’re going to get stuck with someone else’s problems. If you do have an issue, most dealerships offer some type of roadside assistance (either through the dealership or direct from the manufacturer).
In addition, new cars have their downside, including significant deprecation the second you drive it off the lot (it effectively because a used car). Other cons include paying a much higher price for your vehicle than you would if you bought a used car.
Now that we’ve covered new cars, let’s look at buying a used car. There are some pretty impressive benefits to be found here, as well. Of course, the most prominent advantage you’ll find is that you don’t have to pony up nearly as much cash for that car. In fact, you can often find nearly new cars and certified pre-owned cars at a fraction of the cost for the same car in new condition. That helps your bank account stay happy and healthy.
In addition to paying less money, you might be able to enjoy some warranty protection as well. Many automakers are now offering very long manufacturer’s warranties, and these will transfer to a second owner. You can also supplement that protection by purchasing an aftermarket warranty that will cover anything the manufacturer’s warranty doesn’t (powertrain warranties ONLY cover the powertrain, for instance).
If you’re a savvy shopper, you can actually buy used cars that are practically new. For instance, program cars might be available to you. These come with low miles, and are usually gently used – they’re just being retired from the program and can’t be sold as new. Of course, you can also find some very good deals on used cars from drivers who like to trade up frequently.
Buying used does come with some important caveats, though. First, make sure you only buy used cars where you have a full vehicle history present. You should also make sure to have the vehicle professionally inspected before signing on the dotted line. Take it to a trusted mechanic and have them give it a thorough once over to make sure you’re getting what you pay for.
Both new and used cars can be good purchase options, and your ultimate decision should be based on your needs and your budget.
Don Elfrink is the owner and operator of AutoMatStore, an auto flooring company based out Columbia, Missouri. Before AutoMatStore Elfrink was the operator of a automotive production site. AutoMatStore focuses on all-weather, logo, carpeted and molded car mats.