There are pros and cons to getting
a new car or a used car (a.k.a. pre-owned). Cars last longer today than they did
1015 years ago in part due to competition to make reliable cars. Some areas to
Not previously owned so it's likely to not give you problems after you have driven it away
from the dealer.
Even if a car looks great, there may be hidden problems waiting to happen.
Comes with full manufacturer's warrantee.
No warrantee or limited short warrantee. You can however get a 3rd party extended
warrantee for quite possibly a reasonable cost (also available for new cars).
Price is easier to determine.
It can be difficult to determine the real worth of a used car.
You get the options you want.
Less control of the options unless there are abundant choices of the model you want.
No need to check the car's history since you would be the first owner.
If you are concerned about the history, you'll need to check on it. Carfax.com can provide the details.
Price for a new car is expensive. You will pay considerably more. As soon as you drive the
car off the lot, it depreciates about 10% or more in total worth if you were to resell it
shortly afterward. Check pricing at Edmunds.com.
You can save considerably by getting a 2 or 3 year old car. Many recent models made just
23 years ago are still in great shape, similar in functional value and design, and
you stand to save 30-40% or more in cost. The only exception to the value might be if the
new car has just undergone a major redesign (which could be used as a negotiating point to
lower the cost of a used car). Cars change very little between major redesigns. Check
pricing at Edmunds.com.
No need to have a professional determine if the car needs immediate repair work.
You may want to ensure that the car does not require extensive repair work by hiring a
mechanic to look at the car. Dealerships usually will not let you take the car, but
individual owners are more agreeable about allowing a checkup by mechanic.
The bottom line is that there is more work involved when checking out a used car if you
want to ensure that the car is worth the price being asked for and whether or not it's a
car you should even consider. However the price difference can make the used car a great
More often than not, a late model Japanese used car will likely have a
marginally better reliability rate. American made late model used cars are designed better
these days, but the percentages still favor Japanese made cars as a category. Individual
models however can range quite differently and you may in fact find an American made that
is better than some Japanese makes.
Check your car guide like Consumer Reports. Consumer Reports is one of the most
non-biased reports in existence today because they do not accept paid advertisements and
endorsements for their reports.