The biggest reasons for choosing new over used are that the new vehicle offers greater selection and control of the features, a better warranty, and a car that will potentially last well beyond the financing period and the one factor most people consider when choosing new over used; buying a used car may mean buying someone else's problems.
New Cars Offer Greater Selection of Makes, Models, and Features
Buying a used car often means sacrificing one feature for another. For example you may find the shade of red you are looking for, but the car’s interior is a color you hate. Or, you find the truck with the off-road package you want, but it doesn’t have the leather interior and power package you hoped for.
Buying a new car will likely give you the option of choosing the exact car and features you want. New car dealers can almost always get the exact make, model, color, and options package you want.
When buying used cars you have less control of these factors, you are subject to what is on the lot or listed on craigslist™ or the local newspaper. This means that you will either be forced to settle for what is available or wait very patiently for the right car with the right features to become available.
New Cars May Offer a Longer Relationship
Buying a new car may be your best bet if you plan to keep it at least four to six years. This is a factor to consider because when buying used you are getting a vehicle with a shortened potential life span.
These days you can count on a new car to remain reliable for at least four to six years and this is also the normal financing period for most new cars. This leads directly into the next consideration – warranty.
New Cars Offer Free Factory Warranties
One huge benefit of buying new is that nearly every manufacturer offers a free factory warranty. These warranties range from the low-end of 3 years and 36K miles to 10 years and 100K miles. Factory warranties are a great way to ensure your vehicle will last as long as the payments.
Used cars don’t offer “factory warranties” and any warranties you get on used cars normally come at a premium.
Buying Someone Else’s Problems
The biggest draw back for used car buyers is the fact that buying used potentially means buying someone else’s headaches. Whether it’s a squeaky noise under the dash, a tear on the driver’s seat, worn brakes, a dying alternator, or something more expensive – like engine or transmission problems – buying used can often lead to added expenses or nagging nuisances.
You never know how the previous owner treated your car before you buy it. Even catchy phrases like “previously loved” don’t offer the same assurance as a new car fresh from the factory does.
While there are equally good reasons to buy to used vehicles, for many the best option is buying new. But either way you go, be sure to take another person with you when car shopping. Many of us get far too excited in the car show room. This never ends well. Having an advisor along to be your check and balance, to ask the questions you may forget in the heat of the moment can save you from yourself.