We’ve been looking at replacing our very well traveled Toyota Prius so I started to research the best options for a new or used car for the family. We have never bought a new car and always chosen to purchase a used car in search of getting a better deal by buying a car a few years older that has depreciated but retains some of the factory warranty, so I just thought this was likely the way we were going to go this time around as well.
After much research and opinions I came to another conclusion which really surprised me…buying a used car (depending on the model) was often times more expensive that buying a brand new car. And in the cases where the used car offered some savings over new, the difference was only a few hundred dollars upwards of about $2,000.
Now considering that there are many unknowns to buying a used car such as how kind (or not) the previous owner was to the vehicle, maintenance, etc. and considering much of the factory warranty may have been used already, for the small savings you’d find, my preference would be the peace of mind of a new vehicle compared to the little bit extra I would have pay…and that is only in some cases.
For many models, such as a new Toyota Prius, it is actually cheaper to buy new than used! Have a look at Edmunds.com for a breakdown of over 60 models they compared buying new versus used. This handy little chart may just change your mind on buying new versus used for you next car…it definitely helped me make us my mind.
Now keep in mind the chart looked at used cars that were only one year old, so expect that you’d see some more savings for a car a couple of years old, or a touch older. But considering that interest rates are at all time low’s (this is why a new car of often cheaper than a used car), and the cost unknowns of repairs for a car purchased outside of a warranty, my take is that on overall basis the safer and cheaper bet is buying new…at least for now.