There are pros and cons for buying both new and second hand cars and your decision will often be swayed by the importance you place on the various advantages and disadvantages. Below are some of the major factors to consider.
You’ve bought a brand spanking new car and are just about to drive it off the forecourt. The trouble is as soon as you drive it away it then becomes a ‘used car’ and, as such it starts to depreciate in value immediately. In fact, it’s estimated that a brand new car loses approximately 40 per cent of its value within 3 years, although this is just an overall average figure and some models do tend to retain their value far longer than others. Therefore, when you buy a used car, someone else has copped for the vast bulk of the depreciation so you don’t lose out anywhere near as much when buying used.
Both new and used cars come with additional costs. For the new car owner, it will possibly come with higher insurance premiums, registration etc. whilst with a used car; you’ll incur more costs for repairs and replacement parts that have become worn over time.
Although some dealers will still offer some kind of limited warranty on a used car, they won’t be as comprehensive as for those who are buying new and, if you buy from a private seller, you’re not likely to get any kind of warranty at all.
As a particular model of a car becomes more well known, drivers get accustomed to understanding just how well (or, in some cases, badly) each model tends to perform over time. They get to understand each model’s quirks, their strengths and weaknesses etc. and this is all very useful information when considering what kind of used car might suit you in terms of performance and reliability. Some people heavily rely on consumer reports of defects and problems with certain models when choosing a used car whereas when buying a new model that has recently been introduced onto the market, there are not a lot of readily available consumer reports to go on and you’re having to pay out a lot of money for a new model with not much more than hope, expectation and the manufacturer’s reputation to rely on.
Although the tendency would be to think that a new car has to be more reliable than a much older used vehicle, this is not always the case and some older models can prove to be extremely reliable and durable. However, that said, only by buying new can you be sure of how the car has been treated and looked after.
Although many used car owners are, rightfully, proud of their purchase despite the fact that somebody else has owned it previously, many would argue that there’s simply nothing like owning a brand new car in mint condition.
Up until a few years ago, many car owners would argue that buying a brand new car as opposed to a used one would be far safer due to the increased emphasis on the car manufacturers to install safety features. However, with some of these safety measures having been standard for a number of years now, many used cars today are equally as safe as a new one, providing the car has been looked after.