Shopping for New Cars Vs. Used Cars in Colorado
A Look at The Advantages and Disadvantages of New or Used Cars in Colorado
Do you picture yourself in a sleek new car? Or a reliable used one that has a tried and true record? Luckily, there is no right or wrong answer to this age-old question. For prospective buyers, of new and used cars in Colorado, it all depends on what you want, what you need, and your budget. The sky is really the limit when it comes to answering the new vs. used question yourself.
But there are a few things you should know before making the big purchase, let’s take a look at the advantages and disadvantages to each.
New Car Advantages
There are some people out there who’ve never owned a used car. They won’t even consider buying used and only see the benefits of a new vehicle. And there are quite a few benefits:
- Latest Technology: Imagine owning a car that lets you pay for items – like Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Most new cars come with Bluetooth phone connectivity, so you can use your phone while driving and play the latest hits from your internet radio or satellite radio.
- Advanced Safety Features: Driver assistance technologies are coming out with the latest and greatest “must haves” almost every year! Things like autonomous emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, blind spot monitoring, and lane departure warning. Some of these are becoming standard fare for even the less expensive models of new cars.
- Fuel Efficiency: For people with an eye on the environment and their wallets, fuel economy gets better and better with each passing year. For example, even SUVs that are new will perform better than the gas guzzling models of past years. Fuel costs are a major part of a car’s total cost of overall ownership.
- Knowing The History: You’ll know what you’re getting upfront. No wear and tear, no accident history, and no old recalls hiding between your bumpers.
- Warranty: New vehicles come from the factory with a warranty for three years or 36,000 miles.
- Ease of Purchase: Buying a new car is easier than buying used. You are likely to find just what you want without much searching. Plus, if you want a different color or new features, your dealership can look around until you have the exact car of your dreams.
- Financing: Special financing incentives and lease deals can be found on new cars that aren’t typically found on pre-owned models.
New Car Disadvantages
Now, here’s the rub. New cars also come with some disadvantages. Let’s take them one-by-one.
- Money: Let’s get the obvious one out of the way first. You will pay more—and in most cases—much more for a new car. What’s worse is that the higher costs don’t stop with the price. You’re also looking at a higher sales tax and possibly higher insurance bill.
- Devaluation: New cars drop in value the second you drive off the lot. Some as much as 20%! That means you could find yourself upside-down on your car loan fairly quickly.
- Untested Models: Being one of the first people to own a particular model may feel “cool” but it can be a bit of a gamble. Sometimes new features are buggy and become plagued with recalls. While the safety of a warranty helps, it may be a hassle.
Used Cars Advantages
Buying a used car in Colorado, or anywhere with specific winter needs, has very real advantages.
- Money: The big one for just about anyone looking at a used car is the cost. You can now save thousands or tens of thousands on your vehicle. For many people, that means getting a few more bells and whistles than they could have purchased in a new car. It can also mean being able to fully winterize your car with the latest tires and accessories.
- Features: Buying used does not mean saying goodbye to cool features. If you are able to make the most of your budget by shopping for an older model, you are likely able to afford some pretty cool stuff. Navigation, leather seats, and more are all within your reach at a reputable used car dealer.
- Ownership Costs: Since the value of the vehicle will be lower, you’ll also save on your sales tax and insurance premiums. If you are financing, you’ll probably save in total interest payments!
- Tested: You will know a lot about your car before driving it home. You’ll know where there are potential problems, and you can avoid them. By the time a new model has been on the market for a couple of years, there will be some reliable information available that you can use to compare models. This is especially true when buying used cars in Colorado, the winters here can be hard on vehicles so it’s good to know how your car will stand up.
- CPOs: Certified used or certified pre-owned (CPO) cars are also an option. Consider them somewhere between buying a new car and buying used. Certified used cars are relatively new, have low mileage, and are sold by their brand’s dealership network. They have not been in a major collision, have been inspected, and refurbished by the dealer—all before going on the lot.
Used Cars Disadvantages
As with all major purchases, there are a few angles to consider. Here’s a look at some of the disadvantages of used car shopping.
- Leftovers: Depending on how well the previous owner took care of the car, you could be getting someone else’s discarded leftovers. It’s important to look at the car’s history before making the purchase. Carfax is a helpful site that can give you the inside track.
- Upfront Cost: There may be an inspection fee if you want to get the used car looked over. A pre-purchase inspection from an independent mechanic is a logical step to buying a used car. It can identify any significant issues—for a price.
- No Warranty: If the car is older than 3 years or past 36,000 miles, chances are there is no warranty. You may have an option to buy an extended warranty yourself, but that’s an extra cost.
- Missed Features: Buying a used car means you’ll have to be a bit flexible when it comes to features. If your heart is set on navigation, the model on the lot may not have it. Color choice is also limited.
The key to buying used is compromise. What are you willing to compromise for the advantages? If the answer is nothing—then a new car may be your best option. It all depends on where you are in your car buying journey. Take your time and find a dealer you trust to land the new or used car of your dreams.