Useful Car Tips

Brand-New or Like-New: Do You Really Need the Latest-and-Greatest?

October 30, 2018
Buying a brand-new car is not something everyone can do these days. And yet automotive manufacturers continue to line dealership lots with fresh-off-the-line models. You’ve probably heard advice persuading you to steer clear of new cars because of things like depreciation, but is there really a good time to buy a new car? In this article, we’re going to talk about pros and cons of buying a new car and if purchasing an older model instead is a better choice. A lot of the deciding factors will depend on your financial situation and outlook. Priorities vary between purchasers, so we’ll leave it up to you to decide which is the right choice for you.

Your Long-Term Financial Goals

Buying a car right now means looking into the future. It’s true! Many people associate huge financial decisions with purchasing a house, but if you’re looking at a new car, you should turn that same attention to your auto loan. Paying off a car takes years at a time, unless you’re fortunate to have the cash to pay outright. In considering which year model to buy, think about your investment. How long will you be keeping your new car? Will you be selling it outright, trading it in, or passing it on to your children? The answers to these questions will help you decide how much to invest, and by extension, which year to buy.


If you don’t want to decide which vehicle to purchase right now, leasing may be a great option. You can experiment with a few models and see which ones you prefer. Making a decision about a car can be an overwhelming experience for some, so take the pressure off. Save the decision for a time when you feel more educated and confident.

Working out the Kinks

Many people prefer not to purchase the newest model year because they feel that there are too many variables within the car itself. Consider it uncharted territory or untested waters. What gizmos and gadgets work properly, and which are taking their first stumbling baby steps towards standardization? At the same time, models only a few years old may have some of these same issues. If parts haven’t changed in that short time, your maintenance and replacement costs may very well be identical. However, replacing your entire car—i.e., if it becomes totaled—won’t hurt you as much financially if you’ve got a few years of payments under your belt. The line between red and black will be easier to reach.

Personal Preference

In the end, it comes down to what you want and what you can afford. Drawing up a comparison chart between the newest model year and one 2-3 years old might end with you picking the newest car. Whatever reasons you choose, just be sure that you’re informed and educated about your decision. Vehicles are not something you can always get your investment back out of. The value truly lies in what your car does for you on a daily basis. Align your values with the model that best suits your tastes and you shouldn’t have any regrets after signing that paperwork.
Previous Article Next Article