Here’s the latest reader question, along with my reply!
Scott asks: Would you buy the first year of a new/heavily updated car? I’ve heard that it’s better to wait until the next year – by which time problems with the first year model will be known about and (hopefully) corrected?
My reply: There’s actually a better reason to wait until the second year – though the reason you’ve mentioned is a valid one. There’s always going to be a higher risk of something unexpected happening with a car that’s just been redesigned or which is “all new.” The manufacturers do a lot durability testing, but that doesn’t always screen for problems that end up going into production. Even if you don’t get the bill for this – because the car will be under warranty – it’s still a hassle. It defeats one of the main reasons for buying a new car – which is to not have to deal with a problem car.
And then there’s the other reason to wait a bit.
A new model – or a heavily updated one – is probably going to get a lot of attention from prospective buyers, especially if it’s a model that’s already popular. That makes them easier to sell – which makes it harder to negotiate a good deal. You have a much better chance of driving new car home if it’s a little old. The same car as last year’s car – just one calendar year newer.
If you don’t have to have to be the first on your block to have the latest thing, there’s a very good chance you’ll pay less for it.
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Got a question about cars, Libertarian politics – or anything else? Click on the “ask Eric” link and send ’em in!
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