There’s nothing quite like the feeling of driving a brand new car off a dealership lot. It’s not just that new car smell that makes it exhilarating – it’s the sensation of coming home with the latest and greatest in automotive design and technology. With the economy in the midst of a long and shaky recovery, there’s never been a better time to buy new. Loan rates are the most favorable they’ve been in years and many manufacturers are offering a number of promotions and extended warranties to woo new customers. The advantages of owning a new vehicle are undeniable. New cars have a much longer lifespan than used vehicles and are more reliable to boot. And if a problem does happen to arise in the first few years of ownership, the warranty that new cars come with will cover it.
There are also the features to consider. New vehicles come equipped with all sorts of modern bells and whistles that you’re unlikely to find on older cars, like center console airbags, motion detecting backup cameras and more. If you’re into creature comforts, you won’t find a bigger bang for your buck than you will with a new vehicle.
However, these reliable components and cool features aren’t going to come cheap. Buying a new vehicle will cost you several thousand dollars more than it would to buy a used version of the same model. This is by no means a deal breaker, but the higher premium does mean that buyers need to their homework before signing off on a loan to ensure that they’re making a good investment.
Since research can be tricky, we’ve created this buying guide to help lead you through the process. Over the next few pages, we’ll cover all of the major obstacles you’ll face and the decisions you’ll need to make when buying a new vehicle. We’ll teach you how to pick out a car, how to talk down the sticker price and how to find the best financing for it when you decide to buy. So if you’re on the market for a new vehicle, grab a pen and paper and get ready to take notes. We’ll start with an overview on what you should be looking for in a new vehicle.
The Table of Contents
- 1 Introduction
- 2What To Look For In A New Car
- 2.2Interior Features
- 2.3Exterior Features
- 2.4The Drive Train
- 2.5The Engine
- 2.6The Transmission
- 2.7The Powered Axles
- 2.8Front Wheel Drive (FWD)
- 2.9Rear Wheel Drive (RWD)
- 2.10Four Wheel Drive (4WD)
- 2.11All Wheel Drive (AWD)
- 2.12A Note on Alternative Fuel Vehicles
- 2.13The Automaker
- 2.14Cost of Ownership
- 3How To Negotiate Prices
- 3.1Do Your Research
- 3.2Check Kelly Blue Book, Edmunds and the NADA Guide
- 3.3Check Other Local Dealerships
- 3.4Investigate Promotions
- 3.5The Newest Cars Have the Least Wiggle Room
- 3.6Negotiating the Price
- 3.7Set Your Floor and Ceiling
- 3.8Make an Offer
- 3.9Make a Counter-Offer
- 3.10Fend off the Gimmicks
- 3.11Seal the Deal or Walk Away
- 3.12A Note on Additional Services
- 4How To Finance A New Vehicle
- 4.1Can You Pay in Cash?
- 4.2How Much Should You Put Down?
- 4.3Who Should Lend You Money?
- 4.4A Dealer Loan
- 4.5A Bank Loan
- 4.6A Credit Union Loan
- 4.7What Type of Loan Should You Get?
- 4.8Double Check and Then Sign