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Author: ziggy29 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 310324  
Subject: Re: Poll: New car or used? Date: 8/9/2012 11:56 AM
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>> Yeah, I chose "I only buy new" but I suppose it's because I think that almost new cars don't seem to be discounted much these days. Maybe I should have said depends on the deal, because it does, and maybe in a different economy 1-2 year old cars would be a better option. <<

The "buy a 1-2 year old car and let someone else take the 30% hit for driving it off the lot" strategy has largely become a victim of its own success. It worked so well and became so popular that the demand for these cars shot up and in many cases -- especially for Hondas and Toyotas for for some other makes and models as well -- the depreciation scale is almost linear (i.e. it doesn't fall off a cliff in the first year or 10K miles like it used to.)

When the depreciation is nearly linear, to me buying new usually makes more sense, especially when there are considerable factory incentives in place. You get the full warranty, and you don't have to wonder whether the vehicle was used/maintained well by its previous owners.

So really, it depends on what I'm looking for, whether there are good incentives in place for new cars and what the current market conditions are for new versus nearly-new. But nearly-new isn't the automatic "slam-dunk" choice it used to be.

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