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What's the Best Age of a Used Car to Purchase?

What’s the Best Age of a Used Car to Purchase?

Many factors need to go into a car purchase, whether it’s a new or used car. While buying a used car is financially reasonable, it doesn’t always guarantee the quality of the purchase. Is the car mileage worth your money? Regardless of your reasons for purchasing a used car, mileage and depreciation are critical considerations. This blog highlights the proper age to buy a used car in Tucson, AZ, and the environs.

Depreciation Works on a Curve

Generally, depreciation works differently for new and used cars. For starters, a new car depreciates faster than a used car. A new car loses 9-11% of its value immediately after you drive it from the dealership. Subsequently, the average car loses 20% of its value within the first year. After the first 12 months, the car loses about 15-25% of its value yearly for five years. The car’s depreciation happens after that period but is much slower.

The Best Time to Buy a Used Car

Purchasing a used vehicle that is 2-3 years old means that you are getting a relatively new car in good condition without being affected heavily by depreciation. However, you stand a chance to save even more if you purchase an older car. An older car (5 years and above) is likely to have lost 60% of its value, making it a convenient age to buy a used car in Tucson, AZ.

What Factors Affect Depreciation?

Different car models generally depreciate at varying speeds. For example, a luxury sports car has a higher depreciation rate since car buyers usually go for the newer models. On the other hand, reliable vehicles such as the Toyota Tacoma, Jeep Wrangler, and Nissan Frontier have some of the slowest depreciation rates.

Recalled vehicle models or cars with a reputation for costly repairs and maintenance also have an extremely high depreciation rate. Despite getting a great deal and bargaining on a particular car model, ensure you consider the ongoing repair costs.

Consider the Cost of Servicing and Maintenance

Generally, modern vehicles are still reliable when aging. A typical five-year-old vehicle costs way less in repairs than a ten-year-old car. While the average five-year-old vehicle is likely to suffer significant damage every 2-3 years, the average ten-year-old will most likely face considerable damage every 18-20 months.

Consider More than the Car’s Sticker Price

Additional safety features give newer models a competitive advantage over older ones. The best model year to buy a used car would be the 2012 model, when superb safety features entered the auto industry and redefined cars. These features include electronic stability control, side curtain airbags, and backup cameras.

In addition, newer cars have better mileage, thus helping your long-term savings goals. More importantly, more recent models have more gadgets and improved style choices.

What You’re Looking for in a Used Car

What is the most crucial factor to consider when purchasing a used car? Below are some practical tips and considerations for when buying a used vehicle:

  • Future resale value
  • Car features and specs
  • Value for your money
  • Low upfront costs
  • Low running costs.

These factors affect the price of a used car before purchasing it.

How Old Should a Used Car Be?

If you are looking for a great used car bargain, ensure you buy a car as old as you are comfortable driving around. Also, ensure the vehicle is in good condition and reflects proper care from its previous owner. Unfortunately, you can’t always get such a good bargain by purchasing new or relatively new cars.

Remember that most modern safety features aren’t available in older models. Therefore, the proper model year to buy a used car should be a 2012 model at the very highest.

Cactus Auto Sales has got you covered if you want to buy a used car in Tucson, AZ. Contact us To help you find a well-priced and maintained used car in Tucson, AZ, and the surrounding towns.

Image Source: clean_fotos | GettyImages

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