New Vs Used Cars – Which Should You Buy?

When you finally make the decision to replace your car, the next question you will probably be asking yourself is ‘should I buy new or used?’. The new or used care dilemma has been around for as long as vehicles have existed and it never gets easier, to make matters worse, the annoying answer is there’s no single right answer. Instead, your decision as to whether to buy a new or used car will often rest on your answers to these 3 key questions. 


  1. What can you afford?
    One of the key reasons that most people choose to buy used over new is down to the initial purchasing cost. Used cars are almost always cheaper than new cars, which could give you access to a top of the range model that you were previously unable to afford. However, there are now many cheaper brand new cars available giving even people with very limited budgets access to a brand new car. Whether you can afford new or used will, therefore, come down to what kind of car you want to buy and the features you want it to have. 

  2. Do you want to take the depreciation hit? 

Another reason why many people are opposed to purchasing new cards is that they lose 20-30% of their value the moment they drive off the forecourt, with some depreciating by as much as 50% in the first 3 years.  Depreciation is the loss of a car’s value over time and is a hit that you will take on the head when it comes to trading in or selling your car later down the line. The key reason that a used car is often so much cheaper than a new car is simply down to depreciation. How do you feel about throwing this money away for the chance to drive the car in its first three years?

  1. Are you willing to put in the maintenance and repair that a used car may need?

One area that new cars always win on is with regards to the cost to maintain and repair them. Many new cars come with extended three-year warranties which cover the cost of all servicing and repairs, though this is a pretty safe bet on the manufacturers part as brand new cars shouldn’t experience any serious problems in this time. Used cars, however, often don’t come with such luxuries and depending on their age and mileage they may be approaching a time in their lives where things start to go wrong and there’s always the chance that you could be inheriting someone else’s problems or poor mechanical fixes. To minimise your chance of purchasing a problem vehicle always buy used cars from reputable used car experts such as Carlton Car Centre, and have them checked out by a knowledgable mechanic. 


Having weighed up what you can afford, whether you mind taking the depreciation hit and whether you are willing to put in the time and money that you may need to maintain and repair a used car, you should have a clearer answer as to which one to choose. 

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