Buying a car for the first time can be an overwhelming experience.
There’s so much to know and how to know what’s important.
With this article, we’ll take some of the mystery away from the car buying process.
We’ll focus on the car itself in this article because we’ve already covered topics such as new versus used, financing, loans, best first cars, and more. Many new car buyers don’t completely understand how things like engine power, miles per gallon, safety equipment, and reliability factor into making decisions about what to buy. Incredibly, some novice buyers put more importance on color as a decision factor than almost everything else.
When buying a car, the old adage that “you get what you pay for” usually applies. A less expensive car will more than likely have lower engine power, fewer safety features, and lower reliability than cars that cost more. But how important are those things?
Continue reading Your First Car – What’s Important?
One of the most frequent questions we hear from people who are buying a car is, “What is the most reliable car?” Or “What is the best new car?”
Obviously, these people are interested in getting the best, most dependable car for their money. They also realize that all car brands are not the same in terms of quality and reliability.
Fortunately for us as automotive consumers, Consumer Reports magazine puts out several car-related issues each year in which it publishes the results of vehicle reliability studies conducted with actual owners. The results are also posted on the company’s web site, which requires a subscription to view all the details.
In this years latest results, the Audi company came out on top . Subaru was ranked second, followed by Lexus, Porsche, and BMW for the top five spots
Toyota, which has ranked in the top five in years past has slipped to the #8 position this year. And Honda has fallen to the #10 spot.
Continue reading Most Reliable Car?
What Are the Best Cars to Buy?
There are literally thousands of combinations of different automobile types, makes, models, styles, and prices, which can make it difficult to choose which to buy. However, we will help you determine the perfect car for your needs.
What is a good first car? Which car is the best buy? Which is more reliable?
Which gets the best gas mileage? Should I buy a SUV or pickup? Which car is safer? Which is more economical?
Which is cheaper to insure?
What car should I buy as my first car?
If you were to ask this question and you gave no other information about yourself or what you wanted, we would suggest you buy either a Honda Accord or Toyota Camry, two of the most popular and most purchased cars in America. Both cars come in either a sporty 2-door coupe version or a 4-door sedan, and with a variety of engines, luxury features, and safety options. Both also offer gas-saving hybrid versions.
Continue reading What Car Should I Buy?
We answer questions from first-car buyers almost every day when we participate on the Yahoo! Answers web site in the Car Buying and Selling section. The majority of those questions come from teens and young adults who have little or no experience in buying, trading, or selling cars.
In the few years that we’ve been doing it, we have seen certain common questions come up over and over again. Some come up numerous times in a single day.
We thought we would post some of the most frequent questions here, and answer them just as we do on Yahoo! Answers.
Q. How many miles are too much for a used car? How many miles will I get from this used car?
A. All used cars are different. It’s not possible to say that a certain car of a certain age and of a certain brand that has 150,000 miles is a good car. It depends on how it has been driven and cared for. Some cars with only 50,000 miles are ready for the junk yard, while others with 150,000 miles are good for another 150,000. Even brands such as Honda and Toyota, that are known to be very reliable, can have serious high-mileage problems. Therefore, don’t make a purchase decision based on mileage alone. Get a professional mechanic to inspect your car before you buy. It’s the actual condition of the car, not mileage, that is important.
Continue reading First Car Questions
We see this question being asked frequently: “What is the best car to buy?”
Of course, the real answer as to what is the best car can vary, depending on your own personal needs, preferences, and finances. Some people place a great deal of importance on reliability. Others might think safety or cost is more important. And others might feel that the best car should have great looks and high performance.
Many people believe that to get the best car, you must spend a lot of money — that the best cars are the most expensive one. Strangely, this is just not true. Actually, some of the best cars are the least expensive — and some of the most expensive cars are the least reliable and the least efficient.
One of the best automobiles, overall, is the Honda Civic. Why? Because it has the most perfect combination of all the factors that most car buyers look for — cost, fuel efficiency, reliability, cost of operation, cost of insurance, style, performance, resale value, riding comfort, luxury features, and handling.
Continue reading What is the Best Car?
Of all the cars available to teenagers, which are the best first cars?
If you simply want the fastest answer to that question, without explanation, we would say the Honda Civic is the best all-around car for teens. The Toyota Corolla would be a close second.
If you don’t like the Civic or Corolla there are other cars with similar characteristics and different styling that might suit you better.
But what is it about the Honda Civic, Toyota Corolla, and similar models that make them great as a first car for teenage drivers?
First, they are economical — relatively inexpensive to buy, inexpensive to insure, and inexpensive to drive.
It doesn’t cost much to buy a new or relatively new Civic. Used models might be a little higher priced that other brands but that works in your favor too. When you get ready to sell or trade, Honda and Toyota vehicles hold their resale value better than most. Continue reading Best First Car for Teenagers
Even many experienced car buyers don’t know about the “secret” factory-to-dealer rebates given to dealers by car manufacturers.
Car companies often select certain models and styles for these rebates, and the selection can change from month to month.
Dealers can use factory-to-dealer cash (sometimes called “marketing support”) in almost any way they choose but most pass it along to customers in the form of price discounts. Some dealers might advertise the low prices (not the rebates themselves) or simply offer a discount to customers during the buying process. He may choose to give all or just some of the total rebate.
Most customers are not aware of which vehicles have factory-to-dealer rebates, or the amounts. Therefore, it is difficult to factor in those discounts in the negotiating process. However, our sister web site, Best Car Deals, provides such information. Some of these rebates are very large and represent a significant discount off of sticker price. This is particularly true for last year’s leftover models that dealers must sell in order to make room for this year’s incoming models.
If a dealer gets a factory rebate on a particular model and gives it to customers as a price discount, he still makes his usual profit on that car, even though customers may be getting a great deal. Smart customers will expect the dealer to contribute some of his usual profit as an additional discount — which makes an even better deal. In many cases, customers can buy a car for less than dealer invoice price, which is only possible if the car manufacturer is helping with the deal.
In summary, factory-to-dealer rebates can be a large factor in making new cars — especially first cars — more affordable. Look for vehicles with the largest factory-to-dealer rebates.
You can get free price quotes for any vehicle at Edmunds.com. The prices you get will contain any current price discounts and manufacturer incentives that are available.
As this is being written, this year, 2011, has become the best time to buy a new car in years. And 2012 looks to be even better.
In normal years, we would tell you that the best time to buy a car is when sales are slow at the end of the month, end or the year, or during vacation season. We would tell you that you might still have to negotiate your prices because dealers aren’t just going to give you a good deal because they like you.
BUT……..things are much different now. Sales have been slow for over a year and are still slow right now. As a result, we are now seeing some of the biggest and best car incentives on new cars that we’ve seen in years. Nearly every car manufacturer is now offering a combination of large factory-to-customer rebates, low-interest loan deals, 0% APR loans (even on long 72 month loans), special lease deals, free maintenance, and “secret” factory-to-dealer rebates that dealers usually give to customers.
Why has 2011 become such a good time to buy a car? Continue reading Good Time to Buy Car for Best Deals
It’s difficult to recommend cars since there are so many choices, and so many types of people and personalities who buy them. We all have different likes, dislikes, needs, and finances. If we were all the same, there would probably only be one car brand, in one model, and at one price.
There are many differences in cars. They are far from being the same. Although they all can get us from Point A to Point B well enough, that’s where the similarity ends. There are different types of vehicles to meet different needs: 4-door sedans, coupes, sports cars, SUVs, trucks, minivans, to name a few. There are differences in size, style, safety, riding comfort, reliability, performance, color, technology, and of course, price.
One of the most important things that automotive consumers can do now to make sure they select the best vehicle for their needs — that wasn’t available until about the last 15 years — is to do research online, on the Internet.
Continue reading What’s a Good Car To Buy?
The best selling cars are those that car buyers like best and buy most often. Given that most of those buyers do at least some research before they make a decision, they choose their cars wisely and make informed decisions. If other buyers don’t want to do the research and make their decisions based on what other buyers are choosing, that’s okay. They still end up getting great cars.
Although we will be talking about best-selling new cars here, the same cars are generally the best-selling used cars as well. Furthermore, we won’t talk about trucks, but suffice it to say that the Ford F150 pickup has been the best-selling vehicle of any type for years.
Before we present our list, let’s take a moment to discuss why some cars are super-popular and others not so much.
Generally, the best-selling cars are those that have the best combination of all the things that buyers are looking for — the optimal “package.” Smart buyers want good value, a reasonable price, quality construction, high reliability, good performance, a comfortable drive, adequate space for passengers and cargo, good styling, good fuel economy, modern features, an excellent safety rating, and maybe some luxury features. They also want a car that is reasonably inexpensive to insure, maintain, and repair.
Continue reading Hottest Cars – What Cars are Best Sellers?
I frequently visit the popular web site, Yahoo Answers, and answer questions about cars there. Many of the questions are from teens and other young people who are buying their first car.
One of the most common questions is, “What is a good first car?” or simply, “What is a good car?”
Sometimes the asker has already narrowed down his or her choices to a few makes and models but, more often, they simply don’t know and want some advice or suggestions.
It’s difficult to recommend a specific car to someone when you have no idea of their needs or preferences. But I usually suggest the popular Honda Civic as a good first car because it has a great combination of most of the things that buyers are looking for. It offers a lot of car for a relatively low price, whether it’s used or new. It’s very reliable and won’t be expensive to maintain. It has good gas mileage which makes it relatively inexpensive to drive. Insurance costs are low, compared to many other cars. It’s safe and comfortable. And its 4-cylinder engine provides peppy performance.
Although the Civic is a great car for a great price, it doesn’t fit everyone’s needs.
Continue reading What’s a Good First Car?
Many people know they need/want a new car but struggle with what car to buy. There are so many choices.
How does a person go about deciding what car is best for them?
There are actually a number of different approaches that be taken in making a decision.
One way is to simply do detailed research. This can take a lot of time and work depending how much you can narrow down your possible choice before you start. For example if you already know you want a Nissan, it’s just a matter of researching the various Nissan models, styles, options, specifications, and prices to find the one that best fits your needs. One of the best ways to do it is to visit the car company website. In this example, it would be www.nissanusa.com.
Another way is to start with a popular make and model as a first consideration — such as a Honda Accord or Toyota Camry — and decide what you don’t like or what you want different about those vehicles. Then research other makes and models for those characteristics. This is the approach we suggest in our article, What Car Should I Buy?
Continue reading What Car to Buy?