Car Buying Tips – New Cars – Used Cars

Car Buying Tips

Car Buying Tips

Welcome to Car Buying Tips and Car Buying Guide here at – With useful information on used cars and new cars, customers can be well informed and therefore make the right decisions. Here, you will find articles that will help you on buying brand new or used cars. The posts that you will find here will surely be helpful should your decide to purchase a vehicle now or later. Aside from articles about the guides on buying a car, you will also find other helpful tips about negotiations on price, car warranties and more related to both new cars buying tips and used cars buying tips.


Buying New Car


Intro to Buying New Cars

If You Know Their Rules … You Can Play Their Games
l. lntroduction
To be a smart car, van, or pickup buyer you need three things:
1. An understanding of the automotive selling business:
• How a dealership operates
• Their selling strategies
• Their ploys and games
2. A basic strategy designed to help you buy the right vehicle at the lowest price possible
3. The determination not to be intimidated by the process
We can help you with the first two, but the third you’re going to have to supply. Hopefully, once you’ve read this book, your knowledge of the car business will give you the confidence to take charge of and remain in control of virtually any car, van, or pickup truck buying situation.
Buying Is Negotiating
Unless you plan to walk into a dealership and pay the asking price for a vehicle, every buying situation is a negotiation. And, as with most negotiations, there are different phases or steps.
Step 1. Assuniptians
Every negotiation begins with assumptions, even before the two parties meet. In car sales it is not uncommon to find many customers entering a dealership assuming that the salesperson and the.Dealership are going to do their best to “take” them in one way or another. On the other hand, many salespeople in the dealership assume that customers are going to try to “beat them up” on price and lie about anything from the number of places they’ve shopped to the condition of their trade-in. The trouble with assumptions is that they are just that: assumptions. Left untested by facts, they can make a negotiation very difficult for both parties.
Step 2, Fact-Finding and Information Gathering
Good negotiators always make an effort to get all their facts before the negotiation. In the car business this means that you should research the vehicle you want to buy, determine the real cost of that vehicle, know the actual wholesale value of your trade-in, and shop for the best financing.This process begins before you walk into a showroom and continues throughout the sales encounter.On the dealership side, good salespeople begin by knowing their product thoroughly-obviously before the customer walks in. Once in front of the customer, good salespeople conduct their fact-finding and research by asking questions, listening, and observing. Their objective is to learn as much about the customer’s needs, wants, and purchase ability as possible.

Step 3. Confrontation
Once the sales process begins to focus on price, the lines are drawn and the issue becomes: your money and how much of it you’re willing to pay in exchange for the desired car. There are two possible outcomes to the confrontation phase:
1. You do not come to an agreement on price and leave.
2. You come to an agreement and buy the car, van, or truck.
Step 4. Agreement
There are three kinds of negotiated agreements:
Win/Win:This is an agreement in which both sides feel that they’ve gotten a good deal.WinlLose:An agreement in which, from your point of view, you’ve won by getting a great price and the dealership has lost. Be warned: Sometimes salespeople will act as though they have lost when, in have won. However, to make you feel good, they pretend to have taken a “beating” on the price.
About Buying New Cars
LoselLose: This is an agreement, of sorts, in that you have “agreed” not to buy the car and the salesperson has “agreed” not to sell it to you because you simply could not agree on the price. In this case the sales¬person has invested time but earned no commission (very much a loss). You have invested time but not managed to purchase a car. (Sometimes this might be construed as a loss since it means you’re going to have to continue shopping. Other times, it may well be a “win” in disguise because your refusal to give in may lead to a better deal later on.)
Of all these steps there is none more important than number two: fact-finding and information gathering. In “About Buying New Cars” we’re going to focus on the kind of information you should have before you enter the dealership. It is our belief that the more you know about how dealerships and salespeople think and work, the stronger and more secure you’ll feel when it comes time to negotiating the price. To put it another way, the better you understand their rules, the better equipped you’ll be to play their games.

Profile of a Car Salesman

About Buying New Cars
LoselLose: This is an agreement, of sorts, in that you have “agreed” not to buy the car and the salesperson has “agreed” not to sell it to you because you simply could not agree on the price. In this case the sales¬person has invested time but earned no commission (very much a loss). You have invested time but not managed to purchase a car. (Sometimes this might be construed as a loss since it means you’re going to have to continue shopping. Other times, it may well be a “win” in disguise because your refusal to give in may lead to a better deal later on.)
Of all these steps there is none more important than number two: fact-finding and information gathering. In “About Buying New Cars” we’re going to focus on the kind of information you should have before you enter the dealership. It is our belief that the more you know about how dealerships and salespeople think and work, the stronger and more secure you’ll feel when it comes time to negotiating the price. To put it another way, the better you understand their rules, the better equipped you’ll be to play their games.
2. Profile: The Ideal Salesperson
There may be an inclination-a strong one, in fact-to assume after reading this book that all car, van, and pickup truck dealers are something less than ethical and that salespeople are simply not to be trusted. Unfortunately, W more than a few cases that may well be true. However, we want to make it clear that there are very good, very ethical dealerships that work very hard to deliver good value, stand behind their products, and will do whatever is necessary to assure that their customers remain satisfied throughout the ownership experience. Their rewards, not so incidentally, are the benefits that come with run¬ning a very successful business.
There are also a good number of salespeople who proudly regard themselves as “professionals.” They work very hard to develop and hold their customers. They go out of their way to make themselves “valuable” to their customers long after the sale has been completed. These are the people who send thank-you notes for your business. These are the people who make it a point to be on hand when you bring your car in for its first service. These are the people who will always be your voice in the dealership should you have problems or special needs.
And They Want to Make a Living
Make no mistake, these salespeople are in business to earn good commissions. They are not going to “give the store away.”

Your Car Buying Needs

What Car Dealers Won’t Tell You
The sales representative is only employed by the dealer, they will not be able to “give away” the vehicle. But then, would you expect any less of a good salesperson? They know that they will make more money in the long run if they develop a list of very satisfied customers. These “professional salespeople” realize that every sales transaction must be a win/win. They know that their customers must leave feeling that they have received, and will continue to receive, good value for their money.
At the same time, professional salespeople conclude the sales transaction knowing that they have made a fair profit for the dealership, that they’ve earned a good commission for themselves, and that, most important, they have laid the groundwork for developing the kind of ongoing relationship with their customers that will generate new customer referrals and repeat sales. If you’re fortunate enough to deal with one of these “professionals,” here is what is likely to happen:
The Greeting
You walk into the dealership and u2thin moments a professionally dressed salesperson-meaning that both the men and the women look as if they work for IBM or Xerox-greets you with a smile and an extended hand:
“Welcome to …. My name is …. ”
As you answer they might present you with their business card. From this point they will probably adjust their personalities and demeanor to match your personality. If you’re a no-nonsense, let’s get down to business type, they will be all business. If you’re what car people classify as a “pipe smoker,” i.e., someone who says little but wants to know all of the facts and generally gives the impression of a college professor-they will become your information resource. If you’re outgoing, gregarious, and open and regard car shopping/buying as fun, they will be your alter ego.
Qualifying-understanding your needs
After making you feel welcome in the dealership-expect to be offered a cup of coffee or a soft drink-they will direct the conversation toward what you’re looking for in a car, van, or pickup and try to determine your price range. While there are certain pieces of information that you, as a buyer, will choose not to reveal at this time (more on this later), you do want to tell them which model and features you’re interested in.
An astute professional salesperson is not going to mention prices, deals, discounts, or trade-in allowances at this time. Even if you bring up the subject of price, professionals will make every effort to have you focus on the car and its ability to satisfy your needs before they discuss price. Their first objective is-or at least should be-to under­stand your needs and to show you a car that addresses those needs
“Hot Buttons”
During what salespeople call the “qualifying” stage, the salesperson may ask you to identify what is really important to you:
“What’s your number one priority in any car you decide to buy?”
Often, this will be the first time you’ve ever given the question much thought. Is it safety, performance, reliability, durability, resale value, or maybe even prestige? These are what salespeople regard as the “hot buttons.” The value and importance you place on these “hot buttons” will eventually be one of the primary reasons you’ll decide to buy one make or model over another.
Once good salespeople discover your “hot button”-that is, what’s really important to you-they will build their presentation to make sure that you fully appreciate why this car or that pickup addresses your needs. Smart salespeople always sell the value before they talk about price.
The Presentation
For a professional salesperson to be able to show how their product addresses your needs, they have to know everything there is to know about each model they sell. If you want to know engine displacement, they’ll be able to give you the figures. If you want axle ratios, they’ll know. If you want to know about crumple zones and air bags, they will provide you with a complete explanation. If you’re a female buyer, they will treat you with respect but never with condescension. Good salespeople are “gender blind,” and they gear their presentations to your level of need and interest, not to your sex. To put it another way, they will treat you as you want to be treated.
The Demonstration Drive
Once the car has been presented and you’ve had a chance to sit behind the wheel and ask questions, the professional salesperson will always invite you to take a demo drive. If you’re serious about buying the car, take the demo drive. You owe yourself time behind the wheel to see if the vehicle meets your expectations.


New Car Salesman Follow Up

Pre-Sale Follow-up
After you’ve left, the professional car salesperson will sit down and write you a letter thanking you for coming in, suggesting that he or she knows that you can get together on price, and that if you’d like, the salesperson will be happy to bring the car out to your office or house for another demo drive. The letter arrives the next day and you’re impressed. Who wouldn’t be? Here’s someone who is really interested in earning your business. Expect a phone call as well.
Making The Deal
Eventually you return to the dealership and negotiate a deal. The good professional will always be just that-professional. He or she does not want to give away the store, but at the same time doesn’t want to lose your business. When you finally come to an agreement, the sales¬person will put all the “give and take” of the negotiation behind and extend a hand congratulating you on your purchase.You’ll give the dealer a deposit-but not the whole amount-to secure the deal, and the salesperson will arrange for a convenient time for you to come in and take delivery of the vehicle. The professional will ask that you allow forty-five minutes to an hour so that you can complete the paperwork, go over the owner’s manual, service books, and guarantees, and review the operation of all the features on the car.
The Delivery
The professional will make the delivery of your vehicle a special event. When you arrive, your car, van, or pickup will be sitting in a special place out front for everyone to see. The interior and exterior will be spotless. When you enter the dealership, your salesperson will be waiting, and immediately you’ll sense that he or she is just as excited paperwork. Really savvy professionals will even go so far as to clear the top of their desks of everything but those papers and booklets relating to your purchase. They want you to know that nothing is going to distract them from giving you their total attention.
Once the paperwork is done and you’ve handed over the check, the salesperson will take you back to the service department and introduce you to the service manager and, very possibly, to the service writer who will be assigned to you. In good dealerships these people will be genuinely happy to make your acquaintance and welcome you to their family of customers. Parenthetically, the author has been in dealerships where the service department is so much attuned to cus¬tomer needs that customers will continue to buy their cars from the dealership even if some other dealer beats their price. There’s an old saying in the car business: “The first car is sold by the salespeople and the second by the service people.” Very true.
Anyway, after you’ve met the service people, the professional will take you out to your new vehicle. Don’t be surprised to find a small gift waiting for you. Some of the best professionals we’ve known always have a bouquet of flowers for their female customers. Key holders, document pouches, and the like are all very common for men.
During the delivery you’ll be given a complete “walk-around” of the car. You’ll be shown how to open the hood and check the oil and transmission dipsticks, windshield wiper reservoir, and where to find the fuse box.
Inside the car, the salesperson will review the seat adjustments, air conditioning, heater, radio, and all the other features. Depending on the car and the situation, the salesperson might offer to take you for another demo drive to be sure that you fully understand the vehicle’s operation. One other nice touch that some dealerships and salespeople add to the delivery experience is to drive with you to the nearest gas station-or use the dealership pump, if they have one¬and buy you a full tank of fuel. The act of having someone buy your first fdl-up is one of the more powerful ways to cement a good cus¬tomer-salesperson relationship and lay the groundwork for referrals and future sales. In a good dealership the dealer or general manager will come out and thank you for your business and tell you that their door is always open if you have questions or concerns.
If the professional has done his or her job, you will feel very good about the entire experience. But there’s more to come.

Post-Sale follow-up
Sometime within the next two days your salesperson will give you a call to ask if everything is okay and to inquire if you have questions.The smart professional will use this opportunity to set up an appointment for your first service.
Sometime during the first week a letter will arrive from the salesperson formally thanking you for your business and suggesting that if you were happy with the purchase experience and know of anyone in the market for a car, an introduction would be greatly appreciated. This is where the professional’s approach begins to pay off. If he or she has really managed to lay the groundwork for a long-term relationship, your endorsement of that performance to friends will, on average, generate three additional customers for that salesperson.
When you arrive for your first service, your salesperson will be there to greet you and reintroduce you to your service writer. The professional will make it clear that he or she is always a phone call away if ever you have questions. On the anniversary of the purchase, you’ll get an anniversary card from your salesperson.

In Conclusion …
The bottom line here is this: If you are fortunate enough to encounter the kind of professional salesperson described here, latch on. This person can become a valuable resource. You may even find that it’s worth paying a little more just to assure that your salesperson and the dealership really are prepared to go the extra mile to guarantee your satisfaction.


Understanding New Car Dealers

Understanding New Car Dealers
In business, in life, and in the car business, good negotiators like to “get into the heads” of their opponents and learn as much as they can about how they operate, how they do business, and how they plot their negotiation strategies. In this segment we’re going to show you the world from the dealership’s perspective in the belief that the more you know about the car business, the more prepared you’ll be to deal with their tactics.

Identifiying the Enemy
“They have identified the enemy and he or she is you.” (Or at least one of the enemies.) From a car dealer’s perspective (and fortunately this is not universally true) there are two kinds of enemies:

Enemy #1. Those customers who have taken the time to do their homework, who refuse to accept less than the true wholesale value for their trade-in, and have established a budget beyond which they will not go. These people are also the type who maintain a pleasant, even attitude-no sign of anger or malice in these folks-and they make it clear they are prepared to walk out and shop another dealer if they don’t get what they want. Salespeople will, in private, also reveal their feelings about customers with the expression: “Buyers are liars.” In truth, sometimes they are. As you learn, there are times when a white lie-or at least an avoidance of the truth-works very much to your advantage. (More on this later.)
Enemy #2. Any and every competitive dealership. Most salespeople are firmly convinced that a competitive dealership will all but “give away their vehicles” if that’s what it takes to “steal” a customer. Make note: This very real and often fierce competitiveness is one of your best weapons.

Floor Planning
The manufacturer sells its vehicles to dealers at set invoice prices. But since most dealers don’t have the kind of money it would take to buy and hold a full inventory, they enlist the help of their bank or other financial institution. This is called “floor planning.”

For the purpose of this explanation, let’s assume the dealer uses his local bank. The bank lends the necessary invoice price to the dealer and then charges the dealer interest (usually prime rate plus points) for that period between when the dealer takes delivery of the vehicle and when he sells it to the customer. When the car is sold, the dealer repays the bank the invoice cost, settles the interest due, and keeps the remainder as profit. The longer a car sits on the lot, the greater amount of interest it accrues. That’s why dealers want to move cars as fast as they can and why they prefer to sell you a car or truck from their stock rather than having you request one that must be ordered from the manufacturer.

Dealer Markup
You will find that there are two sets of markups on most cars. One markup is the profit on the base car. That is, the car without any of its options. The second markup, which is frequently higher, is for the options. For example, you’ll find that the markup for a Chevrolet Corvette is 15’/2percent for the base Corvette. The options are marked up 17 percent. You should consult a consumer guide like Edmund’s New Car Price Guide to identify the base vehicle and option markups for the car of your choice.

Front End Prorfits
The amount of profit from the sale of the vehicle is called the “front end” of the deal. From this they have to pay the salesperson’s commission and contribute to the dealership’s overhead. Clearly, the new vehicle sales side of the dealership’s operation is successful if they can:

1. Sell cars or trucks in volume
2. Earn a good gross profit on each vehicle sold

Back-End Profits–Profits after the Sale
If a dealership had to exist on the front-end profits alone, most would probably be out of business in short order. For that reason they will work very hard at selling “add-ons” after you’ve agreed to buy the car or truck. These include rust protection (which they sell to you for $150 but which costs them less than $10), extended warranties, and life, accident, and health insurance. All of these are major profit sources for the dealer. They will also try to convince you to finance your car through them. That becomes another source of profit.

Sometimes, car companies offer financing rates that are better than those you will find at your bank or credit union. This low APR (annual percentage rate) is usually part of the manufacturer’s effort to move an oversupply of inventory. While we recommend that in most cases you say no to dealer-offered life, accident, and health insurance, there are some situations in which these add-ons can be of value: specifically, if you are elderly and in poor health and find it difficult to get insurance.

Dealer Hold-Backs
Currently, most manufacturers are “holding back” from the dealer anywhere from 2.5 to 3 percent of the markup in their cars. In other words, if a car has a list price of $17,100 and an invoice of $15,000, that is a 15 percent markup. What the manufacturers do is hold back 3 percent of the profit-in this case $450-so that the dealer can, if he so chooses, show an invoice of $15,450 to a customer to prove how “close we are to tissue.” Once the car is sold, the manufacturer sends the dealer a check for the “hold-back.”

One of the interesting side notes on this “hold-back” process is that it has negatively impacted many sales commission checks. Usually the salesperson earns a commission based on the total profit in the deal. Even though the “hold-back” is, in fact, profit, many dealers are not figuring that into the salesperson’s commission. Needless to say, this does not sit well with the salespeople

Your Trade-in as Dealers Profit Source
If the dealership has a used-car operation, your trade-in can also rep¬resent a source of additional profit. Let’s say that a new car has a sticker price of $18,000 and that the dealer’s price, or invoice, is $16,000. Further, let’s assume that the buyer trades in a car with a wholesale value of $8,000 and that the dealership agrees to put that $8,000 of used car equity against the new car. The buyer turns over the used car and a check for $10,000. The dealership now has to pay off a floor plan on the new car. The floor plan would be the invoice plus whatever interest has accrued.

For simplicity, let’s say that the dealer’s payment to the bank or financial institution amounts to $16,200-the invoice plus the floor plan interest, which will round off to $200. Because $8,000 of the deal is in the equity of the trade and $10,000 is in cash, the dealer has to make up the $6,200 difference. That “difference” will come from the used car. If he has given the customer $8,000 as a trade-in allowance, it’s probably because he knows that the car will bring at least that and probably more at auction. However, if it’s a nice car, he may sell it himself in order to improve his profit on the transaction. It would not be unusual for him to put the car on his used-car lot with a price of $10,995, which is about a 37 percent markup. If he sells it for $9,995, that means he has received $10,000 in cash and a trade-in, which as a result of the resale grossed him $9,995 for a total of $19,995. Subtract what he paid the bank for his floor plan-$16,200-and his total profit on the new car transaction is $3,795.

Now, factor in the back end of the deal, hold-backs, and possibly even a factory-to-dealer incentive payment, and the total gross profit to the dealership could be several thousand higher. You see? There is a reason why car dealers live in big houses.

How New Car Salesman Works

Their Selling Strategies – How the salesperson Works

The Steps of the Sale and Controlling the Customer
Earlier, we took you through the steps of the sale and showed you what it would be like to deal with a truly professional salesperson. One who, while trying to make a profit, is also intent on making you a truly satisfied customer. We’re going to go through the steps of the sale again, but this time we’re going to help you understand some of the strategies, tactics, and ploys that salespeople use to control you and the selling process. The intent is to show you what’s going on behind that smiling face. As we explained earlier, there are eight basic steps to the sale.


1. Meet and greet the prospect and establish rapport
2. Qualify the prospect. Find out what they’re looking for and determine what they can pay and how they intend to pay
3. Present the car
4. Take the prospect on a demo drive
5. Answer and overcome any objections
6. Close the sale
7. Deliver the car
8. Follow up and ask for referrals

Meet the Car Salesman

Meet and Greet
Any salesperson worth his or her commission will want to make a good first impression and establish some degree of rapport. In the best of circumstances, they want you to think of them as someone you can trust and someone who has just become your new best friend.
As the old saying goes, “You don’t get a second chance to make a first impression.” With that as a given fact of life, you have to wonder why so many salespeople act as if you’re imposing on their time, as if they would really rather be reading the newspaper than selling you a car.
In any event, a smart salesperson will try to establish a good rela¬tionship, and that’s as it should be. While smart buyers recognize that this person is never really going to be their friend, they also know that it is better to deal with someone who is basically pleasant and tries to lower the stress level for all concerned.
Going for the close from the Open
Sometimes a customer will come in and ask, “What’s your best price on this car?” The more inexperienced, desperate, or lazy salesperson will immediately start dealing, and the negotiation begins-and sometimes ends-within minutes. The only time you want to start dealing from the get-go is when you’ve decided that it’s in your best interest. We’ll talk more about this type of situation later and offer some strategies for you.
Roles They Play- The Salesperson as an Actor
Often in automotive sales training the point will be made that the salesperson is like an impromptu actor. The customer comes in, sets the stage, and it’s up to the salesperson to play whatever part the customer’s needs, personality, attitudes, experience, or demands dictate. This probably could be said of just about any salesperson who is interested in being responsive to his or her customers. A salesperson will also try to determine if you have anything in common: Do you know the same people? Do you live in the same area? Do you like sports? Are there hobbies you share? The more a sales¬person can make you believe that he or she is a lot like you, the greater the chances of building rapport.
In sum: Salespeople try to sell themselves to you and to establish the basis for a working relationship by finding a common ground. There’s nothing wrong with this so long as you understand that, in the end, their goal is to sell you a car. If they’re smart, they will also try to establish the basis for an ongoing relationship. Unfortunately, most car salespeople’s vision ends with their commission check.

Qualifying The New Car Buyer


Demo Drive The New Car


Buying The New Car



Buying Used Car


Intro to Buying Used Cars

How to Buy a Used Car and Not Get Taken
A Word about This Segment

This segment was developed by people who know the used-vehicle market. Their objective was to provide a reference that would help you make a more informed used-car, van, or pickup buying decision. Their efforts have produced a guide that offers ideas, tips, and suggestions that you can put to use when evaluating a used vehicle, even if you have little or no automotive expertise.
A.C.LS. makes no representations that this information will assure you of buying a trouble-free vehicle. Make no mistake, there are risks when buying a used car, van, or pickup. While it is possible to detect problems that could lead to costly repairs, no publication and probably few automotive experts can predict with 100 percent accuracy how a used car* will perform one month, six months, or a year into the future.
You will, we believe, improve the odds of getting a good used buy by preparing yourself before you start to shop. We offer this manual as a means of providing you with basic information that, when used with common sense, can help you decide what questions to ask of the seller, what to look for during your inspection and test drive, and when to enlist the help and advice of a professional mechanic.

It is our hope you will find this segment interesting, useful, and that it will make your used-car shopping experience a more rewarding one.
*When we talk about a, used car, we are, in general, talking about issues that also relate to the purchase of a used van or pickup. To avoid the redundant use of “oar, van, or pickup” we are, in the main, limiting ourselves to the term “used car” and hope that you will understand that, unless otherwise stated, it generally applies to vans and pickups as well.


Preparation in Buying Cheap Used Cars

1.Pre-Shopping Preparation

The upside of a Used-Car Purchase
If you have the right information and you know where and how to shop, many experts will tell you that purchasing a used car can be a sound investment.
A used car can provide a good return on your transportation dollar, especially if the car is no more than two to three years old. When you consider that a new-car price generally includes the dealer’s markup, the salesperson’s commission, the manufacturer’s transportation charges, and the cost of both their advertising campaigns, you realize that a good deal of a new car’s price has nothing to do with the car itself. Add to this the fact that the moment you take delivery of a new car and drive it off the dealer’s lot, you have reduced the market value by as much as 40 percent or more. In addition, by the end of three years the average car will have lost, through depreciation, approximately two-thirds of its value.
In many instances, used cars have lower insurance rates, lower titling fees, and sales taxes. Plus, if you’re buying a luxury car, you will not have to pay the luxury tax (10 percent of the amount over $32,500) or the gas-guzzler tax.
The Dowaside of a Used- Car Purchase
Having made the case for a used car, van, or truck, we come to a fun¬damental used buyer’s question: “Don’t I run the risk of buying someone else’s headache?” The answer of course is yes. The used-car business is full of bad buys and lemons, and we do not want to suggest that bargains are always there for the picking. Buying a used car does involve some degree of risk. You should also be aware that finance rates will usually be higher on a used vehicle than on a new one. Plus, you do run the risk of more maintenance costs and repairs with a used car.
However, it is our contention that if you are prepared to do some homework and are willing to invest some time-and maybe even $40 to $90 (depending on your area) for a professional inspection-you can reduce the risk, save money, and end up with a very satisfactory automobile.

Cheap Used Car Buying Basics

What Do I Need to Know Before I Shop?
Before you get serious about any one car, it’s important to get the facts concerning:
l. The car’s reliability and repair record
2. Whether the car has been subject to a manufacturer’s recall
3. Current owner satisfaction or dissatisfaction with the car
4. The “real” price of the car
5. The approximate amount of markup on the car if you’re buying from a dealer
Reliability and Repair Record
Consumer Reports, a publication of Consumer’s Union, offers a section in their Buying Guide entitled “Frequency of Repair Records.” This section is a reflection of over 600,000 reports supplied by the subscribers to the magazine. In it you’ll get an excellent picture of the repair records of what appears to be the vast majority of recent model used cars. They provide a highly useful list of “Reliable Used Cars” and “Used Cars to Avoid.”
Has the car been subjected to a recall
Consumer Guide Auto Series publishes a “Used Car Rating Guide” in which they offer a general assessment of individual used cars, technical data, price ranges, and a rather detailed description of the recall history. Another source for determining if a model has been subjected to a manufacturer’s recall is the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration. You can call their hotline at 1-800-424-9393 (free of charge) and ask for recall information on a specific car-year and model.
Owner satisfaction with the car
In addition to speaking directly with friends who have owned the car ,you’re considering, you might also want to turn again to Consumer Reports. They offer charts showing how their subscribers rated their satisfaction with recent model cars.

Where to Buy Cheap Used Cars


Francise Used Car Dealers


Almost New Used Cars


Used Car Pricing


Used Car Warranties


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