With more people buying cars recently than in the past decade (due to the economy and older cars wearing out), there are more options for you in the car world.
One that has grown exponentially is the dealers that offer used high end cars, meaning Acura, Audi, BMW, Lexus, Porsche (pictured), Mercedes Benz among others.
I went with a friend last week to one of these dealers and it’s an experience for those of us who usually buy lower end cars from traditional dealerships. As well as those of us who have only owned American or Japanese cars that are not luxury models.
The first thing to know when shopping high end is know the car you are looking at and the quirks and what makes that car unique.
A lot of German cars are considered “driver’s cars”, and have a stiff ride, perform well but not as loose as some Japanese counterparts and definitely don’t feel like American cars.
Also be aware that maintenance on these cars can be complicated and the average mechanic may not be able to work on it.
My friend who has previously owned two BMW’s learned to do a lo0t of repairs himself and knows the “ins and outs” of BMWs, what tends to go wrong, when (in mileage), certain issues happen and how to handle the car.
Remember just because that BMW may cost $ 17,000 now, five years ago it costs $ 45,000 and the maintenance will reflect that new car price.
Doesn’t mean you can’t have a nice car, just need to be prepared for it.
Also I learned from the sales manager at this pre-owned high end store that when it comes to financing these higher end cars, banks tend to give better (longer),rates to the Japanese luxury cars because they have a better reliability record.
So take for instance a BMW 330 and Acura TSX, both 2012 models, both loaded and within 20,000 miles of each other. But the bank will do a loan twice as long for the Acura than the BMW because they think the Acura will last longer and have fewer problems.
Granted the BMW was a much nicer car, faster and more luxury appointments but remember that Acura is a Honda product and they run forever.
I have a friend who bought a TSX new in 2006, she still has it, 110,000 miles on it, in great shape. Previously she got 14 years out of a Nissan Sentra, this is why financial institutions think this way because these cars last, usually.
When buying any car, “Cash is King”, for every $ 100.00 you put down, it takes the payment down $ 10.00 a month, plus it shows good faith. Doesn’t mean you have to but putting cash down always helps.
I have another friend who runs a pre-owned high end dealership with his brother and he has spoken of the growing nature of the business. People want a nice car but need to be aware of what goes into it.
Yes there is more that can go wrong and more to work on but it’s the costs and knowing specialty mechanics to fix the car.
And where to get specialty parts in case if you want to do it yourself.
I’m not deterring you from going the pre-owned luxury car route, a lot of people are getting these cars just be aware of what you need to do to keep the car in great condition.
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Filed under: Cars