Perhaps you’re looking for a used car that has the latest technology such as adaptive cruise control and cameras that provide a 360-degree view of the surroundings. But, you can’t afford a 2-year-old model with average miles, but Highway Motors has the car of your dreams, and it’s a thousand less. There’s one problem: This 2-year-old model has over 100,000 miles. Should you stay clear?
Here’s a few pointers to help make a decision on either one of these cars.
The first thing with any car is “do your research”. CARFAX is a great reference as to the condition and reoccurring problems the may be a problem. Check if there are repetitive problems, such as serious (and expensive) issues with the transmission, power steering, electrical system and engine. Replacing the engine’s timing chain, for example, can run $2,000 to $3,000.
Knowing a car’s history is important. Ask the dealer to show you data that includes the vehicle’s repairs, maintenance schedule, recalls, and in some cases, even oil changes. CARFAX or AutoCheck are good sources for this information and you can buy a used car report for about $40. Generally, a vehicle that has been well-maintained should have a longer, potentially trouble-free-future compared to the vehicle that has been ignored. Highway Motors offers an up to date CARFAX on every vehicle on the lot.
Remember, the 2 year old car is still a 2 -year old car. Compare that with a 6-8 year old car with 1000k miles. Age is a factor, many components tend to wear out over time not always just because of miles driven. By opting for the car you can afford in this case you better your chances of success financially by staying within your budget and driving a newer, nicer car at the same time.