The January blahs are over; February could not have come soon enough because january was a slow month, as it always is.
In honour of February, then, here are 10 things to consider before you buy a new car.
1. Do the research: Of course this is an obsolete bit of advice, but it holds true every time. Decide on the type of vehicle you need, narrow the list to three, any one of which you could live with, and then get your facts straight on everything from pricing to horsepower and fuel economy.
2. Let the salesperson do most of the talking: Treat car sellers like border guards. Let them ask the questions and only answer those questions. Don’t say you love the car and don’t share anything about how much you can pay. You should know how much before going to any dealer. Research.
3. First-of-the month purchases: Sometimes this can be the right call, sometimes not. Just know that as the month winds down and sales targets look tough to meet for certain dealers and manufacturers, richer deals often come out to play.
4. New-year purchases: We discussed this already. There are January exceptions and Deals covered many of them last month.
5. Going green: Really, is a hybrid what you want? Yes, you’ll save at the pump, but you’re not likely to save enough to recover the hybrid price premium. The marketplace is awash in very good, very fuel-thrifty cars that cost half as much as any hybrid. And diesels? Great torque and terrific fuel economy and range. Diesel cars are no more common in Nigeria. That cuts into your fuel economy savings.
6. Play the game: Look, car dealers are very competitive. Visit several and play one against the other. Also dig into the dealer’s reputation for service. That will matter for the next four years of that new-car warranty.
7. Control your emotions: Of course it’s exciting when buying a new car. Enjoy it. Revel it — after you’ve done the deal. Treat car buying like I treat emails that really aggravate me. I write my reply, then sit on it for 24 hours. Do the same with a new-car offer. Take it away and sit on it for 24 hours before you pull the trigger. You’ll thank yourself.
If you follow the following tips closely, you will enjoy buying a new car.