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Does it Make More Sense to a Buy New or Used Car?

By: Sally Aquire - Updated: 7 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
Motoring Budget Used Car New Car Buying

When it comes to budget motoring, people often wonder if they should opt for a new car or a used car when buying a car. Both have their advantages and disadvantages, and much will depend on your personal desires and circumstances. This article offers advice on choosing between a used car and a new car when buying a car.


When choosing a car, most people are restricted by the amount of money that they have to play with, and this is even more important if you have a motoring budget that you need to stick to. In this situation, a used car is often the best option, as it is hard to find a new car for less than around £10,000 that is not severely lacking in features.

The Advantages of Buying a New Car

Many people enjoy being the first owner of a car, particularly a car that is approved of and sought after. If this is the case for you, a new car will probably be far more desirable than a used car. Aside from the aesthetic reasons, there are also more practical reasons for wanting to buy a new car. For example, new cars tend to require less maintenance than used cars, and often have roadside assistance included in the package.

The Disadvantages of Buying a New Car

One of the big drawbacks of buying a new car is the price. For those on a motoring budget, a new car could well be out of your budget entirely. Although it probably won't be the first thing that you think of, it's worth remembering that new cars depreciate far more quickly (that is, they lose more of their original value over time) than used cars, partly due to the fact that they cost more in the first place. See our article on “The Impact of Depreciation on a New Car” for more information on depreciation. You can certainly end up paying dearly for being the first person to own a particular car!

The Advantages of Buying a Used Car

As there are lots of used cars on the market, you are unlikely to be stuck for choice. Used cars used to be inferior to new cars on the reliability front, but things have changed a lot in that respect, and there is much better reliability than was previously the case. There is also the opportunity for 'as new' availability on used cars. 'As new' cars are probably the closest to a new car without having to break the bank. Used cars were once considered to be inferior in every sense of the world, but there are now highly rated used cars available, which means that you no longer have to compromise on quality.

The Disadvantages of Buying a Used Car

For many people, the major drawback of buying a used car is the fact it is not new. You may end up paying a significant amount in repair bills, particularly if you choose a used car that is more than a few years old.

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