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Old 08-21-2010, 08:22 PM
Location: Connecticut
24,568 posts, read 40,120,453 times
Reputation: 6942


Thanks to an accident we are in the market for a new vehicle. We need what I call a "kid carrier. Basically I am interested in a 3 row SUV. I have narrowed it down to buying a new Honda Pilot, buying a used Acura MDX or leasing a new MDX.

The MDX is my favorite vehicle. We had one and really did think it was great. New MDX's are too expensive so I have been looking for used. I may have found a 4 year old vehicle coming off a lease with mileage under 20,000 miles. My wife loves the color and should be well within our budget. I am a bit concerned that this vehicle is already 3 years old and in a month or so it will be considered to be 4 years old. Also I have never bought used before and am not sure how good the condition of it is but it will be a Certified Used Car by the dealer.

We could buy a new Honda Pilot for a bit more than the used MDX. The problem is I am not sure how much I like the Pilot. It really is a truck and I am use to a more car like vehicle. In fact I kind of think they are pretty ugly and very big.

The final option is leasing a new MDX. We have never done this before. The problem with this is that after 3 year of payments you really have nothing. You either buy the vehicle for a set price or you walk away. On the other hand if the vehicle is a dog you can walk away or if it is good, you can buy it. Also the lease may be tax deductable since my wife would use it for her work mostly. Our accountant said it probably could be deducted but noted he does not recommend leasing since it means you always have a car payment.

Anyone else go through this or have any thoughts on what we should do? Jay
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Old 08-21-2010, 08:41 PM
10,139 posts, read 22,404,584 times
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These Asian kid carriers are so popular even as used cars that I depart from my usual position that one is a moron to buy a new car. The used price is so close to new you might as well just buy one new. I had an early Mazda APV and still hate Mazda because of it. The Honda is the best choice even if Mazda has straightened out its problems.

Ages ago I decided not to ever have another car payment and I can tell you, it is quite a luxury. But since you need a really dependable rig, you're stuck with it for now probably.
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Old 08-21-2010, 10:04 PM
Location: Purgatory (A.K.A. Dallas, Texas)
5,010 posts, read 12,808,501 times
Reputation: 2414
You can probably get a better interest rate on the new one, but if you really like the MDX, get the MDX. The mileage is good, even if the car is a bit older. Check out their CPO program online, I think Acura's is decent.

Leasing is only good if you know for sure you will want a new car in 3 years. Also, with kids, maybe not the best idea. Kids tend to be tough on cars, and they will charge you for that stuff.
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Old 08-22-2010, 06:32 AM
Location: Eastern NC
18,088 posts, read 16,618,330 times
Reputation: 15930
Buy used, you'll save a big wad of cash.
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Old 08-22-2010, 06:57 AM
Location: Mtns of Waynesville,NC & Nokomis, FL
4,113 posts, read 7,599,227 times
Reputation: 5050
I can't make leasing numbers work, as I can no longer write any part of it off, and we now keep cars for several years. If the Honda is CPO'able,
and it is a decent program, (familiar with BMW's CPO, not Honda's), I would look hard at used MDXs. 20k miles is barely broken in; an oil/filter change,
maybe brake fluid change, and a good "history", should make it enticing.
GL, mD
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Old 08-22-2010, 07:09 AM
10,139 posts, read 22,404,584 times
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Originally Posted by trlhiker View Post
Buy used, you'll save a big wad of cash.

I hate that I suggested new above, because I have not bought a new car in 20 years and only then because you could only get a V6 Honda Accord in the new model year and I wanted one.

But, the KBB retail for a 2009 Honda Pilot EX is $32,000 and that's what they are on the lots for. Yuck! So for $4000-6000 don't you buy a new one and call it a day?
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Old 08-22-2010, 07:40 AM
143 posts, read 360,036 times
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It really depends on the car. For a car like you're looking for, and if you keep your cars for more than 2-3 years, I would buy a 1-2 year old CPO (especially for the Acura). For a Honda Pilot, you might just be better off buying new because of how they hold their value and the incentives.

If you were buying a new BMW, for example, a lease would be by far the better option.
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Old 08-22-2010, 12:21 PM
1,964 posts, read 4,427,237 times
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Buying a used Acura or Infiniti is safe bet. You can easily drive these cars well over 150k before needing engine/transmission work. Also, these brands tend to be very forgiving of neglected maintenance, especially compared to Euro brands like Audi or BMW which will run over 150k only if you baby them & take care of every single leak.

In fact you'll probably get rid of your car because of cosmetic issues like stained/worn interior or dinged/scratched up paint, far before mechanical failure. Unless you're like the anal-retentive woman from the Acura commercial & crave a pristine vehicle, I'd say just get a CPO MDX since you're on a budget & you can use those thousands saved for a family vacation or college funds. The Pilot is nice & rugged, but the main advantage is that it can fit a 4x8 sheet of drywall/plywood inside (and that's probably overkill for a kiddy hauler).
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Old 08-22-2010, 01:00 PM
Location: Atlanta,GA
2,671 posts, read 5,408,911 times
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Looking at your selection of cars, I'd say you can't go wrong with used. Bargain hard. You can get one at a decent price. If you're going to keep the car for a while, and you find a clean example, you can't go wrong with a low mileage lease return Acura MDX. They usually extend the warranty to 100k IIRC (I know Toyota and Honda do it).

I don't buy new. It's a waste of money imho. You're getting the same exact car, just driven by someone else before you. If I want something new, and won't keep it for long, I'd lease. You can always negociate maintenance, mileage etc in your lease contract. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

You mentioned having kids. I'm not sure how you deal with kids and your cars (My kids don't eat, drink and don't make a mess in my car, they're not allowed to. They know better. Their mom lets them do it in the minivan. ), however some parents are lenient. If you're the latter, get a dark colored interior with leather seats (Leather is standard on the MDX anyways) if you plan to lease. You still have to be on top of things regardless, (but black/charcoal leather is easier to maintain than taupe/creme colored interiors)

Go to your local dealer's website, and source one you may like. Deal with the internet sales manager. Don't waste time going in, until you're ready. Save gas and headaches (haggling nonsense).

Again, if you're keeping for a while (5+years), I say buy a low mileage CPO Acura or Honda. They're still as good as new. Get your money's worth.

If you're planning to keep for 3 years or less, lease. You won't have to bother with depreciation. You'll just be paying for it, while you're driving it.

Good Luck
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Old 08-22-2010, 08:30 PM
Location: Connecticut
24,568 posts, read 40,120,453 times
Reputation: 6942
Thanks everyone. I will let you know what we end up doing. Jay
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