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Old 10-03-2010, 06:04 PM
 
4,847 posts, read 5,012,749 times
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Default Is Dec/ Jan really the best time to buy a new car?

I've searched and read a bunch of threads here, but the jury still seems to be out.
I'm hoping to get a new 2010 Kia or Toyota for under 16K.
I read that dealers give bargains towards the end of the year seeing as the new models are already there.
So what say you?
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Old 10-03-2010, 08:10 PM
 
Location: Earth
4,214 posts, read 11,600,892 times
Reputation: 2017
I've bought 3 used vehicles in December, 2 of them just before Christmas. 2 of them bought from a new & pre owned car dealer. All of them I paid less for them than usual. I think they do as a rule mark them down before Christmas to get them moved for extra bonus money.
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Old 10-03-2010, 08:16 PM
 
Location: Brambleton, VA
2,187 posts, read 3,516,986 times
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The jury is still out on that one. Some dealers negotiate better than others. What has worked out best for us is going to Cars Direct and getting that price, getting the Consumer Reports Car Report that breaks down the actual cost of the car and then to e-mail each dealer with the price, and get a bidding war going. Frankly, with the economy being as difficult as it has been fewer dealers are in the same situation they were years ago where their excess inventory made negotiations much better at the end of the year. You can save a lot of money if you are willing to buy a demo car from the dealer. It has some mileage but has all the same warranties, etc. I have a co-worker that got a great deal on a Kia Demo a few months ago. Good Luck! There are few things out there that are as annoying as buying a car!
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Old 10-03-2010, 09:26 PM
 
Location: Purgatory (A.K.A. Dallas, Texas)
5,010 posts, read 7,782,930 times
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Yes because dealers are looking to pad their year-end numbers. The busiest week of the year is the last week.

No, because if you're looking for 2010 models, they are usually gone. What remains is models that EVERYONE has passed on, usually for good reason.

If you're willing to settle for something, then it's a great time. However, if you want something specific, you'll probably be out of luck. They can't sell you the $23K model for $16K just to get rid of it.
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Old 10-03-2010, 09:40 PM
 
9,281 posts, read 11,130,268 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kingfish22 View Post
I've searched and read a bunch of threads here, but the jury still seems to be out.
I'm hoping to get a new 2010 Kia or Toyota for under 16K.
I read that dealers give bargains towards the end of the year seeing as the new models are already there.
So what say you?
The BEST time to buy a new car is when you need one. AND have taken several weeks to do your research both on the internet and at the various dealerships.

You can generally find deals at model year end as the dealers try to clear out the older models. The advantage is that you get a decent deal; however, you are buying what is essentially a one-year old car.

You can find deals at the end of the calendar year as traffic at the dealership is REAL SLOW. Do realize that most states assess a tax on inventory and that is a small encouragement for the dealer to get it off the lot.

If you are serious about buying, head over to Edmunds.com and cheack the "Prices Paid" on the models that you are interested in.

Also, I strongly recommend that you rent the models that you are interested in for a weekend. That way, you can see if you really like the vehicle BEFORE purchasing. It is a good way to avoid making a mistake.
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Old 10-03-2010, 09:44 PM
 
Location: Purgatory (A.K.A. Dallas, Texas)
5,010 posts, read 7,782,930 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlawrence01 View Post
You can find deals at the end of the calendar year as traffic at the dealership is REAL SLOW.

Incorrect. The beginning of December is slow due to holidays. The end is enormously busy.

I wouldn't even talk to someone who said "just looking". Your sales number typically double in the last week of December from the first couple weeks of December.
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Old 10-04-2010, 07:34 AM
 
13,569 posts, read 16,411,735 times
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The first thing to consider is what the published incentives are on the vehicle you are looking for. These incentives don't always get better (in fact many get worse) as you approach the end of the year. Manufacturers are usually trying to blow out the previous year models in the Aug - Oct timeframe and that is when the strongest incentives are out there.

If you are not relying on subisidies then December is a good time on a new vehicle, but the deal isn't necessarily any "better" than what you could negotiate sooner, it's just that more dealers are willing to deal to get rid of the dud inventory and pad the end of year numbers. For instance, if you want a 2010 this December you will most likely have few choices and those you have will be the unpopular colors and equipment combos.

What I can tell you for certain is that the best time to buy a used car is December - February. There is so little activity on the used market that many dealers are willing to cut a good deal just to get the car off the lot versus paying floor plan on it through the winter. This tends to only be applicable in cold climates though.

At the end of the day if you are looking to buy new and you have your ducks in a row, you are better off doing it now and getting the dealers to compete with each other in the traditional way when there is still a good amount of inventory out there to pick from.
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Old 10-04-2010, 09:08 PM
 
Location: North of the border!
662 posts, read 623,482 times
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I sold cars/ran dealerships for over 10 years. In the North east no one buys cars in February. Go in on a Tuesday after dark on the coldest or snowiest day and I assure you the dealership will give you the best deal that they can. Manufacturer incentives etc etc might be more generous at other times but dealers are very hungry then.
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Old 10-06-2010, 12:00 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles
249 posts, read 393,592 times
Reputation: 105
Might be confusing to read here but the link is at the bottom.

Greatest Discounts
Featuring the highest discounts on 2010 and 2011 models. Large trucks offer the greatest discounts at an average below MSRP of
12%. Model year 2010 domestic makes including Chevrolet, Ford, and Chrysler offer the biggest discounts along with Hyundai and
Mercedes-Benz. The top 2011 makes with the biggest discounts are Toyota, Chevrolet, Honda, BMW, and Subaru.


Best and Worst Days to Buy a Car
Thursday, September 30th will be the day consumers can expect the best buys for the month, with a projected 8% discount from
MSRP. In addition, the first half of October will see discounts over 6%.



Shortest and Longest Days in Inventory
Vans, luxury sport cars, and large cars are where the best potential inventory-based discounts will be seen. On average, vans are
staying in inventory for 130 days, while luxury sport cars and large cars are on-lot for 68 days and 66 days respectively. Meanwhile,
Midsize SUVs continue to move off the lots quickly, with an average inventory stay of 34 days.


Most Flexible Prices by score
Toyota Avalon (Score: 97)
Toyota Sequoia (Score: 75)
Dodge Ram 3500 (Score: 91)
Cadillac CTS Wagon (Score: 99)
Lexus GS 460 (Score: 93)
Porsche Cayenne (Score: 80)
Suzuki Kizashi (Score: 98)
Mitsubishi Endeavor (Score: 100)
Volkswagen Routan (Score: 94)
Toyota Corolla (Score: 99)
Mazda Tribute (Score: 94)
Chevrolet Colorado (Score: 91)
Mitsubishi Eclipse (Score: 98)
Nissan cube (Score: 100)
GMC Savana Passenger (Score: 97)



Top 10 Discounts for 2010 makes % below MSRP
Chevrolet
Ford
Chrysler
Hyundai
Mercedes-Benz
16%
14%
12%
11%
10%

Top 10 Discounts for 2011 Makes % below MSRP
Toyota
Chevrolet
Honda
BMW
Subaru
10%
8%
8%
7%
5%

Top Discounts by Model 2010 % below MSRP
Chevrolet Silverado 1500
Ford Ranger
Hyundai Elantra
Jeep Liberty
Toyota Corolla
22%
17%
13%
13%
12%

Top Discounts by Model 2011 % below MSRP

Toyota Camry
Honda Pilot
Toyota Sienna
BMW 3 Series
Ford Mustang
11%
8%
8%
7%
6%

Best Day to Buy - September 30th, 2010
Average Discount: 7.96%

Worst Day to Buy - October 4th, 2010
Average Discount: 6.18%

Source http://www.truecar.com/media/references/TrueTrends_by_TrueCar_September_2010.pdf (broken link)
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Old 10-06-2010, 04:17 PM
 
Location: SLC, UT, Ketchum, ID, Southern Cal.
3,162 posts, read 4,439,715 times
Reputation: 1527
There are 2 things to consider here.

1) Amount a dealer will discount a car.

2) Amount of manufacturer incentives/rebates/finance deals.


#1 is going to depend on the dealer, number of cars (of that type) in stock, how sales have been that month, etc. In my experience, all things being equal, you can ALWAYS get a dealer to discount a car - doesn't matter what month. The later in the month, the better.

#2 is what will change by month more than a dealer discount. THIS is what you should look at. All makes differ, and incentives differ by area. If the make you're looking at has the best incentives in [July] then that is the best month to buy your car. Most times, incentives correspond to changing model years. All makes release new models at different times. Again, best to "play it by ear"


Long story shot - the manufacturer incentive usually trumps a discount at a dealer. Shoot for both, but a dealer isn't going to blow out a car if there is no backup from the manufacturer.

Let me finalize this by ....... if the data above my post is true, the difference in % of discount between the "best" day and the "worst" day is less than 2% in discount. Thats less than $300 on a vehicle in your price range. Best to wait to find the car you WANT rather than stressing over $300.
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