Tips and Steps to Buying a Car
Yes, depending on the brand of car you buy, people will decide they know just how much money you make a year. If you pull up in a Mercedes vs. a Chevrolet, people will make an immediate decision on who you are.
Mercedes and BMW use the same approach but without the use of divisional brand separation. They use small and midsize cars with their brand cache' to get you in your first car and hope to entice you to move up in their product live as you grow in your finances.
The Japanese and Koreans use the same approach as GM and Ford and have separate divisions and standalone brands to distinguish their luxury brand from their value-based automobiles.
Lease a Vehicle?
Finally, if you are the type of person that wants the latest in high tech and safety equipment and you trade your car in after just three years of ownership, leasing is a great option. You don't have to worry about selling or trading in your car. All you have to do is drop it off at the dealer and select your next new auto.
The downside of leasing is when the payment booklet is paid off, so is your lease, and you have to turn in the car. Also, any damage or milage over 10,000 to 12,000 a year, will be charged directly to you. All of this is a big part of your decision-making process as excessive mileage on a lease is very expensive. And, if you have a change in your financial situation, you may have to lower your expectations on the next car you lease.
Owning a Vehicle
Big auction houses like Barrett Jackson, Mecum, and Russo and Steele do tens of millions of dollars a year in promoting and auctioning these and every other type of classic (used) car, truck, SUV, motorcycle, and art. They usually travel across the country so it can be easy to find a city near you and attend in person. The online component is also a convenient way to find and purchase your dream classic.
The downside is you're purchasing an older car. In some cases, the car could be 50 years old. That means you'll have to make sure it isn't a car that was in a wreck and someone did a quick fix-it job to make it look nice but didn't fix the structural problems. You also have to make sure you're not paying for a vehicle that doesn't have its original drivetrain and doesn't have matching numbers (matching numbers on the car body and engine from the date of manufacturing). It is ok to buy cars without matching numbers, but the price difference and the resale are both affected if it is either-or.
The good news is these big auction houses do their best due diligence on the cars they offer and are not going to represent a car dishonestly. The down side is you have to pay to be a bidder, usually $500.00, which is applied to the purchase of any vehicle they sell you, but you also have to pay a buyers premium (10% of the bid) on top of the sales price.
What is The Right Choice for Buying a New Car?
And remember to go out and enjoy the process!