It’s time to decide which 2022 new vehicle, make model and accessories, is best for you. You’re fortunate that you don’t have to buy a car today, because you understand that supply and demand conditions brought on by the microchip shortage and other COVID-precipitated factors has driven new car prices to record levels.
Choosing the right new car is relatively easy because there’s one source of accurate, unbiased information that you can bank on…Consumer Reports, the “Bible” of consumer information on automobiles. Go to www.ConsumerReports.org, and check out any new vehicle that strikes your fancy. Choose the one that you like best esthetically…styling, performance, etc., but then check them out for the less obvious, but important criteria. Safety, fuel economy, maintenance and insurance costs, reliability, and rate of depreciation.
Test drive the vehicle that you choose to order. To avoid a lot of time and sales pressure, make it clear to the salesman that you will not be buying that car today. Finding the exact vehicle in a 2022 model can be a challenge, depending on how soon you begin your buying process. You’re buying a 2022 because a 2021 model is a one-year-old car today…essentially an “undriven used car”. The discount that dealers may give you on a 2021 never offset the extra cost of depreciation when you trade that car in on another. As I write this column, new vehicle inventories are at historic lows, especially 2022’s. If there are no major changes in the 2022 you order vs. the 2021, you can settle for driving the older model. Test driving a new car isn’t just “driving it around the block”. Take it out on the highways and the same roads that you routinely drive on. Drive it at all the various speeds you drive, back it up, and park it. Ideally, you should take a car home overnight and park it in your garage.
Locate the Costco certified auto dealers in your region. Go to this web address, www.CostcoAuto.com. If you’re not a member of Costco, you should buy an annual membership for only $65. The Costco auto buying program requires their certified dealers to sell Costco members a new car at a lower price than they have sold that car to any other buyer for. Costco will initially offer you only one certified dealership…the one closest to your zip code. You can obtain more certified Costco dealers by calling Costco directly. As you probably know, car dealers charge different prices to each of their customers for the same car, including Costco dealers. What sets Costco dealers apart is that the price you pay is the lowest price they will sell anybody that car for.
Be sure the Costco certified dealers will agree to sell you the car at their Costco price on the date you are prepared to take delivery of your new car. Eliminate any Costco dealer that refuses to do this. Contract with those that do agree and the one from whom you choose to buy your new car at the Costco price in effect at your expected time of delivery.
Choose a delivery date no sooner than December 2021 and, optimally, closer to March 2022. New car prices will begin coming down slowly this month (October 2021). They’ll continue to decline through the first quarter of 2022. Once you’ve finalized this purchase agreement, you can monitor the Costco price on the car you’ve chosen as often as you like. You may find that the price has come down enough to buy the car sooner than your planned delivery date. You might have to choose from a color or equipment of a car in stock that’s a little different than the one you have on order.
Buy low and sell high is the title to this article. You’re buying your new car low, and you CAN sell your used car very high today. I devoted little of that to this article because you probably need your current car. This morning, before I started writing this article, CNBC announced that the average used car is selling today for 56% higher than two years ago. That’s a record increase in used car prices. If you can get along without your current car, sell it today. But don’t trade it in on your new car, sell it directly to a dealer after shopping for the highest price. Also, check with these online companies, www.Carvana.com,www.Varoon.com, www.CarMax.com and www.WeBuyAnyCar.com.