If you are thinking of getting a new set of wheels, you might find it is less expensive to buy a new model than an used one.
The financial analysts at Edmunds.com, a leading automotive site, ran the numbers and found that six manufacturers two German and four Japanese are offering special interest rates on certain 2009 models that make them less expensive to purchase than comparable used 2008 models.
In fact, Edmunds says, well-to-do buyers looking for an expensive BMW 650i convertible could save a whopping $6,175 on a car with a list price of $82,515. If they opt for the coupe version they could save as much as $5,534.
The savings on certain Audis, Hondas, Mazdas, Mitsubishis and Nissans range from a low of $15 for the Touring model of the Mazda CX-7 crossover vehicle to a high of $2,603 on a Mazda5 Grand Touring minivan.
Compared with new vehicles sales which are at lows unseen in decades the used car market is doing well, said Jeremy Anwyl, Edmunds.com chief executive officer. Desirable used vehicles are becoming harder to find, pushing up their prices, while today's new cars are heavily discounted. This is creating an unusual economic event.
In making its calculations, Edmunds assumed buyers would take out a 60-month loan. They also assumed a new-car interest rate of 5.9 percent and an used-car finance rate of 10.5 percent. The analysts added in delivery charges, gas-guzzler taxes if appropriate, and dealer cash programs.
Edmunds suggests that customers check its Incentives and Rebates database on its web site to see if there are any additional savings. It also suggested they add in sales tax and registration fees to figure out their total cost.