Buying Luxury Cars
For most of us, luxury cars are out of our reach. However, it isn't entirely impossible to buy a luxury car. With some hard work and smart shopping you can get into the car of your dreams.
What Are Luxury Cars?
A luxury vehicle is one that offers comfort and convenience beyond just the basic vehicle necessities. For example, all vehicles need upholstery of some sort, but not every vehicle comes with premium leather seating and high-end trim -- as some luxury cars do.
As far as cost is concerned, understand that luxury cars come with luxury price tags; however, some luxury car manufacturers present “entry-level" models that can hit a more affordable price range.
Tips for Buying a Luxury Car
Mostly due to their price tags, luxury cars aren't for everyone (although, leasing a luxury vehicle might be an option).
However, with some research and proper planning, buying a luxury car could become an option.
Know the Dealer Cost
Generally, luxury car manufacturers leave a lot of room for dealerships to make a lot of money. Valuable automobile resources such as Kelley Blue Book (KBB) and Edmunds can help you find the dealer invoice price; this way, you'll know where to really start when it comes to negotiating a fair buying price.
Consider Used or “Off Lease" Luxury Cars
Undoubtedly, you already know that used vehicles cost less than new ones. However, you might not realize that, depending on the dealership, you could be able to purchase a luxury car that a driver formerly leased.
This is called “off leasing," and it simply means you're purchasing a vehicle that was once leased by another driver. Generally speaking, off lease luxury cars cost significantly less than new luxury vehicles.
Buy the Features You Want
Don't buy a Mercedes just to own a Mercedes; buy a Mercedes (or any other luxury car you're considering) because it has the supple leather interior or enhanced safety features or impressive navigation system or any other luxury feature you want. Overall, luxury cars cost more; for that kind of money, you should get exactly what you want.
Simply put, don't settle for the sake of image.
Consider Additional Costs
Generally, high price tags bring higher taxes, insurance, and other vehicle-related costs (such as maintenance and repairs). So, keep in mind that just because you can afford to buy the car doesn't mean you can afford to keep the car.
Refer to our section on New Car Taxes and Fees for additional information.
As is always the case when buying a car, be sure to shop around. Browse more than one dealership, talk with more than one salesperson, and be prepared to walk away if you can't get a price you can reasonably afford.
Leasing a Luxury Car
Some experts claim that nearly half of all luxury vehicle drivers lease, rather than purchase, their luxury cars. Generally, leasing a vehicle means a lower down payment, lower monthly payments, and—if you choose to keep leasing—a new vehicle every few years.
However, leasing might not be right for you. Make sure you can handle the wear and tear on your own. Also, keep in mind that you will have to stay within the mileage restrictions, and be ready to relinquish the vehicle once the lease is over.
Learn more about the pros and cons of leasing vehicles as compared to buying them in our section on Leasing vs. Buying.