Should you buy a new or used vehicle?

June 4, 2019 1:15 pm | Peter Warren

There's nothing quite like that new-car smell — except, maybe, the smell of a used car and a fistful of savings. But which option is best for you? Here's our guide on how to decide whether you should buy a new or used car.

1. Price 

Let's get the elephant in the room out of the way: the number one reason to buy used over new is price. If price were no object, aside from those interested in classic cars, most people would buy new. As we'll come to discuss, new cars have all the latest features and technologies that make them superior to those that have come before, as well as having none of the wear-and-tear a used car has. But with those upsides comes a higher price, as the latest and greatest always comes at a premium. Depending on your needs, however, that may be a price worth paying; while a used car will almost always be cheaper, the reasons why that's so need to be considered.

The biggest upside of buying used is usually the lower price   but of course, it depends on the model you're purchasing.
The biggest upside of buying used is usually the lower price — but of course, it depends on the model you're purchasing.

2. Quality

A new car offers peace of mind that a used car can't match. Everything in the vehicle is fresh from the factory and works as it should. For truly hassle-free motoring, a new car is absolutely the way to go.

Buying used is more of a gamble. It's difficult to know the actual condition of a car — even with a test drive. The car might drive fine right now, but is there a problem that's about to crop up in the next 100 kilometres? A full mechanical inspection mitigates some of this risk, but that's an extra cost you have to factor into your purchase decision.

The danger of buying a lemon is best avoided by purchasing your used car from Peter Warren Automotive. In addition to our new models, we have a huge range of quality used vehicles available. You can trust that we only sell the best in used cars, because our reputation for quality depends on it.

3. Latest features

A new car is going to have all the latest bells and whistles that a used car won't. Partially-autonomous driving features, the latest infotainment systems, more airbags and greater safety engineering; these are all things new cars have over older models. You can mitigate this problem by creating a list of the must-have features, and shopping for a car that ticks the necessary boxes on your checklist. You may well find the latest and greatest is superfluous to your actual needs — in that case, a used car might be better suited.

4. Warranty and Insurance

New cars come with warranties that typically last either three years or 100,000 km — whichever comes first. Used cars bought in private sales will not usually come with a warranty. That said, some used cars purchased from dealers come with a three month or 5,000 km warranty from the date of sale. This warranty is required under the Motor Dealers and Repairers Act 2013, and applies to cars that have done fewer than 160,000 km or are less than 10 years old. 

And then comes insurance. A car with a lower value is generally going to be cheaper to insure and, for the most part, used cars have a lower value.

5. Financing

Buying a used car in a private sale is generally going to require you stump up the cash immediately. New cars, on the other hand, almost always are sold with financing option available, making it easier to purchase a vehicle even if you don't have a lot of money to spend up front.

At Peter Warren, we offer financing for both new and used cars. Financing a vehicle with us comes with a range of benefits:

  • Quick approval — generally by the next working day.
  • Fixed interest rates — no nasty surprises with changing rates
  • No deposit — for certain approved clients, 100 per cent financing is available.
  • Payment plans designed for you — we make it easy to structure repayments to your budget.
There are often more financing options available for new cars, but certain places sell used under finance too.
There are often more financing options available for new cars, but certain places sell used under finance too.

So what will it be — new or used? There's no one-size-fits-all answer, so that's something for you to decide. That said, whatever you choose you can be sure that the folks at Peter Warren will be able to help find the car for you. We stock a range of new and used cars to suit all tastes and budgets. To learn more about what's in our showrooms, come and visit or get in touch.