Best Time to Buy a Car

Black car

The best time to buy a car is a question that occupies many consumers' minds. Whether it's a small coupe or a luxury sedan, a new car is a big expense. LoveToKnow is here to help narrow down your options and save you money.

1. December

During the holiday season, most people are pre-occupied with purchasing Christmas gifts, traveling, and visiting relatives. Edmunds.com, SmartMoney.com, and other reputable sources all seem to agree that the best time to buy a car is in December, especially close to the end of the year. Discounts and incentives are widely available as car dealerships work to achieve an annual sales goal; December is their last chance to make their required numbers. However, sometimes you have to be a bit careful since car dealerships may decrease the number of vehicles they order in anticipation of a slow period.

2. When New Models are Released

Historically, the fall season is when new vehicles for the upcoming year become available for sale. Once a new line is released, there is a big push to sell all vehicles from the previous year. As a result, higher rebates, incentives, and dealer cash programs become available to the consumer. However, new models are not just released in the fall season but throughout the year. Stay on the lookout for advertising for the new "future year" vehicle releases. Visit car manufacturer websites, including Chevrolet, Toyota, Hyundai and Honda, for the latest rebate and discount information.

3. Month's End Sales Quota

Every month, the dealership sales department work toward a quota of vehicles they must sell in order to receive a bonus or to earn a higher dealership ranking. At the end of the month, salespeople who have not met their personal monthly quotas may feel pressured to work with sales managers to bend even farther on pricing. This is a good time to find a car deal. Remember, you have the option of walking away, and that's the last thing any sales person wants to happen. Keep is in mind when you begin to negotiate on a better price.

4. Middle of the Week

During the week, most people are working their day jobs and do not have time to car shop. You can use this to your advantage since many salespeople won't have as many distractions and are eager to assist. During the week, you might feel less pressured by time and will make better decisions. Take advantage of the salesperson's time and take a couple of test drives on different models.

5. Saturday Morning

If the dealership has experienced a slow week, then morale will be a bit low and the pressure to sell increases. Saturday often becomes one of the best times to buy a car. With the stress to sell, salespeople will have more flexibility on pricing. If the dealership has its own website, check for specially-priced vehicles such as weekend specials. If you see something you like, print it out and take it with you so the salesperson knows exactly what you're looking for in a vehicle.

6. End of a Vehicle’s Design Cycle

Sometimes car manufacturer's decide to discontinue a particular model. It can be due to a variety of reasons, such as a lack of interest by the consumer, high manufacturring costs, design issues or vehicle defects. These vehicles are deeply discounted, so you can save a lot of money. Research carefully, since you want to make sure the reason the vehicle is no longer available is not due to defect. After researching, should you consider one of these vehicles, don't wait too long; demand for the vehicle sometimes increases due to scarcity, and dealerships often raise prices on their remaining stock.

Best Time to Buy a Car