Author Topic: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco  (Read 1661 times)

Merdox

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Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« on: November 28, 2017, 11:47:54 AM »
Hi all,

So I have about 3 weeks to buy a new (old) car because that's when my current lease is up. Yes, I agree, leasing is the worst, but I got locked into that without my consent -- long story, irrelevant here.

I have my heart set on a used Prius Two Eco, which, based on my research, would be a very sensible acquisition. The problem is I'm in New York but the only ones I see under 20k are as far away as Florida, Georgia, California. The oldest models I can find are 2016 because it's a newer edition.

Any and all advice would be very welcome. I'm new to the used car scene. Thanks in advance.
« Last Edit: November 28, 2017, 11:49:41 AM by Merdox »

ketchup

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #1 on: November 28, 2017, 11:58:44 AM »
My first advice would be to open up your search to other similar models/trims, so that you can go back a little further than 2016.  That's pretty limiting.

lbmustache

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #2 on: November 28, 2017, 12:34:48 PM »
My first advice would be to open up your search to other similar models/trims, so that you can go back a little further than 2016.  That's pretty limiting.

I agree. Is there a specific reason you want the brand new model of Prius, in this specific trim? The prior generation (2009-2015) will be under $20k, easy.

Merdox

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #3 on: November 28, 2017, 02:19:43 PM »
Yeah the Eco specifically is what all the endorsements I've received are for. It was a Motor Trend Car of the Year contender and someone I know who owns 4 different Priuses would not shut up about how great the Eco is specifically.

But you guys might be right; I may need to open up to other trims or else I'm SOL. I did find one way out in California, which I obvi won't be able to test drive because I'm in NY: https://www.cargurus.com/Cars/inventorylisting/viewDetailsFilterViewInventoryListing.action?entitySelectingHelper.selectedEntity=d15&zip=11576&sourceContext=leadConfirmationEmail&sntEmlId=1477220041&type=leadConfirmationEmail&subscriberId=18828416&sntEmlId=1477220041&source=email&type=leadConfirmationEmail&utm_source=leadConfirmation&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=AZULUEVO_control&utm_term=2017-11-28&utm_content=listingImageLink#listing=192001288

Is there any way I could satisfy myself as to the quality of the car given that I can't check it out in person? Any ideas?

Slow2FIRE

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #4 on: November 28, 2017, 02:58:18 PM »
If you can only find cars around $20,000 then I have a better idea for you:

2017 Prius Prime Plus
New York is an area where Toyota offers $3500 rebate on the Prius Prime.
New York offers an additional $1100 rebate on the Prius Prime (https://www.nyserda.ny.gov/All-Programs/Programs/Drive-Clean-Rebate/How-it-Works)
Federal Govt offers a $4502 rebate on the Prius Prime.

All in you get a BRAND NEW 2017 Toyota Prius Prime for about $19,000 (assuming no options on a Prius Prime Plus with dealers fee, delivery charge, paperwork fees).  Just make sure you pay at least $4502 in federal income taxes (not your refund, your total taxes owed).

* Note: you will pay taxes and registration fees based on the MSRP and you won't get the federal tax credit back until you file taxes
** Note2: you may be able to negotiate a few hundred dollars off of MSRP in addition to the $3500 manufacturer's rebate.
« Last Edit: November 28, 2017, 03:01:03 PM by Slow2FIRE »

topshot

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #5 on: November 28, 2017, 03:57:32 PM »
Don't know what is different in the 4th gen models but we have gotten good deals on 2 2012 models (3rd gen after the mid-gen facelift). First was a Two with 68K for $10,350 and second was a Three with 58K for $9600 (private seller). Granted both had been in minor accidents but you really can't tell. Only reason for 2 purchases was the first got totaled but we got an even better deal on the second so came out ahead. :)

kimac

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #6 on: November 29, 2017, 11:48:51 AM »
I'm not sure what your motivation is for selecting a Prius, but purely in terms of cost, it's not necessarily a clear winner. The fuel cost is lower, but the purchase price (and associated depreciation) is expensive compared to other options.

Edmunds TCO for a 2016 Prius Two ECO over 5 years: $34,924 | https://www.edmunds.com/toyota/prius/2016/st-401611902/cost-to-own/
  - Legroom F+R: 75.7''
  - Rear shoulder room: 53''
  - Cargo volume: 27.4 cu ft
Edmunds TCO for a 2016 Honda Fit EX CVT over 5 years: $31,726 | https://www.edmunds.com/honda/fit/2016/st-200742369/cost-to-own/
  - Legroom F+R: 80.7''
  - Rear shoulder room: 52.6''
  - Cargo volume: 16.6 cu ft (plus room under rear seats)

I drive a 2009 Honda Fit (~5'' less legroom than the latest generation, but slightly more cargo volume) with 2 adults and 2 kids in car seats, going camping with a canoe on the roof. It fits a double stroller in the trunk. I've seem people with 3 car seats in the back. So if you are willing to sacrifice a bit of cargo space (http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/12/08/turning-a-little-car-into-a-big-one/), a Prius is not the only option.

orangepalm

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #7 on: November 29, 2017, 12:03:13 PM »
I second the thought of looking at a 3rd gen Prius instead. Forget looking at $20k cars, you should be able to get a really nice one (from a private seller at least) way below $10k.

Priuses seem to always top the list of lowest ownership cost, I wouldn't worry one bit about getting a slightly older one. Ours is a 2010 model with ~140k miles. Drives like new and there's never any issues at all, it's pretty ridiculous if you ask me. Of course, this is 100% anecdotal :)

If you're really set on a newer model, maybe it's a blessing in disguise that you can only find cars a little further south. At least you won't have any rust issues.

ketchup

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #8 on: November 29, 2017, 12:11:39 PM »
If you're really set on a newer model, maybe it's a blessing in disguise that you can only find cars a little further south. At least you won't have any rust issues.
I don't think too much rust damage can happen in a year or less. :)  My car is a 2001 and the first ~7 years of its life were in Texas, but the last 10 have been in WI/IN/IL and somehow it still has almost no rust (and none on the exterior body or visible from underneath; just a little on the driver door jamb).

Merdox

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #9 on: November 30, 2017, 12:23:47 PM »
If you can only find cars around $20,000 then I have a better idea for you:

2017 Prius Prime Plus
New York is an area where Toyota offers $3500 rebate on the Prius Prime.
New York offers an additional $1100 rebate on the Prius Prime (https://www.nyserda.ny.gov/All-Programs/Programs/Drive-Clean-Rebate/How-it-Works)
Federal Govt offers a $4502 rebate on the Prius Prime.

All in you get a BRAND NEW 2017 Toyota Prius Prime for about $19,000 (assuming no options on a Prius Prime Plus with dealers fee, delivery charge, paperwork fees).  Just make sure you pay at least $4502 in federal income taxes (not your refund, your total taxes owed).

* Note: you will pay taxes and registration fees based on the MSRP and you won't get the federal tax credit back until you file taxes
** Note2: you may be able to negotiate a few hundred dollars off of MSRP in addition to the $3500 manufacturer's rebate.

This is incredibly useful advice. Never would've occurred to me. THANK YOU and thank you to the rest for all your advice as well. All helpful. Much love to you all.

Merdox

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #10 on: November 30, 2017, 12:50:10 PM »
If you can only find cars around $20,000 then I have a better idea for you:

2017 Prius Prime Plus
New York is an area where Toyota offers $3500 rebate on the Prius Prime.
New York offers an additional $1100 rebate on the Prius Prime (https://www.nyserda.ny.gov/All-Programs/Programs/Drive-Clean-Rebate/How-it-Works)
Federal Govt offers a $4502 rebate on the Prius Prime.

All in you get a BRAND NEW 2017 Toyota Prius Prime for about $19,000 (assuming no options on a Prius Prime Plus with dealers fee, delivery charge, paperwork fees).  Just make sure you pay at least $4502 in federal income taxes (not your refund, your total taxes owed).

* Note: you will pay taxes and registration fees based on the MSRP and you won't get the federal tax credit back until you file taxes
** Note2: you may be able to negotiate a few hundred dollars off of MSRP in addition to the $3500 manufacturer's rebate.

Looks like the $3,500 Toyota rebate is set to end Monday 12/4/17. Any idea as to whether that would be renewed thereafter? If I have to buy the car this weekend to get that rebate I will. Thanks in advance for the guidance.

ManlyFather

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Re: Advice on buying a used car? Looking for a Prius Two Eco
« Reply #11 on: December 01, 2017, 03:22:40 PM »
Widen your search area and be prepared to travel.  When I bought my used 2012 Prius V Two, I saved $2k by flying from WI to OH instead of buying in WI (that includes the cost of airfare plus the cost of gas driving it back).

Try to line up more than one deal within a 1-2 hr radius if you fly somewhere to buy the car.  Just in case the first one is a dud, you have a backup plan.  Often, the dealership will send a free shuttle to you to pick you up (even if you are 1-2 hr away).

Be sure to get the final price (with taxes, fees, etc.) sorted out before traveling to the dealership.  Do not walk into a dealership without this info in hand.

If you want an incredibly in-depth explanation of how to tackle this project, I wrote a post about it here: https://www.manlyfather.com/how-to-buy-a-used-car-like-a-man/

(mods, please remove my post if this is inappropriate - I'm not trying to self promote, just trying to be helpful)