Author Topic: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars  (Read 4686 times)

goldgrasshopper

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Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« on: November 01, 2015, 03:32:11 PM »
Are there some cars out there that retain their value so well, that buying used is equivalent or even less desirable than buying new?

I've owned used cars all my life, I just recently sold my 1998 Honda Civic this year with 190K miles for $1,500. Now my live-in girlfriend who already is inclined to buy a new car is looking at getting her first car, a 2016 Subaru Impreza 2.0 Premium. Taking up the challenge of finding her an equivalent model used car, I came across used cars but damn do they hold their value! We live in New England, where demand for 4WD cars and particularly Subarus is always high. Case in point, here is a nearby search and keep in mind that a brand new base model starts at $18,295 MSRP http://tinyurl.com/qebrvtv
« Last Edit: November 01, 2015, 05:13:15 PM by goldgrasshopper »

The Beacon

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Re: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« Reply #1 on: November 01, 2015, 04:07:46 PM »
not sure what you are looking in a car.  Money wise, you perhaps already know that buying a brand new is never a wise move for 2 reasons
1: fast depreciation
2: opportunities loss

Lets say car 1, brand new, is $18000 and same car , 5 years old,  $11000.  If you invest the difference, 7000 @ 7% per year for 15 years, we are looking at close to 20k in total returns.   15 years later, both cars will be worthless.  Sure the second car might require a bit of more repairs, lets say $5000 in 15 years.  That would still leave you 15k.  If you can DIY a bit, you'd have a bit more left than 15k.

But of course, life is not all about money.


csprof

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Re: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2015, 08:36:02 PM »
Are there some cars out there that retain their value so well, that buying used is equivalent or even less desirable than buying new?

I've owned used cars all my life, I just recently sold my 1998 Honda Civic this year with 190K miles for $1,500. Now my live-in girlfriend who already is inclined to buy a new car is looking at getting her first car, a 2016 Subaru Impreza 2.0 Premium. Taking up the challenge of finding her an equivalent model used car, I came across used cars but damn do they hold their value! We live in New England, where demand for 4WD cars and particularly Subarus is always high. Case in point, here is a nearby search and keep in mind that a brand new base model starts at $18,295 MSRP http://tinyurl.com/qebrvtv

Not unless things are really insane.  The $3-4k you'd save off of a brand new one, provided it doesn't have rust problems, compounds nicely and represents a very worthwhile savings.  Just randomly scanning craigslist and limiting to for sale by owner cars only:

https://boston.craigslist.org/nwb/cto/5224172623.html

2011, 44k, $12k.

The curve for Subarus still does the normal "lose 10% the second you drive it off the lot" (or whatever the % is)-- it's just flatter after that.  As the previous owner of a 3 year old used subaru, I *highly* recommend that path.

Jack

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Re: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2015, 10:56:24 AM »
Are there some cars out there that retain their value so well, that buying used is equivalent or even less desirable than buying new?

Yes. When a particularly popular new model comes out, demand can exceed supply and used prices can temporarily exceed new MSRP, allowing lucky early adopters to drive said car for maybe as much as a year and sell it for more than they paid. However, trying to execute such a strategy is definitely risky speculation.

At the other end of the spectrum a very old car that's become a "classic" becomes more valuable than it was initially due to both increasing rarity and inflation. For example, any surviving 1953 Corvette is almost certainly worth more today than its $3498 MSRP.

However, I don't think it's necessary for Mustachians to concern themselves with either such strategy; we should all be on bikes to begin with! If a car is needed often enough for ownership to be necessary, I prefer the strategy of buying at the bottom of the depreciation curve so that losing much money is impossible because there's not much tied up in the purchase in the first place. And who knows, maybe my '90 Miata will become a classic...

CmFtns

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Re: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2015, 12:22:29 PM »
So don't hate on me guys for my car choice because I'm just providing my experiences for the sake of analyzing the OP's question. I am providing this not to try to convince you to buy such an expensive car but because I found the same observations when I was searching around for my subaru. My recommendation for someone like your GF, who probably doesn't care as much about her ride as I do, is a used corolla/matrix or civic around mid 2000s years 50k-100k miles. This is probably what I would have bought for myself if I wasn't a crazy person.

I drive a 2015 WRX and today, when I search for the same exact car I have with the same options, I see cars with 15k-30k miles selling for very very close to what I paid.

I'm talking about these types of numbers:

NEW: $28,500

Used: 21k miles $26,900
Used: 26k miles $27,175
Used: 25k miles $27,698
Used: 16k miles $28,500
Used: 17k miles $28,270
Used: 23k miles $28,888

This is with a nationwide search for this car used with 15-30k miles sorted for best prices.

I am NOT claiming that a WRX or even a subaru is a mustacian car, but if you are going to buy one anyway, I can totally see a justification here to buy new. The depreciation here seems to only be around 5% for the 20,000 miles driven and to me, 20,000 miles is more than 5% of the car's reliable life unless your planning on driving past 400,000 miles.

I've done this analysis multiple times and always found that cars all across the subaru lineup hold their value extremely well especially in cold climates and there can be some value attributed to having a new car, especially if you are a car enthusiast.

Jack

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Re: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2015, 12:52:32 PM »
The WRX was apparently redesigned for 2015. I would expect the gap between new and one-year-used prices to widen next year as the early-adopter rush ends.

CmFtns

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Re: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« Reply #6 on: November 03, 2015, 01:32:29 PM »
The WRX was apparently redesigned for 2015. I would expect the gap between new and one-year-used prices to widen next year as the early-adopter rush ends.

You are correct that they redesigned, however when I was searching for my car, it was the end of 2014 and I was comparing the 2015 WRX with used WRXs from 2013/2014 model years and had the exact same findings with used prices being within 5-10% of new price for cars with 20-30k miles and those obviously weren't related to early-adopter rush... if anything the exact opposite would apply and people would be trying to sell the end of production run to get new one.

Another nationwide search for 2013 & 2014 model years sorted by best deals
2014 18k miles $24,900
2014 17k miles $27,995
2014 27k miles $25,830
2014 17k miles $25,000
2013 23k miles $28,960

I'm just saying that I couldn't find anything even close to 20% of new price back when I was searching and if it was even close to that then it was torn up or abused with scratched up rims etc...

« Last Edit: November 03, 2015, 01:43:55 PM by comfyfutons »

jjcamembert

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Re: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« Reply #7 on: November 03, 2015, 02:25:34 PM »
Yes I found the same thing for Subaru Crosstreks. They didn't start building them until 2013 so there is higher demand in the used market. I found that the oldest 2013 models with about 40k miles (way more miles than I would put on a car in 3 years) were priced maybe $5000 less than a brand new 2016. Consumer reports reliability was only "ok" for 2013 too, increasing in later years. Found similar price-points for Foresters too. So would I pay $5000 to get a 3 year warranty, know that I'll take care of the car, and get an extra 4 years (mileage) out of the car? Sure!

If I didn't drive on snowy mountain roads yeah a cheap sedan would have been an economically better choice.

clarkfan1979

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Re: Subaru Impreza and high resale value cars
« Reply #8 on: November 04, 2015, 01:24:52 AM »
Interesting points. I have considered a similar path for used RV's. Find a desperate seller and pay cash. Use it for 2 year and then sell it for what you paid for it.