2023 Author: Eric Donovan | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-21 15:44
Getting to a new car does not always have to be the best. Buying the previous model can still be worthwhile.
By Heiko Haupt The
fact that car manufacturers and dealers complain about a lack of sales does not change the fact that the development departments are constantly working on new models. Numerous model changes are to be expected again in the context of the International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt / Main from September 13 to 23. This in turn opens up an additional option for those interested in buying: In addition to the selection of brands and series, it is important to consider whether it really has to be the brand-new successor model or maybe the predecessor, which is also brand new in the sales rooms. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages.
It does not look rosy for car sellers: According to the Central Association of German Motor Vehicle Crafts (ZDK) in Bonn, sales of new cars fell by 3.1 billion euros in the first half of the year. The annual forecast of expected new registrations was reduced to 3.2 million - in the previous year, according to the ZDK, it was 3.47 million.
New models are traditionally considered a means of stimulating the desire to buy. And because the IAA is taking place again this year, a whole series of new releases can be expected. For example, the new A4 is expected from Audi, while Mercedes is now following the sedan with the new station wagon version of the C-Class. Those who like it sportier and more expensive can look forward to the powerful M3 version of the 3 Series from BMW. In addition, the 308 comes as the successor to the 307 from Peugeot, while Mazda is renewing the mid-range Mazda 6 series.
Model change brings a surge in demand
The question remains: what to buy? In addition to the innovations brought onto the market with a lot of advertising expenditure, dealers also have brand-new and long-established predecessor models. "Normally, a model change also brings a surge in demand," explains Jürgen Schönleber, spokesman for the market watcher Deutsche Automobil Treuhand (DAT) in Ostfildern (Baden-Württemberg). But that doesn't always have to be the case.
After all, there are just as much reasons for buying a previous model that has just been discontinued, as well as for reaching for the newly developed successor. “There are always people for whom it is important that a vehicle has proven itself,” says Schönleber. And that is especially the case with an expiring model generation. Such vehicles have usually rolled off the assembly line for several years and have been repeatedly optimized in detail during this time. In the case of newly introduced series, on the other hand, “teething problems” occur time and again.
Discounts of up to 30 percent
But there is also another side: "The newly introduced models are technologically up to date," explains Maximilian Maurer from ADAC in Munich. This applies, among other things, to the design based on upcoming emissions standards. Particulate filters will be a matter of course in current diesel vehicles, and the optimization with regard to consumption is also more advanced than in the previous models. However, it should also be noted that some of the really popular new releases are not available immediately, and that the customer must expect delivery times.
Another important point when making a purchase decision is the price. And here in particular there is a clear advantage with the discontinued models: "There are differences depending on the manufacturer, but discounts of 20 or sometimes even 30 percent on the discontinued models are quite feasible", explains automotive researcher Ferdinand Dudenhöffer from the forecasting institute B&D Forecast in Leverkusen. Because both dealers and manufacturers attach great importance to selling the "old" models as soon as possible to make room for the successor. In addition to discounts for the vehicles, there are also variants in which the cars are well equipped at an affordable price. Short-term approvals are another means of reducing prices.
Predecessor initially loses value
However, you should also calculate precisely on an obsolete model for discounts. Because even the successor usually no longer achieves the specified list price. "There is also a discount on new models - nothing works below five percent today," says Dudenhöffer.
When considering a purchase, it can also be worth taking a look into the future - at some point the car should be sold again. "In principle, when a model changes, the predecessor initially loses value on the used market," said DAT spokesman Schönleber. Because it actually looks a little old = " at first. But the initially noticeable difference in the used prices to be achieved does not have to stay that way in the long term. "That often adjusts itself again." In a few years the differences will only be present on a much smaller scale. (dpa)