Luxury Import Cars: Choosing Wisely
For those people in the market for a luxury imported car, there are many ways to go about acquiring one. Leasing is more popular with upscale imports than with domestic and non-luxury imports. The BMW 7-Series.
Leasing allows people who might otherwise not be able to afford a luxury import the opportunity to do so. When a customer leases a car, he or she is essentially paying the up-front cost of the car minus what it is expected to be worth at the end of the lease, an amount called the residual value. Financing only the residual value is why leasing costs less than buying. For cars that retain their value well, leasing can be a good way for an ordinary person to be able to drive a nice car, and that is one reason that imports, including luxury imports remain popular even in difficult economic times. But if you plan to purchase a luxury import outright, there are a few things you need to know and do beforehand.
First, you should have the vehicle appraised, particularly if you are buying new. Sometimes car dealers will price imports artificially high, counting on the customer to not know the market for that model well. With all the information available over the Internet, a little time invested in learning the going prices for models you are interested in will pay off when it is time to make that deal.
Second, you should research not just price, but the car itself before buying. Gas mileage, engine performance, and reputation are important. You should also try to gather information on how well the model you are interested in retains its value over the years.
Finally, you should always get an opinion from a non-interested mechanic, i.e., one not employed by the car dealer, to let you know the ins and outs of caring for your luxury import. Find out if there are mechanics in your area who have experience servicing cars like the one you want. Also find out how difficult and/or expensive it will be to buy replacement parts for the model you want.
Luxury imported cars will always be popular, whether leased or purchased outright. But whether you are leasing or buying, acquiring a luxury import is still a large commitment of money. Make a wise decision by learning about models you like well before contacting a car dealer or answering a classified ad.