Gearheads sometimes catch a lot of heat for not buying new cars. Hey, it's not our fault we are savvy shoppers…. (or broke). The reality is we know that buying used is just a much better value. For example, once I convinced a client to get a CPO C-class for the same money he was going to spend on a loaded Camry. Like many of you I spent way too much time window shopping the various auto listing sites. While I am not Doug "Buys Crazy Cars from CarMax" DeMuro, I decided to come up with a list of cool cars that could be a solid purchase when you have someone else take the depreciation hit. These cars are what I consider "lightly used" and have one or more of the following: low miles, some remaining factory warranty, and/or CPO coverage.
CPO 2011 BMW 135- 29,738 (price new aprox- 44k)
For about the same price as a loaded BRZ you can have this striking blue 300hp, turbo, 2-door with M-sport package. While it does weigh a bit more than the Toyobaru twins, you certainly are not going to be waiting for the power to arrive.
CPO 2012 Hyundai Genesis R-spec- 31,995 (price new aprox. 48k)
While it might not have the the pedigree or prestige of the mid size German sport sedans it does have a honkin 5.0 V8, RWD, and plenty of creature comforts for a highway cruise. So if you are not hung up in fancy badges, you can land yourself a comfy, quick, stealthy sedan.
CPO 2012 Buick Regal GS- $25,647 (price new aprox. 35k)
Yes it is "wrong wheel drive" but if you want something different for the price of a moderately equipped Accord you can have 18" wheels, navigation, 6-speed manual, Brembo brakes with HiPer-Strut suspension, a 270hp turbo 4, navigation, leather and other goodies.
Used 2012 Ford Mustang GT- 21,000 (price new aprox. 31k )
Say it with me..V8, RWD, 6MT, 21K! Not much in the way of options but it has everything you need to burn some rubber and make some noise. While it does not have CPO coverage with only 28k miles it is barely broken in.
CPO 2010 Porsche Boxster $36,998- (Price new aprox. 50k)
Looking for some top-down motoring bliss? Mid-mounted Flat-6, 6-speed manual, it even has navigation and a Bose stereo! It is not as "new" as the others but there is less than 25k miles on the clock and still has some warranty coverage. Just make sure you pronounce it correctly ;)
2009 Chevy HHR SS- 16,495 (price new aprox. 24k in '09)
So how could I make this list and not include an "affordable" fast, wagon. This is the oldest car on the list but it has less than 13k miles. The "free" vehicle history report is not available for this listing, so there may be more than meets the eye. But if it is clean, 260hp, 5 speed manual, and boat-loads of cargo space make for a serious hauler.
Of course these are just a few examples of what you can find. If you know of any more great used performance buys list them below. If you don't, I expect you spend the rest of your day being "productive" to find better picks.
Thanks for reading!
My name is Tom and I run AutomatchConsulting.com. I am a professional car-buying consultant, which means people pay me to help them select the right car (NO YOU CAN'T HAVE A PRIUS) and negotiate with the dealerships to get them the best price. If you have any other questions or suggestions for future posts about the car-buying process please let me know. You can find some of my other posts on car-buying here. You can also find me on Twitter @AutomatchTom and Facebook. com/AutomatchConsulting