Should I Avoid Buying A New Car Made On A Monday Or A Friday?

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Photo: BMW

As Jalopnik’s resident car-buying expert and a professional car shopper, I get emails. Lots of emails. I’ve picked a few of your questions and will try to help out. This week we are discussing whether you should avoid new cars made on a certain day of the week, and ordering a car from a previous model year.

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First, does the day a car is made affect its quality?

“I have often heard that you should never buy a car manufactured on a Monday or Friday. Is there any factual (read: proof) of this? And if so, is there any way by looking at the VIN or similar codes to determine what day of the week a car, SUV, etc. was manufactured?

I am getting ready to purchase a new car in 2021, and would like to know if this is a valid consideration.”

I haven’t heard this one in a while, and it comes from a longstanding assumption that workers on Friday are checked out after a long week and not as careful with their assembly tasks. Similarly, the theory was that workers on Monday were still recovering from the weekend and could be a little sloppy. This seems like a myth that was never really substantiated. Here is a forum question from back in the day that gives a very good answer.

The complete manufacturing process for a modern car takes more than a single day (though final assembly is amazingly quick), and if a factory has worker performance issues two days a week, that factory is likely to have issues overall. There doesn’t seem to be any direct connection between the build quality of the vehicle and which day assembly was completed.

Next up can you order a car that is still for sale but the model year has passed?

“ I’m wondering if it would still be possible to order a 2020 model from the factory through a dealer after 2021 has begun.

This would be for a somewhat higher-end Ram 2500 Longhorn (a version of the Limited trim level), if that matters.”

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A dealer may be able to find a 2020 model somewhere in the country that’s close to what you’d like to order. But if there are none in inventory, then a factory order would have to be for the current model year. At this point, that is a 2021 model. There are times when the automaker has shifted to the “new” model year for some vehicles and is still producing a previous version of the car, but if you are seeing the 2021 model 2500 on the configurator, it’s likely that 2020 production has ended.

Got a car buying conundrum that you need some assistance with? Email me at tom.mcparland@jalopnik.com!

DISCUSSION

By
Gtferrari

it takes 20 hrs to build a F-150. multiple shifts have touched that trucks. hundreds of people have attached parts and assemblies. thousands of robots have lifted, pinched, and welded on it. that being said a f-150 rolls off the line every 53 seconds.

they are made 24/7. there isnt a friday feeling or a case of the mondays. someone on the line is facing an eviction, bankruptcy, divorce. dealing with alcoholism, abusive spouses, finding child care during this pandemic. people will have good days and bad days.

factor in just in time manufacturing and its a recipe for disaster. now not only is there the human element on the line but on the shipping company and the manufacture of the assemblies. did they have a bad day? you can count on it.

american manufactures are the worst for quality because they can fix it at the dealership. dont hold up the line just ship it well fix it when it arrives. imports dont have that luxury of being able to overnight a part. it has to be put in a container and shipped or worse airfreight. thats very costly. so they hold the vehicle at the factory and make the necessary repair.

its fun to sit at a dealership and watch the weekly delivery arrive. ive seen fords with mix matched interiors body panels and the lot. and the scary thing is that none of this has to be declared to the buyer.