Now that you’ve got your licence, you’re tired of asking your parents to borrow their car and haggling with your siblings for it. You want your own car, but the question is: should you buy a brand new one or a used one?

The instructors at Ambitious Drivers have compiled a list to help you come to a decision:

New Cars

The number-one problem with buying a new car is it depreciates as soon as it’s officially yours. The worse part is that it’s a hidden cost many people are unaware of until they trade their car in for another model. New cars can depreciate up to 11% of their value. External factors, like gas spikes, can cause depreciation rates to increase if the new car you want is a gas guzzler.

Another big problem with buying a new car is the car payments. They stick to you for several years and monthly payments are quite high—higher than your grocery budget and that’s not including the interest. So, you need to be sure that it’s worth having that over your head if you buy a brand new car. To add insult to injury, if you were to calculate the total your monthly payments add up to, you’d see that it’s far more than what your car is worth because it depreciates as long as you own it.

Used Cars

By “used car”, we don’t mean the 1998 model your grandparents are still using. While it’s good to save your money and purchase a used car, it’s important to buy one that has modern features for the driver and passengers’ safety.

Modern features, like electronic safety control and curtain airbags, provide benefits to inexperienced drivers and are easier on the wallet than buying a new car. The price of a used car combined with car repairs will be far less than what you’d pay for a new car.

Used cars will come with a history and the treatment it got from its previous owner will have an impact on its performance and reliability. Reliability is essential when it comes to cars. A used car’s warranty protection will have expired by the time you’re driving it. So, don’t go for a car based on its appearance; that won’t help you when you need to brake hard to avoid an accident.

Electronic safety control is available in cars after 2010, but don’t stop there! Evaluate a car on all of its features. To know a car’s level of safety, look into its performance and safety features to make sure they meet Motor Vehicle Safety Act (MVSA) standards and regulations.

Tip: Steer clear of large pickups and SUVs. These heavier and bigger vehicles are not suited for inexperienced drivers because they are harder to maneuver.

The Choice

Still not sure which car is for you? Do some research on car models, and talk to experienced drivers as you shop for your own car. The instructors at Ambitious Drivers are happy to answer all your questions, so contact us today! Still not confident behind the wheel? Book a driving test!