If you have been following the news, you might have seen a significant fall in the number of vehicles sold in the first quarter of 2014. It’s convenient for the motor manufacturers to explain this dip away by pointing to the weather. The polar vortex brought real hardship to all in the top half of the country and some discomfort to those in the south. But there’s a quite different reason for the slowdown. Have you noticed how many manufacturers are announcing new models for next year? That’s a real problem for consumers. Although many dealers will discount the old models to clear out the stock before the new models arrive, this leaves you stuck with a model that’s going to lose money fast in depreciation. No one will want to buy it secondhand with a new model coming. Put another way, consumers are getting a lot more savvy when it comes to working out the cost of owning a vehicle. One of the biggest factors is the amount of money lost simply by registering the vehicle in your name. The sales tax is gone immediately. The first two years of ownership see the fastest loss in value on the secondhand market. So before you buy any new vehicle, have a look at the secondhand values and see how quickly the resale price drops. Now you can see which makes and models are the cheapest to own.

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