Buying a new car is an exciting undertaking, but it can also cause a fair amount of stress if you’re not actually sure what kind of car is best for you. So which car should you buy? We’ve come up with a list of questions you should ask yourself so you can be as informed and prepared as possible before even stepping foot on the dealership lot.
Understand Your Driving Habits and Patterns
One of the best ways to figure out what kind of car is best for you is by getting reflective.
How many people and/or how much cargo will you be transporting on a regular basis? This will affect the size of your car, how many seats are available, and how much trunk space will be needed.
Do you have kids or pets? Again, depending on your answer, you’ll need an entirely different car than someone without children or a dog to worry about.
Do you live in the suburbs, the city, or a rural area? Do you have to worry about your car standing out too much in your neighbourhood and being a potential beacon to thieves? Will your car be too big for the city streets or too small for the highway?
In a similar vein, what is the weather like where you’re from and how will it affect your ability to drive your car? If you’re from a cold or rainy climate, a convertible probably isn’t your best bet. Likewise, if you mainly drive along narrow city streets, you probably don’t need a hummer.
How confident are you in your driving? How competent and safe are the other drivers in your area? Are accidents something you need to be particularly concerned about? Try to think about what model or make of car will give you the most peace of mind and keep you the safest.
How much are you willing to spend on gas and how important is fuel economy to you? By looking into these aspects of the cars you’re interested in, you’ll easily be able to eliminate any options that don’t suit your needs (or your budget).
Lastly, is being environmentally conscious important to you? Are you willing to look into hybrids or other earth friendly car models in order to do your part to help the environment?
Pros and Cons of Different Cars
Sedans are great because they’re compact but still allow for enough leg room and space to transport 4 passengers comfortably. Sedan’s have four doors (which adds to the ease of access for passengers) and are still small enough that finding a good parking spot shouldn’t be too much of a challenge.
Hatchbacks are a great alternative to sedans if you want more trunk space but don’t want to the fuel consumption of other larger vehicles. Hatchbacks are sleek and steadily gaining popularity in the North American market.
The name alone may give you flashbacks to the Griswold Family Christmas, but station wagons aren’t as dated and archaic as you may think. They boast a ton of space for both passengers and cargo (again, without costing nearly as much as a larger crossover or SUV would).
Synonymous with soccer moms everywhere, minivans are the go to vehicle for families with 3 or more children. While they might not be the coolest of cars, they certainly do their job; tons of legroom for passengers, more seating than any other vehicle, and a boatload of storage space.
These vehicles are some of the most heavy duty you’ll find, and with good reason. The increased height of the car adds to the increased weight, so if a good fuel economy is something you’re after, this probably isn’t the vehicle for you. However, if you want better visibility and easier access to your seat, SUV/crossovers are a great option.
These cars are great if you live in the right climate for them and don’t have to worry about transporting pets or kids. Otherwise, you might want to think twice (or at the very least, make sure it’s not your primary vehicle). Many convertibles and sports cars have back seats that are difficult to access (which can seriously impact how practical they are in your daily life).