Excited about shopping for your next car? Here’s how to have a good experience


Shopping for a car – new or used – is exciting.

CarStory has proof.

In a recent survey, the website asked shoppers how they felt about looking for a used car, and nearly half of those responding (49 percent) indicated a feeling of “excitement.”

Used-car shoppers generally are excited, optimistic.
Used-car shoppers generally are excited, optimistic.

Nearly as many – 44 percent – said they were feeling optimistic, while “satisfaction” (28 percent) and “happiness” (23 percent) also scored reasonably well among the shoppers surveyed. Survey respondents were permitted to select more than one feeling about their car-shopping experience.

Meanwhile, most shoppers appear to have sound reasons to shop for a used car instead of a new one.

CarStory reported that 60 percent were looking for a used vehicle to save money, while getting a good deal was the second-most popular response at 53 percent. Also high on the list was another economic factor, “to get more features for the buck,” which drew responses from 26 percent of shoppers.

But before they buy, shoppers also want information that will help them make a decision on a used vehicle, according to CarStory. This includes details on vehicle condition (81 percent), accident history (77), service history (75), listing price (74), value of vehicle (73), mileage (71), price compared to the market (68), dealership reputation (66), as well as selling price (65) and mileage (64) of similar vehicles.

Dealer descriptions, meanwhile, provide less information than many shoppers want, with under half of women (47 percent) and even fewer men (38 percent) indicating they got enough to decide.

(Perhaps remarkably, cost of ownership, which was cited by 60 percent of survey respondents, often is identified by experts as one of the most important factors shoppers should consider.)

The bottom line appears to be that used-car shoppers try not to let their excitement and optimism get the better of them when looking for their next vehicle. The degree of success shows in good or bad feelings about car shopping, which range from satisfaction (28 percent) to disappointment (21) to delight (15), and from surprise (14) or joy (13) to irritation (12).

So, enjoy your feelings of excitement, but don’t let it get in the way of a good shopping experience.