Schmidt, Sethi & Akmajian Blog

A Whole New World: Part IV - Pricing a Car

Posted by Dev Sethi | Oct 11, 2018 | 0 Comments

Last week I focused on resources to help evaluate the safety and performance of cars.  

Today, I share a cool tool that helps a buyer understand the value proposition of a car.  Everyone talks about the savings a used car offers.  "Let someone else take the depreciation" is a common refrain.  But what does that really mean? And in walking the lots and checking the internet, I have not see a huge difference between new and used prices for some of the more popular cars -- RAV-4, CR-V, and other good value crossovers, which are the bulk of what I am looking at.  

Enter UsedFirst, a website that illustrates the depreciation curve for a variety of vehicles.  I can't vouch for the data, and they don't have every car in the system.  But in reviewing their charts and graphs along with real world pricing, I do see correlation.  

The site allows you to search by brand and vehicle.  It then shows you the depreciation curve, and highlights the sweet spot -- where you get the most bang for the buck in the used car market.  For example, a 2016 Ford Escape provides the best value proposition.  By the time you get to a 2011 model, the curve is so flat that there is no difference between that model year and 2006. It is a good resource for looking at how well vehicles on your list hold their value -- and, more commonly, how far they plummet.

Happy Car Hunting.

Ford Escape Depreciation Curve

About the Author

Dev Sethi

Dev Sethi litigates and tries a wide-range of complex injury and death cases throughout Arizona. He has Martindale Hubbell's highest rating, AV, and he is listed in "Best Lawyers." Dev is also recognized as an Arizona Super Lawyer in the area of plaintiff's products liability litigation.Dev has been at the forefront of auto product defect litigation. He played a key role in uncovering the Goodyear Load Range E tire scandal and worked to hold Ford Motor Company responsible for the danger posed by their now notorious 15-passenger vans. Dev is currently representing families in product liability suits against the nation's largest corporations including General Motors, Ford, Pentair Pools and Invacare.


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