NEW CAR ADVICE: Has anybody leased a car?

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 04, 2013 12:50 AM GMT
    My boyfriend returned to grad school this week and decided he needs a new car. He's budgeted $200/mo. for lease payments.

    Below are the "advertised specials" from the manufacturer websites on likely candidates. They're 36 month leases, which times well with his schooling.

    CHEVROLET
    Cruze - $149/mo + $1129 down
    Malibu - $169/mo + $1649 down
    Camaro - $189/mo + 2589 down

    HONDA
    Fit - $159/mo + $2499 down
    Civic sedan - $159/mo + $2499 down

    TOYOTA
    Toyota Camry - $189/mo + $2588 down
    Toyota Prius C - $179/mo + $2578 down

    OTHERS
    Buick Verano - $199/mo + $899 down (24 months)
    Mazda3 sedan - $209/mo + 0 down

    Which car would you pick?

    Have you visited a dealership on "website specials" and ended up paying more (or less) and how you got your best deal on the lease?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Sep 04, 2013 1:29 AM GMT
    Well, generally speaking no point in leasing a car if you have to cough up a large down payment. Might as well buy.

    So out of your list, I'd take the Mazda 3. However, I'm partial to Honda. I'd take the Civic if I was planning to buy the car after the lease is up. But need more details like what's the residual value on each. Open or closed ended lease. Allowed mileage per year. Free maintenance. Etc.
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    Sep 04, 2013 2:18 AM GMT
    xrichx saidWell, generally speaking no point in leasing a car if you have to cough up a large down payment. Might as well buy.

    So out of your list, I'd take the Mazda 3. However, I'm partial to Honda. I'd take the Civic if I was planning to buy the car after the lease is up. But need more details like what's the residual value on each. Open or closed ended lease. Allowed mileage per year. Free maintenance. Etc.


    Thanks for your info. That's good to know you like the Mazda3. I like Honda the best too, but seems Chevy has the best lease prices. These are all closed end leases with 12k miles/yr.

    I think he wants cheapest but reliable transportation while he's in school. He drives about 10-12k miles a year, so mileage limits are no problem. A 36 month lease will be up when he graduates, and he will most likely turn the car in at lease end.
  • killercliche

    Posts: 948

    Sep 04, 2013 2:27 AM GMT
    Also your payments will be higher depending on your credit score. Those ultra low rates are available only to those with perfect credit, or so I'm told. My credit was not perfect and my payments are a lot higher than advertised.

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    Sep 04, 2013 2:40 AM GMT
    Tangiers said
    Thanks for your info. That's good to know you like the Mazda3. I like Honda the best too, but seems Chevy has the best lease prices. These are all closed end leases with 12k miles/yr.

    I think he wants cheapest but reliable transportation while he's in school. He drives about 10-12k miles a year, so mileage limits are no problem. A 36 month lease will be up when he graduates, and he will most likely turn the car in at lease end.
    LOL. I didn't notice earlier since I was on my phone. But Camaro? Your list seems all over the place, in terms of types of cars. Gotta narrow things down. It sounds like your boyfriend is on a tight budget. So I would avoid cars that cost more to insure, costs more to maintain, cost more to fuel up, etc. So I would scratch the Camaro, Malibu, and Verano. Focus on the compact cars.

    Cruze and Mazda 3 are probably the two top picks, in terms of lowest total cost during the lease term.
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    Sep 04, 2013 2:52 AM GMT
    TheGuyNextDoor said2 things to bare in mind about leasing...
    The low monthly payments are due to the lowest model they have available. You'll get AC and Power windows, but that's it.
    Expect cloth seats and no frills. These are base models.
    Also know you have to stay within 10-12K miles a year or it's about .10-.25 cents a mile over your limit when your 3 year lease is up.

    I've leased many times because it only makes sense given my close proximity to home. I've also bought to own then went back to leasing. The pros on some leases are they change your oil and do ALL maintenance for free. You just have to keep the tires in good shape. You can often get "More" car for your payment when you lease.

    Now..if you like to drive a car for 7-10 yrs. or till the wheels falls off, leasing's not for you.


    Your "More car for you payment" really tells me leasing is the way to go.

    Graduate school is going to be a 6am to 11pm routine for him. So his main priority is the car be reliable and soak up as little money as possible. The question is which one will he get.




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    Sep 04, 2013 2:59 AM GMT
    killercliche saidAlso your payments will be higher depending on your credit score. Those ultra low rates are available only to those with perfect credit, or so I'm told. My credit was not perfect and my payments are a lot higher than advertised.



    This is my concern. The low payments are a gotcha game....only good for people with perfect 800 credit score, own a home and been on the same job for 20 years. IOW, nobody can qualify for these payments.

    Every time they pull credit, it makes the applicant less appealing to the other lenders.
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    Sep 04, 2013 3:17 AM GMT
    xrichx said
    Tangiers said
    Thanks for your info. That's good to know you like the Mazda3. I like Honda the best too, but seems Chevy has the best lease prices. These are all closed end leases with 12k miles/yr.

    I think he wants cheapest but reliable transportation while he's in school. He drives about 10-12k miles a year, so mileage limits are no problem. A 36 month lease will be up when he graduates, and he will most likely turn the car in at lease end.
    LOL. I didn't notice earlier since I was on my phone. But Camaro? Your list seems all over the place, in terms of types of cars. Gotta narrow things down. It sounds like your boyfriend is on a tight budget. So I would avoid cars that cost more to insure, costs more to maintain, cost more to fuel up, etc. So I would scratch the Camaro, Malibu, and Verano. Focus on the compact cars.

    Cruze and Mazda 3 are probably the two top picks, in terms of lowest total cost during the lease term.


    You're right. I put the Camaro in there because the lease payment was under $200, and that's what I'd buy. But this is about him.

    He likes bigger cars because he was in a serious accident a few years ago and he feels safer with more metal around him. So that a good point...see if he needs a Camry or Malibu size car, but if not then get the safest compact.
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    Sep 04, 2013 3:38 AM GMT
    What is your BF looking for most in a car? How often and how far will he be driving it? I was once a starving grad student too, so I'm assuming he's looking mainly for fuel economy and reliability.

    The compact cars will tend to get the best fuel economy: Cruze, Fit, Civic, Prius, and Mazda3.

    I'm in the market for a compact commuter car right now, and I've read on various car forums that Mazdas tend to be a little less reliable. (Mazda 3 hatchback is one of my top choices though <3 ) Toyotas and Hondas are really reliable in my and my family's experience. I currently drive a Toyota Solara (basically a 2-door version of the Camry). This thing is amazingly reliable and gets pretty good gas mileage.
  • rnch

    Posts: 11524

    Sep 04, 2013 1:13 PM GMT
    Tangiers saidMy boyfriend returned to grad school this week and decided he needs a new car. He's budgeted $200/mo. for lease payments.

    Below are the "advertised specials" from the manufacturer websites on likely candidates. They're 36 month leases, which times well with his schooling.

    CHEVROLET
    Cruze - $149/mo + $1129 down
    Malibu - $169/mo + $1649 down
    Camaro - $189/mo + 2589 down

    HONDA
    Fit - $159/mo + $2499 down
    Civic sedan - $159/mo + $2499 down

    TOYOTA
    Toyota Camry - $189/mo + $2588 down
    Toyota Prius C - $179/mo + $2578 down

    OTHERS
    Buick Verano - $199/mo + $899 down (24 months)
    Mazda3 sedan - $209/mo + 0 down

    Which car would you pick?

    Have you visited a dealership on "website specials" and ended up paying more (or less) and how you got your best deal on the lease?



    Not quite 3 years ago Toyota, in trouble after a couple of highly publicized recalls and facing stiff competition from the all new Hyundai Sonata, advertised a 36 month closed end lease package for the 2011 Camry at $199 due at signing and $199 a month, 12K miles per month, free oil changes/tire rotation for the life of the lease.

    The agreed on end of lease purchase price was quite low, below the current prices of a 3 year old Camry at that time.

    I have 3 months to go on this lease; am so well satisfied with the car that I just may buy it.

    Where else can I find a perfect, low mileage (29K on it today), by-the-book maintained 3 year old used Camry at a price that is 3K below market value?
  • Joshua21

    Posts: 5

    Sep 04, 2013 4:27 PM GMT
    It all depends on what you are looking for. I just bought a 2012 Prius c.

    I get like 50 miles to the gallon, I never fill up. It is surprisingly roomy for a small car. This car is great for 1-2 people, anymore than that and you might want to look elsewhere. You can fit 4 people in it, but the back seats are not to roomy. It is pretty quiet, get a bit loud on the highways, but not terrible. It holds it's own in the highway, struggles a bit up hills, it not terrible. If you are looking for a car with a lot of power, it is not for you. If you are looking for a car that is reliable, gets superb has mileage, and something you can run int the ground, the Prius c is awesome. It gets me to point a to b comfortably, and the car looks pretty nice. Sure it does not wow people, but I am not ashamed to drive it, and everyone is interested about the gas mileage.
  • Joshua21

    Posts: 5

    Sep 04, 2013 4:32 PM GMT
    Just for the record, my Prius c has all of the luxuries in it. There are 4 levels you can choose from. I chose level 3. I have Bluetooth, and a large screen on it, with navigation, it hooks up through my phone to pandora, and all that other stuff, it hooks up to my cell phone so I don't have to hold it. If you get level 4 you can get leather heated seats with a moon roof as well.
  • kew1

    Posts: 1595

    Sep 04, 2013 5:08 PM GMT
    Bromoflexual said

    I'm in the market for a compact commuter car right now, and I've read on various car forums that Mazdas tend to be a little less reliable. (Mazda 3 hatchback is one of my top choices though <3 ) Toyotas and Hondas are really reliable in my and my family's experience.


    Odd, Mazda 3s come near the top in reliability surveys over here.