How to Avoid Buying a Used Rental Car
A car that's been abused is obviously not going to last as long as one where the owner treated it like their baby.
This is why most experts advise not to buy a car that's been used as a rental or commercial vehicle. When most people rent cars, they don't have a vested interest in the long-term reliablity of the car.
Most will floor the accelerator every chance they get. Some people even use rental cars as if they're stunt cars, trying to pull off 360 degree spins and abusing the braking system.
Knowing which cars are used most often as rental and commercial vehicles can help you avoid buying one.
Automotive Fleet Magazine released a list of cars most often used as fleet vehicles. Some on the list, such as the Ford Crown Victoria, are used mostly as taxis and police cars and usually aren't found too often as used cars.
If you're interested in buying one of the cars on the list, we advise you find one being sold by a private party. Make sure it is a one-owner car, not one that has been resold already. If the car is being sold on a dealer lot, our recommendation is to stay away. Chance are the car was purchased at auction from a rental or fleet company and the dealer doesn't have any obligation to reveal this fact to you.
Top 20 Cars Used as Rental or Commercial Vehicles
|Rank||Vehicle||% Sold to Fleet|
|1||Ford Crown Victoria||94.0%|
|4||Lincoln Town Car||66.1%|
|5||Chrysler PT Cruiser||61.5%|
|10||Mercury Grand Marquis||55.4%|
|12||Pontiac Grand Prix||53.3%|
|13||Ford Taurus X||51.4%|
3 Steps Every Car Buyer Needs to Take to Save Maximum MoneyThe key to getting the best deal is to gather price or lease bids from as many local dealers as possible. Then shop that best price around until no one can beat it. Here are the steps:
Step 1 Get Prices From My Trusted NetworkSelect the vehicle you're interested in to see if there are local dealers in my network who will provide you with their best upfront price. You will get direct access to an internet sales manager who you can further negotiate with online (no need to visit dealership).
Step 2 Get Prices From TrueCar / CarsDirectTrueCar, and CarsDirect are my top 2 online price quote recommendations. These services show you pre-negotiated prices from dealers closest to you - and the deals are usually pretty decent. But remember, you can still negotiate further.
Step 3 Complete my ChecklistFollow this up with my checklist to make sure you squeeze out every last bit of savings.
- Gregg Fidan
Each week, I'll keep you up-to-date on the latest car deals and news that might affect your purchase. This includes...
- Best Rebates, Incentives, and Lease Deals
- Latest Car Buying Scams and Tricks
- The Best & Worst Time to Buy a Car
- Which Cars You Should Avoid