What are Pre Reg Cars?
This may seem a simple question to many, but last week I took a call on my mobile from a lady in Bradford who was looking on our website for a new or nearly new car, and just wanted a few simple points explained in non-technical motor trade language – I was more than happy to answer her questions but it led me to think that there may be lots of people out there who would like to know the differences between, and the pros and cons of, buying new cars, pre reg, ex demo’s, manufacturer approved cars, used cars from a main dealer, used cars from an independent company and buying privately! That's a lot to get through so here goes…..
Do I choose New ? PreReg? Demo? PreOwned? Nearly New? Used ???? Great Questions that are often asked – here are some answers!!
- New car - Fairly easy, it's brand new, you will be the first registered keeper, it will always have covered less than 100 miles, most often less than 20, and will have the benefit of all the manufacturer’s finance offers or incentives which they offer to persuade you to buy new, and that all important new car smell
- Pre Reg - These are cars which have been registered by the dealer, generally for one of two reasons - either the manufacturer or the dealer was falling behind target for market share or monthly registrations, or the dealer was over target and took the opportunity to register some cars before an impending price rise or simply because they would be sufficiently reduced in price that a substantial saving could be made against the original new car price making the pre-registered car, with no or very low mileage, more appealing to the customer. It is important to note however that manufacturer supported finance offers are usually only available on brand new cars as opposed to pre-reg cars, so it may be a new car offers a lower monthly payment, but a higher cash price.
- Ex Demo – An ex demo or demonstrator is a car which has been registered and used by the dealership, so it will normally show a considerable saving on the mrrp and on the price of a similar pre reg car – again it is unlikely that it will be available with the same finance offer as a new car but it should have a much cheaper cash price than a new car – however, if you buy it from the dealer using their finance terms, the monthly payments may not appear as advantageous as they are on a new car but that is due to the tempting finance offers provided by the manufacturer.
In most cases, it will not matter to the dealer which of the above three vehicle types you choose as long as you choose the type most suitable for you – that is what you need to determine.
- Manufacturer Approved Used Cars. Basically these vehicles are the same as you would buy from nearly all main dealers, but with manufacturer endorsed standards which, in most cases, the manufacturers will enforce their dealers to offer and will charge them for- however in reality any reputable, honest main dealer already adheres to those standards – particularly if they encourage customer feedback and reviews! The warranties attached to manufacturer approved cars are mechanical breakdown insurances, provided via specialist companies and the dealer has no control over what is and isn't covered or will be paid for.
So my advice would be for you to spend some time reading reviews which other customers have written about the dealership you are considering buying from and gain a much better understanding of whether they are reliable and trustworthy – most good companies will encourage reviews on their Facebook pages, Google + pages, yell.com and Auto Trader.
- Used cars from a main dealer.
- There are a number of advantages buying from the main dealer, the biggest being if you are buying a Used Suzuki from a Suzuki dealer, there is a much bigger chance that the dealer sold it from new, serviced it, and sold another car to its owner – thus knowing the full history of the car, as opposed to buying that car from an independent used car centre, who may have taken it in part exchange, but it's very unlikely they sold it previously and serviced it, and had any relationship with the previous owner.
The franchised dealer is also subject to standards and audits by the manufacturer they represent in order to retain its franchise so that should give you further reassurance as a buyer, and as they are representing a manufacturing brand with considerable investment in infrastructure, the brand would not want to be represented by poor business ethics, so the consumer can be more confident with their purchase.
- Used cars from an independent dealer. Cars sold by independent dealers should be cheaper than main dealers, but it's not always the case - so I suggest you do your research and don't assume they are - there are however many different independent used car dealers, some of them are professional and do have standards similar to those of a main dealer but sadly most do not - so once again I advise you to look for reviews from previous customers and to look at them on more than one review site, just to ensure you are not looking at a set of false reviews from made up customers –
Remember, false economy can cost you more in the long run! If you have reason to complain you can be assured that the main dealer will be fully au fait with your legal rights, as this will be part of his franchise standards, but non franchise independents require no such qualifications, so do make sure you do your research.
- Buying privately. While the purchase price should be much cheaper, and bargains can be found, there are many pitfalls from buying your used car privately and next to no legal support in the event all is not as it seems. Other than defects, potential outstanding finance, or vehicle identity checks to ensure it has not been an insurance write off, you will not have the option to finance the purchase, or the possibility to return the vehicle if faults are found.
Unless you are a car expert or prepared to take some degree of risk, I would suggest you weigh up the saving against the potential loss if all is not as it seems, and one thing I always say is this - if it seems too good to be true, it probably is!!!
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