One of the most thrilling experiences some drivers encounter is being able to drive a brand-new pickup off the dealer’s lot and down the road to its new home. Having that brand spanking new truck, like the GMC Sierra 1500, sitting in your driveway, brings curious neighbors to your door to look at in awe.
But, in reality, buying a new pickup isn’t always what it’s cracked up to be. You’re more likely to throw a bunch of money away on it that you’ll never get back again. If you go used, however, you could save more money. The iSeeCars report shows how buying used is the better way to go in most cases.
How can you save money with a GMC Sierra 1500 purchase?
GMC pickups are some of the more expensive trucks on the market when purchasing them brand new off the lot. These trucks offer you plenty of impressive safety features, high-quality materials, powerful engine options, and even state-of-the-art technological infotainment screens.
While those items are nice, and they’re probably well worth the money, are they really necessary for your needs? If you could get a GMC Sierra 1500 with some of the same features in a slightly older model, would you consider it?
You should since it could cost you significantly less money than a brand-new version would. The iSeeCars report shows that there’s a 54.7% difference in the price of a brand-new Sierra over a slightly used version of the pickup.
If you break that percentage down into dollars, you could see about an $18,590 difference between the two. That amount of savings could go toward the purchase price of another vehicle or even a down payment on a house.
Why is there such a big difference in prices?
It probably seems like a hard concept to wrap your mind around. How could a slightly older version be so much cheaper than a brand-new one? Well, it boils down to one major factor, which is depreciation. According to CarFax.com, the first month alone will eat away at the vehicle’s value by 10% of the purchase price. After one year of owning the pickup, that amount would increase to around 20%.
So, if you bought a pickup at $30,000, the depreciation amount for one month could be $3,000. Over time, the value of that truck continues to go down. After about five years of ownership, the value could be about 40% less than the price you originally paid for it. Of course, there are a few factors here and there that could affect the price, but overall, you could see a $12,000-$18,000 difference.
What to look for in a used GMC Sierra 1500
If you’re looking to purchase a GMC Sierra 1500, and have decided that a used version would be more cost-effective for you, then there are a few things to keep in mind when doing your research.
Obviously, you want a good price, but it’s also important to look at what features the truck has. If you find a used one with a great price, but doesn’t have the 6.2-liter V8 engine that you’d love to have, decide whether it’s really necessary. Can you get by with the 5.3-liter? No need to pay more for one that has items you don’t necessarily need to have.
Don’t let the mileage scare you away. While we all would love to have a truck with lower mileage, you can bet, it will cost you quite a bit more. Since modern pickups, according to Consumer Reports used truck buying guide, can last well into the 200,000 mileage range, a pickup with higher miles may serve you just as well as one with lower miles. As long as they have taken good care of it, and you continue to maintain it, it should last you a long time.
There’s nothing wrong with buying new, but know that once you drive it off the lot, the value will start ticking down immediately. In a couple of years or so, when you try to sell it or trade it in, you’re not likely to get even half the amount you paid for it. Going used is a more cost-effective way to go about it. A used GMC Sierra could save you almost $20,000 if you find an older model to purchase.