Skip to main content

Article Highlights:

  • How the wealthy avoid paying full price for cars
  • How we plebians can take advantage too
  • Is there really a lot the rest of us can do?

We all know wealthy people do things… a little differently. Obviously, that also includes new cars and the act of car buying. As Nolan from Donut Media points out, there’s several ways in which the wealthy find a way around paying those pesky taxes or outright paying for their used and new cars, and a few the rest of us mere plebians can learn from.

Rich people register their cars out of state

A topographical map of the state of Montana
States like Montana are used to avoid sales tax | Interim Archives via Getty Images

The first reason rich people’s new cars cost them less is somewhat obvious. Someone figured out you can register your cars in states that have no sales tax on vehicle purchases. Obviously, the most readily available example of this is the great state of Montana. Take a trip to any local car show and you’re almost guaranteed to see your boilerplate Ferrari 488 boasting a Montana plate.

That plate means that the owner didn’t pay sales tax on his $300,000 prancing horse. However, registering your ride out of state is easier said than done. The legalities of it are often confusing, but most wealthy people have a “guy” for such frivolities. Far and away the easiest way to do this is to own property, or a business, that’s registered in a state like Montana or Oregon. Then, no tax.

Starting your own company could mean new cars for you

New cars like this grey Lamborghini Huracan, shot from the front 3/4 are heavily discounted for the wealthy
The Huracan is exactly the kind of car the wealthy get deals on | Martyn Lucy via Getty Images

Speaking of companies and the states in which they reside, that brings us to our next way to own new cars on the cheap. As Nolan so kindly points out in the video above, many aspects of an LLC are tax-deductible. Offices use this little hack to buy furniture, computers, and the like for cheap, if not for free. Now, there is still the upfront expense of said purchase, but it all comes back to you on tax day.

That’s perhaps the biggest hangup for us mere mortals looking to score a free Lamborghini. Both of the methods detailed above require money and lots of it. Even if you are able to get a business up and running, it has to be legit. That house in Montana has to be legit too, and so do those new cars. Those things require money, and the tax benefits of buying a vehicle that way are negligible compared to the other costs associated with these “hacks.”

You’re out in the cold without cash in hand

A man holds out empty pockets in a black and white photo
The rest of us will have to buy cars the old-fashioned way | Getty Images

Realistically, your best shot at heavily discounting one of your new cars is the LLC route. Everyone and their mother has one, and it’s far more approachable than the property prices in Bozeman. Doing so could net you several thousand dollars off in sales tax, or, even better, your car registered as a company car, and thus entirely tax-deductible. However, if that isn’t a reality, your best option is to go to the dealer and haggle the old-fashioned way. And that is an art in and of itself.


Celebrities and Supercars: How Valets Park Million-Dollar Cars