New Mass Market or used Premium?

You’re in the market for a car and you’ve seen all the new technologies and sleek designs of the new mass market cars such as the Fords, Volkswagens or Toyotas. But you’ve also seen the used premium badged cars on car classifieds at the same price, the Audis, Mercedes or BMW’s. Do you go for those premium luxury brands, but used? Or go brand new but mid-market? 

That buying decision depends on a lot of factors, and  we’ll run through some in this post. So keep reading and then decide what type of car you should buy.

Buying the New Mass Market Car

Many people have the intention of buying a brand-new mass-market car because they don’t tend to rely on used vehicles, whether luxury or not. Undoubtedly, buying a new car is exciting and has a lot of upsides, but it also comes with a few cons.


  1. Latest Working Features

Buying a new car means getting a fully working vehicle with all its latest features. Although these features are fewer than those found in premium cars, they will all be functional, and no equipment will be missing, damaged or broken. The same can’t be said for every used car. 

  1. Low maintenance Cost

New cars should require almost no maintenance in the first few years. You’ll always have your yearly service, but older cars often need extra maintenance and repairs at each service. Small things like bearings, brake discs etc. New cars also often come with a few years’ service costs built into the price. When you factor in the warranty if anything does go wrong, it means a number of years worry free of an unexpected breakdown bill. 

  1. Economy

These days new mid-market cars have exceptional economy. Many are also hybrids and automatic as well. If you commute in city traffic the increase fuel economy can save you quite a lot of money over a few years. Along with the comfort of the automatic gearbox, parking sensors and all the other tech that makes driving that bit easier for you. 


It’s not all rainbows when it comes to buying a new car or the choice would be easy. There are a few downsides to consider too. 

  1. Less luxurious

When considering either a used premium car or new mid-market the biggest trade off will be luxury and features. You’re unlikely to get the latest self-driving features, leather seats and surround sound infotainment systems on a Ford Fiesta or Toyota Corolla hatchback. It’ll be a compromise between the two and depends on what you value most.

  1. Expensive

While the latest cars come with great fuel economy the car itself will still be expensive. A new base model Toyota Corolla will start from over €30,000 before any extras are added. Similarly, a Ford Focus will start from almost €33,000 again for just the basic model. Depending on the age you choose a similar used premium car can be had for far less. 

A second factor to consider is the harsh depreciation the new car will suffer as soon as you take delivery. A new car is expected to lose 60% of its value in just the first three years. That’s a steep amount of money to lose so fast.  

Buying a Premium But Used Car

As we’ve just mentioned, a new car will lose up to 60% of its value within the first 3 years. The flip side of this is it provides for a great opportunity in the used car market. If you’re willing to drive a 3 to 5 year old car you can put the same money in and get much more car back. 

Just like buying new, there’s still some pros and cons with buying used, we’ve run through a few of these as well. 


If you want to buy a used luxury car, the following are the benefits you will get.

  1. Your Dream Car

The biggest advantage of buying a premium or luxury used car is you get to own your dream vehicle. Premium cars like BMW 7 Series, Jaguar XJ, and Audi A8 are no doubt luxurious, and expensive. But while your budget might not stretch to afford a brand new model of these premium cars, it might stretch for a slightly used model. 

  1. Price

Brand new luxury cars cost from €50,000 to over €100,000. While not what many would consider premium, even the new Ford Focus starts at €28,000 and the new VW Passat at €40,000. That’s a huge amount of money even if you go for the instalment plans.

A brand new car loses its value by 15-35% in the first 12 months, and continues losing value each year after that, depending on the make and model. Buying a premium but used car lets your money go further. 

  • For the price of a new Focus with a hatchback, you can buy a used but bigger Lexus SUV.
  • For the price of a new Passat, you could buy a luxury used BMW 5 Series with more extras than you’d get in the new Passat for the base price.

Depreciation also slows down as a car ages. A car that’s a few years old will lose less of its value each year than a brand-new car.

Always compare the brand new premium car’s prices before going to a used luxury car dealer. That way, you will get an idea of the used premium car market.

  1. Features

All manufacturers will always put the latest tech and features on their premium models first. The rest of the fleet will get them later in a trickle-down fashion over the years. This goes for technology and safety features. For example, the BMW 730Ld DPE Signature has the following uncommon safety features:

  • High-beam assist
  • Speed-sensing door lock
  • Flashing emergency brake light
  • Lane departure warning

Because of this buying a used car might not mean a compromise. It all depends on how old you decide on. You can’t expect a 10-year-old used car to have lane departure warning or xenon headlights. But at a couple years old you can expect to get many of the features of the brand-new counterpart. The European Union (EU) has also made some car safety features mandatory to reduce road accidents.


Just like buying new there’s some cons to consider too. 

  1. Repair cost

Servicing a premium car isn’t as expensive as you’d assume. Brake pads and oil are still cheap. The sting is in a repair cost. All those extra features we mentioned also means more complications and more potential issues. If you plan to buy a used luxury car, ensure you are ready to pay the inevitable repair costs. Every car needs some repairs down the line. That cost is periodic and might be expensive in the longer run. The newer the used car, the less likely it is to break down or still be in warranty. 

  1. Fuel Consumption

Luxury cars are often bigger multi litre engines, which consume more fuel due to their power. You won’t get the same high economy as a mid-sized new car.

  1. Old Technology

A one-year-old luxury car will have most of the latest technologies you’d expect but the price will reflect this. Buying a used luxury car might mean going for an older model to stay within the budget. As a result, you might not get as many of the cutting-edge features compared to the latest model.

Which option you go for is up to you. We hope breaking down the pros and cons of each has made the decision a little easier for you.

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