Dear Click and Clack, 3 months before finding out I was pregnant, my husband and I bought a Toyota Prius. 9 months later our twin boys were born and we are out car shopping again. We like the crossovers and after some research we have it narrowed down to the Toyota Highlander, the GMC Acadia, or the Honda Pilot. We had planned on purchasing a new car because of all the great incentives out there but a used Mercedes R-350 recently caught my eye. Basically we can afford to purchase a new crossover from the list I mentioned above or a used (2007) Mercedes R class. What should we do? The most important thing to us are the safety features. Of course we care about cost of ownership and resale value too. What do you guys think?
How safe is a car that you can’t trust mechanically ? Check CU reliability record for Mercedes products.
This is simple; buy the Honda or the Toyota.
The Mercedes will bankrupt you with service and repair costs, and the resale value of the Acadia may plummet depending on the course GM decides to take.
Friends of mine have a Pilot, and although it’s not my cup of tea it is a VERY nice vehicle. It’s the only thing that size I would even consider.
The most valuable ratings IMO that CU does, is not only their repair ratings…but customer satisfaction rating…Pilots do really well there. My neighbor too is working on has 2nd one.
The Mercedes R-350 is a very expensive car to maintain and repair! If you were GIVEN such a car, it would still cost you a great deal to keep it going. There are many better buys around fro less money.
Which one is safer? Ask your insurer what the insurance rate will be on each one. The lowest price is probably the safest, since poor safety record equates to higher payout for the insurer. I’m sure that resale value for the Honda and Toyota will be higher than the GMC. If you plan to sell your truck shortly after the warranty runs out, this may be important. If you want to know about cost of ownership, check with Edmunds.com in each truck. Click on ‘true cost to own’ to see which one is lower. I believe it will be the GMC. The Honda and Toyota are average while the GMC is below average in total cost to own. Personally, I’d just buy the one I like the best unless there is a big difference in purchase price.
Can you afford to do all of the maintenance on a Merc? I’d find the maintenance schedule, then call the dealer and see what they typically charge. That GMC might look a lot more attractive when you hear the prices.
EDIT: I accidentally skipped over Docnick’s post, he of course has excellent advice.