My 1994 Honda Accord has been a faithful car, but it needs to be replaced relatively soon or I will need to spend more money on it. I’m attracted to the Prius for the high mpg, but should I wait until the 2012s are released (the v wagon, plug-in, or just updated regular version) or should I go with the 2011 or a used model? The dealers where I live are not moving much below MSRP. I can get an extra $500 on a trade-in through labor-day weekend, but maybe they’ll run this type of promotion again? The 2010 used models are not that great in terms of prices, either, at least for the cars with low mileage. Any advice would be appreciated.
First advice…Don’t trade in you Accord…Sell it…You’ll do far better then what the dealer is going to give you.
If the 2011 model is right for you…the go for it. But wait until the 2012 model comes out. Then the dealer will be more motivated to sell the left over 2011’s.
I don’t think the regular Prius will be different in 2012, but if you want added cargo room (at the expense of some mpgs) then the V would be good. I don’t know when the plug-in is coming, but I wouldn’t spend the extra money, anyway.
Only the Prius v wagon will be out in the fall of 2011. The Prius c and PHV will not be released until next spring.
Used hybrids are like gold, they sell high and won’t be coming down in price for awhile. Go talk to a dealer about custom ordering a new one, see when they stop taking orders before they switch to the new year model orders
Forget used unless you are finding a private owner. The prices are very high due to limited supply to a bunch of factors including slowed new car sales, Japanese earthquake and credit lock.
About trading in the old car - I agree you are unlikely to get much as a trade, but how well you can do in private sale will depend on the condition of your car. I sold my old 96 Subaru to Carmax because I didn’t want the hassle of dealing with people who might or might not be interested. And, I didn’t want someone to come back to me a few weeks later complaining that the 15 yr old car had an issue that they didn’t want to deal with even though I turned over all records and sold it as is. Maybe I could have gotten more for it, but probably not a lot more. I know you didn’t ask for this advice, but I hope it is helpful.
There’s also the Lexus CT Hybrid starting at $29,000. It uses much of the Prius running gear, gets 43/40 MPG and seems to be a better driving car. Just a thought.