Where to purchase my car?

I have to move from CA to MN shortly and will need to purchase a car. I am thinking a 2005 Acura MDX. should I purchase in MN or CA? What are pro’s and con’s for each? I cannot make up my mind.

I’d wait to buy in MN since you’ll likely have to register the vehicle twice, as well as the price differences between CA and MN is purchase price.

Pros for buying now:
you’ll have a vehicle to carry your stuff in(if you don’t already have a U-Haul or something else lined up)
If it passes CA inspection, it should pass in MN

Pros for waiting:
You’ll likely save on insurance and taxes
purchase price should be cheaper

In favor of waiting: see bscar’s post above.

In favor of now: You can take your time, shop carefully, test drive many models, negotiate with caution, and have your mechanic take care of the little odds & ends that are the inevitable part of used car buying. In MN you’d have to rent a car to do your errands while carefully car shopping over a period of a week or two.

One thing to consider is that if you have your heart set on a 2005 Acura MDX, you’ll probably find a much bigger selection of them in California, especially if you’re moving to a part of Minnesota that’s not Minneapolis.

Buy it on eBay from a highly rated licensed dealer in the Southwest US. You will get a rust free vehicle and save thousands in the process.

Prices for new cars are competitive in Ca. Used cars seem to cost more there than elsewhere. Lowball the offers you make in Ca. and maybe someone will accept. If you can’t make a deal there, wait for Mn.

There’s one thing you need to keep in mind regarding a MN vehicle. Rust can really eat them up quick due to road salt and an '05 is already going on 4 years old.

A few years back my son and I were traveling down I-35 from KS back to OK and 2 transport trucks passed us. Both were loaded down with mostly late model SUVs with a smattering of small pickups (Rangers, S-10s).

My son was driving so I kind of eyeballed the vehicles over. At first glance they appeared shiny and beautiful but every single one of those vehicles had MN plates and was rusted to oblivion.
I was surprised that a few of them were not simply collapsing on the transport truck due to bumps in the road.

These peaches were all on their way south to Oklahoma City or Texas I assume, where they will receive the obligatory 20 pounds of body plastic, some cheap paint, and be resold to someone who will pay dearly later.

That is one thing I didn’t take into consideration.
And, looking at what an MDX is(too many lettered designations causes confusion RL, TL, TSX, MDX, RSX, RDX, name the friggin things), you might actually get a better deal in California since most are trying to unload their SUVs. Also, contact Cali’s DMV to see if you can get temp Cali tags for the vehicle, then when you get to MN, get it registered and plates from there.

Check asking prices on line at dealer web sites in Cali and Minnesota. You might also check newspaper classifieds on line, too. If you really want one, the prices should be excellent price since they get such awful mileage. Are you sure you want an MDX?

Check with MN DMV to be sure, but they will likely not charge sales tax (or whatever they call it) on a car where you have recently paid tax in another state. Registration fees alone may be fairly cheap.

If you buy a car in CA and move to MN within (30 days I think)…you do NOT have to register the car in CA or pay any sales tax. You pay the sales tax when you register the car in MN (if there is a sales tax there). When the OP buys the car in CA…they can give him a temp plate to transport to another state.

However I’d still buy the vehicle in MN…Mainly because of warranty. What are you going to do if there are any problems???