Buying used can offer significant savings over new, but not without a bit of risk. Compared to shopping for a new car, buying a used car involves a number of unknowns that can turn what looked like a good deal into a bad investment.
Information is your most valuable asset when buying a used vehicle, and these trusted industry publications will empower you to make informed decisions in your quest for a used car.
The National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA) is an organization that provides automotive information and advocacy to dealers, consumers, and others. It was founded in 1917 by a group of dealers that wanted to lower automotive luxury taxes, and became a permanent union that continues to represent automobile dealers before Congress and other government agencies.
For consumers, the association publishes NADA Guides. Since 1933, NADA Used Car Guides have offered a wealth of information to help people who are buying or selling a wide variety of vehicles. NADAguides.com was launched in 2000, and provides an exhaustive collection of resources for used car shoppers.
Kelley Blue Book
Equally venerable Kelley Blue Book began in 1918 as a single car dealership in Los Angeles, the Kelley Kar Company. In 1926, the dealership published the first Kelly Blue Book, a guide to used car values. Over the years, Kelley Blue Book grew to become a national automobile publication.
The company has grown to become the largest automotive valuation company in the United States. It launched kbb.com in 1995, and Kelley Blue Book continues to be one of the most trusted resources for information on used and new cars.
This monthly magazine has been published since 1936 by Consumers Union, a non-profit organization committed to testing products, informing the public, and protecting consumers. Consumer Reports tests all sorts of products at its in-house laboratory and publishes product reviews and comparisons based on the findings.
Consumer Reports releases the annual new car issue every April, which is generally the magazine’s best-selling issue. Information on used cars is often featured in these issues, as well as on consumerreports.org, which Consumer Reports launched in 1997. You can find an overview of the best and worst used cars on the site, and paid subscribers have access to many detailed ratings and rankings.
NADA Guides, Kelley Blue Book, and Consumer Reports are three of the most trusted and valued sources for automotive information. These publications and their websites offer comprehensive information that have helped millions of people buy and sell used cars. Take advantage of them and inform yourself before you spend any cash on a used car.