Imagine if you could find an automobile that you knew had been well maintained the first years of its life-the oil changed when recommended; brakes, tires and other parts inspected regularly; exterior and interior cleaned regularly. And what if that 1- to 3-year-old vehicle also came with a 12-month/12,000-mile warranty and a seven-day repurchase policy? Actually, this requires no imagination at all.
Consumers have access to literally tens of thousands of low-mileage, late-model, high-quality used vehicles via car rental companies. In 2004, American motorists purchased 1.5 million used rental vehicles. These vehicles-while driven by multiple motorists-receive a lot of TLC, and the financial benefits are many: lower prices, less depreciation, and lower insurance, financing, licensing and registration costs.
"The truth is that rental cars represent some of the best buys in today's market," said Tim Walsh, senior vice president of Enterprise Car Sales, a division of Enterprise Rent-A-Car. "Having well-maintained and reliable vehicles is the lifeblood of the rental car business, so these vehicles receive proper inspections and extra care and attention. We also offer a seven-day repurchase policy on our vehicles."
Consumers can expect a customer-friendly experience in shopping for a rental car, said Mary Goodwin of Fairview Heights, Ill., who purchased a Mazda 6 from Enterprise Car Sales.
"I received such superior service…[the salesman] was professional, friendly, helpful and understanding," Goodwin said. "The 'we'll take care of it, no problem'-with a smile-atmosphere and philosophy is outstanding."
For more information and additional tips on pricing and buying used vehicles, visit Kelley Blue Book (www.kbb.com) and NADA (www.nada.com).