Luxury to lemons: Tax time tips for buying a new ride

Most reputable dealers will likely boast the best advertising

VINCENNES, Ind. (WTHI) – With the help of credentialed experts, News 10 took a spin at Vincennes University to get the best advice for tax-time car buyers. Associate Professor and Automotive Program Coordinator, Ty Freed, taking a quick tour around a potential buy can save motorists from potential disaster.

“Look at the tires, seeing if those tires maybe are mismatched, maybe take a look at the tread depth on those tires, maybe look at the body on the vehicle, does it have excessive rust on it, do the body panels match as far as color would be concerned, maybe take a look at how the panels fit on the car, does the hood appear to fit correctly, do the doors open and close well,” offered up Freed.

Even to an inexperienced buyer, Freed explained, the aforementioned indicators can be red flags in the auto buying world. Doors and hoods not closing correctly could be a sign of a previous crash. To prevent buying a lemon, Freed noted, educated buyers can purchase a car safety report, that details service and crash records.

Most reputable dealers, Freed stated, will likely boast the best advertising available. Word of mouth tells a big story for auto dealers. Freed told News 10, if the dealer is well respected, the general public will speak highly of the dealer. Less reputable dealers, Freed explained, will likely result in having a bad reputation.

“Just get someone that you feel trusted to take a look at that automobile before the purchase,” he added.

Perhaps the best insurance policy for inexperienced buyers is to take the vehicle to a trusted mechanical source, Freed stated. A trusted mechanic can use computer equipment to diagnose any possible problems not obvious to the average eye.

“Generally, you’re going to find some of your unscrupulous used car dealers will be able to hide somethings,” Freed said, discussing practices like clearing indicator lights, and temporarily fixing hose leaks.

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