Hidden Freebies in Your New Car

Posted by Motorama in Buyer Advice

All new cars have hidden benefits behind the sticker price.

So what are you really buying?

The price of a car is a big factor in how you shop. But if you look behind the sticker price, there are many things that add value to a new car.

Roadside assistance

Having the peace of mind in case of a breakdown used to cost extra, but some cars now have it built into the price. As part of your service schedule, some brands will pay for your membership so long as you service your car on time with an authorised service centre (usually attached to a dealership.)

This can save money beyond the price of membership, as a program like RACQ in QLD and NRMA in NSW have benefits and discounts beyond just towing and jumpstarting your car – this can be as big as discounts on holidays to cheaper fuel.

Service and parts pricing

Ongoing costs can add up – especially with servicing and replacement parts. Capped price servicing is an excellent way to manage your ongoing car costs as you pay down your car loan. Some carmakers offer longer schemes than others ranging from 3 years up to the lifetime of your ownership, while others may not offer a capped price but give you a ‘menu pricing’ so you know how much items due at a particular scheduled service are going to cost.

When you’re shopping around for the best deal, it pays to remember that while a car may seem like a steal right now – it may not be such a bargain when it comes to owning it. Replacement parts for some models are more competitively priced than others – ask in the service and parts department for the general cost of parts (especially if it’s just a facelift of a current model car.)

Fuel costs

One of the most frequent ongoing costs will be your weekly (or if you’re lucky, fortnightly) stop at the petrol station.

Nowadays, “cheap fuel” is whenever it’s below $1.30 per litre, so it’s smart to take into consideration what you’ll be spending at the pump.

If you’re buying a petrol powered car, ask whether you’ll need premium fuel – as more complicated engines sometimes need the top shelf stuff to run as required. Some cars even get as finicky as to choose between Premium 95 and Premium 98, which can be a problem if you’re touring out past the city – regional petrol stations don’t tend to carry both (smaller stations might not carry premium at all!)

If you’re buying a 4X4, see how much capacity the fuel tank has (and compare it to the official fuel consumption numbers) to see if it’s worth adding an auxiliary fuel tank, especially if you’re choosing a petrol 4WD to go offroad (diesels tend to be abit more frugal when low range is selected.)

The friendly sales team at Motorama can help you find the right car for your lifestyle, and get the most out of your budget so all you have to worry about is what trip to plan next!