Four Tips for Buying Vehicles during Winter Months

November 29th, 2014 by

Have you considered buying vehicles during winter months? Purchasing a Vehicle at any time of year can be an intimating process.  When its cold, slippery, wet, icy, the whole host of conditions that we in Montana are used to, this process can become even more daunting.  As daunting as it may be, buying vehicles during winter months is the best time to both find a great deal and find the vehicle that will meet all of your needs.  Here we will discuss four tips for buying vehicles during winter months.

Buying Vehicles During Winter Months

One – Winter Offers the Perfect Test Drive

If you want a true test drive experience, its not taking a short predetermined route on a warm dry day, on a smooth and newly surfaced road.  Lets take it out on a cold, icy, slippery, windy, wintry day.  Throughout the year we are asked about the capabilities of every make and model for winter conditions.  What better way to know the true experience of a “new to you” vehicle in winter conditions then to actually drive it – in winter conditions.  “The worse the better” for putting a vehicle through its paces like testing: braking, stability control, handling, visibility, etc.

Two – Winter May Offer the Best Brand Incentives

The next year models are on the lot, close-outs, sell downs, year end incentives, Black Friday, Christmas, New Years sales are all in full swing.  Vehicle Manufacturers are looking to move last years models to make room for the new model year vehicles.  Plus, dealerships are looking to both end the year strong and start the New Year with a bang.  Both of these realities potentially make buying vehicles during winter months an advantage.  Be careful with this though, it is not set in stone. Many customers have passed up great Spring or mid-year deals waiting for an expected year-end incentive that never came about.  To avoid this, do your research on brand trends and even as it relates to specific models within the brand.

Three – Winter Helps You Consider Features that Matter

In the warmer times of year many customers simply do not consider a vehicle’s cold weather features. I can’t tell you how many customers have test driven a vehicle in the warm months and disregarded many options and features that are designed for when the weather is cold.   Truth is, many come back in looking to have them installed later.  Things like heated seats, remote start, block heaters, heated windshields, and other features for winterizing your vehicle, etc.  As a dealership we literally cannot keep up with the demand for these as soon as the cold weather hits.  Test driving and buying vehicles during winter months allows you to identify what will be important to you and your family when the weather gets difficult.  Things that, in the summer months, seem insignificant or not necessary can become imperative to both comfort and/or safety in your driving experience and overall satisfaction with a vehicle.

Four – Winter Helps you Ask the Right Questions

It looks nice, sounds great, priced right, “I’ll take it.” Lets face it, we as people can be emotional buyers.  Buying vehicles during winter months slows us down and helps us ask the right questions. Questions like: Does this vehicle offer the safety features that will keep my family safe? Are the tires more than adequate for the wintry driving conditions?  Can appropriate winter tires be utilized on this model and what do they cost?  Does this vehicle offer the things I will need in terms of clearance, power, traction (2WD; AWD; 4X4), etc?  Again, when purchasing in the warmer months it is easy to end up with a vehicle that is beautiful but not very practical for a safe and enjoyable winter driving experience.

Buying vehicles during winter months is a great time to purchase a “new to you” vehicle.  Let’s face it, at least half of the year in our vehicles is spent in colder, wintry driving conditions.  It is easy in the middle of the warmer months to neglect this reality or simply discount the effect these conditions hold. So, pick the most inclement, cold, wintry day that you would usually stay home in front of a fire, toasty and warm and suit up and brave the weather and take a vehicle out for the best and most revealing test drive possible. Buying vehicles during winter months provides the most revealing and thorough research opportunity for you to make the best possible purchasing decision.