How to make your dream car a reality

Do you love cars? Do you dream of being at the wheel of a Jaguar or Porsche at least once in your life? What if you could own one, and live your dream for years? Obviously, not everyone can afford a luxury vehicle, but it may be a more realistic goal than it seems. Find out how to make it happen in this article.

1. How to lower the purchase price 

This year’s Porsche 911 Carrera costs $104,000 at the dealer.1 That’s a lot of cash for one car, discouraging a lot of potential buyers. But do you have to kiss the car of your dreams goodbye? Absolutely not! There are several ways to lower the price. Here are a few:

Trade in your car to the dealer. This is a very popular strategy for buyers. Offering the current value of your car to the dealer is an easy way to lower the price of the vehicle you want.2 You save not only on the sales price, but on taxes too. However, be aware that cars lose value every year, so the older your vehicle is, the lower its trade-in value will be, so you may need to look at other strategies too. To start, calculate the trade-in value of your car using our tool.

* Good to know: You can sell your vehicle yourself. You’ll probably get a better price, because merchants always make sure to have a profit margin on a purchase. However, the legal process, the hassle and the risks associated to the sale are entirely your responsibility.

Only get minimal options and accessories. Regardless of whether you’re looking for a luxury vehicle or something more down to earth, merchants will offer a whole host of options and accessories during the sale: heated seats, air conditioning, USB ports, and so on. Some of them just aren’t worth it, and they raise the car price exponentially. Adding a sunroof, for example, can inflate the bill by nearly $2,000. An integrated GPS system will cost about the same, but you can get one in any electronics store for a fraction of the price. Luxury manufacturers also have a bad habit of offering pricy but useless options, such as Porsche’s leather seats or the starry roof available with certain Rolls Royce models.3 Don’t necessarily say no to everything—some options are worthwhile, like air conditioning or automatic transmission—but keep it to the bare minimum.

Buy used. Depreciation is a reality that all automobile owners must face. All vehicles gradually lose value over time. It’s a factor you can use as a buyer—don’t ignore the used luxury vehicle market. You’ll find cars in excellent condition at a more affordable price. Jaguar, BMW and Porsche owners, for example, tend to take excellent care of their ride, and often only take it out for special occasions or when the weather is nice. You’ll get your biggest savings by choosing a 2008 model rather than a 2018. Cars depreciate the most the minute you drive off the lot, so a nearly new vehicle will be much less expensive. But make sure to do a complete inspection to avoid any surprises, because luxury vehicle repairs can be very expensive.

2. Buy from a dealer or an individual?

Unless you make enough money to be able to buy a luxury car new, you’d probably better look at used models. The question becomes: should you buy from a dealer or an individual? The two options both have pros and cons, but the luxury car market has its own reality, and one of the options is definitely better.

Buying from an individual is, in most cases, easier and less expensive because there’s no intermediary. An individual may also be more flexible on price, depending on their situation. However, Quebec’s Consumer Protection Act doesn’t cover this type of transaction, and there are no laws requiring guarantees. If you choose this route, we recommend having the vehicle inspected before buying it.

That’s also why we advise going to a dealer for a luxury vehicle. Not only will your purchase be covered by guarantees and after-sales service, but also keep in mind that luxury vehicle parts are more expensive and often harder for independent garages to get hold of. When you buy from a dealer, you can deal directly with the manufacturer.

3. Types of financing available

While there’s no special type of financing for buying luxury vehicles, there are several options available:

Should you get a personal loan or an auto loan when buying from an individual? That’s the big question for buyers. An auto loan is definitely more advantageous, because the interest rate is much lower. Even if you’re buying your dream car from an individual, we recommend an auto loan. Contact your financial institution to get an auto loan from your local branch. It’s an instalment sales contract (ISC)i, like at a merchant, where the vehicle is used as collateral, giving you a lower interest rate than a personal loan without collateral. It’s always better to agree on a price with the seller before applying for a loan.

* For more information, visit the Auto loans and other loans section on

Auto loan at a merchant or dealer
Auto loans are especially advantageous when you’re buying a more expensive vehicle directly from the dealer. Dealers often have the most competitive interest rates on auto loans, because they use instalment sales contracts (ISC)ii, where the vehicle is used as collateral on the loan. At many luxury vehicle merchants, they have good financing programs for certified used vehicles. These programs also usually offer a warranty on the vehicle, which covers buyers in the event of premature failure.

What’s more, the loan application is handled on-site. Desjardins members can also get their financing pre-authorized online on AccèsD before heading to the merchant. That way, they can shop for a vehicle with peace of mind, knowing their loan has already been pre-authorized. Plus, they don’t have to fill out a loan application at the merchant and disclose their personal financial information. You can keep your financial situation to yourself!

Don’t be afraid to negotiate! The luxury vehicle market is a little different. Every transaction brings in a large amount of money, and there aren’t as many buyers. Both parties involved in the transaction therefore have a vested interest in coming to an agreement. In general, merchants have a wider profit margin on luxury vehicles than on other cars. Dealers buy their cars directly from the manufacturer, and the higher the price, the greater the difference between the cost price and the suggested retail price.4 That means there’s room to manoeuvre. When you negotiate, remember to:

• Let the merchant know exactly which model you’re interested in. If you know the colour and options you want, they can more easily determine how much wiggle room there is, making the whole process easier.

• Set a price with the merchant before offering your vehicle to trade in. While we advise you trade in your car to lower the transaction price, it’s important that you first agree with the merchant on the price of the new vehicle. Your car should be there to lower the price, not the opposite.

• Choose the frequency of payments and the terms you’re comfortable with before signing the contract. Think of all the additional costs, like interest rate, accessories, and maintenance. It will be harder to change the terms after you’ve signed, so you need to be comfortable with your choices! Use our tool to calculate your payments.

Having a luxury car is an outlandish idea for most people, but these purchase tips can help you make your dream come true!

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