Used-Car Prices Reach New Low in November

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Black Friday deals may be on the minds of many shoppers right now, but it's also a good time to grab a deal on a used car. Since April, when prices were at their peak for the year, late-model used-car prices have fallen every month thereafter and currently average $21,758 — a decrease of $1,660.

Prices for used Audi A3 and A6 cars surged last month, but they gave up their gains and then some in November. A3 prices fell 6.6 percent ($1,590) this month to lead all models, and the A6 was second with a 5.6 percent ($2,087) drop. The all-electric Nissan Leaf had the third-largest decrease in asking price with a 4.7 percent ($821) decline.

Related: More Used Car News

As Audi prices weakened, Mercedes-Benz prices strengthened. There were just eight models in November that saw their average prices increase, but four of them were from the luxury brand including the S-Class flagship sedan, which led all models with a 1.4 percent ($810) gain. The Infiniti M37 sedan was next with its average price up 1.1 percent ($344), and following it was the Mercedes M-Class SUV, which saw its price rise 0.8 percent ($311).

The charts below detail used cars from the 2011 to 2013 model years with the biggest price drops and increases. To be eligible for the lists, a model had to have at least 250 cars in Cars.com's national inventory.

By Mike Hanley | November 26, 2014 | Comments (3)

Used-Car Prices Down More Than $1,100 From Start of Year

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Late-model used-car prices continued their steady decline in October, reaching a new low for the year. Average listing prices for 2011 to 2013 models stood at $22,071, which is 1.3 percent ($283) less than September. Prices are down 5 percent ($1,166) since January.

Related: More Used Car News

Mitsubishi Galant prices dropped the most this month; prices for the midsize sedan were down 4.2 percent ($559) from the month before. Just behind it was the Kia Sedona minivan and BMW 328i compact luxury car with price drops of 3.9 percent ($659) and 3.4 percent ($943), respectively.

By Mike Hanley | October 29, 2014 | Comments (0)

Used BMW Prices Fall Most in September

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Used-car prices continue to sink, extending a trend that began in the spring. Compared to August, average September listing prices for 2011 to 2013 model-year cars were down 1.1 percent ($250) to $22,354. Average prices have now fallen nearly $900 from the beginning of the year.

Related Storm Surge: Beware of Title-Washed Cars

Practically all the models with the biggest price drops this month were luxury cars, and most of these were BMWs. The brand's 7 Series full-size sedan took the top two spots, with the six-cylinder 740i down 4.7 percent ($2,266) and the V-8 750i down 4.1 percent ($2,113). The lone nonluxury model in the top 10 was the Nissan Leaf electric car, which experienced a 2.9 percent ($531) price drop.

By Mike Hanley | September 26, 2014 | Comments (1)

Storm Surge: Beware of Title-Washed Cars

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Shopping for a used car in Mississippi? Beware of title washing. The Magnolia State has the highest density of title-washed cars in the country, with 1 in every 44.6 used cars bearing a washed title, a Cars.com analysis has found. That's well above the national average of 1 in 324.9 used cars. New Jersey, meanwhile, has the second-highest rate: 1 in 87 cars.

Related: How to Know if You're Buying a Flood-Damaged Car

Why? In a word, hurricanes. Nearly a decade ago, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita left 600,000 flood-damaged cars across the Gulf States. And in 2012, Hurricane Sandy reportedly left more than 200,000 storm-damaged cars in New Jersey and New York. Salvage titles, or titles for cars that were retitled after they were written off as total losses by insurance companies, proliferated after all three storms. Title washing also surged, where sellers alter vehicle titles to hide their salvage status and sell the cars as regular used vehicles. To do this, sellers often send those cars through states with looser title laws.

By contrast, used-car shoppers in Ohio, Florida and Pennsylvania have less to worry about. Just 1 in 2,127 used cars in Ohio has a washed title. Florida (1 in 1,444.9 cars) and Pennsylvania (1 in 1,200.3 cars) round out the podium for low-risk states.

By Kelsey Mays | September 23, 2014 | Comments (5)

NHTSA Launches VIN-Searchable Recall Finder

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Used-car shoppers: Want to know if your prospective car has any recalls that haven't been done? After all, about 1 in 4 recalled cars never get their recall work done, which could stick future owners with potential safety hazards.

More Recall Coverage

Now there's a place you can find this information. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration just launched a tool on its website where you can look up a car by its vehicle identification number to view its recalls. It's at www.safercar.gov/vinlookup. You can find the VIN at the base of the driver's side of the windshield, just beneath the glass.

It isn't just a tool to see what recalls have been announced on a prospective vehicle; it also shows you if those recalls have been completed or not on that specific car.

By Kelsey Mays | August 20, 2014 | Comments (0)

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5. Buying a Used Car? You Need These Tips

By Matt Schmitz | August 16, 2014 | Comments (0)

Video: Used-Car Buying Tips

Buying a used car in many cases can actually be a better deal than buying a new car — if you play your cards right. In the video above, Cars.com's Joe Wiesenfelder coaches shoppers on what to look for, what questions to ask and how to play the odds in order to make the smartest gamble on a used-car purchase.

By Matt Schmitz | August 11, 2014 | Comments (1)

Report: GM Cars in Ignition-Cylinder Recall Selling for Less

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A new report by iSeeCars.com says cars involved in the most serious of GM's ignition-related recalls have lower prices on the used-car market. The Woburn, Mass.-based automotive site, and Cars.com partner, analyzed more than 11 million cars for sale and found the listed price of recalled cars has dropped more than double the rate of non-luxury used cars in general.

More on GM's Ignition Recalls

The website looked at listed prices for the 2005-2007 Chevrolet Cobalt, 2007 Pontiac G5, 2003-2007 Saturn Ion, 2006-2007 Chevrolet HHR, 2006-2007 Saturn Sky and 2006-2007 Pontiac Solstice. All six models were among the 2.2 million cars recalled in the U.S. between Feb. 25 and April 9 for faulty ignition switches and then, ultimately, faulty ignition cylinders.

By Kelsey Mays | July 25, 2014 | Comments (3)

Used-Car Prices Fall for Third Straight Month in July

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Late-model used-car prices dipped below $23,000 in July for the first time this year, settling at $22,919. That's a 0.78 percent drop from June, and it's the third month in a row that prices have dropped.

Related: What’s the Most Affordable Car in 2014?

The Hyundai Sonata Hybrid's price fell the most in July, dropping 3.2 percent ($653) to $19,511. The only other alternative-fuel car in the top 10 list is the Chevrolet Volt range-extended electric car, and all of the other models are from luxury brands.

By Mike Hanley | July 25, 2014 | Comments (0)

IIHS: These Used Cars Are Safer for Teen Drivers

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Teen driving statistics are scary: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report that car crashes are the leading cause of death for U.S. teens and in 2010 seven teens died every day from crash-related injuries. What's worse is that according to the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety, many teens drive vehicles that don't protect them very well in an accident. Since the IIHS estimates that 83 percent of parents who buy a vehicle for their teen purchase a used car, the agency just released its first list of used vehicles that cost less than $20,000 and are recommended as safe for teen drivers.

More Safety News

IIHS suggests that parents choose lower-horsepower larger vehicles that are equipped with electronic stability control. The cars on its list range in price from $4,000 for a 2005 Saab 9-3 to $19,900 for a 2011 Buick Enclave. Click here for more from our friends at USA Today and check out the IIHS's full list of recommended vehicles here.

Noel Hendrickson/Digital Vision/Thinkstock

By Jennifer Geiger | July 16, 2014 | Comments (10)

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