7 Tips in Buying a Brand-New Car in the Philippines

Purchasing a brand-new car is a thrilling experience that opens up a world of adventures. Whether you're a first-time car buyer or looking to upgrade, the process can be both exciting and overwhelming. In the Philippines, the automotive market offers a diverse range of choices. So, it’s important to approach the purchase with careful consideration.

To help you finalize your decision, here are some tips to guide you through the journey of buying a new car in the Philippines.

  1. 1. Set a Realistic Budget

Before you step into a showroom, establish a realistic budget that considers not only the initial purchase price but also other associated costs. Factor in expenses such as insurance, registration, taxes, and potential add-ons you want for your car. Knowing your budget from the outset will help narrow down your options and prevent you from overspending.

  1. 2. Research Extensively

With numerous car models and brands available, thorough research is essential. Consider your specific needs and preferences, whether it's fuel efficiency, safety features, or cargo space. Take the time to read reviews on the best cars for first-time drivers, compare specifications, and gather feedback from other car owners. Websites, forums, and social media can be valuable resources for gaining insights into the performance and reliability of different car models.

A few of the best cars for first-time buyers are the Honda City, Suzuki Dzire, Nissan Almera, Toyota Vios, and Mazda 2. They’re mainly suited for city driving and would be a good line of cars to compare and do research on.

  1. 3. Test Drive Multiple Models

Once you've narrowed down your choices, schedule test drives for the models that caught your interest. Experiencing the feel of the car on the road is an important factor in making an informed decision. Pay attention to factors such as comfort, handling, visibility, and noise levels. A test drive provides a hands-on experience that goes beyond the specifications on paper.

Pro tip: If you live around Metro Manila, it’s good to test your car in areas that experience heavy traffic. That way, you can gauge whether it’s comfortable to drive in these types of locations and situations. After all, you are inevitably going to drive in congested areas. Might as well pick a car that can provide you comfort in such times.

  1. 4. Explore Financing Options

Consider your financing options early in the process. Whether you're paying in cash or opting for a financing plan, shop around for the best interest rates and terms. Many dealerships in the Philippines offer in-house financing, but banks can also provide car loan options. Compare the total cost of financing to ensure it aligns with your budget and financial goals.

Also, consider the car loan requirements that the dealerships and banks ask of you. Sometimes, even the differences in the requirements can influence your decision in terms of financing.

  1. 5. Negotiate Smartly

Don't hesitate to negotiate the price with the dealership. While brand-new cars may have less room for negotiation compared to used cars, there's often flexibility in terms of add-ons or accessories. Be prepared to walk away if the deal doesn't meet your expectations as some dealerships are willing to adjust terms to secure a sale.

  1. 6. Consider Resale Value

While it may seem counterintuitive to think about selling your new car before you've even bought it, considering this is a good tip for first-time car owners. Some brands and models tend to hold their value better than others. Research the resale values of different cars to make an informed decision that factors in long-term costs and potential returns.

  1. 7. Trust Your Instincts

Finally, trust your instincts. If something feels off during the purchasing process or if you're uncertain about a particular model, take a step back and reassess. Deciding between cars can be the tiniest detail like the sound of the car door, or the height of the seat. If any of these features aren’t up to your standard with one of the vehicles you’re checking out, move on and look for the perfect one.

Buying a car is a significant investment, and your comfort and confidence in your choice are pivotal. You don’t want to get buyer’s remorse a few months after purchasing your car.

Buying a brand-new car in the Philippines involves careful planning, research, and consideration of various factors. By setting a budget, researching thoroughly, and listing down the features you want, you can make an informed decision as you choose among the different car models in the market. The joy of driving off in a brand-new car is even sweeter when you know you've made a well-informed choice. Happy car shopping!