What Factors Influence Car Prices?

You’ve been doing your research, and you’re on the hunt to buy a new or pre-owned vehicle, but you’re also looking to find the best deal. In order to get the best deal, you’ll have to know what to negotiate. To know what to negotiate, you’ll need to know what factors affect car prices, and that is what we will be discussing in this article. Whether you want to purchase a car or you’re looking to sell your own, there are multiple factors that affect car prices you should consider. Some of these factors you’ll be able to control and possibly work in your favor while others may be out of your hands. Let the myHopscotch team show you what you should be on the lookout for.

What Influences The Cost Of A New Car

New Cars

When purchasing a new car, you may think that there is one fixed price and that you can’t negotiate your price or possibly get a better deal. However, there are several factors that affect new car prices that can help you save money in the long run. Some factors to consider are:

Residual Value

Everyone has heard about how new cars depreciate the moment you drive them off the dealership lot, however, did you know that some vehicles retain their value for longer than others? That’s right! Do your research and find out which cars maintain strong resale values, and you’ll be making a better overall investment.

Cost of Ownership

Car buyers often only think of the “now” and hardly think about how the future of their vehicle can cost them more money. You shouldn’t just think about the price you’ll pay at the dealership and for monthly payments, but the cost of insurance, fuel, maintenance, and more! Doing your research and knowing fuel efficiency, maintenance schedules, and other things your car may need can ultimately save you more money in the long run.

How Features & Technology Affect The Cost of A Vehicle

Features & Technology

When looking at factors that affect car prices, updated features and technology are key considerations. Dealerships may try to sell you on all the latest technology, including advanced safety features, an upgraded sound system, and smartphone integration, but if you don’t need it, then don’t pay for it!

Incentives & Trade-Ins

One of the biggest factors that can affect car prices is your trade-in. All the money for your old vehicle can go into your new vehicle, but remember that your trade-in is a separate transaction and doesn’t have to be done at the dealership you’re buying from. Shop around and find the best deal! You’ll also notice that there are certain times of the year when dealerships have special incentives like lower interest rates or rebates, so keep an eye out and never rush into a deal.

What Affects The Cost Of A Used Car

Used Cars

Now that we’ve discussed what factors can affect car prices for new cars let’s take a look at used models. Some of the factors that can affect used car prices the most are:

Kelley Blue Book & Auction Value

Researching is always important when car buying, especially when knowing the price of the car you want to buy. Websites like Kelley Blue Book can show you the highs and lows of the vehicle you want to purchase should be going for. Always begin your offer at the low end of this value, and very rarely should you go above the high end.

Mileage & Condition

These are the two main factors that go into pricing a pre-owned vehicle, and they are often closely related as when the mileage goes up, the condition tends to go down. A pre-owned car with 20,000 miles on it is likely to be much more expensive than a car with over 100,000 miles.

How Does Mileage Affect The Cost Of A Used Car

Accident History

Though visual appearance and the condition of the vehicle is a huge factor that affects the price of a car, you must also consider the vehicle’s history. Serious accident history can decrease resale value up to 10%. Keep this in mind when you are attempting to trade in a vehicle that has been in an accident. For peace of mind when shopping, a CARFAX® Vehicle History Report can tell you a vehicle’s history, so you don’t have to wonder if it’s been in any accidents.

Vehicle Make

Remember what we said about resale value? Some makes hold onto their value longer, so, therefore, may cost more when looking to buy and may get you more when looking to trade in. Makes like BMW, Subaru, and Honda tend to have above-average resale value for their quality and dependability.


These can be anything from panoramic moon roofs and all-wheel drive to air conditioning and automatic windows. Some of these factors affect a car price when they are present, while others can affect the price negatively when they are not.

Factors That Affect The Cost Of A Used Car

Other Factors

At the end of the day, there will be some factors that affect car prices that are out of your control. The strength of the economy, supply and demand, and the needs of the consumer can heavily drive prices for both new and used vehicles.

Contact myHopscotch

Ready to get started on your next negotiation now that you know what factors affect car prices? We’re ready to help! Contact myHopscotch today for all of your vehicle negotiation needs.