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    Below we are going to share info from THE STAR about Time to buy a car

    Firms give incentives to attract new buyers

    Buy A New Car

    THE economy is slowing down. What to do? Tighten spending? Hold back on purchases? Yes, that is what most people will be doing for the time being and perhaps in the near future.

    But what if you’ve been saving up or planning to buy something for a while now, like a house or a car – what do you do? Hold on? Wait and see? Plans dashed – what a bummer!

    A house or a car is considered two of the biggest investments in a person’s life. Which is why one would always need to think things thoroughly before making a final decision.

    Unlike property, automobiles, like nearly everything else, depreciate in value the moment you buckle up for that magical cruise down the road for that first time drive.

    Yes, even when you are still being smothered by the smell of that squeaky clean upholstery and the mileage gauge still shows a measly single-digit figure, you are already burning away your investment.
    Industry observers say now would be a very good time to buy cars

    People looking to buy cars already know that, but even so, a car is pretty much a necessity these days, and with an economic slowdown, the need to be more vigilante in choosing the right car for your needs speak volumes.

    Thankfully, the plight of the car buyer has not gone unnoticed. According to an industry observer, now would be a very good time to buy cars.

    “Car companies which are seeing a slowdown, if not bracing for one, will want to pump up sales by providing financial incentives such as higher cash rebates and even zero-percent financing.

    “Chinese New Year, which is usually a time when many people buy cars, is also coming and a lot of car companies will be having promotions to capitalise on that. This is definitely a buyer’s market,” he says.

    A Klang Valley-based dealer selling Chevrolet cars said its vehicles were being offered interest-free for the month of January.

    “We are offering an interest-free instalment plan for purchasers of our Aveo, Optra and 2007 Captiva models,” he says, adding that buyers can also opt for a non-interest free plan and purchase the cars at a discount price.

    ”The 2008 Captiva does not come with an interest-free plan but customers are given a RM3,000 rebate,” the dealer adds.

    He also says buyers of vehicles that were not interest free only needed to pay interest rates between 2.9% and 3%.

    A Kuala Lumpur-based dealer also said it was offering some of its Myvi and Viva models to customers with special discounts while stocks last.

    “Our 2008 Viva manual 660 currently comes with a RM800 discount,” he says, adding that its 2008 standard Myvi model was also being offered at a RM800 rebate. Hire-purchase interest rates for its vehicles stood at 3.75%.

    A sales advisor for a dealership selling Nissan cars in Kuala Lumpur also says it was offering its cars with special discounts.

    He says customers could now buy its Nissan X-Trail, Sylphy and Grand Livina at a discount of RM4,000, RM2,000 and RM1,000 respectively, while interest rates were between 2.5% to 3.25% for the cars.

    A sales agent from a Petaling Jaya-based dealer selling Proton cars points out that some of its cars were being offered at discount prices.

    Buyers of its 2008 Proton Persona get a cash discount of about RM2,000, while buyers of its 2008 Proton Perdana get a RM6,888 rebate.

    The sales agent also said its 2008 Proton Savvy was being offered at a discount price of RM2,000.

    He added that the promotional packages would continue until the end of the month or until stocks last.

    Buyers with families who are looking for something that is not too small but at the same time do not want to splurge so much money on a vehicle can look forward to the multipurpose vehicle (MPV) that Proton aims to launch in this quarter.

    Some industry observers feel that there is much hype over the MPV and that it has the potential to steal market share from existing MPV sales. Perusahaan Otomobil Kedua Sdn Bhd is also expected to launch an MPV by year-end.

    People who cannot afford a new car may want to consider used cars which is obviously a cheaper alternative.

    Another advantage of having a used car is that sometimes they have better resale value.

    “Used cars will hold their value and depreciate less quickly than new cars.

    “Compact vehicles will hold their value better overall, as people start downsizing as a result of the current economic slowdown,” says a second hand car dealer.

    The used car dealer also concurs that now would be a good time to buy second hand cars.

    “People looking to buy used cars also should not wait too long. With the current downturn, there may be less selection to choose from later on as people who don’t have the money to buy new cars will already be looking at used cars as an option,” he adds.

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