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If I want to upgrade my car should I trade it in or sell it privately?

Asked by Henry

I have Kia Sportage 2017 model and I’m looking to upgrade to a Kia Carnival seven-seater from 2017 upwards. Just wondering what option is best: To either trade in the Sportage for the Kia Carnival and pay the difference, or sell the Sportage privately and negotiate a deal for a Kia Carnival... what are your thoughts?

Answered by CarsGuide

2 Dec 2020 David Morley

The answer will come down (somewhat) to whether the car dealership you buy from wants your car as a trade-in or not. Even if it’s agreed that your Sportage will act as a trade-in, if the car yard in question doesn’t really want it, they won’t offer you much for it. Sometimes, a car dealer will even give you what’s called a no-trade bonus which is a few dollars off the price of the new car on the basis that you’re not lumbering them with a trade-in they don’t want to have to sell on.

You stand to make a little more by selling the Sportage privately, but only if you can be bothered with placing an advert and then having a stream of strangers in your driveway on a Saturday morning. Trading the old car in on the new one is the simplest, easiest way of switching cars, but as with any deal like this, don’t be star-struck by the trade-in price, because the extra you think you’re being given for the car will almost certainly be added on to the price of the new car. The important number with this type of transaction is the change-over figure; the actual amount of money you need to stump up to swap from one car to another.

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