True and false. The end of the year sales might be the best time for buying a new car, but the trade-in numbers favor a different time of year. Values tend to be higher in the first two quarters of the year, with larger drops in the final two quarters.
There are more buyers in the market early in the year, and dealerships need more cars to feed the demand. Also, a used car feels more new when it is eight or 10 months away from turning a model year older rather than just two or four months away. These are good things to keep in mind when you’re looking to either time your trade-in or negotiate with a salesperson in March instead of October.
That said, 2020 is an exception because we’ve seen an upward curve in used car values. Now really is the best time to maximize your car’s value if you plan on trading it in.