Make 2016 the year you buy that new car, as prices are affordable.

New Year, new you, new car

The end of 2017 is only weeks away, and millions of Americans are making an assessment of where they are in life to see if a resolution is in order. Whether it’s to lose weight, or win a highly sought-after promotion at work, many view the New Year as their first-class ticket to a “new you.”

If you’re looking for a “new you” in 2018, you may want to experience it with a new car, as the purchase environment sure seems to be signaling a green light.

Prices trending in encouraging direction

The numbers speak for themselves, as vehicle valuation firms have consistently produced statistics that suggest now is a great time to buy a new car, particularly in recent months. For example, according to Kelley Blue Book, the estimated average transaction price for a new vehicles in November was $33,801. That’s up a mere 0.7% from the same month last year and by less than $150 compared to September.

Karl Brauer, Kelley Blue Book, Senior Analyst, noted that the slight uptick is amplified when you compare it to what the trend was like earlier in 2017.

“While average transaction prices are up again in November, the rate of growth was modest at less than 1%, which stands in contrast to the 2% to 3% increases seen so far this year,” Brauer referenced.

He added that if you don’t include trucks or sports-utility vehicles, price growth is far less, and in some cases, has gone down, including for makes like Ford, Nissan, Toyota, and Volkswagen.

Speaking of the German automaker, it too is aiming to keep prices as affordable as possible in the wake of the emissions scandal. On both AutoTrader.com and KBB.com, diesel models as well as those taking unleaded regular have seen prices slashed, down by almost $2,000 per vehicle. VW is also making new-car incentives more enticing, averaging almost $5,000 per vehicle in October.

Michelle Krebs, Autotrader senior analyst, indicated that the low price environment has been fueled both by VW wanting to make amends with the public but also to reduce inventory, as sales have slid since the Environmental Protection Agency launched its investigation.

Interest rates at record lows

Financing is the main way in which new-car buyers – as well as used – purchase a vehicle. Even here, interest rates are helping to keep costs affordable. On auto loans between July and September, the national serious delinquency rate was only 1.1%, according to data from credit agency TransUnion.

“Consumer credit performance continued to be healthy in the third quarter of 2017,” said Ezra Becker, TransUnion, Vice President of Research and Consulting. “Delinquencies for mortgages continued to drop, while both auto and credit card default rates remained near all-time lows.”

Furthermore, Becker explained, consumers are having an easier time with loan approvals, as credit access has risen.

A major purchase necessitates the proper investment, which is why auto insurance is so important. A new car has features and functions that typically require a new policy, but this is good news, because you may be able to take advantage of discounts that you weren’t eligible for with your previous car.

Did you know that purchasing a new car is a great time to also reevaluate your current auto insurance policy? Often times, a new car can change how much you’re paying for your current coverage. Find out how much you can save in the new year with all of Elephant Auto Insurance’s discounts.