6 Websites to Use for Researching a New Vehicle Purchase
Say you've decided to buy a new car. Say you haven't done this in a REALLY long time. Say you have NO idea what you are going to buy or even what to look for. Welcome to my world about a month ago. My truck was totaled by a driver who ran a red light. I had been driving that Toyota truck for 14 years. We had bonded. Given its mileage, I intended to drive it another four to five years. Why should I spend money on a new car when I had a perfectly good car already? And then, boom.
Photo by Derrek Barlow
Now, 14 years is a long time. Think of all the technology that has changed since then. Things like bluetooth, the iPhone, YouTube and Facebook...all invented since then. And, for cars, there wasn't widespread use of hands-free calling or steering wheel controls of the stereo. There weren't even USB ports. It was the DARK AGES, and yet I managed to survive.
But, with the prospects looming of a new car purchase, I had to first decide what I wanted and then figure out how to get it. Like all things, I went to the web for help. I could have queried friends, but I knew the hodge podge of responses I would get wouldn't do me much good. So, I began looking for websites to aid in my research. I was surprised to find so many good online resources for buying new cars that didn't involve trying to sell me something.
When typing in the name of any vehicle followed by the word "review," one of the first response to come up in Google is the US News website. Sure, they obviously give good SEO, but do they review cars well? The answer is yes. They not only provide a variety of positive and negative reviews from various publications, but they show how they ranked your car alongside other vehicles of the same class. So, if you are looking at the Subaru Forester as I was, it will show you where it ranks among other SUVs and other Compact SUVs in its rankings. I found it very useful as a comparison tool.
Still one of the most respected magazines for vehicle reviews, the Car and Driver website contains more information than anyone could possibly need -- save maybe a mechanic -- about cars. I was never a big car enthusiast, so some of the details can get a bit granular for me, but it is a fantastic resource for researching a new car.