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The Ledbetter Law Firm, APC

New doesn’t necessarily mean reliable when it comes to cars

What draws people to buying new, rather than used, cars? A recent survey indicates that the perception that new cars are more reliable may be a big contributor.

In the survey, prospective car buyers who said they were only interested in purchasing a new vehicle were asked why they wanted to buy a new car. Many of these individuals gave reasons related to concerns about reliability, repairs and breakdowns. These reliability-related reasons were cited more often than things like technology and safety features.

So, it appears that many new car buyers assume they are getting a more reliable vehicle, as compared to a used car. Unfortunately, some such buyers may find themselves disappointed.

While one would hope that manufacturers would not put new cars out on the market that have reliability issues, reality falls short of this. New cars are not immune to such issues. For example, there have been new car models that haven’t performed very well in Consumer Reports’ reliability surveys.

So, not all new cars may meet a buyer’s expectations regarding reliability. What can you do when buying a new car to try to avoid such a disappointment? One thing is to research the reliability of the vehicle model you are considering. When doing such research, it is important to look at the reliability of the specific model year of the vehicle you are considering, rather than just making assumptions based on past model years. Just because a vehicle model was fairly reliable one model year doesn’t automatically mean it will be in the next one.

What can new car buyers in California do if they end up with a car that has serious reliability issues? Depending on the severity of the issues and whether the issues have responded to repairs, legal action under the state’s lemon laws may be an available option. Among the remedies that can be available in connection to lemon law claims are vehicle replacement or repurchase. Skilled lemon law attorneys can give new car buyers who have encountered a very unpleasant surprise from a vehicle they thought would be reliable guidance on whether they would likely have a viable lemon law claim.

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