A Fool-Proof Used Nissan Buyers Guide
By Tim Charlet on August 27, 2018
If you read most used car reviews, you’ll quickly discover one common thread – previously owned Nissan’s are rated quite well. Nissan’s have been one of the most reliable and long-lasting consumer cars on the market for the past 30-years. Whether it’s the quality of components, the ease of routine service, or the precision manufacturing standards, buying a used Nissan is not as risky as other common brands. However, there are a few items to consider when purchasing a used Nissan that will protect you from buying a lemon.
Here are five items to add to your pre-purchase punch list if a Nissan is on the menu.
Item #1 – Ask the Owner for All Routine Service Records
If you’re thinking about buying a used Nissan, there are a few important items to consider. The first thing is that any used car is only as good as the routine service and maintenance it has received. Scheduled maintenance completed on time and frequently, will reduce the potential of major component failure – which tends to be the biggest expense of buying a used car, truck or SUV. So – make sure to ask the owner of any Nissan you plan on buying for a copy of all service and maintenance records. If they can’t provide you with them – it’s probably a good idea to find a different vehicle.
Item #2 – Ask the owner for a Vehicle History Report
There are several online sites that offer Vehicle History Reports. What you need is a vehicle’s identification number or VIN. This number is what repair centers use to document major repairs, especially if a vehicle has been in an accident in the past. If you buy a used Nissan from a dealership, they are required by law to provide you with a VIN report – it’s your consumer right.
Item #3 – Have a Pre-Purchase Car Inspection Completed
If you’re serious about buying a used car – especially from a private owner, it’s a good idea to spend a few extra dollars on a pre-purchase inspection by a professional mechanic. More local mechanics – especially some mobile services, are offering these inspections. They will review the vehicle fluids, check for leaks, inspect the suspension and other major components for wear-and-tear. This can reduce the potential of you paying for major repairs – which can save you thousands.
Item #4 – Always Test Drive a Used Nissan
No matter how much you’re pressured to ‘commit’ to buying a car by its owner, you should NEVER buy any used vehicle without test driving it first. In fact, it’s a good idea to have someone you trust (especially if they are mechanically inclined) to test drive the car as well. A second-set of eyes never hurts when you’re going to make a major purchase.
Item #5 – Don’t Be Afraid to Say No
When you’re the buyer – you’re the boss. If you don’t like what you see with a used car, don’t be afraid to say no or walk away from a sale. Many used car buyers fall victim to ‘guilt’ and will buy a vehicle without being 100% certain. Most of the time, this can backfire and lead to buyer remorse. While many Nissan’s are built incredibly well, and can last several hundred-thousands of miles, they are not without risk. By marking the five items posted above off your pre-purchase checklist, you’ll be better equipped to make a smart purchase on a used Nissan.