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Shoppers Likely To Buy Used

More Americans say they will buy a used car when it comes time to replace their current vehicle, according to a recent telephone survey conducted for CarMax, Inc.

Thirty percent of respondents surveyed indicated that buying a used car is what they will do once their current car stops running. A greater percentage of women chose this answer (34 percent) than men who were surveyed (26 percent). One in five (18 percent) respondents said that they purchased a car in the past year despite the recession, while seven percent say that they are ready for a new car, but will buy a used car to be smart.

The following are the results of the recent telephone poll that asked adults: As the weather and the economy both show signs of possible thawing, which of the following statements best describes your attitude toward shopping for your next car?

Responses Offered


I'll wait until my car doesn't run anymore, then I'll buy used


I bought a car this past year despite the recession


It's still too early, I'm nervous about spending that kind of money


I am ready for a new car but I will buy used to be smart


I'm doing my research online to find the right car to purchase


I'm looking for something with fewer bells and whistles to keep the cost low



The survey was conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs on behalf of CarMax. The national, random sample consisted of more than 1,000 U.S. adults who were interviewed by telephone during February 18 – February 22, 2010.

According to ADESA, in February used vehicle average wholesale prices reached their highest level in eight months and passed the $10,000 mark for the first time since July 2009.  This represents an 8.3% year-over-year gain, and a 3% upswing compared to January.

Looking at individual segments, there were year-over-year increases across the board, with full-size vans (up 33%) leading the way. Full-size SUVs (up 10.8%) and luxury cars (up 10.7%) also showed double-digit gains.

Overall, car segments climbed 6.2% from February 2009, and truck segments grew 11%.  On a month-over-month basis, only full-size cars (down 4.8%) saw their values fall. Sporty cars (up 5.6% from January) led the rise, as car segments jumped 3.9% and trucks climbed 2.3%.

Source: CarMax, Inc., ADESA