Study: Cities cheaper than suburbs for used cars

June 8, 2012 12:00 AM

When it comes to used cars, prices can fluctuate based on many factors. For example, a car where the owner kept up with scheduled maintenance will often fetch a much higher price than one in rough condition. Used car prices can also go up and down according to things like dealer inventory, fuel prices, and the time of the year.

A recent survey by CarGurus revealed another factor that goes into used car buying - location. The auto research site recently analyzed millions of used car listings throughout the country, taking special note of where the vehicle is located. By and large, the website found that drivers can find better deals in the city than they can in the suburbs.

According to the site, city dealerships were approximately $345 cheaper than suburban dealerships located within the same state. This trend seemed to be tied to population. In states like California and Texas with more people, the disparity between city and suburb was larger. Some cities outpaced the average discount - in New Orleans, for example, it's $770 cheaper to buy in the city than outside of it.

"If you are looking for the best deal on a used car, head for the city," said Langley Steinert, founder and CEO of CarGurus. "Our data shows that dealers located in populated metro areas tend to price their inventory more competitively than dealers located farther outside the city."

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