Here are some ways to save money:

  • Check on reliability--Nothing can torpedo a budget like unexpected repair costs. The annual Consumer Reports car reliability survey cites both overall ratings and specific problems. If you're a paid subscriber to the magazine or online service, go to
  • Look at continuing costs--Although insurance and gasoline costs are continuous, new-car depreciation--the value it loses each year--is a major factor. summarizes these variables in a feature called True Cost to Own, accessible on their home page. A vehicle that costs less to buy now than a competitor may in fact cost more to own over a five-year period.
  • Negotiate --Reduce your purchase price by looking for the dealer cost or "invoice price" on sites like and Kelley Blue Book ( Then aim for a selling price before any rebate of no more than 2% over the invoice price. Better yet, talk to our Sun Federal CU loan officers about pre-approving your auto loan before you even start to shop for a car.