Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Topic Author
adimoron
Posts: 44
Joined: Thu Oct 05, 2017 7:59 am

Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by adimoron » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:31 am

Hi All,

I plan to buy a SUV soon and would be buying a new car. I see that the price for trim levels varies drastically. Do you guys buy the highest trims ?

Cars I am considering:
1. Hyundai Palisade
2. Subaru Accent
3. Honda Pilot

I want to stay below 40k but see that Leather seats are available in only higher trims.

Has anyone here gotten the katzkin leather installed ? Reviews suggest that you can buy lower trim and get custom leather fittings done for 2k.

Wanted to know your opinion on:
1. Buying higher trim cars
2. Katzkin leather installs.

User avatar
Wiggums
Posts: 2888
Joined: Thu Jan 31, 2019 8:02 am

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by Wiggums » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:34 am

If leather seats is a requirement, then go for it.

I keep my cars for a long time...

User avatar
Sandtrap
Posts: 9974
Joined: Sat Nov 26, 2016 6:32 pm
Location: Hawaii No Ka Oi , N. Arizona

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by Sandtrap » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:35 am

DW and I are planning to order a new Honda Passport Elite (highest trim) next year.
We keep our cars for a very long time so always get the highest trim level where possible.

As for leather, we order high end custom car seat covers (forgot the brand). This keeps smells and stains off of the leather. Also able to remove and wash.
If not covered, leather seats would take a beating in our uses. (grandkids, horse feed, etc).

Leather seats seem to keep a certain firmness over a long time vs fabric seats that "slump" after awhile.

Suggest: Loaded Honda Pilot.

j
Wiki Bogleheads Wiki: Everything You Need to Know

User avatar
cheese_breath
Posts: 9223
Joined: Wed Sep 14, 2011 7:08 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by cheese_breath » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:36 am

adimoron wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:31 am
Hi All,

I plan to buy a SUV soon and would be buying a new car. I see that the price for trim levels varies drastically. Do you guys buy the highest trims ?
Just the opposite for me. I buy the minimum that satisfies my needs. But then, I'm not a car guy.
The surest way to know the future is when it becomes the past.

User avatar
dm200
Posts: 23148
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:21 pm
Location: Washington DC area

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by dm200 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:50 am

When we bought new cars, we picked the options we wanted and were willing to pay for. Sometimes, it was actually less expensive to pick an added package or trim upgrade - and we got another feature or two at no charge.

One of our older Camrys has leather seats. I am not impressed - cold in the winter and hot in the summer.

sport
Posts: 8966
Joined: Tue Feb 27, 2007 3:26 pm
Location: Cleveland, OH

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by sport » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:54 am

dm200 wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:50 am
One of our older Camrys has leather seats. I am not impressed - cold in the winter and hot in the summer.
This is why I prefer cloth seats. However, the model Camry I prefer only comes with leather.

User avatar
mhc
Posts: 4119
Joined: Mon Apr 04, 2011 10:18 pm
Location: NoCo

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by mhc » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:54 am

For my DW I bought the highest trim level last time. She drives the kids a lot and we use it for family trips. I wanted to see if it was worth it. Meh.

In the past, I always bought the trim level that suited my needs and was still a good value. I find the extra bells and whistles on the highest trim levels annoying at times.

I would make a list of what is really important to you and get the trim level that has those features.

02nz
Posts: 3382
Joined: Wed Feb 21, 2018 3:17 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by 02nz » Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:57 am

All three of those cars can be had with leather (from the factory) for 40K - the Palisade and Ascent are a couple hundred dollars over that with freight included. Pilot (EX-L) is under 39K with leather (for 2WD; just over 40K with AWD).

tomd37
Posts: 3198
Joined: Thu Mar 01, 2007 10:39 pm
Location: Middle Tennessee

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by tomd37 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:12 am

I usually keep a car for at least ten years and just upgraded a week ago to a new 2019 Subaru Outback 3.6R in their highest trim line "Touring" model. I wanted to take advantage of the safety features on the new cars that my 2010 model year vehicle did not have plus much better all around visibility. This is most likely to be the last car purchase for me as I am in my 82nd year. I was considering waiting for the 2020 model, but the new 2.4 liter turbo charged engine they will have in the 2020 gave me some hesitation. It is already in use in the 2019 Subaru Ascent for a year now. I decided to stay with the proven 3.6R BOXER engine. Also got a $7,200 off MSRP plus my trade-in.

You apparently want the three rows of seats based on the models indicated in your post. I cannot address the Katzkin leather matter as I do not know anything about it.
Tom D.

stoptothink
Posts: 7246
Joined: Fri Dec 31, 2010 9:53 am

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by stoptothink » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:21 am

cheese_breath wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:36 am
adimoron wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:31 am
Hi All,

I plan to buy a SUV soon and would be buying a new car. I see that the price for trim levels varies drastically. Do you guys buy the highest trims ?
Just the opposite for me. I buy the minimum that satisfies my needs. But then, I'm not a car guy.
Ditto. Although I am a "car guy", at this point the daily driver is just an appliance in my mind. Last 2 cars were absolute lowest trim levels.

User avatar
oldcomputerguy
Moderator
Posts: 7564
Joined: Sun Nov 22, 2015 6:50 am
Location: In the middle of five acres of woods in East Tennessee

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by oldcomputerguy » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:23 am

This topic is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (vehicle purchases and maintenance). -- moderator oldcomputerguy
"I’ve come around to this: If you’re dumb, surround yourself with smart people; and if you’re smart, surround yourself with smart people who disagree with you." (Aaron Sorkin)

MotoTrojan
Posts: 9313
Joined: Wed Feb 01, 2017 8:39 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by MotoTrojan » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:24 am

Depends. I went middle recently. Had the CarPlay, rims, and Bose I really wanted and I saved $4K by not getting leather (has faux leather, can’t even tell) or LED headlights. No regrets.

ddurrett896
Posts: 1185
Joined: Wed Nov 05, 2014 3:23 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by ddurrett896 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:28 am

adimoron wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:31 am
Do you guys buy the highest trims ?
I buy the lowest trim that meets my needs.

For my wife's Pilot, backup sensors were a non-negotiable/must have. Touring was the only option and what we went with.

Teague
Posts: 1802
Joined: Wed Nov 04, 2015 6:15 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by Teague » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:34 am

sport wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:54 am
dm200 wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:50 am
One of our older Camrys has leather seats. I am not impressed - cold in the winter and hot in the summer.
This is why I prefer cloth seats. However, the model Camry I prefer only comes with leather.
As a counterpoint, as Sandtrap astutely noted, leather seats do tend to keep their firmness better over time. I did some research into car seating a while back, and it turns out this is because the leather trimmed seats will generally have a denser/firmer/better grade of foam padding underneath. The designers do this because, while cloth can stretch without much issue, leather responds poorly to being stretched and its appearance and integrity would suffer. The solution is firmer padding so it stretches less.

As for me, I buy higher end trims these days since I can afford it and I also keep my cars 10-15 years. When I was young and poor it was just the opposite, I'd look for the most bare-bones trim available.
Semper Augustus

Jags4186
Posts: 4438
Joined: Wed Jun 18, 2014 7:12 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by Jags4186 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:36 am

The problem with the highest trim level is that usually you can bump up to the next model for a similar or even slightly lower cost. Sure you may be missing bells and whistles, but overall it should be better on your pocket. When you eventually sell a 10 year old car people aren’t going to think your 10 year old cutting edge technology is that fancy. In fact, this is why I suggest people buy the most basic mode that fits their needs—nothing is less attractive than an outdated infotainment system. If you go basic it makes for better presentation down the line.

Also...the difference in price between a base Honda Pilot and the Elite is $18k! That’s an entire Honda Civic.
Last edited by Jags4186 on Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

wootwoot
Posts: 464
Joined: Tue Jan 27, 2009 7:37 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by wootwoot » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:36 am

When buying new I go for the lowest trim and when buying used I go for the highest trim. Most of my cars were purchased used at 2-3 years of age.

Jack FFR1846
Posts: 11337
Joined: Tue Dec 31, 2013 7:05 am
Location: 26 miles, 385 yards west of Copley Square

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by Jack FFR1846 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:37 am

It depends whether the "stuff" that comes along with what you really want in a high end trim is of interest to you. I've purchased cars of the highest trim because most of what's included is of interest to me. I'd love if I could get a Limited Subaru with a manual transmission and no sunroof, but that's long gone. An aftermarket leather package will likely be a much higher quality than OEM when installed by a qualified upholsterer. I've seen a Subaru Outback base where the dealer added aftermarket leather and it was the perfect car for me. Base price + $1k with none of the crap that I don't want. If you simply buy the base car, you can specify lots of custom leather options like accent color piping or center sections and alcantara if you want.

Of course, if a sunroof or radar guided missiles or something are included only in the top package and you must have them, then that's something you have to decide if you really want it for the price adder.

Once you go used, the top level can be far more affordable. We bought a Subaru Legacy Limited that was a year old and it was only a couple hundred dollars more than a premium. So consider that.
Bogle: Smart Beta is stupid

User avatar
lthenderson
Posts: 4634
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:43 pm
Location: Iowa

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by lthenderson » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:44 am

Not really a car guy but we do usually buy up to the trim level that gives us leather seats. With kids, they just hold up a lot better and don't stain nearly as easily. Sometimes this is the highest trim level and sometimes it is the next one down. We buy Toyota or Honda.

User avatar
Just sayin...
Posts: 294
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2007 10:12 am

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by Just sayin... » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:47 am

I am at odds with most car manufacturers. I like a good stereo and want all the advanced safety features, but don’t want a sunroof. However, almost every manufacturer forces you into a higher-end model to get what I want, but won’t sell you a non-base model without a sunroof! I know....first world problems.

User avatar
lthenderson
Posts: 4634
Joined: Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:43 pm
Location: Iowa

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by lthenderson » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:50 am

Just sayin... wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:47 am
I am at odds with most car manufacturers. I like a good stereo and want all the advanced safety features, but don’t want a sunroof. However, almost every manufacturer forces you into a higher-end model to get what I want, but won’t sell you a non-base model without a sunroof! I know....first world problems.
+1 We have sunroofs in both our vehicles that never get opened.

THY4373
Posts: 1217
Joined: Thu Mar 22, 2012 3:17 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by THY4373 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:54 am

Generally I buy the highest or near the highest trim model. However I am normally buying used so usually paying pennies on the dollar for all that extra stuff. Sometimes the highest trim level commands a premium or is rare and in which case I'll generally not go for that one but one just below.

And I'll echo the sunroof comments above.
Last edited by THY4373 on Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:54 am, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
dm200
Posts: 23148
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:21 pm
Location: Washington DC area

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by dm200 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:54 am

Seems to me that, over the decades, things seem to have changed with "trim levels". Decades ago, we purchased the highest trim levels to get the features we wanted. Today, however, it seems that the lower trim levels have everything we would need or want.

There seem to be a lot of games being played with 'trim levels". There are more combinations and permutations of the designations - CE, SE, XLE, LE - and so on. They also often change from one year to the next. As well, with many vehicles - All Wheel Drive or Four wheel drive is often a common option. Even some of the automatic transmission options have expanded.

All done, I suppose, to further attempt to confuse the buyer!

User avatar
jhfenton
Posts: 4528
Joined: Sat Feb 07, 2015 11:17 am
Location: Ohio

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by jhfenton » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:54 am

lthenderson wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:44 am
Not really a car guy but we do usually buy up to the trim level that gives us leather seats. With kids, they just hold up a lot better and don't stain nearly as easily. Sometimes this is the highest trim level and sometimes it is the next one down. We buy Toyota or Honda.
+1 We've never bought the highest trim level, but we do try to buy up to leather seats. When we bought our Honda Odyssey in 2012--our last new car purchase--the highest trim level had in-car navigation, DVD player with video screens, etc.--things we absolutely did not want. (Even in 2012, it was clear that it was all obsolete technology.)

onourway
Posts: 2342
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by onourway » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:56 am

Yes, generally, although on the used market where you pay only a small premium to get them - although you have to be a diligent shopper to find one with the options you are after. I generally want leather seats, the best radio, the best headlights, the safety features, etc.

User avatar
dm200
Posts: 23148
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:21 pm
Location: Washington DC area

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by dm200 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:57 am

lthenderson wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:50 am
Just sayin... wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:47 am
I am at odds with most car manufacturers. I like a good stereo and want all the advanced safety features, but don’t want a sunroof. However, almost every manufacturer forces you into a higher-end model to get what I want, but won’t sell you a non-base model without a sunroof! I know....first world problems.
+1 We have sunroofs in both our vehicles that never get opened.
I just do not get the appeal of sun roofs. Just one more mechanical thing to break - and then, something I do not want needs an expensive repair to keep the rain out. We have an older (purchased used from an individual) Camry SE with such a sun roof.

onourway
Posts: 2342
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2016 3:39 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by onourway » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:58 am

dm200 wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:57 am
I just do not get the appeal of sun roofs. Just one more mechanical thing to break - and then, something I do not want needs an expensive repair to keep the rain out. We have an older (purchased used from an individual) Camry SE with such a sun roof.
Lets a lot more light into the cabin. Kids love them - especially the full length ones, because it greatly expands their view otherwise limited from the back seat.

I think every vehicle I've owned for the last 20 years has had a sunroof. I've never had an issue with any of them.

User avatar
Svensk Anga
Posts: 672
Joined: Sun Dec 23, 2012 5:16 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by Svensk Anga » Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:59 am

We almost always go for the lowest trim. I think the auto makers really compete on price on the low end but jack up their margins with all the gimmicks on the higher trim lines. I just don't see the value in all the high end stuff. You can end up spending $1000 for an in-dash navigation system when a $150 Garmin or your phone will do just fine and you are likely to be annoyed with the car's software to boot. We do not like leather - too hot in Florida. Don't want a sunroof as it cuts into headroom. High end cars sometimes do poorly on those initial quality surveys because there are so many opportunities for something to not work right.

We did go up a grade from base on our latest car in order to get the Honda Sensing safety features.

User avatar
sk2101
Posts: 425
Joined: Sun Jun 02, 2013 4:54 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by sk2101 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:01 am

If the only reason you want the highest trim are the leather seats, then Katzkins are a good solution. I have them on my daily driver, and I am very happy. I think they are better quality than OEM leather. I bought them on Ebay for $500 and did then install myself. I believe they go for around 2K installed.

The Katzkin kit even came with leather for the door panels and the armrests.
Last edited by sk2101 on Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:03 am, edited 1 time in total.

dbr
Posts: 32221
Joined: Sun Mar 04, 2007 9:50 am

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by dbr » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:02 am

Both. The last time I bought a car almost everything we wanted excepting a couple of things that could not be avoided were in the highest trim line. The next car I think might be on the horizon will be in the lowest trim line possible in order not to get some features. We may have to upgrade to get a couple of things we want. It is all about finding a happy medium for features wanted and unwanted.

User avatar
dm200
Posts: 23148
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:21 pm
Location: Washington DC area

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by dm200 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:04 am

Do folks think that dealers are more likely to apply more of a dollar or percentage discount to the high end trim levels? In other words, is it possible that the cost of a higher trim level is less than the MSRP difference?

H-Town
Posts: 2589
Joined: Sun Feb 26, 2017 2:08 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by H-Town » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:11 am

adimoron wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:31 am
Hi All,

I plan to buy a SUV soon and would be buying a new car. I see that the price for trim levels varies drastically. Do you guys buy the highest trims ?

Cars I am considering:
1. Hyundai Palisade
2. Subaru Accent
3. Honda Pilot

I want to stay below 40k but see that Leather seats are available in only higher trims.

Has anyone here gotten the katzkin leather installed ? Reviews suggest that you can buy lower trim and get custom leather fittings done for 2k.

Wanted to know your opinion on:
1. Buying higher trim cars
2. Katzkin leather installs.
I go for highest trim when I buy used car (not that I have ever bought a new car before). There is a lot of value here. You can find a highest trim used Lexus RX 350 from 25k-30k. You don't have to worry about normal dents, wear and tear, etc.

But if you're dead set on buying new, plan to keep it as long as you can and go for custom leather to keep cost low.

User avatar
Doom&Gloom
Posts: 3318
Joined: Thu May 08, 2014 3:36 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by Doom&Gloom » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:21 am

It is like any other purchase. If I want it and the value is there, I get it. If there is an aftermarket alternative for any of the items offered in the higher level trim packages, I evaluate whether I would rather go that route. It is not quite rocket science.

adamthesmythe
Posts: 3260
Joined: Mon Sep 22, 2014 4:47 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by adamthesmythe » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:25 am

HighER, not highEST.

Usually the best values are toward the middle.

dsmclone
Posts: 412
Joined: Fri Oct 25, 2013 8:50 am

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by dsmclone » Mon Jul 29, 2019 10:25 am

Depends on the car. If I was buying a Honda Accord, I'd probably be fine with the EX-L because there isn't a lot in the Touring that I'd want. If i was buying a Pilot, I'd only consider an Elite because it's the only one with captains chairs in the back. And Honda is about the easiest to figure when it comes to trim level. Go and try to configure a truck some time where you can customize everything and it's mind numbing.

TheOscarGuy
Posts: 1033
Joined: Sat Oct 06, 2012 1:10 pm
Location: Where I wanna be.

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by TheOscarGuy » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:13 am

adimoron wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:31 am
1. Buying higher trim cars
2. Katzkin leather installs.
1. Yes.
2. No.

Just buy what you want, within your budget. I would never install anything after market that I can get from manufacturer. GPS is an exception (google maps).

student
Posts: 4649
Joined: Fri Apr 03, 2015 6:58 am

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by student » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:19 am

I prefer mid trim to get all the safety feature. Things like leather seats and sunroof that often are included in the highest trim are not important to me.

ncbill
Posts: 675
Joined: Sun Jul 06, 2008 4:03 pm
Location: Western NC

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by ncbill » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:24 am

Sunroofs reduce headroom and eventually leak...never again for me.

Leather is just as uncomfortably hot as vinyl once exposed to direct sun in our climate, though if you must aftermarket is often cheaper & higher quality.

If you've got kids you should be using custom-fit seat covers (Costco has nice options) whether the seats are cloth or leather.

Buying one down from the top trim line (to avoid sunroof/leather) is the way we go.

mariezzz
Posts: 847
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 11:02 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by mariezzz » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:26 am

If you want leather, look into what kind of leather they use. I wouldn't pay extra for bonded leather. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bonded_leather

I wouldn't opt for leather at all though due to the heat/cold issues. I've never had a problem with a cloth seat and I've bought older cars (corolla, civic) and driven them past them being 20 year old cars.
Last edited by mariezzz on Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

swordandscales
Posts: 56
Joined: Fri Jul 26, 2019 3:24 pm
Location: Louisville, KY

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by swordandscales » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:27 am

I feel like the high level options are among the most depreciable items on the new car, with the exception of quality leather.

I’d much rather buy a 2-3 year old used vehicle that mostly meets my needs, than a new vehicle with everything just right.

The amount saved is substantial.

However, if you’re buying new, I think middle of the road is usually adequate. Then again, adequate is highly subjective. For me, adequate is a working Bluetooth radio and leather.
Discipline is freedom. | -Jocko Willink

JediMisty
Posts: 475
Joined: Tue Aug 07, 2018 7:06 am
Location: Central NJ

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by JediMisty » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:30 am

I have a short commute so I buy the lowest trim level. I bought a 2012 Camry in 2013. Came with a sunroof and driver's assist electric seats. No Nav system or extra gadgets. 8k miles and saved over 20% off list of a new one. I don't like leather seats. Cold in the winter and hot in the summer. App. 64k miles on it so far. The sunroof did break, but weeks after I paid to have it fixed, it was recalled so I got a check from Toyota. I had planned to buy a new one, but all the dealers locally didn't have any that weren't loaded with features I didn't need or want. :annoyed

KyleAAA
Posts: 8134
Joined: Wed Jul 01, 2009 5:35 pm
Contact:

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by KyleAAA » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:34 am

I’ve found the highest trim tends to be a better deal than the luxury brand version of that vehicle.

theplayer11
Posts: 1122
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 8:55 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by theplayer11 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:34 am

buying the highest trim just because you can is silly, IMO. I buy the highest trim that has the options I actually want.

mariezzz
Posts: 847
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 11:02 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by mariezzz » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:36 am

dm200 wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:57 am
lthenderson wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:50 am
Just sayin... wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 9:47 am
I am at odds with most car manufacturers. I like a good stereo and want all the advanced safety features, but don’t want a sunroof. However, almost every manufacturer forces you into a higher-end model to get what I want, but won’t sell you a non-base model without a sunroof! I know....first world problems.
+1 We have sunroofs in both our vehicles that never get opened.
I just do not get the appeal of sun roofs. Just one more mechanical thing to break - and then, something I do not want needs an expensive repair to keep the rain out. We have an older (purchased used from an individual) Camry SE with such a sun roof.
I agree. I currently have an older Civic with a sunroof (no leaks) - had the car for a year. Never used the sun roof. All you see is the sky if you look up (good if you want to go star gazing in your car!) I don't drive with it open (keep the shade closed as well).
I guess in a hot climate, it would help air the heat out when you first start the car.

theplayer11
Posts: 1122
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2014 8:55 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by theplayer11 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:39 am

mariezzz wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:26 am
If you want leather, look into what kind of leather they use. I wouldn't pay extra for bonded leather. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bonded_leather

I wouldn't opt for leather at all though due to the heat/cold issues. I've never had a problem with a cloth seat and I've bought older cars (corolla, civic) and driven them past them being 20 year old cars.
that's what heated and now ventilated seats are for :D

T4REngineer
Posts: 80
Joined: Thu May 31, 2018 9:50 am

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by T4REngineer » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:46 am

I buy the highest trim level that has what I value and can not be better or equally replicated in the aftermarket or installing OEM parts myself. In general this has meant second to highest trim options on our cars.

*As others have mentioned used car prices tend to not be kind to "options/fully loaded" - may not make a difference to you if you plan on buying new and not selling for 10+years

*The biggest kicker is when higher trims have different drivetrains (engine, AWD/full time 4x4) etc. to me those are generally where the "value" comes in vs. a sunroof , leather, extra creature comforts.

I know you did not ask for this advise but I would recommend a ~3yr old model, is a general sweet spot and you can get a heck of a vehicle for 40k.

mariezzz
Posts: 847
Joined: Mon Oct 02, 2017 11:02 pm

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by mariezzz » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:47 am

theplayer11 wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:39 am
mariezzz wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:26 am
If you want leather, look into what kind of leather they use. I wouldn't pay extra for bonded leather. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bonded_leather

I wouldn't opt for leather at all though due to the heat/cold issues. I've never had a problem with a cloth seat and I've bought older cars (corolla, civic) and driven them past them being 20 year old cars.
that's what heated and now ventilated seats are for :D
Leather seats just seem unnecessary, for many reasons.
I cannot stand heated seats - even when I lived in a cold climate state I did not like them - parents had them. :beer

User avatar
dm200
Posts: 23148
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:21 pm
Location: Washington DC area

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by dm200 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:49 am

Not me, but I sometimes wonder if some auto owners care (meaning buying highest trim) to have the back of the car show that this is an "LE" or "XLE" model vs. a lower trim level, such as a "CE" or "SE" or just plain blank?

User avatar
dm200
Posts: 23148
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 2:21 pm
Location: Washington DC area

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by dm200 » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:51 am

Leather seats just seem unnecessary, for many reasons.
I cannot stand heated seats - even when I lived in a cold climate state I did not like them
My wife loves the heated seat on our 2002 Camry. Not me.

User avatar
White Coat Investor
Posts: 14522
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2007 9:11 pm
Location: Greatest Snow On Earth

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by White Coat Investor » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:53 am

adimoron wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 8:31 am
Hi All,

I plan to buy a SUV soon and would be buying a new car. I see that the price for trim levels varies drastically. Do you guys buy the highest trims ?

Cars I am considering:
1. Hyundai Palisade
2. Subaru Accent
3. Honda Pilot

I want to stay below 40k but see that Leather seats are available in only higher trims.

Has anyone here gotten the katzkin leather installed ? Reviews suggest that you can buy lower trim and get custom leather fittings done for 2k.

Wanted to know your opinion on:
1. Buying higher trim cars
2. Katzkin leather installs.
I think it's like a lot of things in life:

The lowest trim is for the cheapskates.
The middle trim is the way most people prefer their cars.
The highest trim is usually a rip off and/or a status symbol.

If price matters as it seems to to you, then either wait longer to buy until you have more money or go with a lower trim level. I suspect it is probably not cost-efficient or time-efficient to buy a lower trim level and then add features a la carte most of the time.
1) Invest you must 2) Time is your friend 3) Impulse is your enemy | 4) Basic arithmetic works 5) Stick to simplicity 6) Stay the course

randomguy
Posts: 8679
Joined: Wed Sep 17, 2014 9:00 am

Re: Do you buy the highest trim car ?

Post by randomguy » Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:54 am

KyleAAA wrote:
Mon Jul 29, 2019 11:34 am
I’ve found the highest trim tends to be a better deal than the luxury brand version of that vehicle.
Nah the luxury car gives you a better driving car with higher quality materials and less useless features:) Buy the trim of car with the features you want. In 2006, you needed to buy top trims of a lot of models to get basic safety gear like VSC. In 2015, you needed to get top trims to get decent headlights and adaptive cruise control. Make the list of features that you require and want (i.e. I want a 360 camera. Not paying 3k for one though) and pick the trim that makes sense.

Post Reply