When you’re thinking about buying a car, the first thing to do is to figure out what model best suits your needs and wants. After all, you don’t want to drive off in your newly purchased vehicle and suddenly realize you forgot to take one or more important decision-making factors into account before you signed the purchase agreement.
But where do you start? After all, there are as many as 400 different models of cars and light trucks available to car buyers in the U.S. That’s a lot of tires to kick. Fortunately, you can simplify the task by first asking certain questions about how a car fits into your life and what you need and want from it.
The following 10 questions can help you pare down your car-buying options and get a better idea of your priorities. After you answer them, you can consider other important criteria, such as body type (pickup or minivan, for example) and powertrain (cars with gasoline engines, electric vehicles, or plug-in hybrids, for example). It can be helpful to write down your answers, assign them a numerical value, or list them in order of importance.