5 Tips for Buying a Used SUV

July 26, 2019 9:05 am

You’ve set the day aside to look at cars. You’re buying a used SUV. You’re at one of the local West Palm Beach used car dealers, and it dawns on you that there are certain factors in buying an SUV you haven’t considered. What elements do you absolutely need to consider before making a decision?

1. Seating

Nearly any SUV will seat five people. Not all of them will seat them comfortably. Don’t just look at the capacity; but get in those back seats yourself and make sure they’re really as roomy as advertised. If you’re looking at a third row for 6-8 passengers, do the same with these.

2. Cargo

Your cargo space opens up when a second and/or third row gets folded flat. That’s great, but plan ahead. If you’re aiming for family trips where you won’t have that space available because you’re seating more, what’s your realistic cargo space?

Do you plan to be loading anything heavy? In this case, you may look for a model that features air suspension. This can lower the vehicle, making loading easier. Some even have powered lift gates, which makes the job even easier. These are ideal if the SUV is going to get a lot of work out of that cargo space.

3. Drive Platform

SUVs generally utilize front-wheel drive with an all-wheel drive (AWD) option. All-wheel drive will suit you fine when buying a used SUV for most types of environments.

You may wish for 4-wheel drive (4WD). A lot of people mistake this for AWD, but they’re not the same thing. 4-wheel drive uses gearing at low speeds for rough and difficult terrain. This is ideal for dirt roads and hilly terrain. (Just remember to turn 4WD off when you get back to paved roads, or you can damage it.)

4. Driver Assist

West Palm Beach used car dealers should ensure you get a good look at SUVs with modern safety technology. This involves forward collision warning, blind spot warning, lane assist, automatic emergency braking, and rear-view cameras. Even more luxury models might utilize heads-up displays, night vision, or telematics that notify EMS when the airbags are triggered.

5. Towing

If you have a need for towing, go a little over your target haul. Larger SUVs will sometimes be able to tow as much 9,000 pounds. That’s perfect if you’re bringing a big boat along on a trip. A midsize SUV that can haul 5,000 pounds can tow a small boat, but if you haul something larger and heavier, you could be inviting disaster.

Don’t eyeball weights. Know the exact weight of what you’ll be towing and make sure when buying a used SUV that it’s rated for that weight. If you can’t, the optional tow package is a legitimate investment.

When buying a used SUV, keep these tips in mind – and stop by to check out our extensive inventory.

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