Leasing a brand new vehicle seems like a pretty good deal. You pay a monthly fee (£350 in my case) for a vehicle no one but you will have driven. But although you get the included warranty and knowledge that everything should be working as intended, this isn’t the option I’ll continue using once my current lease comes to an end. In fact, I’m never going to lease a vehicle ever again.
Consumerism at its worst
Buying a brand new car is a lot like a new phone or Apple product. You pop into a fancy-looking store with some smiley people looking to extract as much cash from you as possible. That’s the same deal at car dealers, though plenty of them can go to extreme lengths. Luckily, the local dealer I purchased my 2018 Seat Leon is a pretty good one.
Choosing the model as an upgrade for my first car, a 2016 Seat Ibiza, it was a joyful occasion. The majority of my driving hours are spent on the highway, which meant the super-mini wasn’t the most pleasurable of experiences on long trips. Sure, the Seat Ibiza is a great little car, but the Leon is simply better at comfort and … well, everything else.
A monthly fee of £350 for the Leon didn’t seem like much of a big deal for me. It’s easily payable with the available expenditure I have each month. There’s also the included bonuses like the first few services pre-paid for, as well as free tyre replacement for up to five tyres, and even alloy refurbishment should I happen to grind along some curbs.
I got a good personal contract purchase (PCP) deal. But even the best PCP deal is a bad one.
Why I won’t lease a vehicle again
Here are some reasons why I won’t be rushing to the car dealer once this lease ends to get another vehicle out:
- Depreciation: It’s no secret that as soon as you drive the new vehicle out of the dealer, you’re knocking countless figures off the value. It’s a bad investment overall. You’re paying full price for something that you know will be worth far less in four years.
- Additional costs: Not only do you need to pay for the car’s RRP in full, but you’ll also need to find the extra few thousand should you happen to write it off since your insurance will likely not cover it in full.
- I’m not the owner: Contrary to what you may believe, the finance company or bank owns the vehicle we have on lease. It’s why there are so many strict guidelines as to what one can do with it, including modifications.
- Can’t afford the car: Even if you can cover the costs of the monthly payments and then some, you simply cannot afford the vehicle, otherwise you would have bought one outright. I could have bought a decent second-hand vehicle instead of the Leon, and I regret that decision.
- Used EV prices: The used electronic vehicle (and charging) market is in far better shape these days with plenty of EVs available at lower prices. I’ll be picking an EV up next, which is most likely to be a Nissan Leaf.
So those are the reasons why I won’t be leasing a vehicle again. If you’re thinking about doing so, hold back and consider the alternatives. Do you really require a brand new car? Could you get a similar vehicle on the used market? If you’re in a similar boat, I’d love to hear your experiences.