Approximately two years ago, I bought a used 2011 Audi S5. At the time, I guess I was going through a “mid-life crisis” so went and splurged on a new [to me] car. Well, as of 2 days ago, I have sold the Audi. While I loved driving the car, my commute to work is really short (around 10 miles RT.) Then on the weekends, we took out the SUV just because it’s more comfortable. The Audi averaged about 3.5K miles per year. Another thing that “annoyed” me about the Audi was that the car was really low to the ground, and you had to work your abs each time you got out of the car. Also why I’ve started to work out. I fully realize the last comment is #oldmanproblems, but once you’ve gotten to a point in your life, you start to not GAF about “looks” and want comfort. Oh and the last reason is that my Tesla 3 should be coming this fall. That was the straw that broke the camel’s back. My wife and I DO NOT NEED FOUR CARS! So that’s why the Audi had to go.
Selling the car
I had posted the car on cars.com at first for $29K. It was the lowest priced 2011 Audi S5 with only 40K miles. I got a few responses that were trying to lowball me at 24K; one even offered 22K. I held out since I was in no rush to sell the car. After a few weeks, I listed it on Craigslist and lowered the price to 27K. I got the same low offers, and eventually I stopped responding to them. I think in all, I got about 5 inquiries and only 3 serious ones. After a month, I got a call from a guy in Bellingham who wanted to check out the car in person. We met up in the morning in the parking lot of a grocery store (after my MS run.) He test drove it for a bit. Then the moment of truth… “will you take 24K?” I told him, “Naaah. Someone else was going to buy it for 26K, but never got back to me, so that’s the lowest.” Quick aside – The KBB on the car was 27K in ‘excellent’ condition. He thought about it for a few seconds and said, “Okay, I can do 26K.” He then gave me a $500 deposit and a few days later, came back with a cashier’s check for the rest.
I had paid $40K for the car exactly 2 years ago, of which about $4K was the extra 4 year warranty. The brakes and tires cost me an additional $1K. I won’t count gas, oil, and insurance since I would have paid that on any other car. So in total, this car cost me $41K and I got $26K back for a net loss of $15K in 2 years. I actually didn’t realize the warranty was transferable and that I had 2 years left (I knew I had at least 1 year left,) so that probably cost me an additional $1-2K, but I won’t get into that. That meant the car cost me $7,500 per year to drive.
If I had leased a new car say for 3 years, to keep the same $625 monthly payment, I could have driven a new $45K car (assuming 60% residual.) A new Audi S5 goes for $60K+ however and so that wouldn’t have been possible. I could have gotten an A5 maybe. Whatever new car I would have gotten wouldn’t have been the same as the Audi S5.
Lease vs Buy New vs Buy Used
In my scenario, buying used was my best bet since I only lost 15K. If I had leased a brand new S5, it would have probably cost me $12000 per year, so $24K total after 2 years. If I had bought a brand new S5 and sold it after 2 years (terrible decision due to the up front tax,) it would have probably cost me $71K out the door ($65K + 6K tax) and realistically, I’d hope to get maybe $50K for a loss of 21k. Granted the last 2 options are newer and better cars. The best option was really to not buy ANY car and saved myself the $15K, but I digress.
If I could do it again, I still would have bought the car. It was fun to drive the last 2 years, but now I’m done with it. Now I’m just looking forward to the Tesla.