Buying a Motorcoach: New vs Used
Considering a new vehicle for your fleet? When deciding between a new and used coach, there are many factors to consider. HT Bus Group wants to help you make the choice that’s right for your business.
Discounted Purchase Price
Let’s start with the obvious. When selecting a new coach, sales can work with you to an extent on purchase price, but a used coach is always going to cost less. Sales might be able to get you into the perfect new coach at the right price. But sometimes your needs are different, sometimes you have a limited budget and you need to make it work harder. Do you want one brand new coach, or do you want two or three used coaches? The answer obviously depends on what you need to get out of your fleet. When you’re buying used coaches, you can stretch that budget a lot further.
Special Deals Available
Another great thing about used coaches: special deals are often available. Dealers frequently get a coach in amazing condition at a great price. They can pass this savings onto their customers. If you keep your eye open, you can find like-new motorcoaches at fantastic prices. In fact, we have a few beautiful HT-Series coaches available now. Contact our sales department to find out more.
*Special Concerns: Traditional Cutaway or 35′ Mid-sized Coach?
If you’re in the chauffeur or limo business, this is a question you may ask yourself quite frequently. Is it worth it to continue running cutaways exclusively, or is it time to move into motorcoach? The mid-sized 35′ motorcoach is similar in size to many cutaways, with a higher passenger capacity. However, the maintenance on a coach is different (and often simpler), meaning operating costs can often be much better. With new CARB requirements, a lot of operators are switching over to motorcoach and never looking back. For an introduction to motorcoach, a used coach might be the ideal solution. A tried and true coach that’s been operating smoothly for an extended period of use will continue to be reliable as the business adjusts to the new vehicle, helping to keep your transition smooth.
Available Now, Not later
If you’re buying a brand new coach, especially one that you’re making customizations to, it can take months for your coach to be delivered. A used coach is ready now. If you want to make upgrades to a used coach you’ve purchased, it’s just as easy as making upgrades to a coach you already own. The vehicle is waiting and available. All the dealer needs is for you to say the word; they’ll help you handle your needs on the spot. If you’re looking to make a lot of customizations, a used coach is often the way to go because the money saved on the purchase price can be applied to your upgrades. Your coach will look just as fabulous as if it were new.
Something that’s top of mind for all operators: Safety. Many operators choose used coaches for the simple fact that they know which individual vehicles have the best track record for safety. Although every manufacturer strives to build safe coaches, safety recalls do occasionally occur. When you buy a new coach, operators should rest assured manufacturers will make them whole in the event of such a recall, but with used coaches, the chance of experiencing any downtime and the risk of dissatisfied passengers is greatly decreased. Peace of mind can’t be valued enough.
Here’s where the real thinking begins. Which costs more to operate? A new coach or a used coach? The answer is: it depends. As most operators know, operating costs can be predicted, but they do vary from vehicle to vehicle. New features can both increase and decrease operating costs. However, with a used coach, detailed logs and previous owner testimony can be greatly helpful to buyers in making their decision.
Maintenance plans can be one of, if not, the greatest deciding factor(s) when it comes to purchasing a new or used coach. No one wants to be caught out on a repair. That costs money in shop services and in downtime. New coaches will be covered on warranty, but a used coach may also be covered.
Most of the previous is common knowledge, but there are some additional benefits when it comes to operating and maintaining used coaches:
- Known issues have already been addressed – Let’s face it. Sometimes there are issues with certain model years right off the bat. If any issues did exist on a used coach, they should have already been addressed under warranty when the coach was new
- Lower insurance premiums – Used coaches cost less to insure. This is simply a fact.
- “Like new” but with a lower price point – If you can find a gently-used and well-maintained coach, that coach will often perform like a brand new coach… but it’s going to cost you far less. This is especially true of HT-Series coaches, as all our used coaches are 2016 or later.
- Maintenance Records – Any operator worth his or her salt keeps great, detailed maintenance records. When you buy a coach with complete maintenance records, you will know exactly what to expect
- Depreciation is slower – A brand new coach loses a good portion of its value the first time you drive it off the lot. With used coaches, your investment depreciates much more slowly.
- Replacement parts – Finding replacement parts for used coaches is often far easier. For HT-Coaches, finding replacement parts is simple. Give us a call and we’ll help you pick the right solution. You could come into the shop, in some instances, we could send out our service truck with the required parts. Or, our certified repair centers will handle the issue. Even better, our coaches parts from well-known American manufacturers. Finding the part you need can be as simple as walking into your neighborhood Napa Auto, Grainger, Fluid Tech, McFadden, McMaster, Online Metal, or even Home Depot stores. With an HT-Series coach, getting the part you need will never be a problem.
So, Which One is Right for You?
Ultimately, there’s no right or wrong answer to this question. Individual business needs and budget constraints will be the determining factor. What is certain is that there’s an HT-Series coach that’s perfect for you. If you’re considering a new vehicle for your fleet, give us a call (1(800) 216-6788) , or reach out to us by email. We’re here to answer any questions you may have. Let’s chat.