The average new car loses 11% of its value the moment you drive it off the lot. In fact, during the first five years of its life, the average car will depreciate 10% - 25% per year. Buying a slightly used car allows you to get a reliable car in good condition at a fraction of the cost. Instead of buying a new car off the lot for $30,000 try looking at a 3 year old car instead. Chances are, you can probably get the same car, albeit 3 years older, for around $17,000. Some dealerships are even willing to extend factory warranties for certified pre-owned vehicles. This affords you the protection of a new car warranty without the new car price tag.