Fall is generally known as the best season to buy a used car. It’s an easy time to snag a deal, as dealerships swap out the previous year’s inventory for the new models. But how do people fare the rest of the year, when cunning and patience are required to really rake in the savings?
Vroom’s data scientists combed through mounds of data to sleuth out which state’s residents consistently scored the best deals while shopping for used cars. Buyers from the states listed below tend to be the savviest car shoppers — they save the most money on the cars they buy, compared with estimated values based on real-time used vehicle valuations by vAuto. Buyers from these states save an average of hundreds or even thousands of dollars, thanks to their shopping savvy.
Oklahomans have to contend with a full menu of weather — like whipping winds, golf ball-sized hail, and not infrequent tornadoes — so they require cars that can withstand a beating from the elements. Sooner State residents are rightfully choosy when picking out their vehicles. Compared with the rest of the nation’s spending habits, large pickup trucks like the Titan, Silverado, Ram, and F-Series sell here at a rate more than twice as high as the national average.
People in Louisiana are savvy car shoppers because they do it so frequently. The state has 91 vehicles for every 100 residents, making it the 12th highest state in the country in terms of vehicles per capita.
Michigan is the epicenter of American car manufacturing, so it comes as no surprise that residents of the Wolverine State know how to purchase a car smartly. There are 13 assembly plants in Michigan, responsible for 20% of all U.S. production — far more than any other state. About 2.3 million cars per year roll out of auto manufacturing plants in the Great Lakes State in 2014.
4. New Mexico
Elevation in the Land of Enchantment ranges from just 2,800 feet above sea level at its lowest point in the Rio Grande Valley to more than 13,000 feet at the top of Wheeler Peak. In a state with such varied terrain — and one that experiences all four seasons, despite its southern location — residents need cars that are dependable, trustworthy, and fairly priced.
There a lot of retirees in Arizona, particularly in places like Sun City, where a full 66% of the population is aged 65 or older. With age comes wisdom and Arizonans can teach us all a thing or two about scoring a good deal on their automobiles.
A California road trip is not just scenic — it’s often a necessity when you’re trying to get around the third largest state in the union. It houses 840 miles of coastline and 51,326 miles of California State Highway. It makes sense that its residents are savvy when it comes to car shopping, since California has 21 million licensed drivers, nearly double the amount of any other state.
Colorado has the fewest vehicles per capita of any state in the nation — there are only 34 vehicles for every 100 people and they’re making their car picks wisely. Maybe Coloradans really are using skis as transportation? In reality, they’re likely cruising around the mountains in a truck from the Ford F-Series family; it’s the most popular vehicle in the Mile High State.
8. New York
For the 8.5 million people who reside in NYC, a car is an unnecessary burden. Maybe that’s why there are only 57 cars for every 100 people in New York, making it the state with the third fewest vehicles per capita — and they make those car purchases count. The most popular car among New Yorkers is the affordable Honda Accord.
Missouri has nearly 4 million licensed drivers, which is impressive, considering it has only 6 million residents total. And they’re packing each car with passengers, considering the Dodge Caravan sells at 208 percent of the national average in the Show Me State.
There are 1,759 miles of interstate criss-crossing Pennsylvania, which means it has the fourth most interstate mileage of any state. Driving on those roads are more than 8.3 million licensed PA drivers, the fifth most in the nation, so it’s no wonder that residents here can spot a deal from miles away.
This year, help your state climb the rankings by finding your next car on Vroom and potentially saving thousands over the market average.