Less than a decade ago, SUVs and crossovers were expensive vehicles that most people were unable to afford. Prices have come down by a significant margin in recent years as consumers have shifted their tastes toward larger vehicles.

With more units being produced on assembly lines every year, manufacturers are dropping their prices to provide savings for their customers. For instance, GM was recently able to cut its prices across the board by $2,300 for most of its SUVs.

When combined with strategies for getting a great deal, seniors can reap the benefits of a cheaper SUV and crossover market to get the car of their dreams.

Why SUVs and Crossovers Are Beneficial for Seniors

The reality is that seniors are the ideal buyers for SUVs and crossovers. Seniors need extra safety features to protect themselves from the possibility of an accident and they often have a large family that may need to travel long distances on family trips. SUVs and crossovers that come with a third row of seats are perfect for long car trips that require either additional luggage or a few extra passengers.

Also, larger vehicles are fun to drive so they can give seniors something to do with the extra time that they have during retirement.

Apart from these key points, there are a few other SUV and crossover features that benefit seniors.

Greater Protection in Accidents

One of the main selling features of larger vehicles is that they can protect you in the event of an accident.

When two moving objects collide, the object with the lowest mass experiences the greatest amount of acceleration. Likewise, if you get into a crash at an intersection, you will experience significant whiplash when you are in a smaller car since most of the impact’s force will be transferred to your vehicle.

Studies have proven that SUV drivers have less than half the fatality rate of drivers who operate compact vehicles. Since seniors are especially vulnerable to experiencing injuries in the aftermath of a crash, driving an SUV and crossover can be a great way to stay protected while on the road.

Easier to Drive

Another major benefit of SUVs and crossovers is that they are generally easier to drive. Many of the newer models that are available come with electronic safety features that help to guide your vehicle through difficult turns or even stop automatically to avoid a crash.

Some SUVs come with off-road features that can be useful in adverse weather conditions or on bumpy roads. For instance, if your driveway is built on a hill, an SUV can often easily climb the hill in the middle of a snowstorm. Although crossovers do not generally have the extensive off-road capabilities that large SUVs come with, they are usually based on similar technologies that can at least offer better performance than with ordinary cars.

Higher Seating

Of course, being elevated at a higher seating position can give you an advantage on the road. If you are driving a car, seeing beyond the vehicle in front of you while on a highway can be challenging or impossible depending on the shape of the road and prevailing traffic conditions. With an SUV, on the other hand, you can easily see the cars around you and even look ahead to watch for stopped traffic. Crossovers provide similar advantages because they give you a slightly higher seating position that can make a huge difference during an emergency.

How Seniors Can Find SUV and Crossover Deals

Although SUV and crossover prices have come down significantly, it is still important to look for a great deal. If you compare prices and consider alternatives, you can save thousands of dollars.

The key to getting the best price is to do your research in advance so you can recognize a deal when you see it. Additionally, knowing your prices can give you the bargaining power to demand a discount when you know that a vehicle is worth less than a dealer is offering.

Look for Deals on Interest Rates

According to the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, average interest rates on car loans increased from 4.17 percent in 2016 to 5.5 percent in 2019. Higher interest rates have made zero-interest financing difficult to find, but you may find dealers that are still offering it if you shop around.

Financing a new SUV or crossover at no interest can enable seniors to keep more money in their retirement account to continue earning returns on investments.

Explore Off-Lease Vehicles

With how inexpensive interest rates were in recent years, many car dealers are flooded with a massive inventory of used cars from expired leases. Furthermore, some buyers who only want to drive new cars take out leases that expire in less than a year. Many dealers are, therefore, offering “nearly new” vehicles that have low miles but drive like new cars.

Remember to Negotiate

Modern technology has not eliminated the importance of negotiation. Dealers still source their cars from manufacturers in the same way that they did half a century ago.

If you are a senior, take full advantage of the lessons that you have learned over the years to negotiate with dealers to get the best price.

Use Online Information

There is a broad range of information sources that you can use online to find almost any answer that you need with a simple search. Today’s buyers are increasingly walking into dealers knowing the exact car model that they want to buy and the price that they are willing to pay.

If you take full advantage of the information that is now available, you can find great deals while also identifying the SUV or crossover that will offer the most value in your situation.

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This article was worked on by a variety of people from the Autoversed team, including freelancers, editors, and/or other full-time employees.