Let someone else take the initial hit and then snag yourself an amazing car.
Any time you buy a new car you can expect it to depreciate as soon as you drive it off the lot. Some cars hold value quite well while others quickly become worthless (relatively). Very expensive models have a lot more value to lose, but this isn't necessarily a bad thing. Many luxury cars depreciate massively in the first year of ownership, and you can take advantage of this. The car that we're proposing is a 2015 Mercedes S65 AMG. A new 2016 S65 would run you $224,650. But don't buy new before seeing how cheap a used model is.
We found a 2015 S65 at Mercedes-Benz of North Olmsted in Ohio. (Note: It appears the ad has been removed or the car has been sold.) It's just one model year old and only has 10,754 miles on it. Even though it's practically new the price tag is just $159,994. That means if you're willing to wait just one year to buy an S65 you can save around $65,000. There really isn't too much downside to buying this car used either. Because of how new it is, this S65 is being offered as a certified pre-owned vehicle. It comes with a five-year, unlimited mileage warranty that will be good until 2020. You will also get an additional 12-month limited warranty on top of the factory warranty. This way you won't have to worry about expensive Mercedes repairs.
You may think that we simply picked one of the least desirably optioned cars, but this S65 seems to be pretty loaded. It comes with optional features like Executive Rear Seats with power adjustment and folding tables as well as a refrigerator mounted in the rear center console. Speccing a new S65 this way would cost around $232,000. Unfortunately you won't be able to choose your color combination, but we'll take our savings, buy a new M3, and forget about it. Now you may be worried about buying a car like this because it will depreciate further. The sixth-generation S-Class just came out in 2014, but based on the older models it is clear that depreciation will be an issue.
We ran a search on Cars.com for used S65s and found several examples of the previous-generation for between $30,000 to $40,000. These cars are less than a decade old and started off at around the same price as a 2016 model when they were new. Clearly, if you buy the certified 2015 model that we recommended you won't be completely done absorbing the depreciation. So when is the best time to buy one of these cars? Well, the answer depends on a few factors. With cars that are this expensive, it's good to know that you won't be on the hook for expensive component failures. This means that buying it under warranty is key.
You have probably heard the phrase, "There is nothing more expensive than a cheap Mercedes." So even though that 2008 S65 for $43,000 may seem like the smarter purchase, you have to factor in how much it will cost to maintain. In some cases the amount saved over the other car is so enormous that it won't matter, like in our S-Class example. You can buy a 2008 S65 for over $100,000 less than the 2015 model that we showed you. If you have the money for the 2015 but want to spend it elsewhere then by all means go for the 2008. The problems begin when someone who can just afford a $40,000 car decides to buy a car like the 2008 S-Class.
The S65 does not have the same maintenance costs that would be associated with a new $40,000 car. Even though that's how much it's worth now, you will still be paying the same amount of money to service the car as someone who paid over $200,000 on a new model, except yours will be older and out of warranty. Buying a used AMG S-Class can actually be a huge bargain. You just have to understand the risks that are associated so that you don't end up buying a car that you really can't afford.