All posts by peakkianorth

Tips for Shopping for Used Cars

Shopping for a used car can be stressful. It is much easier when you do some research and know exactly what you want before going to a dealer or searching online. Here are some tips to help you shop for a used car.

Step 1: Determine Your Budget… and don’t budge from it

Buying a car is a large financial commitment whether you pay cash or finance the car. If you are looking to pay cash, set the maximum budget that you are willing to pay and stick with it. If you are financing a car, this will look a little different. First, you should determine the downpayment you are willing to make, then from that, calculate what monthly payment you can afford. There are loan calculators out there that can help you with the math. Once that is figured out stick with it! You might also want to do some research on different financing options.

Step 2: Build a List of Target Cars

Everybody has their dream car, but if you take a minute to think about it, your dream car might not be practical. Match your target list of cars to your needs. Do you need a car that fits a family? Do you need something with a lot of cargo space? Do you need a truck that can pull a trailer? Do you want all-wheel drive for those snowy winter months? Or is safety your priority? Once you answer all those questions you can narrow the search down to a few makes and models.

Step 3: Check the Reliability of these Cars

Once you have narrowed your search, you should check the reliability of the cars to narrow it further. This would include looking at the total cost of ownership of the car. Is the car expensive to maintain? Do others have major problems with their cars? Are there constantly parts being recalled? These are important when considering this sort of investment. Last, check if the car holds its value over time.

Step 4: Locate Cars in Your Area

In today’s world, there are so many ways you can do this. You can drive by dealerships, check online, and even search personal selling networks like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace. If you are looking for a car that is Certified Pre Owned (CPO) then looking at dealer websites is going to be your best bet.

Step 5: Check the Vehicle History

Vehicle history reports are relatively easy to get these days. You can access them online, although you often have to pay for a detailed report. As long as you know the VIN of the car, you can at least get a quick overview of the history. You want to watch out for Salvage Titles which likely indicate that the vehicle was totaled by an insurance company or the odometer was rolled back, not representing how many miles are actually on the car. You can also see how many previous owners there were and where the car originated from.

Step 6: Call the Seller

Whether you’re looking at a car from a private seller or a dealership, it is always wise to give the seller a call. This gives you the opportunity to establish a relationship with the seller and ask questions that you likely can’t find answers to online. You can ask private sellers why they are parting with the car. You can ask dealers if the car is still in stock. If you like what you hear on the phone, you can schedule an appointment to see the car. Be sure to schedule your appointment during daylight hours so you can get a good look at the car.

Step 7: Time for a Test Drive

When you get to the test drive, before you get in the car and drive off, give the car a good once over. You obviously want to look for cosmetic damage, but check that all the doors open and that the trunk and hood open properly. Once you have done that, it is time to get in the driver’s seat.

Pick a route that has everything, from highway speeds, hills, curves, and rough pavement if you can. Be sure to drive with the radio off. You’ll want to be able to hear for any weird sounds coming from the car, and you can always test the radio when you get back. Pay attention to the ergonomics of the vehicle. Can you reach and see everything you need to? It is important to check for blind spots too. Does the car have enough power and does the steering feel comfortable? Is the braking responsive? And last, does the car have any mechanical issues? You don’t have to be a mechanic to tell if there is a serious issue with the car.

When you get back from the test drive, this is your opportunity to check things like the radio, legroom in the back seat, cargo space, and other important things like Bluetooth connection.

Step 8: Negotiate the Best Price

You have done your research, you know what you can afford, and you now have a better feel for what the car is worth. A good starting point to negotiation is to point out areas the vehicle might need some improvement. A good example of this would be if the tires will need to be replaced soon. Then mention the book value of the car and ask for a price below that that would allow you to get new tires. Be sure to be reasonable and in the ballpark. The worst they can say is “no” to which you might respond by meeting in the middle.

Negotiating can make people nervous, so here are some additional tips for a successful negotiation:

  • Don’t negotiate by monthly payment if you have a pre-approved loan. As far as they know, its a cash payment to them, and you’re paying the lender back, not the seller.
  • Don’t get trapped in an office. The best thing you can do is walk around the lot and talk. This levels the playing field a bit because the salesperson is used to being behind a desk with all the authority. Now you are both out of your element and hopefully, this helps you get the price you want.
  • Remember to ask about fees before settling on a number. Usually, the final number includes fees, but make sure you and the salesperson are on the same page.
  • Always be ready to walk. Sometimes it just doesn’t work out and it is perfectly okay to say “thanks, but no thanks.”

Step 9: Buy

You’re almost done. Here is when you sign the papers and buy your used car. A dealership will offer extended warranties on CPO vehicles, and if it is important to you, you might want to consider it. Be sure to read the contract thoroughly before signing. If you are buying from a private seller, make sure the seller has the proper paperwork to transfer ownership over to you. It is always wise to ask for the seller to sign the title over to you before there is an exchange of money. Last, you will want to make sure that you have insurance before you drive away.

Step 10: Enjoy!

You did it! You purchased a used car. Now the only thing you have left to do is enjoy it. You did all the research, you hopefully got the car you wanted, and you got the deal you deserve. Be happy and enjoy your car!

If you are looking to buy a used car, Peak Kia has a wide selection of pre-owned vehicles for you to consider. Take a look at our inventory today.

Prepare Your Car for Colorado Winter

Winter is on its way. Colorado has already seen the first snow of the season, but before the weather gets worse and sticks to the roads, you should be sure your car is ready for a Colorado Winter. Here are 5 things you can do to prepare your car for winter.

Pull Together an Emergency Kit

Colorado weather is always unpredictable. You need to prepare for the worst before a bad storm comes along. We suggest putting together an emergency kit to have in the trunk of your car. Must haves include a blanket or two, a flashlight, an extra pair of gloves and a hat, an extra ice scraper and brush, a small shovel, and high protein snacks like jerky and nuts. Some other things you should consider putting in your emergency kit are a first aid kit, a change of warm clothes for the driver, and a bag of kitty litter or sand in the event that your tires get stuck in snow or slush. It is easy to put these things is a bin and store it in your trunk for the season.

Check Your Tires

It is especially important in Colorado that your tires are in the right condition to drive through snow and slush. First, you are going to want to check your tire pressure. If you are unsure what the PSI should be, refer to your vehicle’s manual. Having the right tire pressure will help your tires perform better in snow and slush. You should test your tire pressure monthly during the winter.

Another tire related thing you are going to want to check is your tread depth. If your tires are low on tread depth, they aren’t going to be able to grip the road properly and you will find yourself slipping and sliding around in the snow and ice. Most people do the Lincoln Test. This is where you take a penny and sick it in your tread with Lincoln’s head pointing inward toward the tire. If you can see his whole head, you are in need of new tires. Having proper tires in the winter is vital to the safety of you and those around you.

Depending on where you live in Colorado, you might want to consider snow tires for the winter. Snow tires are made differently than regular and all season tires. They are optimized to grip the road more and have different tread patterns to move snow and slush away from your tires, instead of compacting the snow down. They are also made with thousands of tiny slits in the tread that help provide better traction on ice.

Check Fluids and Top them Off

While this should be done with regular maintenance of your car, many people forget about this for winter preparation. First, you will want to check your antifreeze/coolant levels. Antifreeze keeps your engine from freezing up in the bitter cold winter months. Check your vehicle’s manual for specific levels. Next, you will want to check your windshield wiper fluid. In Colorado, we can experience days where the high temperature is below freezing, so make sure your windshield wiper fluid can withstand below freezing temperatures. It is also a good idea to top off your washer fluid as you never know when you might need to use it.

Have Your Battery Tested

As mentioned above, Colorado can experience some bitter, cold temperatures. This kind of cold can decrease the capacity in your vehicle’s battery. Get your battery tested to see if it can withstand the cold. If not, get it replaced as soon as you can. It is also smart to keep jumper cables in your car in the event that your car battery dies in the middle of winter.

Install New Windshield Wipers

There is nothing more dangerous than not being able to see out of your windshield in the middle of a snowstorm. Check the performance of your wipers. Inspect them for cracks and if they leave streaks or not. If they aren’t in good condition, consider switching them out for more heavy-duty wipers that are better in snow and ice. Either way, we want to remind you how dangerous it is drive with a windshield you can’t see out of. You should also check that your defrosters are also working properly.

Most of these things are easy to check at home, but if you’d like some help with checking tires, stop by Peak Kia North today!

All-New 2019 K900 Marks New Pinnacle of Luxury and Design for Kia

The redesigned Kia K900 establishes a new standard for luxury, driving dynamics, and technology for Kia. The all-new model features a dignified and sophisticated exterior design, a beautifully crafted cabin, and performance characteristics that befit a world-class sedan. The K900 brings with it an array of new systems and safety features, making it the most technologically advanced Kia.

“The all-new 2019 K900 is much more than a generational redesign, it takes on a whole new look, feel, and character over its predecessor. Only its name – K900 – is carried over,” said Orth Hedrick, executive director, Car Product, and Telematics KMA.

The all-new K900 was conceived and created in Kia’s design studio in Korea with collaboration from the Irvine-based California studio. The K900 is due to go on sale in the U.S. during the fourth quarter of 2018. Pricing to be announced closer to the release date.

Follow Peak Kia North on Facebook for updates, release information and specials from your Northern Colorado Kia Dealer!

Kia Stinger – Dynamic Instincts

From its GT concept car origins to the years of refining and tuning on the Nurburgring Circuit, no detail was too small to obsess over, and the result is simply stunning.

Kia Motors stole the spotlight with the debut of the 2018 Kia Stinger at the North American International Auto show on January 9, 2017. The event is typically dominated by introductions from American automakers.

The Kia Stinger was instantly recognizable as an evolution of the concept car that preceded it. The all-new Kia Stinger design was overseen by Peter Schreyer, Chief Design Officer at Kia Motors, and his talented team of designers in Frankfurt, Germany. Ride and handling development was looked after by Alber Biermann, head of Kia’s Vehicle Test and High Performace Development, and his group of engineers.

What is a true Gran Turismo? This question was the foundation for a years-long journey that began from the original GT concept. It ignited a passion that sparked a fire within Kia. “Kia is always surprising, and it is a car that you would not expect from Kia, but at the same time it is a car that only Kia can do,” said Schreyer.

“Stinger is an explosion, not just the way it looks, but also the way it drives. It’s a whole different animal,” Biermann said.

The combination of a refined gentleman, the spirit of youth, and the elevation of design ultimately sparked an evolution in Kia. The Stinger, with its classic GT feel and dynamic design, captures the utmost dignity. This is an instinct of dynamic and this is the dynamic Stinger.

Contact Peak Kia North in Windsor, Colorado today and let’s get you into one of Kia’s most evolved sedans – The Kia Stinger.