5 Frightfully Bad Leases To Avoid

By

Senior Pricing Analyst

Alex Bernstein is the Senior Pricing Analyst for CarsDirect.com. Each month he studies immense volumes of pricing and incentives data in search of trends that are useful to car shoppers. In the process, he often breaks industry news stories -- his analyses and insights have been featured on websites such as Automotive News, The Detroit News, Autoblog, The Truth About Cars and The Car Connection.

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, Senior Pricing Analyst - October 10, 2017

When it comes to buying a car, nothing is quite as scary as getting a terrible deal or finding out that you could have gotten a much nicer car for less. With Halloween around the corner, we looked at over 600 leases to find some truly gruesome deals.

Imagine finding out you could have leased a $39,000 car for less than one with a $20,000 sticker price. Or shelling out $8,559 in upfront costs that'll vanish in the tragic event of a total loss. These and more horrors await..

5
Insidious Little Bug: Volkswagen Beetle

What's Scary: The Beetle looks cute but there's nothing cute about this month's advertised lease. The 1.8T S Coupe (MSRP $20,815) starts at $329 for 36 months with $1,999 due at signing. That may sound reasonable, but consider both the payment and amount at signing.

With an effective cost of $385, it's $21/month more expensive than a $26,000 Volkswagen GTI 2.0T S ($364) despite a $5,600 difference in MSRP. If you're looking to get more for your money, the GTI is going to be a superior choice.

Frightening Thought: The Beetle will actually cost you $28/more than this month's national offer on the 2018 Subaru WRX ($357). If you can believe it, even the 2017 Lexus IS 200t (MSRP $39,425) is $3/month cheaper to lease ($382) despite an $18,000 higher sticker price.

4
Abominable SUV: GMC Acadia Limited

What's Scary: The Acadia Limited is rather hideous when it comes to leasing. At $349 for 36 months, it certainly seems reasonable given its MSRP of $44,775. However, a closer look reveals something quite sinister..

The deal assumes $8,559 at signing, the single-largest amount out of over 600 offers that we analyzed. That's money you're essentially pre-paying toward your lease, which means you're likely kissing it goodbye in the event of a total loss. The vehicle's effective cost comes in at $587.

Frightening Thought: At that price, you're spending $21/month more than the nearly $48,000 2017 Volvo XC90 T5 Momentum ($566). For $34/month less, you could even lease a 2017 Jeep Grand Cherokee Overland ($553), a nearly $49,000 vehicle.

3
Treacherous Two-Door: Mazda Miata RF

What's Scary: The Miata RF is one of the most seductive cars for the money, offering one of the purest driving experiences in its class. However, the car could be your worst nightmare if you decide to lease.

This month, the RF Club is listed at $479 for 36 months with $1,999 at signing. That equates to an effective monthly cost of $535, an awful value given its MSRP of $32,390.

Frightening Thought: For that kind of money, the Lexus RC 350 is $15/month cheaper to lease ($520) despite being $20,780 more expensive. For $6/month less, you could even lease a $45,000 Infiniti Q60 3.0t Premium Coupe ($529).

2
Wallet-Draining Hybrid: Toyota Prius c

What's Scary: The Prius c has never really been a star when it comes to leases. This month, the 2018 Prius c One is listed at $299 for 36 months with $1,999 at signing here in Los Angeles. At an effective cost of $355, you're going to dread finding out what you could have gotten for less.

If you can believe it, that's $30/month more than the regular Toyota Prius ($325), which is over $4,000 more expensive and boasts more comfort and technology. Since the 2018 Prius c only recently starting arriving, now is probably the worst time to lease.

Frightening Thought: For the money, you could actually lease a 2017 Chevy Volt LT for $6/month less despite a $12,346 difference in MSRP. That's based on a national lease of $299 for 39 months with $1,969 at signing. Residents of states like California, Oregon and parts of the Northeast will be eligible for even greater factory discounts.

1
A Grim Ending: Infiniti QX70

What's Scary: The QX70 is the single worst value for the money out of over 600 leases we examined. Now that the model has reportedly been discontinued, inventory is nearly gone. As a result, Infiniti has nixed discounts, resulting in a massive hike in lease price.

The QX70 Premium is now listed at $809 for 39 months with $4,599 due at signing. With an effective cost of $927, this is one of the most awful leases we've ever seen, and rather insane given the vehicle's MSRP of $51,145.

Frightening Thought: For the money, you could actually lease the larger and more expensive QX80 at an effective cost of $808, an advantage of $119 (per month!). That's truly staggering given the $19,000 difference in sticker price.

You could even lease a loaded 2017 Volvo XC90 T8 Inscription priced at $71,000 and still save $74/month based on an effective cost of $853. We're not exactly sure why Infiniti is even advertising such a terrible lease.

, Senior Pricing Analyst

Alex Bernstein is the Senior Pricing Analyst for CarsDirect.com. Each month he studies immense volumes of pricing and incentives data in search of trends that are useful to car shoppers. In the process, he often breaks industry news stories -- his analyses and insights have been featured on websites such as Automotive News, The Detroit News, Autoblog, The Truth About Cars and The Car Connection.

Follow On: Google+ | Website