Trade In Car Calculator: Understand the Formula

March 18, 2013

A trade in car calculator is an invaluable tool to use when looking for a new car. Buying a new car is always an exciting time, but can lead to some confusion when a lot of different numbers are thrown around. There are warranties to think about, insurance, sales taxes, discounts, trade in values, fees, and the original cost of the car. Once the salesperson finishes talking with you, you think you've been through an MBA class. When it comes to trade in value you can find this out very easily through online calculators. Here is how a trade in car calculator works.

>>Calculate Your Car's Trade-In Value

Year of Car

One of the first parts of the equation is the year of the car you are going to be trading in. A new vehicle is going to be worth more than a car that is at the end of its warranty, or has more than five years of driving on it.

Make of Car

Another part of the equation is usually the specific make and model of the vehicle. Some specific vehicles are not going to depreciate as much as others. SUV's and luxury sedans are some of the cars that will carry a higher trade in value than pickup trucks and mini vans.

Extras and Options

Another part of the trade in formula are the extras and added options that were added at the factory. This does not have anything to do with aftermarket products. Luxury items, power items, and other factory installed options will boost the trade in value.


The mileage that has been put on your vehicle over the years you have owned it will also have a major impact in the actual number value of your trade in. Most trade in car calculators will ask for this information before giving out their estimate.

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