I purchased a 2016 Acura TLX in 2017 for ~$28,000 (2k down, 26 financed at 4.45%). I now owe ~$4,600 on the car. The car has a few damages to it (dented hood tip, cracked windshield, cracked taillight, dented fender) but has no functional problems and I was offered $16,500 for it.

I know that recently used car prices have spiked and so now may be a good time to sell if I would like to. I have always been frustrated that I purchased such an expensive car (instead of getting a regular Toyota or Ford) and so am I wondering if I should be selling.

Is there an equation that can tell me when/if it is financially advisable to sell? Taking into account value given above normal depreciation, cost of getting another car (now or in the future after prices have come down), etc...? Not sure what I should be taking into account when making this decision.

  • 4
    What does KBB say the car is worth? What would would buy to replace it (specifically, how much would it cost)?
    – RonJohn
    Aug 4, 2021 at 19:44
  • 1
    How long would you plan to keep the Acura if you don't sell now?
    – chepner
    Aug 4, 2021 at 20:17
  • 2
    Regarding windshield, check to see if it's covered under insurance, many policies cover windshield with no deductible.
    – Hart CO
    Aug 4, 2021 at 22:32

1 Answer 1


It's really impossible to answer without knowing what you intend to do. You could sell the car, paying off the balance of the loan, and have $11,900. If you don't need another car, you have that money. You could buy a new(er) car for more than that, leaving you with car payments, or you could buy a cheaper used one, leaving you with some cash in hand.

Another factor is that you are almost certainly paying for expensive collision & comprehensive insurance on the current car, and would be paying for it on a financed newer one. But if you buy a cheap used car, you only need to carry liability insurance. This will be a savings: just how much depends on things like your age, driving record, and where you live.

You may also have to pay sales tax and registration fees based on the value of the vehicle, though this depends on your state. So a cheaper used car may save you a bit there.

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