Car: is it better to rent or buy?

After a year in constant decline, marked by inflation and the chip crisis, the automotive sector is preparing for the last quarter of 2023 by recording growth in new car registrations also in September. The data comes from the National Union of Foreign Motor Vehicle Representatives ( UNRAE ), which also notes an interesting growth for what concerns long-term rental among private individuals, which records a +6.2% compared to the same month of 2022. increase in demand is now constant and is linked to the numerous advantages that can be enjoyed with this formula.

Do you really save money with long-term car rental?

The growth of long-term rental contracts among private individuals is linked first and foremost to the competitiveness that distinguishes the formula. However, it may not be easy to establish the actual savings that can be enjoyed compared to the financed purchase.

To better understand how long-term rental allows you to save, you can look at the data collected from the analysis of , one of the reference comparison portals in Italy.

In particular, the study focused on the Audi Q8 50 TDI 286hp quattro , a large luxury SUV almost 5 meters long and equipped with 5 comfortable seats, a large 605-litre boot and standard all-wheel drive.

According to the simulation, in 47 months the purchase of the vehicle involves an expense of 86,287 euros , taking into account the monthly fee and the costs to be incurred for the RCA policy, vehicle damage insurance, inspection, servicing and extraordinary maintenance .

As regards the rental of the Audi Q8 50 TDI 286cv quattro, in 48 months the total expense is around 74,400 euros , since the formula allows all additional costs to be included in the rent, excluding road tax. The saving compared to the purchase with financing is therefore 11,887 euros .

What you need to know before renting a car long term


Long-term rental is a mobility formula that allows you to drive a vehicle without worrying about the management of the vehicle, as maintenance and other obligations are the responsibility of the rental company .

In this way you just need to choose the car best suited to your needs, personalize it by selecting the engine and equipment you are interested in and define the various aspects of the contract. In detail, it is possible to decide whether to pay an initial advance to reduce the amount of the monthly fee, or to rent without a advance if you prefer this method.

The fee includes a series of services such as ordinary and extraordinary maintenance, RCA insurance required by law, driver accident insurance and roadside assistance.

These services can be customized based on the accessory packages offered by the renter, for example by including additional insurance coverage or the change of seasonal tires in the contract. Before placing the order, you must also establish the duration of the rental , which can generally range from 24 to 60 months, and the mileage to be included in the contract.

The only service that remains excluded is the car tax to be paid personally , as required by the regulatory update which established the driver's responsibility for paying the car tax.

Obviously, you can request specific accessories, including a child seat or luggage rack. At the end of the rental period it is possible to choose whether to return the vehicle, renew the contract or rent another vehicle , without having to pay any final maxi-instalment, as the car remains the property of the rental company.

What type of vehicles can be rented long-term?

Long-term rental allows you to choose any type of vehicle by turning to multi-brand operators, otherwise there are also rental companies managed directly by automotive companies that only offer brand models.

This mobility solution allows you to rent cars of different brands, prices, models and features , including commercial vehicles for companies and self-employed workers with a VAT number who use the vehicle for work.

In general, with long-term car rental you can choose between city cars, sedans, minivans, SUVs, crossovers, station wagons and other types of vehicles. Furthermore, it is possible to opt for an endothermic car powered by petrol, diesel, LPG or methane , or prefer a hybrid car to reduce consumption and emissions, but also a completely electric vehicle powered only by battery.

Indeed, long-term rental is a particularly appreciated and convenient formula for sustainable mobility, as it allows you to drive an electric or hybrid car without incurring the high purchase costs and taking advantage of dedicated charging services.

Documents and delivery times for long-term rental cars

To rent a car long term you need to have some mandatory documents . For companies and professionals it is necessary to provide a copy of the Unico form, the latest financial statement, the Chamber of Commerce certificate, a copy of the legal representative's identity document and the car order form.

Private individuals, on the other hand, can rent a vehicle on a long-term basis using their identity card, driving license, latest pay slips and the Single Certification. In both cases you must also complete the rental contract, the privacy policy and the SEPA form for charging the fee.

As regards the delivery times of the car once the order has been placed, the wait can vary greatly and depends on the type of vehicle chosen and the brand. In fact, car rental companies purchase cars directly from the manufacturers, so delivery times depend exclusively on the manufacturers .

Naturally it is possible to know an estimate of waiting times, or choose a pre-assigned vehicle until the delivery of the ordered car or prefer a car ready for delivery .

The article Cars: is it better to rent or buy? was written on: Tech CuE | Close-up Engineering .