Well we were driving a 96 Blazer. It sucked up gas, had no warranty and was needing repairs that were a few hundred bucks every few months, no a/c, insurance was high, still had 3 years left to pay, bought used with an "ok" rate but not stellar since used cars don't qualify for prime rates.
We wanted a new car. I felt unsafe in the blazer and the gas it took sucked. So we decided to look around to see what was out there.
Went to Saturn dealership. I got a 2003 ION which I bought in 03 for $10 less per month then the blazer. Car is under warranty which we extended. 0% financing. Insurance went down $15/month. Better gas mileage..way better. Safer car. So we traded in the Blazer and are still better off with a brand new car. They took off some insane amount in rebates. I think we qualified for around $8k in rebates so even though we were upside down in the Blazers loan we made out well.
Ideally we wouldn't have ever had the blazer but Eric had an 86 Camry prior to that and I had a 98 Saturn SC2 so he thought we needed an suv for cargo. This was all preSophie and when I had a horse. I always managed Lucy's(horse) stuff just fine in the SC2 though. When Sophie was born I got rid of the SC2 to stay home as my payments on that car were crazy high and I would've been just working to afford the car.
Oh and we plan on keeping this car for Sophie's first car. Its being properly maintained and due to it having plastic sides won't rust out.
I wouldn't buy a new car with plans to turn it in 2 years later for the newest model. I also would never lease a car.