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Car Chase

How do you shop for a new car?

By Steven S. Brooks Published: August 7, 2011

I was picking up a part from a dealer the other day and, hanging on the wall, was an ad from a June, 1955 edition of the Beacon Journal for the predecessor Ford dealer. Though I'm not quite that old, it brought back great memories of how I used to excitedly look through the newspaper's auto section for all the great ads from the new car dealers and what seemed to be an endless number of classifieds from private sellers. Not only was it the source for finding my first transportation vehicles and my first new car (a '75 Pinto from Mickey Ruttan Ford in Wadsworth), the antique and classic car ads were an absolute gold mine of automotive treasures.

 I still occasionally leaf through the paper's auto ads but they're just a shadow of what they used to be. I'll even go a couple weeks before opening my monthly edition of Hemmings Motor News, which is the primary print venue for the collector car hobby. The world has changed with broadcast media and the internet taking a much stronger presence in all aspects of our lives. Imagine trying to explain eBay Motors, craigslist or cars.com to someone just twenty years ago. My recent college graduate daughter, who is also a bit of a gearhead, is shopping for a new car and it seems the web is her primary source.

 When it's time for you to buy a new (or used, or collector) car, what resources do you use to research models, pricing and actual vehicles for sale?

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