Should I buy my 2014 MB GLK when it comes off lease?

Hi Guys;
My lease for a Mercedes GLK (6cyl 4 Matic) terminates in 8 months. Residual price on the lease contract is $24,998, with a $595 fee. We love the car, it has been a reliable and it only has 16K miles. It would make a great second car for my family and be driven primarily by my 22 year old son when he returns from university. “Book” value on the GLK according to NADA is around 26,800 - car is base, with only 4matic and heated seats as options - no leather, no sunroof, etc… I think the car is in excellent condition, clean inside and out. Is buying a good alternative? If yes what is a realistic target price? Or is it best to just turn it in?
Thank you,

Wow you actually have equity in your Mercedes lease, if you like it go for it I see nothing wrong, however I may be open to correction

Edit: find out what your payoff is right now. That will give you a more clear picture.

What were your original lease terms regarding months, mileage per year and monthly payment? Has warranty expired? You have likely paid a lot of money for a car you hardly drove. Sounds like it is mint and has some minor equity so might be worth it to purchase it. Take it to Car Max and see what they would give you for it.

Talk to one or two Mercedes dealers and see if they will:

  1. Buy out your lease over the payoff amount (i.e. you monetize your equity), OR
  2. Buy it out and sell it back to you for less than your payoff amount (i.e. save you some money).

*Carmax or literally any dealer can do #1 for you. But no non-MB dealer has a relationship with MBFS where they might be able to buy it for less than the payoff, so non-MB dealers cannot help with #2. Might as well explore both scenarios by going to a couple MB dealers first.

Thanks Wilwar…I was going to wait for them to call me, I have found from past experiences that you always pay for getting out of a lease early.

Grandmaster, A visit to Carmax is not a bad idea. I might be able to make a little $$$. My original lease terms were 36Mos, 10K miles /year, prepaid maintenance, it is still under warranty. $399/mo plus taxes. Remember, except for 4 wheel drive and heated seats it is still a base car.

Max G. Thanks for the reply. I am a little lost about your options…I can’t see what is in it for the dealer to do either of these.

I thought I would just wait until the lease was close to expiring (August) and see about buying the car, for less a bit less than payoff. Simple, right? I am in no rush. I have a good lease and a good car. Two things with that plan: SUVs are in demand (MBFS will prefer to get the car back) and I am not considering getting another Mercedes as a replacement, which makes me feel as if I have no real leverage walking into an MB dealer.

I hadn’t thought about even asking a dealer now to buy the lease out and sell the car to me. I don’t see what would be in it for them to do that. If I decide not to keep the car, I understand taking the car to CarMax at the end of the lease and selling it to them for more than the buyout, pocketing the money and leasing whatever I wish…

Profit. If the MB dealer can buy it from MBFS for X, mark it up and tack on a doc fee (P) and sell it to you for X+P, as long as X+P is below your payoff, you are saving something.

Competition can be your friend.
Dealer 1 might offer X + P1
Dealer 2 might offer X + P2, see which is lower.

My gut says April-May (late spring-early summer) if you want to sell it outright for the highest bid (Plan #1), and wait as long as possible if you want to buy it below payoff (Plan #2)

Thanks MaxG. I very much appreciate your comments. Cheers.

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Follow-up: I checked with MBFS and they said absolutely they will not negotiate the lease-end buyout price. Whether I bought it before the lease ended or earlier. There is no way, none. So, I am off to the dealer. The issue is MB doesn’t have a replacement car that I want/like. The replacement model for the GLK, the GLC is frumpy compared to the Stelvio or the 2018 XC-60.