Author Topic: Second hand car shopping  (Read 948 times)

Brit71

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Second hand car shopping
« on: April 14, 2022, 05:20:30 AM »
Our car may need to be replaced and I would like to do this more systematically and logically than I've done these things in the past. 

Firstly what sort of car should we look for.  The main purpose is to drive my wife to work and back.  We do have a big dog that often needs boot space and we'd like a safer model.  Otherwise it's cost per mile.

As there are big differences between car models (even names) across the Atlantic as well as some differences in the market structure I thought I'd ask the questions on this forum.  I've looked on the blog and forum for posts about used car buying, but if there are any hidden gems out there by all means post them!

bownyboy

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #1 on: April 15, 2022, 12:56:33 AM »
We bought a second hand car in July 2020. Our trusty 15 year old Mazda MX5 failed its MOT (rusty sills) and it wasn't worth it to fix it. Neither of us had bought a car in donkeys years and had no idea where to start.

The idea of buying privately filled us with dread in case we got a dud (we're not experts by any means). Also being ripped off from a dealer meant we wanted to avoid them if possible (and dealing with sales people, shudder).

So in the end we decided to go with one of the big warehouse companies. We searched auto trader to get an idea of the market prices for what we wanted (Korean or Japanese mid size SUV. 3-4 years old so someone else has paid majority of depreciation, low mileage, sun roof, automatic) and then I created email alerts for when something appeared.

In the end we found something with Imperial Cars Warehouse (now bought by Cazoo). Best bit was there was no negotiating, no sales people. We paid £75 holding deposit, could test drive it on our own and had a week to decide if we wanted it or get our deposit back.

There were no hard sells for extras just a 'how do you want to pay'. Best of all we got a 3 month guarantee from them plus remainder of the manufacture guarantee (2 years).

Its a Hyundai Tucson 2016 4WD Automatic with Panoramic Sunroof and all the silly extras which after driving a 2 seater manual 6 speed convertible is a dream to drive.

Crazy thing is, its worth more now than when we bought it in 2020!


Affable Bear

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #2 on: April 19, 2022, 06:23:36 AM »
We bought a second hand car in July 2020. Our trusty 15 year old Mazda MX5 failed its MOT (rusty sills) and it wasn't worth it to fix it. Neither of us had bought a car in donkeys years and had no idea where to start.

The idea of buying privately filled us with dread in case we got a dud (we're not experts by any means). Also being ripped off from a dealer meant we wanted to avoid them if possible (and dealing with sales people, shudder).

My Dad had a 1989 MX-5 imported from Japan in 2005, he loved that car until rust eventually killed it off in 2016. It was a sad time and even though he resprayed the chasis I dont think they were built with the Great British weather in mind!

I also have the same dilemma in buying cars, hate dealers because you know you dont get a deal haa! But equally nervous of private sellers, I think I prefer private sellers over dealers because at the end of the day I dont mind fixing a few things here and there and get a great deal as opposed to paying top dollar with a dealer and having to fight with them if there is an issue.


Our car may need to be replaced and I would like to do this more systematically and logically than I've done these things in the past. 

Firstly what sort of car should we look for.  The main purpose is to drive my wife to work and back.  We do have a big dog that often needs boot space and we'd like a safer model.  Otherwise it's cost per mile.

I think if you are commuting you are looking for high MPG low tax and reasonably comfortable (arm rest, automatic if predominantly city commute, AC, heated seats etc..), probably looking at a petrol engine due to the shorter trips. 

If you have a dog to ferry and need the boot space the obvious choice is probably something like an estate but they wont be as efficient as a small 1.0 petrol, not as easy to park or manoeuvre in city and you are probably looking at diesel, which is probably only worth it long distance commuting. I think a less popular choice but probably more functional/value choice might be to consider an MPV because they have lost a lot of their imagine since everyone wants an SUV meaning they donít hold their value very well, they are also deceptively big. I think the C4 picasoo, fiat 500L, Ford C max, Berlingo, Peugeot Partner, Fiat Doblo etc... Are all pretty cheap and offer decent space. Again you aren't going to impress many people but think of the money that you are saving and you get all the practicality and more than a fake SUV (like Juke, Captur etc..)

If thereís just 2 of you and you are happy with the dog using the back seats folded down you could probably get away with a smaller car which would be more efficient, lower tax, petrol/hybrid/elec and easy to drive in the city. Not sure which cars offer the best flat boot spaces I think the Ford B max is a bit smaller and is pretty flat and the Honda Jazz has a reputation for flat folding seats (kudos for reliability too).

Let us know what you end up with!
« Last Edit: April 19, 2022, 06:30:05 AM by Affable Bear »

Brit71

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #3 on: April 19, 2022, 11:15:22 AM »
We bought a second hand car in July 2020. Our trusty 15 year old Mazda MX5 failed its MOT (rusty sills) and it wasn't worth it to fix it. Neither of us had bought a car in donkeys years and had no idea where to start.

The idea of buying privately filled us with dread in case we got a dud (we're not experts by any means). Also being ripped off from a dealer meant we wanted to avoid them if possible (and dealing with sales people, shudder).

My Dad had a 1989 MX-5 imported from Japan in 2005, he loved that car until rust eventually killed it off in 2016. It was a sad time and even though he resprayed the chasis I dont think they were built with the Great British weather in mind!

I also have the same dilemma in buying cars, hate dealers because you know you dont get a deal haa! But equally nervous of private sellers, I think I prefer private sellers over dealers because at the end of the day I dont mind fixing a few things here and there and get a great deal as opposed to paying top dollar with a dealer and having to fight with them if there is an issue.


Our car may need to be replaced and I would like to do this more systematically and logically than I've done these things in the past. 

Firstly what sort of car should we look for.  The main purpose is to drive my wife to work and back.  We do have a big dog that often needs boot space and we'd like a safer model.  Otherwise it's cost per mile.

I think if you are commuting you are looking for high MPG low tax and reasonably comfortable (arm rest, automatic if predominantly city commute, AC, heated seats etc..), probably looking at a petrol engine due to the shorter trips. 

If you have a dog to ferry and need the boot space the obvious choice is probably something like an estate but they wont be as efficient as a small 1.0 petrol, not as easy to park or manoeuvre in city and you are probably looking at diesel, which is probably only worth it long distance commuting. I think a less popular choice but probably more functional/value choice might be to consider an MPV because they have lost a lot of their imagine since everyone wants an SUV meaning they donít hold their value very well, they are also deceptively big. I think the C4 picasoo, fiat 500L, Ford C max, Berlingo, Peugeot Partner, Fiat Doblo etc... Are all pretty cheap and offer decent space. Again you aren't going to impress many people but think of the money that you are saving and you get all the practicality and more than a fake SUV (like Juke, Captur etc..)

If thereís just 2 of you and you are happy with the dog using the back seats folded down you could probably get away with a smaller car which would be more efficient, lower tax, petrol/hybrid/elec and easy to drive in the city. Not sure which cars offer the best flat boot spaces I think the Ford B max is a bit smaller and is pretty flat and the Honda Jazz has a reputation for flat folding seats (kudos for reliability too).

Let us know what you end up with!

My wife has a reasonably long commute - 45 miles round trip four days a week and mostly on dual carriage way (we are thinking of either a closer job or trying to rent out our house and rent a flat closer to work - but assume we don't).  Although I learned on automatics and prefer them I realise that there are more manual cars and their reliability tends to be higher.  Also she doesn't prefer them and she does the bulk of the driving.  It also won't hurt if I want to persuade her into a smaller car than she's used to.

We currently have an estate with a large boot, but a smaller car with foldable seats seems to be to be better for cost but also they tend to be reliable - so I'm looking at Toyota Corolla and fitting a roof rack for the rare times we will need to take the dog and a week or two's luggage.

Her father attended motorway crashes in the 70s, 80s and 90s and so she has been bought up to believe in big Swedish cars, but Japanese cars actually seem very safe now.  That however may be a different battle!

Affable Bear

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #4 on: April 20, 2022, 04:12:22 AM »

We currently have an estate with a large boot, but a smaller car with foldable seats seems to be to be better for cost but also they tend to be reliable - so I'm looking at Toyota Corolla and fitting a roof rack for the rare times we will need to take the dog and a week or two's luggage.

Her father attended motorway crashes in the 70s, 80s and 90s and so she has been bought up to believe in big Swedish cars, but Japanese cars actually seem very safe now.  That however may be a different battle!

Thats a tough job, I guess you see first hand what holds up. I have to admit I do love a Swedish estate! Never owned one but have always had a soft spot to get one, maybe when we have little ones and I can justify the extra space and costs.

I think Japanese cars are pretty good, I would say Toyota and Honda are probably the best looking at the reliability surveys (if you believe them) I had a Nissan in the past and it wasnt any different to the other cars I have owned reliability wise. Corolla must be a good shout because I see loads of Taxi drivers in them so it must mean they are pretty comfortable, economical/reliable and have at least decent space for luggage, the latest model looks pretty snazzy too!

Brit71

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #5 on: April 22, 2022, 01:37:49 AM »
So the garage seem to have found the reason why the accelerator is cutting out - I think it was the fuel filter but I may have it garbled.

So we asked when we needed to look at getting our 225,000 mile car replaced and were told that 300,000 miles would be a good time.

So I don't need to replace the car, so when should I look to replace it?

There are some repairs coming up, £600 for a flywheel replacement - but I don't think that I should be using that as a trigger.  Other than that the repairs are a sunk cost.

So what are the triggers for replacing a car - if there are any other than never again being able to start. 

It's a diesel estate car and I've been checking the MPG on the dashboard which says it's doing 52-53 MPG.

I am trying to persuade the wife that our next car should be a smaller, possibly Japanese car.

Affable Bear

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #6 on: April 25, 2022, 02:19:57 AM »
Personally if I loved the car and 50mpg isn't exactly horrific I would probably keep it until it dies, becomes unreliable (breaking down a lot) or gets to the point that its uneconomical to fix (engine replacement or something).

Loving the mileage by the way, wear it as a badge of honor!

Brit71

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #7 on: April 25, 2022, 04:37:27 AM »
Personally if I loved the car and 50mpg isn't exactly horrific I would probably keep it until it dies, becomes unreliable (breaking down a lot) or gets to the point that its uneconomical to fix (engine replacement or something).

Loving the mileage by the way, wear it as a badge of honor!
We're talking about a continental European diesel car before 2014, so for all I know it may just be telling me what I want to hear. Remember VW!

MisterA

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #8 on: May 11, 2022, 05:16:22 AM »
We're in the same position. Our 2006 Mondeo estate has been great, plenty of space and reliable. But it's long in the tooth, and costing us a bit at the MOT's.

Like @brownyboy we also fancy buying from Cazoo or similar, and we too were thinking of a Korean Kia Sportage possibly, with a 7 year manufacturers warranty. The 7 year warranty really does give you some peace of mind. But, the cost of used cars has gone up so much, that we're thinking of hanging on for a year or more. But this could backfire, if the prices continue to go upwards!

Then again, things are in flux at the moment. Should we get a diesel, petrol or electric car? Delaying for a year or more might help that decision.

Brit71

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Re: Second hand car shopping
« Reply #9 on: May 14, 2022, 06:25:36 AM »
We're in the same position. Our 2006 Mondeo estate has been great, plenty of space and reliable. But it's long in the tooth, and costing us a bit at the MOT's.

Like @brownyboy we also fancy buying from Cazoo or similar, and we too were thinking of a Korean Kia Sportage possibly, with a 7 year manufacturers warranty. The 7 year warranty really does give you some peace of mind. But, the cost of used cars has gone up so much, that we're thinking of hanging on for a year or more. But this could backfire, if the prices continue to go upwards!

Then again, things are in flux at the moment. Should we get a diesel, petrol or electric car? Delaying for a year or more might help that decision.
Unlike shares or houses (well, building land under the houses), cars are wasting assets, so the price won't go up endlessly. You may need to wait more than a year, but it seems like the best strategy.