Buying my first car - petrol or diesel?

I am looking to buy my first car, but I don't know whether to choose petrol or diesel. I will be doing a 40 mile round trip five days a week (and using it for leisure), so I thought perhaps a diesel might be appropriate.

I like the looks of the Ford Fiesta (2003-2006), but many of the ones in my price range have quite a high mileage (80,000 - 100,000) and I am paranoid about them being less reliable and requiring a lot of maintenance.

I'd like the car to last at least four years. Do you think a diesel is the best option for me and should I be worried about the reliability of the high mileage cars?

Asked on 19 November 2014 by Jordan

Answered by Honest John
If it's an older Fiesta without a diesel particulate filter then that's the way to go. The Fiesta 1.6TDCI 90 was a good little car. Forget the 1.4TDCI, or anything else with that engine from Peugeot or Citroen.

1.9TDIs were the VAG engine to have, preferably the TDI 90 in an Ibiza or Polo. They will all need timing belts regularly. And a good thing to do with any diesel is to renew the oil feed pipe to the turbo bearing because these often get bunged up with carbon.
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Good handling and comfortable ride. Tidy design. Reasonably spacious. Plenty of choice second-hand. Good reputation for reliability.

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