Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke

[This is backstory, you can skip this if you can't be assed to read]

Hi All, any advice is appreciated as i know nowt about cars unfortunately.

My car has failed its MOT (04 plate Mondeo) & i'm kind of glad because i've had it for 2 years & its given me mostly nothing but grief in that time.Before this i pad a 02 automatic Peugeot 407 & a Vauxhall Agila (First car, insurance was ludicrously cheap) Both of these cars have also had there fair share of problems. That said none of them cost more than a £1000 to buy.

£5000 is my budget to buy a car, i could go higher but i'd prefer not to. I have booked a week off work & plan to go all over Doncaster. I've read plenty of online information regarding showrooms etc so think i'll be ok not getting pressures in to anything. I remember my parants in the past having severe problems with financing a rover they bought, so i'm very reluctant to go down that road.

I'm saving for a house but have decided to take a large chunk out of those savings to get a car that hopefully won't need a new exhaust/battery/alternator/engine/tyres etc etc a few weeks after i buy it. But being as thick as i am when it comes to cars i feel a bit overwhelmed by the shere quantity everywhere. I've been browsing this site, other advice web pages & of course motors.com/autotrader (I darn't by a car from ebay) but would anyone be able to shed some light on a few things. Thanks!

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Quick bit about me, I don't care about badges, colours or mod cons, i'm tall so i'm kind of ruled out of anything dinky. I rarely ever have more than one passanger & no family.

1: Pretty much all of my driving is Motorway driving, not long commutes but short trips on M/way to work (About 30 miles a day) monthly trips to Leeds from Doncaster & Maybe london twice a Year at most, maybe once a week i'll drive local short trips. Can anyone mention some Ideal makes/models this kind of driving or specifically ones to avoid. or maybe makes models to avoid altogether.

2: I've been recommended to get a VW Golf but £5000 doesn't seem to get me one with low milage/reg in comparrison to other cars. Should i just assume this is out of my price range? Looking online for this price they seem to be 08-10 plates with anywhere from 60,000 to 100,000 Which seems very high. My mondeo had 100,000 & it cost me £700, surely if i buy one i can't expect it to be trouble free for the next 3 years. I know this kind of comparrison is stupid but i'm wondering if Golfs are more expensive because the name is well knows as a good & reliable car.

3: Why do some prices for the same cars online have such huge variations. a quick example would be, i was browsing autotrader & came across some Skoda Octavias. The diesel ones where nearly twice the price of the Petrol ones for the same milage & age. Can the engine taking a different fuel really alter a price that much or are there far more differences to the engines in these cars than just the fuel they take?

Thanks again... I know at the end of the day any car can go wrong, but if i can get some information that gives me an idea of what to look for i'll be a little more prepared when i get myself another jam jar

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - oldroverboy.

Go and get yourself a kia venga/rio/ceed. one of them will be reliable, 1.2 or 1.4 for the rio 1.4 for the venga and 1.4 or 1.6 for the ceed or the hyundai cousins, but with the kia models you might get some manufacturer warranty.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - RaineMan

Agree with previous poster. You might also find a Honda Jazz/ Civic for this money. Go on condition and service history. Take a decent test drive on a variety of roads and if there is the slightest concern walk away. Remember dealers are on it to make money and many are not that concerned about repeat business.

Edited by RaineMan on 15/02/2017 at 06:46

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - RobJP

Hate to burst your bubble, but VWs are very much trading on the old advertising slogan "If only everything in the world was as reliable as a ...". They've been pretty bad since about 2005/06, when they introduced their 'new' engines and DSG gearboxes.

If everything in the world was as shoddily built and poorly engineered, and came with such terrible customer service as a VW, then there'd be planes falling out of the sky all over the planet daily, tall buildings would collapse at a gust of wind, and you'd spend several hours per day trying to get the simplest problems solved.

The most reliable makes are probably toyota and honda. Ideally in petrol and with manual gearboxes. Kia and Hyundai also do pretty well.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

I can only second the above, Japanese and Korean are usually fair bets, though if you should need genuine parts they will be expensive, but the aftermarket for most parts likely to be needed is vast.

If you have a tame mechanic friend who would come and inspect the right car before you actually hand over the cash (and look after it once its yours), and seeing as you don't care about image, you could buy very well privately, buy not looking for any particular make or model, just scanning whats conveniet, something will pop out that had the right previous (mature cared for) ownership.

Ebay is no different to any sales site, its reasonably priced media for selling things, no more sharks lurking there than any other places, but no sales site is 100% inhabited by fine British gentlemen plucked from history who's word is their bond.

Worth checking out Autotrader's version of HPi checks, i believe you can have 5 checks for £25, these are thorough involving finance etc and you do get some sort of insurance cover so long as you finally enter and confirm the chassis number before buying the car.

£5k is a lot of money for a used car, that will buy you a very decent Civic or Auris or Avensis if you wanted something a little bigger, but there would be nothing wrong with a Yaris either, plenty of room for you with the seat fully back, but suggest you look out for the 1.3 or if you fancy something a little faster Toyota shoved the 1.8 Avensis engine into that little motor for a couple of years circa 2009, Yaris 1.8SR, so long as thats looked after, big easy petrol lump in small car but not aimed at the hot hatch market could be a really nice buy.

You might well find an earlier Corolla cheap thats been looked after by someone older now giving up driving, £1000 might well buy you a low mileage serviced regularly car with full MOT that could last you years, those and Civics of th same era probably the two most reliable cars ever made, not being worried about image can save you lots of wonga so might make sense to take advantage of that fact, just a thought.

Seeing as you're house saving, this lower budget is where i'd be headed.

These are only suggestions, nothing wrong with the right Focus either, but whatever make you choose, don't even consider for one minute anything with the PSA 1.6 Diesel of Doom, this engine went in Pugs, Cits, Focus, Volvo V40's, MINI's and probably others i can't think of at the mo.

Whatever you buy make sure you keep up its care and servicing, this is where Toyota possibly edges slightly ahead, their standard dealer servicing is very reasonably priced, so even if you struggle to find a decent indy, assuming you can't DIY, you won't be paying through the nose for half baked maintenance.

Edited by gordonbennet on 15/02/2017 at 08:29

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke

Wrong section

Edited by Keith Poke on 15/02/2017 at 20:26

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
I'd forget the Golf at this money, they're not as reliable as their reputation suggests and the MK V's you'd be looking at have a tendency to rust quite badly too. The short timing belt interval of 4yrs is an added expense too, one which is avoided by buying a Mazda 3 or Honda Civic petrol both of which are chain driven and have excellent reputations for reliability as long as they see fresh oil annually.

The Civic has the better engine with almost 40bhp more than the 1.6 Mazda and slightly better fuel economy too but the Mazda is a nicer handling car with a very pleasant combination of direct steering and rifle bolt gearchange and you'll get more for your money too.

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Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - pd

If reliability is key go for something boring and probably petrol.

If you do lots of motorway work you need something fairly comfortable. Something like an Avensis 1.8 would do the job fine.

You should be able to find a newer (2007 on) shape one with about 60k miles in your £5k budget. They're decent cars and do 40mpg driven sensibly.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Andrew-T

As usual, lots of good advice here, but also as usual showing bias as a result of having seen an awful lot of cars - PSA Diesel of Doom, for example. I have owned a Pug 207 with a 1.6 diesel for 8 years and 50K miles, absolutely no trouble at all, 60+ mpg.

The question you can most usefully ask is Why is the car for sale? Most dealers won't know this, and they may be unwilling to tell you anyway. Private sellers should do, and if they are also reluctant, try another. The point is that although some makes are statistically more likely to give trouble, you are only buying one car, and you may be lucky (quite likely) or not with any of them. Look for a good service history and signs of having been looked after, rather than heavily valeted in the last few weeks.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - nick62

+1 on the "heavily valeted" comment above.

When I was looking to get back into private car ownership 20 odd years ago, I was amazed at how many overtly very shiny ex-rep mobiles had totally knackered steering wheels and gear lever gaitors.

I think their drivers must have driven with their hands constantly covered in a layer of McDonalds / Burger King grease which attacked the plastic?

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
"As usual, lots of good advice here, but also as usual showing bias as a result of having seen an awful lot of cars - PSA Diesel of Doom, for example. I have owned a Pug 207 with a 1.6 diesel for 8 years and 50K miles, absolutely no trouble at all, 60+ mpg"

I've an old customer who recently bought a 207 1.6 HDi Sport and now deeply wishes she'd listen to me when I told her not to touch it... nothing but trouble and has now discovered the DPF has been removed by the previous owner or selling dealer meaning the car has now failed its Mot, thanks to an eagle eyed tester. As it now shows on the failure list there's no way it can be Mot'd elsewhere without it flagging up. She is currently battling with the dealer for a refund and intends fully on listening to my advice to avoid diesel, especially a modern DPF equipped model when buying on a budget.

While there are people out there who've owned cars with this engine who've not encountered problems, the ratio of good to bad experiences is poor and it is in general worth avoiding this engine in any incarnation even the later supposedly improved 8v variant. A quick google search will flag up loads of owners who've experienced expensive woe.

Edited by SLO76 on 15/02/2017 at 10:38

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet
nothing but trouble and has now discovered the DPF has been removed by the previous owner or selling dealer

nasty, i have a feeling that isn't going to end well.

you can see why so many people are going for new on payments and hand it back at 3 years, rinse and repeat.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Andrew-T
I've an old customer who recently bought a 207 1.6 HDi Sport and now deeply wishes she'd listen to me when I told her not to touch it... nothing but trouble and has now discovered the DPF has been removed by the previous owner or selling dealer meaning the car has now failed its Mot, thanks to an eagle eyed tester.

Ah, but my 207 is old enough not to have a DPF. When I got it from a Peugeot dealer at the end of 2008 I asked about the DPF, and he said 'you're better off without one'. Clearly prophetic.

And since owning it I have gradually shortened the oil-change interval from 10K (suggested 12K) to 8K, and it's due another next month at a little over 7K.

Edited by Andrew-T on 15/02/2017 at 18:27

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
"Ah, but my 207 is old enough not to have a DPF. When I got it from a Peugeot dealer at the end of 2008 I asked about the DPF, and he said 'you're better off without one'. Clearly prophetic."

Yours must be the 90bhp version I assume? Believe all the 110's (though not certain) had a DPF, certainly this one did and it's a 57plate believe registered early 08. The 90's didn't until early 2010.
Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

I'll be just as open about suggesting those not in the know avoid the engine that is in my Landcruiser, mainly the 3.0d4d versions made between 04 and 08, unless they are mechanically minded and know what needs to be done to ensure a long engine life.

Similarly i wouldn't suggest those not in the know buy a higher mileage 2.5 4 pot Subaru without doing their research either.

Lots of engines have weaknesses, and the d4d weakness for those few which slipped through the recall/refit campaign can suffer serious problems right up to full seizure, similarly the 2.5 in the Scoobies can have CHG problems.

But explaining all would run ito pages for just one post and you still wouldn't cover half of it.

No, like your 207 there are thousands of cars with the 1.6 PSA Diesel running absolutely fine, but when they do give trouble (usually the result of neglect, and arguably the official service intervals are neglectful) its like an opening of Pandoras box, hence as there are hundreds of alternatives out there it seems pertinent, to me at least, to suggest someone who by their posting is asking for advice, to suggest that they would be best to avoid certain known problems completely.

If anyone wants the link providing again that shows in great detail and dozens of pics what was found inside such a neglected 1.6PSA lump following multiple turbo failures, and what needs to be done to prevent further failures, i'll galdly provide it.

Similarly we're not likely to advise the purchase of an out of warranty DSG or other weird and wonderful box either, and despite being a Toyota fan myself i'd suggest never to buy an MMT automated manual of theirs either, and to take great care with the 2.2 Diesel (Avensis/Lexus) which can have CHG problems too, the whole used car game is a minefield ready to blow up the unwary.

Its all opinion of course, if the OP wants a 1.6PSA lump he'll go out and buy one, but hopefully he'll maybe think about doing some research and realise that this engine, as with many others it must be said, needs careful maintenance or it can be a monay pit, so a proper service history or faith in the private seller (maybe an ex mechanic type who'se been servicing it every 3k miles, yes they do exist) at the very least we should bring it to the OP's notice seeing as he's asked politely for advice here.

In some ways this is why i tend to advise, especially here where our OP is saving for a gaff, to only spend as little as possible on as well cared for as possible unfashionable car used and looked after by mature previous one or two owners, if he spends £800 on a Corolla and gets two years out of it he can only lose £800 plus running costs.

If he spends £5k on the wrong car and in 6 months time some too clever by half gearbox goes pop and needs £4k spending on it he's lost big time and has to start from scratch again.

Sorry if i've waffled on too long again, but i believe if you offer some advice then it should be to point the person where their bets are best hedged, but thats only my humble opinion and everyone else's is just as valid.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
"if you offer some advice then it should be to point the person where their bets are best hedged"

Wise words...

I tend to be very risk averse when asked for motoring recommendations.

Good point regarding buying a cheap old smoker too. I did this for years, buying a solid well maintained older car below £1,500, ran it for a year or so then flogged it usually for what I paid for it but this takes a bit of motoring know how and more than a little luck. Jap is usually the way to go here and my two recommendations of Mazda 3 and Civic (previous gen) would both still suit. Toyota Corolla/Avensis also good options.

As a newsagent/convenience store owner I never had the time to enjoy a good car anyway so cheap and cheerful fit the bill. Saved the worry of Ned scumbags taking a key down it post knock back for a packet of fags and all the money saved went into my mortgage.

Edited by SLO76 on 15/02/2017 at 11:16

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Ethan Edwards

The op wanted a car to cope with his height too. I'm a hefty 6ft 4. I fit into a Toyota Yaris with no problems. Ditto a Nissan Note. Either of these might suit the OP.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

The op wanted a car to cope with his height too. I'm a hefty 6ft 4. I fit into a Toyota Yaris with no problems. Ditto a Nissan Note. Either of these might suit the OP.

Pukka Yaris in Bedfordshire with the right histories, i reckon it would suit our OP down to the ground.

ebay 182451754675

the only thing in its MOT history is 'fluctuating brake' osf, which i reckon means it might need a set of new discs/pads at some point, nothing else bar a wiper blade on any MOT

Edited by gordonbennet on 15/02/2017 at 13:28

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke

Thanks for all the responses, i didn't quite expect so many in so short a time. Places like these are amazing, even if some of the advice is not always reliable it can't be worse than basically gambling on my own inexperience.

I am suprised at the general disdain for Diesel engines however. (Unless you guys are talking about very specific engines) I was always under the impression they were more robust & were suited better to long distance coasting & migh mileage. I expected to be mainly recommended Diesel cars & to be honest, before now, have been looking more in to deisels than petrols for the above reasons.

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ROBJP

Hate to burst your bubble, but VWs are very much trading on the old advertising slogan "If only everything in the world was as reliable as a ...". They've been pretty bad since about 2005/06, when they introduced their 'new' engines and DSG gearboxes.

No problem, I'm not specifically looking for a Golf, just a few people have recommended them to me, that coupled with the fact they're advertised heavily as reliable cars. Just wanted to confirm if the fact they were generally more expensive than other makes/models with similar mileage/age was justified

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GORDONBENNET

If you have a tame mechanic friend who would come and inspect the right car before you actually hand over the cash (and look after it once its yours), and seeing as you don't care about image, you could buy very well privately, buy not looking for any particular make or model, just scanning whats conveniet, something will pop out that had the right previous (mature cared for) ownership.

Ebay is no different to any sales site, its reasonably priced media for selling things, no more sharks lurking there than any other places, but no sales site is 100% inhabited by fine British gentlemen plucked from history who's word is their bond.

Worth checking out Autotrader's version of HPi checks, i believe you can have 5 checks for £25, these are thorough involving finance etc and you do get some sort of insurance cover so long as you finally enter and confirm the chassis number before buying the car....

...Seeing as you're house saving, this lower budget is where i'd be headed.

Besides a mate who is a keen 'boy racer/chavvy' type, i don't really know anyone car savvy, even then he often sais big words but i get the impression he's chatting b******s most of the time. Hence my reliance on an online forum for advice. I'll open up to using ebay & i'll certainly use the autotrader HPi checker if i buy privately. If it has no expiry, having 5 checks could be helpful later down the line as my mother had a RTA recently & will be looking herself for a car when the dust has settles.

Also I think you may be right with a lower budget car being a better option. (Not that i'm ruling out something more expensive) Part of me wants to pay more because the last 3 cars i had under £1000 have caused me varying degrees of burden in random occuring faults & i'm thinking maybe spending more will make that kind of problem less likely to occur. But i know that spending more on a car may not stop random faults from occuring, wishful thinking i s'pose.

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Thank you for the recommendations, while i like the look of the Mazda more the Civic has been mentioned many many times in this thread. the last one you mentioned looks very promising. If i can't find a suitable budget car, that will likely be top of my list.

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ANDREW-T

The question you can most usefully ask is Why is the car for sale? Most dealers won't know this, and they may be unwilling to tell you anyway. Private sellers should do, and if they are also reluctant, try another. The point is that although some makes are statistically more likely to give trouble, you are only buying one car, and you may be lucky (quite likely) or not with any of them. Look for a good service history and signs of having been looked after, rather than heavily valeted in the last few weeks.

If i ask that in a dealers, wouldnt they just say they're dealers & it's there jobs to sell cars? Asking a private seller why they're selling is repeatedly mentioned in advice online so that ones already on the list.

In regards for what to look for, is there anything to look out for that an idiot could see. Online reccomends i check dipstick for milky colouring in the oil (something to do with a head gasket) wear on the pedals & misalignmen on the body of the car & Judging by some replies here a shiny steering wheel & bad wear to the gear stick gaiter also indicates neglect & of course good service history. That said how beneficial this information is when its me looking for these things is yet to be determined.

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GORDONBENNET

In some ways this is why i tend to advise, especially here where our OP is saving for a gaff, to only spend as little as possible on as well cared for as possible unfashionable car used and looked after by mature previous one or two owners, if he spends £800 on a Corolla and gets two years out of it he can only lose £800 plus running costs.

If he spends £5k on the wrong car and in 6 months time some too clever by half gearbox goes pop and needs £4k spending on it he's lost big time and has to start from scratch again.

Sorry if i've waffled on too long again, but i believe if you offer some advice then it should be to point the person where their bets are best hedged, but thats only my humble opinion and everyone else's is just as valid

Don't worry about lengthy posts, i'm trying to get all the information i can before i go out & spend part of my deposit money. I've never spent £5000 on anything before & i'm certainly not going to p*** it away because the wheels are shiny. The deposit for the house is my priority by a mile & spending several thousands of that on a car only for something equally expensive to go wrong is a galling prospect. Just trying to narrow my odds. But i am convinced buying something cheaper may be a safer bet for me, even if it does reduce the pool of cars available.

Pukka Yaris in Bedfordshire with the right histories, i reckon it would suit our OP down to the ground.

ebay 182451754675

the only thing in its MOT history is 'fluctuating brake' osf, which i reckon means it might need a set of new discs/pads at some point, nothing else bar a wiper blade on any MOT

Bedfordshire is quite a way away from me. Would it be worth travelling 125 miles to take a look at the car. (Would it be worth comitting to buy without looking at it first?) How do you know it's MOT history?

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Thanks again everyone, even if i garner nothing more from here, you've all been a great help.

Edited by Keith Poke on 15/02/2017 at 20:40

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

Hi KP.

''Bedfordshire is quite a way away from me. Would it be worth travelling 125 miles to take a look at the car. (Would it be worth comitting to buy without looking at it first?) How do you know it's MOT history?''

For your average run of the mill car then no, 125 miles isn't necessarily worth it, but for the more unsual cars, and in my ebay search only about 10 1.8SR Yaris came up nationally, so you have little choice, my cars tend to be fairly rare or rather i'm after certain combinations of things so travelling distance to buy is quite normal for me, and sometimes cars that look 'right', with promising ownership service history and MOT history stand out as being worth a look, this one did to me, but it might turn out to be a no go.

Generally if i'm travelling distance i try to pencil in several alternatives so i can make a round trip up and visit several if only to eliminate them.

I travelled 150 miles late last year as i'd pencilled in a 'superb' Landcrusier Amazon, got there at 10am, bloke truned up at 10.05 and by 10.10 i was on my way home again, never even looked inside, got underneath and stuck me hairy mitt straight through a rear box section, tthis was a 04 Amazon that should have been as solid as a rock, car buying is anything but straightforward.

Couple of months ago an LC5 Landcruiser came online for sale, it stood out like a sore thumb from the rest and been traded in for a new motorcamper, which pricked my 'well heeled previous owner' antenna, within 3 hours i'd driven up and bought it, and its as good an example for its year, 05 as i've seen for a long time, that was 75 miles from home.

As i buy older cars usually the last place i want them to come from is Scotland, mainly due to the excess use of road salt, hence in your boots i'd rather travel 125 miles south for a local car (assuming this one is localish) than 125 miles north where salt use will be higher, though life's never quite that simple as cars get punted around, and the person who lives in Beds might neglect their cars where the Scottish driver looks after it and keeps the underside salt free.

No i wouldn't suggest you buy over the phone, far from it, though i bought our Subaru Outback sight unseen via an ebay auction, and travelled 150 miles couple of days later to pick it up, that was three years ago, we paid the princely sum of £1070 for it and it hasn't missed a beat since, though i have been round cars a long time so knew what i was probably getting into.

The MOT check site is www.gov.uk/check-mot-status

its all official and simple to use, any car you are interested in you can check its MOT's for several years back, including advisories.

Similarly you can check if a vehicle is still taxed on www.gov.uk/check-vehicle-tax

That Yaris in the link was only a suggestion, you would probably be just as well off with a decent Civic of similar age.

The autotrader HPI checks do have time limit, or did when i last looked, 6 or 8 weeks rings a bell, but don't quote me.

Good luck in your search, let us know what you decide on, if you spt something you can always link it here, SLO76 knows his onions on car buying.

Edited by gordonbennet on 15/02/2017 at 21:11

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

Diesels are a difficult one, the problem is you need to go back a few years to avoid DPF's, and they need better servicing for a long life than an unstressed NA petrol will, and there's lots of examples worth avoiding.

I'm not in the camp that all Diesels are bad, and you could do far worse than pick up a 1.6 Kia Ceed Diesel regd 09 (i believe, SLO76 will probably confirm either way if of interest) or earlier, which won't have a DPF and nor will it have a DMF either.

The trouble with Diesels is when they do go wrong its usually complicated to diagnose and expensive to put right, and you've always got the problem of previous owners misfuelling the things then flogging them on quick before the pump and/or injectors can peg out, though they might suffer no ill effects at all...there thats clear as mud isn't it..:-)

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
"I'm not in the camp that all Diesels are bad, and you could do far worse than pick up a 1.6 Kia Ceed Diesel regd 09 (i believe, SLO76 will probably confirm either way if of interest) or earlier, which won't have a DPF and nor will it have a DMF either."

Good choice. A modern diesel that doesn't have a DMF or a DPF until Oct 2010 if I remember correctly. Good value used and came with a comprehensive 7yr manufacturer warranty from new which shows how much confidence the firm had in its product but don't get it mixed up with the older 2.0 diesel which did have a DMF and a timing belt where the 1.6 was chain driven and should if given fresh oil every year last the life of the car.

Greatest worry on these is rot underneath. The body resits tin worm well so buyers often get lulled into a false sense of security. Make sure you get right under it for a good look. Crossmembers and subframes rot like it's the 1970's and yup I'd avoid one that's seen the worst the Scottish winter roads can throw at it.

Although I'm often talking people out of thinking diesel it's not because of any fundamental failing in the engines themselves usually (PSA 1600 excluded) rather than the simple fact that they are more complex and there's just more that can go wrong. Plus add in the reality that people largely buy them to save money and thus all too often don't maintain them correctly. Petrol is just a safer option when buying on a budget.
Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke

Can anyone give me a quick thumbs up/down on the below. I'll be going to look at the Honda Civic SL076 mentioned a while ago on Monday

www.gumtree.com/p/honda/2003-honda-hr-v-1.6i-vtec-...9

2003 Honda HRV - 27,000 - FSH - Petrol - £3200

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www.motors.co.uk/car-44156078/?i=28&m=srs

2005 Kia Rio - 69,000 - Seems to have FSH - Diesel - £1800

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www.motors.co.uk/car-44492555/?i=89&m=srs

2003 Honda Civic - 65000 - Petrol - £1200

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www.motors.co.uk/car-43591082/?i=142&m=srs

2009 Kia carens - Mileage ???? - Diesel - £1500

Would it be worth taking a gamble on this? How many miles could it have done in 8 years?

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www.motors.co.uk/car-44334448/?i=171&m=srs

2003 Toyota Carolla - Good service history - 48000 - Petrol £1900

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
The HRV and the Corolla are saying all the right things to me. The Honda was part exchanged against a new one meaning not only did they like the car so much they bought another but they're also not short of funding since they're the guts of £20k. It's a little pricey for one of these and they're not brilliant to drive and a little thirsty but there's plenty of room and little goes wrong. Even the t/belt has already been done for you.

The Corolla is another repeat customer returning to the dealer they bought it from which again tells you they were happy with it and the seller. A bit better on fuel and a nicer drive in my opinion. It's chain driven so no belt to worry about but needs proof of regular oil changes.

These are the two favourites for me along with the Civic I pointed out earlier. Plus can't stress how good the Mazda 3 is, if you can find a tidy example (they do rust round the edges) then take a drive, they're excellent fun and still practical.

Edited by SLO76 on 17/02/2017 at 19:46

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - bazza

We have a 1.4 Corolla like that, had it for 5 years and it's on 91000 now. I can't recommend them highly enough. There aren't any real weakspots, the only thing i would do if you buy it is get a decent brake service done, with a strip down and lube of the calipers and rear handbrake ( this is a disc/drum arrangement, works fine). Also, ours benefited from a decent set of new tyres. You'll see about 39 to 40 mpg, more on a run, less around town. Brilliant cars. Oh yes, the clutch on these can be a bit sharp and also squeak, it's not a problem and a squirt of WD at the base of the pedal might help.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Ebob

Lots of great advice on here!

I am in the same boat.

Do you need to worry about getting an old car though. Looking at an 04 Avensis 1.8 with about 80k miles.

I'm worried at this age that seals might start perishing and electrical faults developing. I need it to get to work.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76

Lots of great advice on here!

I am in the same boat.

Do you need to worry about getting an old car though. Looking at an 04 Avensis 1.8 with about 80k miles.

I'm worried at this age that seals might start perishing and electrical faults developing. I need it to get to work.

I ran older sub £1,500 cars for years without any costly failures in fact I've often made a profit after a years motoring. Simpler older tech cars are easier to fix, cheaper for parts and less likely to go wrong than complex modern gadget laden turbocharged metal. A well looked after petrol Avensis is a great cheap workhorse but they do like to drink a bit of oil so regularly check and top up as required. Otherwise cheap, spacious, robust and decent on fuel.
Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

A quick perusal of the MOT histories rules out the Corolla for me, particularly the failure in 2015, excessive suspension corrosion plus other faults, that isn't going to get any better.

HRV history mentions two advisories going back several years of corrosion to suspension mountings, i'd want to see that for myself...

''nearside rear Suspension component mounting prescribed area is corroded but not considered excessive (2.4.A.3) offside rear Suspension component mounting prescribed area is corroded but not considered excessive (2.4.A.3)''

Civic's MOT history is excellent but i have no idea what the service history is like.

have a look at ebay 172494704725, Civic 2.0S, no cambelt, MOT history good, i owner plus history it says, so long as its been serviced (no history of binding rear brakes suggests it has) this should be bomb proof, my daughter couldn't break either of hers despite the worse abuse she could chuck at them over 100,000 miles., 195/65 x 15 tyres probably the cheapest size going and smooth ride to boot.

122243260976 more expenive but newer and 87k, same car.

Edited by gordonbennet on 17/02/2017 at 20:45

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

Agree with SLO76 about the Avensis, just look after it, keep the oil topped up with something reasonable, good solid motors.

These early noughties cars are the last of the really good 90's designs that many makers had before it all got silly, 2005 is our newest car, Landcruiser, we have no intention of buying newer, ever...well unless the Outback dies in which case SWMBO wants another Scooby so if its another H6 that means regd before march 06 cos ved innit.

Edited by gordonbennet on 17/02/2017 at 20:54

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke

Are Honda Accords reliable?

www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2006-Honda-Accord-2-0-i-VTEC-SE...H

MOT History seems almost faultless, full service history

---

Thanks again for the recommendations Gordon, but i don't have a car now, so it's just too far away. I'll be able to get a lift to most of Yorkshire to go look at a car, (Aside from public transport) but no one'll be taking me distance for a car i may or may not get :P

But thanks anyway

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - corax

Accords are very reliable, in the same camp as the Avensis, and a nicer drive. 2.0 and 2.4 vtec both good engines. As usual be careful of diesel. If you look at HJ Good and Bad, most of the problems involve these.

Auto and manual both good gearboxes.

They can suffer from sticking rear calipers.

If looking for one seriously try to get 16 inch wheels. The 17inch wheels can tramline.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
Petrol Accords are pretty tough things assuming they've been serviced regularly. One of the best used buys on the market in my opinion.
Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

www.ebay.co.uk/itm/2006-Honda-Accord-2-0-i-VTEC-SE...i

That looks a good one, with an almost perfect MOT history, definately worth a look.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke
I took the accord for a quick drive today as it's very close to where I live, down a fast country road and a windy village and it drives very well, only instance I had that felt dubious was when I first started pulling off. There appeared to be no give with the gas pedal until a pressed down hard and it gave way, worked fine from then on. (Because i'd never driven it, I thought maybe I was pressing on the foot rest and missing the pedal entirely) Perhaps they get stiff when hey haven't been used for x amount of time? Only other thing was the clutch was very very responsive, but I chalked that up to me not being used to the car

EDIT - When I mentioned it to the sales bloke he just said the gas pedal night have got caught on the mat, which seems dubious, but then after that one moment it never did it again.

Edited by Keith Poke on 20/02/2017 at 14:48

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

Sounds alright KP, does the service history correspond to that really rather good MOT history.

That model Accord was, to my eyes, the last what i would call reservedly handsome version they made.

The clutch take up sounds like both my daughters type S Civics, near enough the same car underneath as the Accord i suspect, considering she drove them both ridiculously hard with merciless thrashing they seemed to thrive on it.

Is this the one or are you still looking?

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke
I've offered them £1750 and my old car as payment. Max I can go under to without borrowing or breaking in to house savings/credit cards. But they'd like a glance at my old car. I'll be bringing it round to them tomorrow. Whether or not they'd take that for another £120 I don't know, it failed it's MOT pretty spectacularly. Otherwise I've booked the week off for this purpose so it'll still be available and I'll continue looking before coming back Friday

EDIT - service history appears to show the car has been well cared for.

Edited by Keith Poke on 20/02/2017 at 16:04

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - corax

The accelerator is an organ type pedal like BMW's. They can be stiffer than the usual type - I personally like them because they are comfortable on long journeys. That initial stiffness allows you to use it as a foot rest.

However if it's really stiff then it might have stones, dirt e.t.c collected around the pivot, they're more prone to it being floor mounted.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
I'd be asking for £100-£150 off with no trade in anyway so stick to your guns and tell them that's all you have, I'll bet they'll take it,

These are great cars for the money.

I'd have a wee look at the service history and see if the handwriting and stamp match other cars they have in stock with "full history" I'm not suggesting anything's amiss but it's fairly common for small backstreet traders to fake histories. I've seen it too often. Small dealer near me is guilty of this. Every car has a "full history" but all stamped by the same garage and same handwriting. Easy way to add value, a stamp and 10mins filling in the empty service book.

Edited by SLO76 on 20/02/2017 at 21:01

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke

In regards to the service history. I didn't look at any other cars, but i'll remember that in future. Seems an easy thing to abuse. That said this Accord had one of those massive placards on it indicating the Service history & i only saw a few others with the same.

It'd be my first time bartering for a better price on pretty much anything in my life. I originally offered him £1,700 with no car but folded pretty quickly. Ended up with £1,750 + Car, that said i won't go higher than that. Worst comes to worse, then the hunt continues, no big deal.

Edited by Keith Poke on 20/02/2017 at 22:06

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - Keith Poke

Well, it's all done & dusted now. Judging how fast they took the £1750 & the car i expect i could have got it a touch cheaper, but hey ho. The cars a pleasure to drive, it has a good service history & i'll keep that up. Hopefully this car stands up till i save enough for my deposit. Then i'll have to find a forum full of house buying enthusiasts & annoy the hell out of them!

Thanks for everyone that offered advice. I appreciate it. Far better than me just going it blind.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - SLO76
Hopefully it's as reliable as the last Accord I ran or the Civic my other half ran for nearly 4 years trouble free. Only cost us £2,200 and flogged for £1,500 with no repairs other than tyres and brakes. Best of luck!
Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - gordonbennet

Congrats, if its half as good as the daughters 2 x 2 litre Civics of similar model years have been, then you'll probably become a confirmed Honda enthusiast too.

Thanks for updating the thread, do let us know from time to time how its going if you would please, and best of luck with the forthcoming house purchase.

Buying a car, would like a few things cleared up - galileo

Congrats, if its half as good as the daughters 2 x 2 litre Civics of similar model years have been, then you'll probably become a confirmed Honda enthusiast too.

Thanks for updating the thread, do let us know from time to time how its going if you would please, and best of luck with the forthcoming house purchase.

Coincidentally I have just been to a dismantler's in Doncaster for a plug to fit the temperature sensor on my stepson's 2006 Civic.

The pins had corroded to the point where they'd broken inside the plug, impossible to remove so couldn't connect to a new sensor. Honda helpfully don't supply plugs, can only offer a wiring loom at vast expense. Owners would be well advised to waterproof-wrap the connection to avoid this problem.

By the way, avoid Wakefield on a Friday afternoon after 2 pm, unless you like sitting in gridlock for 15 minutes, road layout is worse than my hometown, which is saying something!

Edited by galileo on 24/02/2017 at 17:32

 

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