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Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - littleone
Hi there, this is my first post so please bear with me - apologies if I have started this thread in the wrong place or duplicated another post.

So my story goes like this... I'm looking to buy a used VW Golf. I'll give you a little background on myself which will hopefully explain why I need your help!

I'm 25, female and very short. 4'11 to be precise. Car dealers spot me, see me coming and add an extra £1000 on, no doubt. When I was 18 I bought a Renault Clio (used) 1.2 for £6,000. Plus £2,000 for the privilege of a finance option. I didn't even query it - I just walked in and signed on the dotted line. Many years later, after finally paying it off and being in a good financial position, I'm looking to upgrade.

I have done some research and the car I'm going to go for is definitely a Golf. I want a bigger engine, a bigger car and a relatively good deal. There are just so many models out there to choose from. I now feel confident walking into a dealership and haggling, as I'll be paying cash in full. What I'd ideally like to do is walk in knowing the exact model which is right for me, so as not to get sucked in.

What I'm looking for is:

Around 2-3 years old
Any sized engine up to 2.0
Diesel
5 doors
Manual
Good fuel economy
Low/no road tax - I am aware that some models after '09 fall into this bracket

I do around 20,000 miles a year which is quite high, so I'm looking for something quite economical. I wouldn't rule out a sports version if the price was right though!

To be honest, I am baffled by choice, which often leads to me getting so frustrated about not being able to make a decision that I take the first thing that comes along.

I would be eternally grateful to anyone who could recommend a model type around which I could base my purchase. Thanks for reading my ramble!
Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - daveyjp
The good thing is there is no need to leave the house yet. Search the VW dealer network and look at the stock. You can also compare prices across the area.

When you have found something go and drive it and if still interested let the sales staff know you are there to buy.

The dealers will have a margin to make on the car, but negotiate hard and turn down any extras offered such a paint protection, gap insurance, servicing plans, tyre protection etc.

With this approach the buying process in the showroom should take no more than half an hour.
Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - oldtoffee

For the best economy and lowest VED (£0 at the moment) the 1.6 TDi 105 bhp Bluemotion is the one to go for and by all accounts is a decent enough drive. A 2010 model with 30k would be around £10,000 from a dealer.

The same money would buy you a 2010 GTD with the bigger 170bhp 2 litre engine, sportier suspension and more extras but much higher miles. A similar mileage car to the 1.6 would cost maybe £2,000 more than the 1.6. Penalty is probably 10 to 15mpg at the pumps (still high 50 mpg+ possible) and a higher VED, and more insurance. Worth it IMO for the extra power, (0 to 60 in 8.1 seconds vs 11.3) better handling (relatively as its a Golf not a Focus) and spec.

Whatever you choose factor in a cambelt and water pump change every 40,000 miles or 4 years for around £400. If you're negotiating on price and you want a bit more out of them you might get some results asking for service or work like this to be done as part of the deal as it costs them less than you'd have to pay but as daveyjp says just ask for the best price with no extras. Ask and then keep quiet the sales people rely on you talking yourself into the car. Do your homework, if you like a car you've seen locally but there's another one cheaper miles away on the internet let them know you're considering going to look at it. If you're not 100% happy walk away and keep looking.

Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - Avant

As you're going for a diesel, make sure you get one with the newer common-rail diesel engine, which I think has been in the Golf since 2009. The 2.0 will be only slightly less economical than the 1.6 and will give you much more lively performance.

Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - littleone
Thank you for the advice all, it helps me to narrow it down a LOT so I'm in a much better position to work out what I want and walk into the showroom prepared!
Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - hillman

I realise that it isn't PC to say this, but can you get an older male to accompany you ? One of my friends was done well and truly by a garage and it cost her dear. She always took her father with her after that.

Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - daveyjp
No need for anyone if you have a sensible price you are prepared to pay, i.e understand the garage is a business and needs to make money, are prepared to stand your ground and play the silly car buying game for 10-15 minutes, are prepared to walk if it reaches stalemate.

Edited by daveyjp on 18/07/2013 at 19:09

Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - littleone
Unfortunately there are no males in my family - nor are there any locally in the family of friends. My boyfriend has never bought a car and is just as clueless as me!

Thank you for all the advice - my nerves are turning to excitement!
Volkswagen Golf - Help a young female buy a Golf please! - Andrew-T

If you are anywhere near mid-Cheshire, have a look at Fords of Winsford - about the best and most user-friendly car supermarket. My daughter got her Golf Plus there several years ago for a good price and still has it.

 

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