New car for £6K - Punto ? - Soupytwist
Could be looking to replace current second car (1990 VW Golf GTI) soon. This is due to my wife possibly getting a job a bit higher up the management ladder, involving visiting various establishments and talking to the person in charge and wanting to turn up in a car commensurate with her position (i.e. newer and not looking like it’s done the 140, 000 miles the Golf has).

Budget of around £6k and it will be used to do a 40 mile round trip commute by dual carriageway with town centre stuff at each end. Also other usual second car stuff, shunting small child to nursery etc. Now, here’s the tricky bit, all sorts of sensible considerations go out of the window because she doesn’t like the way the car looks. So, it’s a big no to the nice looking 1996 Saab 900 I’ve seen for £2995 with 63,000 miles, no to anything with a boot (as opposed to a hatchback). No to a Focus, no to an Astra, no to a Yaris, possibly yes to an Ibiza or Leon, Fiat Punto new shape or a Mazda 323. She’d really like an A3 but as our other car is a Skoda Octavia estate I am reluctant to pay considerable money for a smaller second hand version of our other car and £6K isn’t going to get you much of one anyway.

Diesel or petrol, but with a little bit of oomph and reliable. What’s the Punto like ? It’s very reasonably priced but is that because it lives up to all the Fiat clichés ? The car by car breakdown doesn’t really address specific reliability issues since it’s a very new car.

If anyone has any reasonable input I’d be grateful, please bear in mind that eminently sensible suggestions could be dismissed out of hand because they don’t meet the ill defined criteria of what she wants.


Matthew Kelly
No, not that one.
New car for £6K - Punto ? - Andrew-T
Matt - I've only owned one Punto, but daughter is on her second. IMHO, well-designed and put together, roomy (too big really to be called supermini) and economical. Petrol 1.2 (two versions) better than a diesel. Check HJ's car-by-car entry, but common probs (mentioned recently) are rusting sumps(!) and poor adhesion of paint to plastic parts, e.g.mirror housings. Most new ones go to fleets, so buy a decent ex-rental carefully to get the best bargain - after that, depreciation is fairly gentle.

Word at the moment is that Fiat is heading for an uncertain future, though.
New car for £6K - Punto ? - Soupytwist
Thanks for that, doesn't sound too scarey. What would be a good source of a decent ex-rental one ?

FIAT's future is indeed uncertain, especially with the death of Agnelli recently. My wife actually spent some time during her university years in a small town just south of Turinn - obviously something stuck in her subconcious !
Matthew Kelly
No, not that one.
New car for £6K - Punto ? - smokie
Matt - I'm currently in the process of trying to get SWMBO a car too. Exactly the same problems as you - some cars look "too mean", some (small cars) are "too big". It must have five doors, not be black, white, silver, grey, bright red or dark blue. The list goes on and on.

We had settled for a Punto. CbC indicates they are OK, no better. Prices seemed good. So first we went to Trades Sales at Slough where they had a selection of nearly new (6 month old) ones at what looked like keen prices. I think they were pretty basic spec though.

I then took her to the Great Trade Centre in Scrubs Lane so that I could get her to look at other makes, and compare the Punto against them - they have a phenomenal stock of cars.

She went right off the Punto because in the colours of her choice, the interior trim was, in her opinion, a direct clash with the body colour, and she "wouldn't be able to sit in that for 30 mins a day". I have to say, they have a bright blue cloth in many interiors which I also thought was pretty ghastly.

At GTC she also saw Fiat Brava in a specific colour which she wanted to buy there and then. In other colours the car is ugly, but not mauve, so she says. I refused to put down a deposit until I had come home and checked the CbC.

We looked at Fiestas, which are well equipped (but I would have only bought the Freestyle, LX or Ghia as the others seem a bit down-spec, to say the least).

Anyway, I have eventually persuaded her to go for a Focus. So, as I've mentioned elesewhere, I am now looking for any green, light blue or gold, lowish mileage, 5 door, no dents or scratches, no mould on seats (the Bravas had some), perfect condition and in our price range. It sound like the impossible but I feel like we are making progress at last.

For cheap nearly new Puntos try Trade Sales of Slough or Great Trade Centre. There are links elsewhere on this site.

Good luck.
New car for £6K - Punto ? - Dave_TD
no mould on seats (the Bravas had some)


We found the same in a Mondeo Zetec at the GTC that seems to be becoming a bit of a landmark. It pays to check what stock they've recently got in, and pounce on something that hasn't been wet-vac'd and then stood around for the whole of January.
New car for £6K - Punto ? - Andrew-T
Matt - it is sadly true that a lot of ex-rental Puntos are the bog-standard model, but by no means all (mine was a 75SX, IMHO the best spec of the early range). Also I suspect that it will be difficult to find a tempting interior in any base model, as that clearly isn't in the manufacturer's interest! As I said to Smokie this morning, have a look at Fords of Winsford website * (www.fow.co.uk) for an idea of a sharp market price - they usually have plenty.

* no, I have no trade connection - it's only 20 miles from here, that's all!
New car for £6K - Punto ? - teabelly
If she isn't bothered about badge prestige then something like a Perodua Kelisa might be a good choice. They look similar the older style micra but come with a reasonable level of equipment and are quite economical. They sell in small numbers so you may be able to get a really good trade in on your golf.
teabelly
New car for £6K - Punto ? - Soupytwist
All very well but then we watched Wrong Car, Right Car last night!

Not really the image an early thirties professional woman ins trying to project I'm afraid.


Matthew Kelly
No, not that one.
New car for £6K - Punto ? - smokie
Missed it, enlighten me
New car for £6K - Punto ? - Soupytwist
Subject was 80 year old granny from the West Midlands (cue comedy accents from the dealers she went to see). She had a 97P Astra that baldy bloke valued at about £1,500 part ex. She wanted something small and automatic that would accommodate her plus three passengers.

Jason recommended Suzuki Ignis (“I hate cars like that” says my wife), Perodua Kelisa (80 year old couldn’t pronounce it properly) and Citroen C3 – drew favourable comment from my wife, perhaps slightly out of our range.

Baldy recommended pre-registered old shape Micra, VW Golf 1.6 and Merc A Class (is he on drugs?).

Old dear narrowed it down to Micra and Perodua. Bloke at Perodua dealers gave her £2.5K for Astra (baldy nearly fell off his chair) and total cost to change was something like £4,000. She still couldn’t pronounce the name but pronounced herself happy with the deal.

My wife doesn’t want to drive the same car as an 80 year old Brummie.



Matthew Kelly
No, not that one.
New car for £6K - Punto ? - smokie
Thanks - not knowing either Ignis or Perodua, I just looked them up in CbC. I understand why these would not be acceptable....
New car for £6K - Punto ? - DavidHM
C3 is only £7k for a 1.4 LX brand new, if you shop around. It's over your budget, sure, but you might get £1200 for the old one, it's not particularly well put together but it is well equipped, spacious, decently fast and economical and probably there aren't many 80 year old brummies driving them.

www.ukcarbroker.co.uk again, sorry guys. No connection to me and only found them through the link from this site.
Replacement car for £6K - Punto ? - Soupytwist
Having re-read my posting I think that the title of the thread may be a bit misleading. I don’t necessarily want a brand new car for £6K, just a replacement for our second car for up to £6K.
Matthew Kelly
No, not that one.
 

Value my car