Secondhand Value? - Cardew
I always read HJ's auction reports with interest and it seems that for a couple of grand you can pick up some really interesting cars. Obviously you need some expertise to minimise the risk of buying a lemon.

Anyway looking at the Classified section on this site I see that there is a 1996N BMW 523i SE Auto with all the bells and whistles, but 106,000 miles, for sale privately at £7,500. I must admit I thought it a mistake but looking at Autotrader it would appear to be a little pricey but not outrageously so.

Now the 5 Series was unanimously considered to be a fine car. However for the life of me I cannot see how a 7+ year old car can command such a price.

It surely cannot make economic sense, and I would not have thought it rated highly in the performance/status stakes.

Just what is the appeal of such cars? Who buys them?
Secondhand Value? - El Hacko
widening this thread, if I may, we read that new car sales are still roaring away, so surely more and more second hand cars arrive onto an already flooded market. We all know of people having problems selling cars privately. Meanwhile used prices are forced lower still. Will there come a crunchtime when there are more second hand cars than people want? Indeed, for most private drivers, does it make sense to buy a new car these days when there are so many hardly old bargains about? Perhaps when interest rates do start working in the opposite direction, the "real world" will arrive for us (with cars and houses)....

El Hacko
Secondhand Value? - Hugo {P}
I have to say, I'm surprised that there aren't more cabbies and private hire car and leasing companies that don't take advantage of the situation.

As cabbies usually knock up intergalactic miles, getting a good car at auction, or privately for less than a grand, then flogging it to death and scrapping it after a couple of years is bound to save him or her loads of cash.

In addition with the reliability of cars being so good and being sold with full MOTs, even at 10 years old, it seems a pity that there seem to be few low cost or ecological hire companies out there to 'use up' these older vehicles.

If I had a wad of cash I think I would buy up a fleet of trade in Mondeos, Vectras, etc up to 8 to 10 years old and 80K on the clock with near FSH at under a grand a time. Put them through the MOT then hire them out to the public and businesses for a couple of years at half the relevent going rate of the main hire companies. When they reach say 120K or 12 years old, then I would sell them to the public with a bolt on 6 month mechanical breakdown warranty for say £500 a piece.

I would need to keep to regular servicing etc for the

"Forever indebted to experience of others"
Secondhand Value? - J Bonington Jagworth
Interesting idea, Hugo. One of my local garages did something like this for several years - although the cars were slightly newer, they were obtained cheaply enough and rented out for very reasonable money. What killed it was the cost of insurance, which rose very sharply 2-3 years ago. Shame.

BTW, the most reliable cars on the fleet were a Mazda and a Kia...
Secondhand Value? - Vansboy
Another van dealer tried it with Cavaliers/Vectras a while back, reasonable results, but not worth the hassle.

There was a cab firm, from Wales IIRC, bought virtually EVERY ex MoD Montego at Blackbushe auction, when they were cleared out, 2 years ago.

Hardly surprising, '94 L/M plate, excellent turbo diesels, for £12-£1700,just 12-60,000 miles.Most in very clean condition, too.

Only drawback, the Home Office de-spec'ed the power steering option!!

Secondhand Value? - El Hacko
looks as tho' it will get even tougher to sell a car privately - according to today's Sunday Times, car manufacturers are soon to flood the new car market in UK with even more, better offers/gimmicks to shift more metal. All cos this great island of ours is the shining light of Europe car sales. Repeating my point: so will not used car values go down even further?
Secondhand Value? - J Bonington Jagworth
I just read about the Subaru Legacies: "Top bid for a 75k 95N 2.0GL saloon was a mere £700". I'd have had that...
Secondhand Value? - Cardew
That was the original point of this thread. A car like that for £700 makes sense rather than the £7,500 example!

Secondhand Value? - Thommo
A quick perusal of autotrader will show that £7,500 will get you many excellent nearly new cars. At this price my choice would be a 2 year old new shape Mondeo Ghia X in black, minimal mileage and all the extras you could dream of. Thus if he can sell the Beemer for this sum then someone is paying a hell of a lot for that badge...
Secondhand Value? - Nsar
Cardew, I drive an A6 Avant N reg 105,000. Bought it in March with 95K for £5k. In 7months and 10k not a murmur of trouble and servicing at my local Audi indy is cheap as chips.
It drives like new, loads of toys, luxury, safety and even allowing for its age a fair wack of road presence/prestige but that last is I'll agree subjective on the grounds of reg plate snobbery.
I'll put another 40k on it and sell it after 3 years ownership for what, say £2k?
So I get a luxury car suited to what I want it for that is costing me £1k p.a. in depreciation.
I'd turn the question round - who on earth wouldn't buy a car like this? We are taken in by the manufacturers bleating on about major advances when a model is facelifted. My car will do a journey as quickly as a brand new A6, has broadly the same spec but costs about an eighth of a new one and a new one, on any measure is simply not eight times better.
Secondhand Value? - Cardew
I understand the points you are making, but would make the following observations.

Firstly the BMW costs 50% more than yours did and has a higher mileage.

As you concede, any road presence/prestige is purely subjective - personally I think an old 5 series has zilch!

Lastly I question the assumption that a car of that age/mileage will be run without major expenses to get through MOTs etc.

For me the £700 'disposable' Subaru makes sense but the similar vintage, higher mileage 5 Series BMW "on any measure is simply not 10.714 times better!!"

Secondhand Value? - Nsar
All fair comments. I looked at 5 series estates and found them all to carry a like for like premium of about £3k which is borne out by your figures. The same goes for Mercs. Audi wouldn't be my first choice of marque, but it offered enough promise of quality and relaibility (and the FASH and one prev owner helped) without the premium of the other German marques - even at that age the investment in their brand image seem to pay off.
I wouldn't have chosen a non-German car for this kind of purchase so I'm not claiming to be immune from the blandishments of the manufacturers!
I take your point about the probability of a major cost repair in the next 2 and a bit years - but so far so good and I'm going to overservice a bit by way of insurance.
Secondhand Value? - Indy
Slightly straying off ... I am in the market for an A6. What is your cars engine size? How is the fuel consumption?
Secondhand Value? - Nsar
2.8 V6

Fuel consumption - not good - I average about 24mpg according to the computer this is doing a commute of about 14 miles each way of which the middle section, about 6 miles is M/way, the rest very heavy traffic.


Value my car