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Company Car <£20k Help - pablo
Hi all

Am in delightful posn of having my car renewed by work! Allowed up to £20k.

Must haves: fab seats with lumbar adjust due to severe & recurrent back problem. Great long distance comfort. Power

Would like: decentish fuel economy as I have to pay my own, but being young I am prepared to downgrade this if I can have something really hooliganlike for once. Space for cramming in mates & parents on occasion

Not bothered: Residuals & servicing costs etc. Any family facilities as I am single.

Have a 1996 omega 2.0 which I really rate on comfort, toys & handling. In fact I am bitten by the big rear wheel drive bug. I was going to go for one of these with the V6 option until my bro mentioned this site. Can I do better for somebody elses cash? He mentions Alfa but I know nothing about them apart from jokes about rust.

Not a really important factor, more of a 'what if' but I will have option to buy this car in 4 years time, which might fit in with a few other things. Thought occurs that it might be worth going for something good, but that will depreciate like a stone. More intersted in seats size & oomph though!

Forgive me if there's been loads of posts on this. Just tell me how to find them!

Many thanks
Re: Company Car <£20k Help - Simon Whaites
A BMW 318iSE or a Lexus IS200 Sport might be worth a look, or if you are considering buying it an Omega or Toyota Camry etc might fit the bill for the big depreciation.
Re: Company Car <£20k Help - Alvin Booth
HI Pablo,
Just hope I haven't got shares in your company.
If I was the Chairman I would have all my men in Reliant Vans if they still made them.
I'm not a complete killjoy however and would give you the choice of colour and allow you the use of it for recreational purposes. (put your own petrol in of course). provided you didn't thrash it about showing off to your birds.

They don't call me Arkwright for fun.

Re: Company Car <£20k Help - Micky
">depreciate like a stone<" Buy a lemon...... sorry Citroen (hur,hur)

David Woollard is not gonna like this! - David Lacey
Oh dear!
Someone dares to knock Citroens here.......
Re: David Woollard is not gonna like this! - Micky
....waiting.... (I think Dave W has gone to bed, which is where all good Citroen drivers should be, it is after 10-00pm)

Re: David Woollard is not gonna like this! - David Woollard

I'm cool with any opinion.

Yes I was in bed, busy day doing 1000 bales of hay in baking heat, not just the sun but the tractor gearbox would have done a nice steak. Enjoyed the 4 mile road trip to the field as well, the tractor/baler combination really "regulated" the Sunday traffic at a safe 18mph!

Even managed to spend half the earnings on a 1963 Land Rover (parked in the long grass on the farm) on the way home....another project for the yard.

Why am I so cool about your Citroen comments? Well the fact the values drop rapidly means I can enjoy a mint, rust free, refined TD with history for absolute buttons. Thanks to the guys who are buying them new and subsidising my "habit".

See that's done Citroens, Land Rovers, tractors and speed in one.

Oh yes Alvin the Reliant Robin was surely a joke, there's nothing wrong with a MKIII Cortina 1600XL in bronze.

Farmers and Lemons - Micky
">Enjoyed the 4 mile road trip to the field as well, the tractor/baler combination really "regulated" the Sunday traffic at a safe 18mph!<"
I didn't know farmers were allowed to do this sort of thing, surely there should be a law against these outrageous "regulating" activities? Of course, as a townie I fully support the Great Tony's crusade against the excesses of the agricultural community.
Clearly, one advantage of running second hand lemons is that you never have to decide if any major repairs are worthwhile, the value of the lemon is always less than the proposed repair costs. I would suggest banger racing as a suitable and fitting finale to the life of a lemon, but the hoots of derison from competitors and spectators alike would deter all but the hardiest lemon pilot.

(hur,hur) ;-)

Re: Farmers and Lemons - David Woollard

No problem with the 18mph "traffic regulation" they were packed so densely behind the actual flow rate was massive, and they were also so safe chatting on their mobile phones at that low speed.

And as for the lemons, did you mean Citroens? Keep it up, the more they are insulted the cheaper they'll get, might even buy another tomorrow.

Repairs rarely seen here, preventative maintenance is the order of the day.

Re: Farmers and Lemons - Darcy Kitchin

There's more to this lemon thread than meets the eye. I think I remember reading that Citoen's founder Andre Citroen was originally from Belgium and changed his name from Citron purposely to avoid this sort of confusion.
Re: Farmers and Lemons - John Slaughter
It wouldn't have made a scrap of difference round here. I think the local paper has got either a non-car person or a Citroen hater on the telephone staff. It's usual to see at least half the classifieds advertising 'Citreons'.


Re: Farmers and preventative maintenance - Micky
To the farmer

"Repairs rarely seen here, preventative maintenance is the order of the day.<" Now there's a novel concept, a farmer maintaining equipment instead of ordering new and taking full advantage of the delights of EU funding.
From my infrequent forays into rural areas (dangerous places, full of strange people), I have observed that the average farmer considers it acceptable to use bale twine to hold agricultural equipment together. Does your lemon feature any bale twine?

">the more they are insulted the cheaper they'll get,<" A secondhand lemon can get cheaper? Oh come on! Cheaper than what? A parsnip perhaps?


You've really started something with baler twine. - David Woollard

Never said I was a farmer, just said I was going baling on my tractor. Preventative maintenance is the order of the day here. Six hours pre-season maintenance on baler for perhaps 30 hours work, bit like having your car serviced one day every week.

No shiny new equipment either. Baler 35yrs old, mower 37yrs, tractor 30yrs and so on. Only one vehicle on the road to match these survival periods and that's a Land Rover.

Not even a hint of baler twine holding anything mechanical together, holding trousers up perhaps.

Ever bought any baler twine Micky? Best value string in the land. Only £10 for 12,000 feet. In the fens we get the kids to roll it round old toilet roll middles, 120ft at a time. Sells down the boot sale for 50p. Much cheaper than the £3.49 at the garden centre. So get your big rolls for £10, few evenings for the kids and you're looking at £50 gross. Nice little earner.

Cheaper than a parsnip will do fine, actually round here parsnips are well regarded for medicinal properties. Don't knock them, you might fall off your bike outside our house one day and need treatment.

Farmers, twine, money (and upsetting Yorkshiremen) - Micky
To the pretend farmer

">Never said I was a farmer, just said I was going baling on my tractor. <"...... So who else would drive tractors other than a farmer? I sense your mood is changing, I trust I'm not winding you up? And I thought wind-ups were a traditional rural occupation (what else is there to do out in the sticks?)

">In the fens we get the kids to roll it round old toilet roll middles, 120ft at a time. Sells down the boot sale for 50p. Much cheaper than the £3.49 at the garden centre. So get your big rolls for £10, few evenings for the kids and you're looking at £50 gross. Nice little earner.<" .....Don't your kids have anything else to do? It must be a dull life in the fens. As I recall the best bit about driving through Lincolnshire is going over the border into Yorkshire....until you meet a Yorkshireman (that should upset someone). A few evenings work to earn £50 gross? Obviously, after you pay tax on that (a farmer paying tax?), you're left with a pretty useful sum. Should be enough to buy three sheep or a bag of turnips.

">you might fall off your bike outside our house <" No chance, I haven't ridden on road for many years, too many idiots in cars, lemons and tractors



Re: Farmers, twine, money (and upsetting Yorkshire - Bill Giles

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Bill Giles? - Micky
Not the Bill Giles, weatherman to the masses?




(bet you haven't heard that one before!)
Re: Company Car &lt;£20k Help - Harry
Forget the usual crowd - I'd go for an Alfa 147 2 litre lusso Selespeed (150bhp). Drive one if you haven't already. Bags of kit, very safe, sublime handling and a great interior. Plus the old F1 type paddle shift to play with - or use the gear stick sequentially, or switch to full auto mode to make town driving more relaxing. Its one amazing car and it looks damn good. Depreciation wont be as high as other Alfas but you should still get a car you know you've looked after well at a good price at the end of it all! Spec I'd choose for 20k is Nuvolo (iridescent) blue paint (classy!) leather, and the 17" super sport alloys. Oh, and the auto rain & polution sensors. Everything else is standard, including a very good Bose stereo.

If you can wait a few months Alfa is going to bring out a 230bhp version!!!
Lets face it, Alfa is owned by the same bunch as is Ferrari, and some of the technology is shared! Need I say more?
Re: David Woollard is not gonna like this! - honest john
I wouldn't go for a Selaspeed unless you like hard shoulders. I reckon your best choice for £20k is a Toyota Celica GT 190. It's the best handling front drive car there is and with the extra 50bhp goes a bit too. You lie rather than sit in it, so this should be good for your back because it relieves the pressure on the base of your spine. Al least, that's what Professor Mark Porter of The Ergonomics Unit at Loughborough University says.

Re: Seat Toledo V5 or Leon 1.8T - Alvin Booth
A MK3 Cortina XL. have you gone mad?
The peasants should be kept in their place.
I wouldn't like to take you to a shareholders meeting and try to defend your decision to have the salesmen driving around in upmarket wheels.
At pablo's age I was driving my Dads Austin A30 and was the bees knees!!!
MkIII Cortina and Citroens. - David Woollard

Perhaps you are right. For a real penance Micky would have all the poor s-ds driving Citroens!

I bet he drives a BX diesel anyway and just finds it hard to "come out".

Owning up - Micky
To the farmer who may not be a farmer:

No! My secret is up! You have seen through my disguise. Even I wouldn't sink to a BX, however my employer provides me with a wide choice of company car. I selected a Lemon Xantia HDi as the perfect vehicle for a driver of maturing years who no longer feels the need to compete with the hoi-ploi (spelling?). How wrong could I be? The vehicle took 10 000 miles to loosen up and I wondered why it appeared so surprisingly spritely, it would appear that I have been supplied with monstrously powerful 110 hp instead of the humble 90 hp. With diseals, sorry, diseals (...oh alright, slow cars) the extra 20hp is important. It gets worse, the C5 oil-burner with more horsepower looks good (aaaarrrggghh, where's my slippers? I must buy a Harley to rediscover my youth!)

I'm sure you have guessed I have had a minor involvement many years ago with things agricultural. John Deeres (spelling?) with light front-ends wheelying at a touch of the throttle spring to mind.

Setting the record straight. - David Woollard

Serious bit......

Some of my posts contain a bit of sport, some dead serious replies to car/technical questions.

I wouldn't want your good natured teasing to make others think I was less than truthful, after all we can all pretend to be anything in this "virtual pub" but I am quite against misrepresentation on the net.

So........I am not a farmer but I do drive a tractor and do baling this time of year. I enjoy restoring/maintaining the old farm equipment in the same way as others have classic cars. As a side interest I have aquired the skills of haymaking over the past few years and use these locally. Sort of a serious hobby really.

Cars and Citroens in particular are my main thing hence the time spent here information sharing.

Only get wheelies on my International if you leave off the front weights!

Tractor weight boxes - Micky
Ah yes, the fully laden weight box on the front of a tractor, to be avoided at all costs by lesser vehicles.

Tractor weight boxes and other hazards. - David Woollard

Round here the worse one is a John Deere loader driven about at 30mph with an oversized grain shovel on the front, big enough to swallow a Toyota Yaris.

He runs with it set about 300mm off the ground, the leading edge all polished and ready to cut a pedestrian off at the knees.

Tractor vs car - Micky
Many, many years ago, a young tractor driver was turning left from a minor road into a field (via the gate for a change). A rather wide line was taken due to the muck spreader (complete with full load of sh*t) attached to the back of the John Deere (is that a giveway?); a thrusting young gentleman (driving his mummy's Renault) - who had followed the tractor for at least 100yds - decided this would be a good opportunity to undertake on the inside. Result? Mangled wreckage of Renault rolls into ditch, thrusting young gentleman survives (at least until he gets home to mummy), John Deere suffers bent tracking rod (fixed with the highly technical application of gas bottles and hammer).
Moral of the tale? If you find yourself in a ditch, complete with your mummy's Renault, don't be offended when a poor farm boy offers to tow your mummy's pride and joy back onto the road for a small consideration. Names have been changed to protect the guilty.

Hur, hur

Re: Setting the record straight. - Darcy Kitchin

Farmers should give you plenty of scope to pursue your hobby. Apparently this community, the so-called guardians of our countryside, cannot run their highly subsidised businesses without a collection of ancient unusable machinery, 10,000 used tyres, a few derelict buildings, enough plastic bags to cover Wembley Stadium, a handful of derelict tractors and two dozen oil drums.

As Mickey might say, hur hur.

One of the more interesting web sites that I have visited is that of the Air Accident Investigation Bureau. Late last year, I came across the heart-rending story of the pilot of a classic aircraft who suffered engine failure on take-off. Against all the odds, he managed to coax his crippled plane back on to the airfield in one piece, only to have the undercarriage summarily ripped off by a prehistoric rusty old harrow hidden in the long grass.

Pity someone like yourself hadn't removed the hazard and restored it earlier.

This is the site that revealed that the ill-fated Paris Concorde used a mere 800Kg of fuel to taxi to its take-off point. Makes me wonder what all the fuss about catalysers and pollution is all about. I'd be surprised if an ordinary Xantia diesel used that much in its entire life.
Re: Farmers and Lemons - pablo
As interesting as the banter about Citrons & hay bales is, this is the kind of reply I was hoping for!

Ok I'll test drive one. The geezers in the smoking room mentioned that the new Jag might be worth a looksee. I've always had a soft spot for Jags. Haven't done any homework yet. What do you think?

Oh, ignore that bit about 'maybe I'll buy it after 4 years etc.'. Not after meeting my new boss. 4 weeks & counting.

Re: Seat Toledo V5 or Leon 1.8T - Guy Lacey
Depending on how much of a hooligan u really want to be - I reckon you can't go wrong with a SEAT - quality build and engines at a few grand less than a VW/Audi - u could even go Skoda!

I've driven both the Toledo V5 and the Leon 1.8T and they are on the opposite ends of the spectrum - V5 refined, easy, smooth power and the Leon is a bit young and thrusting (like me!!) but with 6spd box u can't go wrong.

Not sure about the seats but I've always found any VAG sourced seats firm but extremely supportive.
Re: Jaguars - Andrew Battrick

X-type is a solid choice but you won't get much for your money and you may get all the teething troubles as both engine, drive train and body is all new.

The base X-type (22k) doesn't have much (e.g. heated front screen) which is standard on most Fords. However, the general standard is much better than the S-type as this is a 'make or break' car for jag.

You can have 20% of a Jag if you buy a Mondeo! The new Zetec S fits under 20K and is probably the quickest Ford at the moment. Depreciation will be high and you get the sales rep label. It can return about 34mpg.

Alternatively a Volvo S60 is an option - if you don't mind the image.

Re: Fast tractors - Stuart B
Mind you re tractors I do get amused at the sight of the 60 mph Fastracs in full power 4 wheel drifts. Now who do I know so I can have a go on one, real hooligan machine I reckon. What with the aircon and the stereo might get a bit of interest with the lads down B&Q car park on Saturday nights?

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