Older cars - J Bonington Jagworth
From HJ's piece, 'Trading in Older Cars Likely to End' (more EU rules) he concludes that "Basically, the value of any car more than 7 years old will be virtually nothing."

For people like me who regard a 7-year old motor as just run in, I can't decide whether this is a good thing or not. Presumably, private sales will still hold prices up a bit, but it will be interesting to see that happens.

Any thoughts, anyone?
Older cars - M.M

Interesting as you say. I really don't think it has sunk in with the man in the street how much motoring is changing year on year, it is getting far more biased towards much newer vehicles and far greater expense....expense that is soon going to be crippling for folks who just manage at present with a £750 banger.

I notice in the other thread on this topic there is a reference to Richard Hall covering this on his Bangernomics site, of course HJ has mentioned it, I've written an article in the Citroen Car Club magazine on a similar theme and Clarkson has also said the same in The Sun.

I suppose only time will tell how this pans out but for me there is a very useful age/type of vehicle that may well provide staggering value over the next 6-10 years and outlast newer vehicles going to the breakers.

Take a 1993/4ish Citroen/Peugeot TD. They are worth buttons...little more than £1000 at best and as little as £150 with the odd fault. Get one with a reasonable 120K and fair history. It will be good for another 100K with only the usual running gear routine replacements. Try and find one with no ABS, no airbag, no aircon and no keypad immobiliser. Of course it has to be a turbo-diesel, and at this age there are no engine ECUs to be a future liability. They don't rust unlike some other makes..get one in good nick now and £15 of Waxoyl in the summer will help it cover this extended period.

Of course you can substitute your own favourite car but it needs to be an ECU free, rust resistant model with a sound engine design.

Yearly service/MOT/repair liability will be about the same as one months depreciation on a newish car changed every three years. And when it finally has to go.....well that's when I'm not sure how the options will look for the following ten years.

We'll see.

Older cars - bazza
MM , totally agree. I’ve thought long and hard about this and come to more or less the same conclusion. Although I would say that it doesn’t have to be a turbo, that’s just more to go wrong! I’ve had both the atmo and TD ZXs over the past few years and although the TD was much quicker in top, the atmo was much more flexible for overall use. TD was fun though!
The latest diesels are hugely complex beasts, completely out of DIY scope, as far as I’m concerned! I have heard stories that diagnostic expertise is almost non-existent outside the dealer networks. I’ve also heard that when they do break it’s very expensive, eg £2.5 grand for a VAG TDi pump? (Is this correct?) So it’s quite possible, that any fuel savings made can be wiped out by one major component failure!
Here’s another potential cheapie to run - cheap parts, vast specialist network, no built in obsolescence, good re-sale and low depreciation, plenty of street cred as well, it’s a used……Land Rover Defender or 90! How about that then, I’m serious!
Older cars - M.M

Of course you do need a certain circumstance and mindset for this approach. If I were back to the major company financed vehicles I'd have the latest whatever and stuff the cost, 11K out of front tyres, 24K out of front dampers, 10K depreciation in three years...you know the score.

Funny you should add the Land Rover to the "thinking" equation...you'd like our yard.


Older cars - Andrew-T
This thread could develop into an interesting parallel to the Mobil Economy Run - except the winner is the one who gets most miles per £ during a given 12 months.
Older cars - J Bonington Jagworth
"winner is the one who gets most miles per £"

James Ruppert ran a series on those lines in Car magazine a few years ago, with points for performance and economy, and the overall cost (including proceeds from sale at the end) of the exercise. It was called the Cr*p Car Cup and was won by a Citroen Visa, IIRC.

Agree with almost all of above (despite my aversion to diesels) although it's going to be increasingly difficult to find vehicles without ECU's, air-con and ABS, let alone cats and air-bags!

Legislating cars off the road isn't very green, though, is it?
Older cars - Ian Cook
Very true, MM.

As you know I run an 8 year old Citroen C15 diesel van as a private vehicle, and it fits your model (except that it is non-turbo). Bought at 76K miles (allegedly) for £2000 and I've already run it for 3 years, and expect another 2 years use...by which time I will happliy throw it away and buy another.

No ECU, no aircon, no ABS - in fact the nearest thing to electronics is the radio, and that's a Sony!


Ian Cook
Older cars - Graham
Baz. Ooooh you're far to new for me.

I've got several Series III landies (and some "proper" cars). Got my first one a year ago. I thought that if I didn't like it I could sell it for what I paid. One year on I now have three. There is no depreciation at all. Now they may even go up, but that’s not the point. As for fuel consumption - well it's not good ! But offset that against 5 or 6 grand that people are prepared to throw away in initial depreciation for the "benefit" of owning a new car! The greens also seem to omit the energy used to produce a car in the first place. Amortise that cost over the life time of the car. !0 yrs for modern 50 for the Landy? Mmmmmm
Older cars - bazza
Hi Graham
I did of course mean to include the older LRs! A mate of mine has just bought a really nice Series 3. The beauty is he can now keep it going indefinitely as far as I can see, and, as you say, depreciation is non-existent. It's a tempting prospect, the more I look at it the more it makes sense, especially when I think how much I've lost in the last few years on nearly new stuff! And I can probably fix most things myself without a degree in electronics!
Older cars - Richard Hall
Here's another possible solution - 'modern classics'. At any one time, there are some cars which attract a cult following, and whose used prices defy gravity. I'm thinking Audi Quattro, Ford Sierra Cosworth, Lancia Delta Integrale, Lotus Carlton. Looking at newer stuff - Audi S2 and RS2, Subaru Impreza Turbo, that sort of thing. Corrados seem to be on the slide, but it'll be interesting to see how far they drop. Golf VR6? BMW M3? Buy the right car at the right time, keep it for a few years and you could see it go up in value. I remember an incredibly clean, one owner, full history Sierra Cosworth struggling to make £3K at auction ten years ago. Try finding a similar example now, and see how much it'll cost.

The lower depreciation wipes out the higher running cost, and because these cars have an enthusiastic following, spares and servicing are no great problem. And they are new enough to be decently reliable (possible exception of the Delta, which can be a bit, well, Italian). New Daewoo, or original shape Audi Quattro 20V? What would you do?
Richard Hall
Older cars - teabelly
An integrale is not for the fainthearted! A good integrale will hold it's value but what you save in depreciation could be spent on running costs and expect to spend somewhere between £1500 & £2000 a year. It is best to think of them as an ongoing restoration project rather than a car! The 4wd system is pretty bullet proof if looked after, ditto the engine but a lot of the problems with these cars are caused by incompetant garages and daft owners that don't do simple things like check the oil level. Certainly with the integrale some of the spares are a problem (can no longer get the headlights for the 16v & 8v versions) and the costs of some things ( exhaust manifold - £600-£850) are quite substantial.

Integrale values are very varied. Good ones will fetch really good money (up to 16-18k for dealer special Evo II) but ratty ones will sell for buttons (£2k ish for doggy 8v). A good late 16v is probably the best long term bet. Go for a later model as there are issues with the cam belts with the early engines and avoid the Evos as they are very expensive for a good one and have a weakness in the front suspension that means you are changing parts every 5k. The parts prices for the Evos are often also a lot higher. The leather interior is another one to avoid as it squeaks like crazy. The alcantara is actually quite pleasant.

I have spent the equivalent of a brand new Fiat Punto mia on mine (buying and fixing since June) I am not sure whether I would have been better off with the punto. Certainly a lot more fun to own and to drive a grale :-)

The safe bet I think would be a corrado (when they have fallen a bit further) and the m3. Less likely to have been raced and rallied! How about the lancia thema 8.32 with the ferrari engine?
Older cars - J Bonington Jagworth
I rather fancy an Integrale, although I suppose a Scooby would be more sensible. I had a Lancia HPE once, and loved it to bits. It lasted better than you might expect, but needed some work by the time I parted with it. Corrados will be an excellent buy before long, I imagine, although I hear that the G60 (supercharged) engine is a bit fragile. Nothing wrong with the VR6 of course, but I like the oddball stuff...
Older cars - Andrew-T
Richard - interesting list of 'modern classics', but it is also an interesting list of performance cars. You haven't included the insurance cost in your balance sheet - hope you have about 15 years NCD!
Older cars - teabelly
It's not that bad actually. I am paying around £750 for a group 18 car fully comp. I'm under 30 with 6 years ncd and a clean licence The average insurance premium in the country is around £600 so I don't think it is outrageous, especially considering the performance.
Older cars - Graham
My landy insurance is £84 fully comp unlimited milage for me and spouse.

And the parts are very cheap also.

It may not (silly - it definately isnt!) be as fast but there is such a huge grin factor. My kids are argueing about who will "inherit" it when they reach 17.
Older cars - Soupytwist

Could you please give an example of the sort of car that meets these criteria ? Obviously I’ve been round here long enough to know that we’re talking about base Xantias and ZXs. What’s the Peugeot equivalent from 93/94 – is it an early 306 ? I’m trying to put together a list of possibles for my aunt who’s finding her non PAS diesel Fiesta a bit hard to maneouvre. She wants diesel powered (going to use biodiesel to satisfy her desire to be green) and PAS.


And, given recent events it’s definitely not that one !!

Matthew Kelly
No, not that one.
Older cars - M.M

Well for an Aunt I'd go for a ZX over a 306. They are almost the same car anyway but the 306 has a greater image and will always sell for more into the younger market.

Personally I like the ZX seats, driving position and ride better...the fact that they are cheaper only adds to the equation.

Older cars - Marcus
Personally I like to have ABS and an Airbag - in fact lots of airbags.

I would also like all other cars to have ABS. Airbags is a matter for drivers and their passengers.

ABS makes driving safer for all of us.!!
Older cars - Phil I
Not for pedestrians, Bikers & cyclists tho Marcus.
Most of current safety measures actually degrade safety for people who are outside the envelope by the false sense of invincibility they engender.

Happy Motoring Phil I
Older cars - Marcus
"Not for pedestrians, Bikers & cyclists tho Marcus"

So ABS, with its better braking performance, doesn't make it safer for the pedestrians, Bikers & cyclists. How much do you need to degrade braking performance then?

Can't quote the exact statistics but road accident fatalities are approx 30% of that 20 odd years ago(and that includes those outside the envelope as you put it) with X times more traffic.

I understand your point about a driver's sense of invincibility but I suggest that is a small factor. Modern cars are safer for all on the road and we should not be encouraging use of cars without aids to safety such as airbags and ABS.

Older cars - J Bonington Jagworth
I don't object to ABS and airbags in principle, just that they reduce the longevity of the vehicle. However, I believe airbags only exist because of the Americans' reluctance to make seatbelts compulsory. In the sixties, Ford were persuaded by Chrysler and GM to drop safety as a selling point, as it was felt to present cars in a negative light!
Older cars - RichL
I dimly recall that one.
Wasnt it that Ford produced one model of their car with things like a padded dash and collapsible steering column, and advertised it on the basis of how safe it was in a crash.
Then it was dropped as they didnt like people thinking how unsafe a crash in any other model would be.

Or something like that.
Older cars - J Bonington Jagworth
You wouldn't think a padded dashboard was too threatening, would you? Still, they (Ford) made up for it with the Pinto fuel tank saga, where Pintos regularly fried their occupants in rear-end shunts, and Ford were shown to have costed the necessary corrections, concluding that it would be too expensive to fix! Corporate greed is nothing new...
Older cars - Andrew-T
MM - at 93/94 I shouldn't think the cost difference between ZX and 306 will be that huge. Personally I respect Cits but don't like them much. Aunts might prefer the Pug aesthetically?
Older cars - THe Growler
Old cars are better because:

- you can fix 'em yourself

- they look individual not like they all came out of the same

- they're cheaper to run. Depreciation is over, they're worth
zip anyway.

- if they eco ***is took their heads out of where they usually
keep them they would realise that maintaining and running
old cars is a better form of recycling and resource
management than than keeping on bringing out new ones which
they have to find room in the market for. But then the eco's
won't tangle with big business (put that in the "too-hard"
tray) much easier to make life miserable for the little

- old cars are really "old". You can keep that '87 Citroen
in your driveway without guilt. But (sharp intake of breath)
a 2 year old Beemer? Neighbours have this year's. Ooo, dear
feelings of inferiority, Bitter Half starts to nag, all that

- you may even end up with a classic if you hang on long enough
then you can sell it for a profit

By the way I still hate that pic on the right of the screen. Is he on the FBI's wanted list by any chance?


THE Growler

Older cars - J Bonington Jagworth
Agree entirely, but I guess it's just as well some people buy them new!

BTW, and nothing to do with my original topic, but there is a TV show here that features radio-controlled robots that bash seven bells out of each other in an arena policed by various suitably named 'house' robots. Tonight's programme had a new one called The Growler! You might want to take it up with the BBC...
ZX vs 306 - M.M

In pound notes I guess you could say the ZX and 306 are close in value year on year but the reality is that the 306 will always sell more quickly to a younger market...and many of the sub £1K cars are in that market.

If you are talking percentages though the 306 will often be 100% higher for an early one. I see/hear of many reasonable early ZX TDs for £500 or less floating about the trade or private circles, it is very rare for a 306 in the same condition to go much under £1K because of the extra demand.

That £500 will buy you a decent all filters service, coolant/brake fluid change, timing belt, new radiator and perhaps a couple of tyres. That is a tpical list of stuff required on many for sale at those prices and it's a great help to get that done within the £1K as well as buying the thing.

Your comments about not liking Cits sort of confirms the point I'm making. You know they are almost the same car underneath, to drive, same build quality yet you'll get a 306 every time for reasons of perceived image. The reality is that the ZX has many aspects that are more sensibly biased to usual private/family driving so you (well the aunt) might be getting a car that suits more and costs less...win-win!

I'm not knocking the 306 but see enough of both of these vehicles to look at them quite objectively.

ZX vs 306 - Ian Cook
MM is spot on with his critique of the 306 and ZX. I've had both and the ZX is streets ahead in terms of comfort and being "a nice car to drive".

You sit slightly higher in the ZX and the doors open wider - it's much easier to get in and out of. The only thing that does it down is the styling, which is why the 306 sells for a lot more money.

Ian Cook
ZX vs 306 - Glutton
Hey, I've got no hassle with people being prejudiced towards Citroens - the more they do so, the more bargains you can pick up!

Replaced my ole Golf with a 94 1.4 ZX, 72k, full service history for the princely sum of 500 quid. Its quick off the mark, comfy and is a pleasure to drive. And compared to a lot of other cars I've driven, it doesn't mind too much going over speed bumps.

Anyway, I look forward to driving it into the ground!!
ZX vs 306 - Andrew-T
MM - I won't quibble with anything you say. I will probably get a 306 every time, not because of 'publicly' perceived Image, but the image I personally perceive. I moved to 306s from a string of 205s, partly because of press enthusiasm, and partly because of the clear family likeness, both over and under the skin. I also ask why almost every model of Cit depreciates so rapidly if they are that good; and I have always been unattracted by traditional Cit excessive quirkiness.

Having said that, for me Peugeot has lost the plot with the 206 and 307.
ZX vs 306 - M.M

I know from your posts you support the 306 for far better reasons than just a shallow perception.

But we are both supporting basically the same drivetrain/floorpan/suspension/design ideas...just with our preferred cars skewed towards an individual taste.

I'm not going to argue the case for the whole Citroen range but you comment on why a Citroen should depreciate so rapidly if it is so good.

Well taking the 306/ZX as a specific comparison that is the point I'm making. Why indeed? There is no actual performance or mechanical reason for any great difference in values but a 20yr old female dance teacher will do anything to keep her 306TD with CD etc.....she wouldn't give a ZX a second look.

Human nature can hand out some real bargains if you are willing to go against this flow.

ZX vs 306 - Andrew-T
But MM - if the ZX/306 discrepancy is all about image, why does the public reject used ones, but apparently still buy them new (I know Citroen discounts are legendary, but still .. .. )
ZX vs 306 - M.M

Well I guess the public don't reject the older ZX as such, just make market forces adjust the prices to balance the demand.

And isn't that what Citroen have sussed so well with their current new cars? HJ commented late last year that Citroen were leaders in realising building and shipping blocks of "standard spec" cars and then moving them at keen prices was the way to go.

ZX vs 306 - DavidHM
I wouldn't say the Xsara is exactly sprinting out of showrooms ot private buyers. A lot of them are fleet cars on very cheap leases, where image is a very marginal consideration.

As far as the ZX was concerned, when it was new... if the average buyer was 45 in 1991, that person is now 57 and probably about ready for a Skoda Fabia saloon or something. It's another good car but the likely buyer probably has a different perspective on image from your average dealer or buyer in the £2k market of today.

Those Xsaras that do sell new are either Picassos (a completely different marketing proposition) or sold based on a combination of discount, space and ride comfort, primarily to people who don't know what their car will be worth in three years' time. Imperfect knowledge is a very powerful thing; ask Adam Smith if you don't believe me.
ZX vs 306 - Dave_TD
SWMBO reckons it's because "at a glance" if you see a ZX you KNOW it's at least 8 years old, whereas a 306 -might- be as young as 4 years. Yes I know, I know. But she refused to believe me today when we saw a K-reg Corsa and I pointed out it was 10 years old.
ZX vs 306 - zm
ZX: Amazing value thanks to its perceived (lack of) image: work colleague of my brother had his J plate ZX 1.4 Reflex surplus to requirements and taking up space so put the word around that it was for sale at .................£50. Yes really. (125000 miles, 3 mnths MOT, HPI clear, running great but required a lock kit and handbrake cable, that was all). Unbeleaveably no one wanted it; some people would'nt know a bargain if it was given to them. So I snapped it up and promptly sold it for £400 - still a lot of car for the money.What I find extraordinary though is the way so many punters will still pay £500 / £600 for J/K plate Escorts which really are the pits by comparison.
ZX vs 306 - J Bonington Jagworth
"so many punters will still pay £500 / £600 for J/K plate Escorts.."

On the grounds that they are 'easy to fix', which is just as well, really! There is also the 'it can't be any good for £50' problem, which applies to all sorts of things. E.g. I use Open Office in preference to Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, etc.) as it just as capable and should, by rights, take over the planet. Unfortunately, it is free and therefore viewed with deep suspicion by commercial consumers who feel 'safer' paying £400 a pop to MS. Funny old world...
Older cars - Soupytwist
ZX is currently top of my recommendation list, if only I can get her past the fact she's likely to be driving a fairly well used car in terms of mileage. I'm desperately trying to get her away from spending about 2/2.5 grand on something that looks good but will be whole load of hassle. She's done that twice before so perhaps she'll be scared off by now.

That thread on the Maestro got me thinking, especially as there's a 87k mile turbo diesel for sale in North Suffolk on the owners club site (she lives in South Norfolk).

Matthew Kelly
No, not that one.

Ask Honest John

Value my car