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To buy a diesel car for our family of 5?

(115 Posts)
Foxjar Sat 13-Jan-18 09:56:19

We need a gutsy car for our family of 5 which include 3 teens. Not brand new but newish.

The only cars big enough with a decent engine for what we need it to do( carry 3 teens in decent seats with space,cope with loads of luggage and long journeys)in our price range are diesel. They have Adblue which puts it in the second to top emissions band i.e. much better than many petrol cars.

When you take into account the damage electric cars do to the environment from mining of chemicals needed to make batteries,shipping it,their manufacture and then the fossil fuels burned to produce the electricity there is very little in said slightly low ec emissions grading as far as I can see between the Adblue diesel we're looking at and the top electric cars i.e. morally I see no point.There are no electric cars big enough anyway. All the petrol options have crappier engines. There is one but it is waaaay out of our price range( 60k Volvo).

Soooo what to do? Would buying diesel option be foolhardy? Our car is on its last legs. Could wait a year tops. It's a dirtier older diesel so ideally need to sort this sooner.

etap Sat 13-Jan-18 09:59:29

Buy what you need.

lljkk Sat 13-Jan-18 10:01:34

I'm impressed you can stick 3 teens in back, that...
...they don't try to kill each other
...they want to go to same places at same time wouldn't prefer to be without them in a confined place.

Be realistic. How often is this car going to be full of 5 people & how often will it be used for one person to commute places. Why do you need "gutsy"?

strangerhoesagain Sat 13-Jan-18 10:02:32

‘Gutsy’ please get over yourself

MojoMoon Sat 13-Jan-18 10:02:59

Restrictions on diesel cars will come into force in various cities over the next few years, I believe
London and Oxford have already outlined their plans

It is not about emission but particulate matter which is much higher from diesel cars. Local authorities are under pressure to reduce particulate levels as many places are way over safe limits and one way is to ban diesel.

So you need to be aware that you may be banned from certain areas of cities in this car, which may be an issue.

scaryteacher Sat 13-Jan-18 10:05:24

Brussels has also gone LEZ this month, and they are after the diesels. If you wanted to the car abroad then there may be places you can't take it without being fined, or paying over the odds to drive there.

MojoMoon Sat 13-Jan-18 10:07:17

Also you need to read the actual academic study that the stories about electric Vs conventional cars were based on. The authors of the study wrote a public letter saying it had been misinterpreted by the media who were comparing the wrong types of vehicles from the study and had only used power generation data from the US Midwest which is much more carbon intensive than the UK.

See the letter to the FT here;

Foxjar Sat 13-Jan-18 10:09:30

Stranger do suggest a different word that conveys getting up hills and travelling long journeys with 5 heavy teens and adults and their accompanying luggage. hmm

Pickleypickles Sat 13-Jan-18 10:11:15

I thought emissions were related to tax? So if a car has really cheap tax its better for the environment and the ones with the most expensive tax are the worst for the environment. Is that not correct? (Sorry to hijack your thread)

wonkylegs Sat 13-Jan-18 10:13:10

I read a more recent study - will have to look out the reference that compared European energy generation & electric cars and included the life cycle costs of electric and conventional cars and electric cars still came out better environmentally than conventional cars, even hybrids are marginally better in this country. They are even better in countries like Norway with high levels of hydroelectricity.
The tone of your post suggests you have already made your mind up.
Most people still choose their cars for the conventional conveniences such as space rather than environmental considerations so you won't be alone.

poshme Sat 13-Jan-18 10:15:06

We recently had to change our car and needed a 7 seater. We bought diesel.
Spent a long time on 'my next green'and got the greenest possible diesel.

I test drive a hybrid 7 seater and hated it.

We'll live with paying higher taxes to drive it.

Foxjar Sat 13-Jan-18 10:15:41

Mojo modern diesels have filters to filter out particulates. Fossil fuels are fossil fuels.Were going to need a lot more power stations. You're just shoving the problem elsewhere with electric cars. You can still drive through European cities with LEZ. The diesels we're looking at are in better categories than many petrol cars,as I said the second to top just below electric.

AlessandroVasectomi Sat 13-Jan-18 10:18:40

The usual reason to prefer diesel over petrol is annual mileage. If you’re going to cover less than 10,000, a diesel would be inadvisable as the superior fuel economy will not outweigh the additional cost of diesel fuel and the diesel engine. There is also the type of journey to consider; a diesel will be no good if you travel mainly short distances as you need longer runs to clear the particulate filter. If your current car is on its last legs, that suggests you keep your cars for the longer term. If that is so, you should also be aware that when diesel engines need repair they are costlier than petrol.

The trend in modern petrol engines is towards turbo charging. This gives greater power output from smaller units, so I don’t know which engines you’ve been considering that would be regarded as ‘crappy’.

However, what can’t be denied is that diesels are set to become ever cleaner, so if that is your priority, you’ll just have to keep searching. Have you tried the HonestJohn website? They have a tool to help choose your next car. You enter all the criteria for your ideal car and it comes up with suggested models. Good luck!

MargaretCavendish Sat 13-Jan-18 10:19:00

Leaving aside your own feelings about the known impact of diesel, which may or may not bother you, I'd be really wary of buying one now - there's every possibility that much greater disincentives to diesel will come in, including either higher tax or restrictions on their use. If that happens you'll be stuck with a car that causes you expense or inconvenience you didn't foresee, and which, as a result, has a massively reduced resale value.

LoniceraJaponica Sat 13-Jan-18 10:20:40

I get what the OP means about gutsy. We live in a very hilly area, and my diesel is gutsy enough to get me up a local long steep hill when it is full of teenagers. I can even overtake the slow lorries and buses in it.

Foxjar Sat 13-Jan-18 10:23:18

I've also elsewhere re the flooding for local people that lithium mining causes.

So morally I see very little difference.

Just wondering if it would be utterly silly to go down the diesel route which engineer very green dh is surprisingly favouring. We're not rich,how badly are we going to be clobbered?We need a 2 litre engine( luggage,bikes,camping stuff)and 5 proper seats.Lijk I hear you but we have no choice.

MargaretCavendish Sat 13-Jan-18 10:26:34

You're probably a lot safer buying a new diesel than an old one, as some of the proposed restrictions apply to older vehicles. If they go down the route of making diesel fuel more expensive, though, then that's obviously unavoidable regardless of the age of the vehicle.

Foxjar Sat 13-Jan-18 10:28:09

Dp is thinking of a small electric car for our daily commute(we car share or one of us cycles). The diesel saving will make it pay for itself. We'll need the bigger car for the weekends,camping and travelling across Europe which we want to do more of but can't afford flights x5. Do you think dh is insane? We wont be able to afford to replace it if we really get hammered i.e. we keep cars for a long time. As things stand now we could drive wherever we wanted in Europe as the system regards the diesels we're looking at favourably.

cricketqueen Sat 13-Jan-18 10:29:22

With newer petrol cars they are not that much different to diesels in terms of power. If you travel a lot then diesels can work put cheaper per mile but again nowadays their isn't much difference. Most petrol cars have a turbo now so they are 'gutsy'. The trend atm seems to be against diesel cars, more tax etc. Most diesels have filters to catch the crap but fossil fuels are all dirty you can't get away from that.
Overall it's your choice but I wouldn't write of petrol or hybrids completely. My dh drives a new 1ltr turbo civic and it is definitely gutsy.

Foxjar Sat 13-Jan-18 10:29:53

Can anybody recommend a big non diesel car for 5 with decent seats for all( i.e. not 2 flip downs that cause 2 to sit with their knees round their ears) and luggage space- with a 2 litre engine?

MargaretCavendish Sat 13-Jan-18 10:33:08

We'll need the bigger car for the weekends,camping and travelling across Europe which we want to do more of but can't afford flights x5

Realistically, how often will you be doing this? And, if they're all teenagers now, will all three of them want to come for many more years? If you spend every other weekend away camping then this seems like a good investment, but if it's something you do three times a year then buying a car especially for it seems like madness.

cricketqueen Sat 13-Jan-18 10:34:47

Why does it need to be a 2 litre engine?

paperandpaint Sat 13-Jan-18 10:35:41

Why come on a thread and be unpleasant about the OP’s choice of words - seriously just be nicer.

We had a Vauxhall something or other a few years ago and it was a nice car but no power so you struggled to get up a hill at more than 20mph and overtaking or coming out of slip roads was a nightmare. Gutsy is absolutely the right adjective!

Foxjar Sat 13-Jan-18 10:36:03

We live a long way away from family too. So 5 hour journeys are pretty regular.Parents getting older too. We simply can't afford holidays with flights and car hire on top of accommodation. Want to do stuff with the kids before they leave. This will be the last big car.

Foxjar Sat 13-Jan-18 10:37:19

Cricket because smaller struggles up hills,moving off slip roads with 5 adults and their crap.

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