First car - what to go with?

(9 Posts)
vinoandbrie Thu 16-Jul-15 13:30:45

I'm looking for a first car, automatic, five door, suitable for me and DDs, (5&1).

Any recommendations?

I'm thinking VW Polo, BMW 1 series perhaps, but would be great to be pointed towards some alternatives to check out.

Also after advice in terms of finance. These PCP deals seem ok in terms of monthly payout, and I'm aware that any car finance is a rip off, but is this more/less of a rip off than others?! Am thinking put down max deposit, have say a 24 month term, and then trade in.

I have no knowledge whatever of cars, we have never had a car before, so any advice very gratefully received.

NKfell Thu 16-Jul-15 14:16:55

I love PCP and if you're looking at 1 Series then looking at Golfs, Audi A3s etc. is more sensible because they're the same class.

Most PCP deals come with free servicing and you can also blag tyre insurance too which is handy if you go for BMW.

If you're looking at the Polo then consider the Audi A1- they're like a tardis.

DP has an A3 and there's bags of room. I used to have a Fiat 500 with 2 kids, me and occasional friend it was fine!

WMittens Thu 16-Jul-15 23:16:02

What is your budget for the car (list price)?

Ignore the monthly headline price, you're buying (or funding) a new car. Does your disposable income give affordability for a £20,000 brand new car (ignoring finance)? (A new 1 series starts at £21,180 before anything nice is added in to the car.)

If you're putting in a deposit and then spending your spare monthly pennies on the payments, will you have enough saved in two years time to put down a deposit on another car to replace the one you've just given back? You may have a grand or two in equity, but that's not guaranteed.

Finance isn't a rip off necessarily, but new car ownership is a steep cost; you pay for the privilege. The most expensive part of new car ownership is depreciation, when you're at the steepest part of the depreciation curve. Depending on the deal, you could have easily spent £10-12k over two years on an average car with nothing at the end of it.

A quick look at a BMW finance offer on a 118i gives £10,724.78 total cost over two years, based on 10,000 miles pa. £0.53p/mile, assuming you use the full allowance (8,000 or 9,000 mile limits can be quoted).

GiddyOnZackHunt Thu 16-Jul-15 23:22:27

I would be wary of a brand new car as your first car. It adds to the pressure of driving. If you mark the alloys then you have done the first mark etc. I would look at finance options and get a three year old Polo or Fabia or the equivalent Seat. They will be solid cars with years in. My Skoda is 9 years old and hasn't needed anything significant spent on it or failed an MOT.

GiddyOnZackHunt Thu 16-Jul-15 23:24:31

Forgot to say, main dealers will have approved used car schemes which give you more security than a car supermarket.

vinoandbrie Fri 17-Jul-15 00:17:57

Food for thought, thank you all!

Budget is not a concern when looking at tis level of car, I'm only after a small car as it's my first and I don't want something that feels difficult to control, rather than plumping for a small car because of finance limitation. Likewise I'm going for finance because it's not my particular desire to own the car outright, I'd like to swap it in in a couple of years with no hassle. But ultimately is it better to just buy the thing cash? God, why is there no idiots guide to this!

Re nearly new cars, I agree this would be ideal as lots of say two year old cars will be in fab condition still. Where I stumble is in searching out a reputable dealership, will the car salesman see me coming and sell me a dud as it's clear I know zilch about cars, or is this just me being cynical? grin

Charlieboo30 Fri 17-Jul-15 05:53:38

I have a Toyota Aygo on a PCP and while I love the car, I wouldn't have a PCP again. I'm constantly worrying about damage (they only accept 'reasonable damage' when you come to trade in) and mileage. Not only are you restricted but because I have a service plan, I have to be at a certain mileage by a certain time (and not over as you get charged). This doesn't really work for me with my job (school based) as I do far more miles in term time.

Next time, I will get another car on finance but not a PCP. Just don't feel it's worth the stress.

WMittens Fri 17-Jul-15 09:27:55

But ultimately is it better to just buy the thing cash?

If you must have brand new, the better deals are usually in some sort of finance - leasing is generally the cheapest cost over a fixed period, especially if you definitely want to give it back. However you are stuck in that hire agreement, there's no early break clause (at least, not without penalty); with PCP you can hand the car back when 50% of the total amount is repaid.

lots of say two year old cars will be in fab condition still.

I have a 14 year old car, a 12 year old car and a 9 year old car, all in good condition. The total purchase and maintenance costs (over 2-3 years, about 30,000 miles) are less than the purchase price of the cheapest brand new 1 series.

NKfell Fri 17-Jul-15 16:43:41

I've never had any problems with PCP- with the mileage, I got a 8k per yr on a 3 yr deal then after 30 months when I was getting close to 23k I chopped it in and had equity. They've never been overly harsh with the damage either- I had a couple of scratches (from other people in car parks) and they never said anything.

If you did feel you were getting close and wanted to adjust the mileage it doesn't change it by much- DP went from 10k to 15k and it added £17 per month.

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