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Cars - advice please on what to choose and where to look

(11 Posts)
extremelychocolateymilkroll Sun 06-Sep-09 15:06:47

After our ancient car died a couple of months ago we are looking at getting a second hand car but a bit newer this time. Dh has narrowed the search down to a Ford Focus or Toyota Prius. We would be mainly using the car for driving in town and to see my mum who lives about an hour's drive away. We are looking to get a car which is 2-3 years old and the differences between the 2 seem to be that the Prius is bigger and a bit more flash but the Focus would be be cheaper - to buy, run and service. We had one dd who is 2 and another on the way in February. Also, we are based in London. Any advice on where to look? TIA

kid Sun 06-Sep-09 18:29:25

We recently bought a car from cargiant. They had so many to choose from but we had already picked the one we wanted using their website

extremelychocolateymilkroll Sun 06-Sep-09 20:39:19

Thanks kid. Can I ask how did you find the experience? Did you feel the need to get an independent inspection done eg AA.

sazm Sun 06-Sep-09 21:07:50

make sure you get a good warranty with it,you should if you are looking at 2-3yrs old,
personally i would go for a focus,

kid Sun 06-Sep-09 21:52:19

The car we bought was just 7 months old so it still had a warrant for about 2 1/2 years so we didn't bother with the independent inspection.

We had already secured a loan with our bank but decided to see what they could do for us. They were able to slightly beat our banks offer so we went with them and were able to drive away the same day which was a nice surprise.

They did offer a warranty but as it came with the manufacturers warranty, we didn't bother. Can't even remember exactly how much it cost but I think it was a decent price.

extremelychocolateymilkroll Sun 06-Sep-09 23:48:30

Thanks sazm for advice about the warranty. Thanks again kid for the info.

sazm Mon 07-Sep-09 10:02:00

when we bought our car it was just 3 yrs old,so they done its first mot when we bought it,
the manufacturers warranty had also just expired,so we took out a yrs warranty(cost about £180) just under a yr later our headgasket went,luckily we had the warranty and it was fixed, the bill they sent to the warranty company was well over £1100!!!

so glad we spent the extra money and took out a warranty.

extremelychocolateymilkroll Mon 07-Sep-09 10:46:29

What bad luck sazm - what make of car was it?

sazm Mon 07-Sep-09 13:33:22

it was an MG, well known for bad engines but hey ho i liked it and didnt listen!

we had an older focus a while ago and it was a great car,my mum has a focus and co does a close friend,they all love theirs too!

lynniep Mon 07-Sep-09 14:11:53

Actually I was just about to recomment cargiant too. We bought our nissan tino there a few years ago. It was fairly efficient and as we had the money as a loan (didnt check if they could do a better offer like kid did!)
We also picked a car online then visited - there were a few we liked the look of and knowing nothing about cars we just sat in them and picked the one with the least mileage for the lowest price!

You are told all the details before you buy eg service history and stuff and they charged us £71 sales charge (this was beginning 2007 so car was about 4 years old) As kid says you can have up to 3 years warantee - I dont know if we took this but I dont think so. It all runs very efficiently but obviously if you visit I'd recommend NOT a weekend if possible!!

I thought the price was very good - maybe not as cheap as buying privately but you know what you're getting. The car has served us well so far.

kid Mon 07-Sep-09 19:56:34

We also went for the lowest mileage car, we seem to have got a good deal. So far, the car has been perfect, I love it.
I think they charged us £91 administration charge in May 09.

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