Buying A Cost Effective Car

Posted on April 7th, 2012 in Money Saving Tips,Random Thoughts by Stephanie

Buying A Cost Effective Car

I’ve recently been thinking about buying my first car and what would be most cost effective. When buying a car, the first thing you may decide on is whether you want a huge seven seat car for your whole family or a smaller 3 door car but with record fuel prices pushing up costs for motorists it has become necessary to also be cost savvy when buying cars.

Firstly, is the great debate on whether a new or used car is more cost effective. It would be great to buy a brand new car but new cars are a lot more expensive than used ones and the value of the car depreciates greatly after only a year of ownership. However new cars usually come with inclusive warranties from the car manufacturer, free or discounted servicing and no MOT to pay for the first three years. A new car will have no wear and tear so it is less likely to break down compared to an older one and is probably more reliable. New cars are generally more fuel efficient than older models and produce less carbon emissions so this could save you money on tax. However insurance is higher than for used cars where you can find a lot of cheap car insurance deals. If you are lucky enough to get a used car that has no problems in the future this will definitely be the cheaper option but otherwise it could end up costing you just as much as a new car. I would say that a safe bet is to buy a car that is around 6 months old which will probably be in just as good condition as a brand new one yet it will cost you thousands of pounds less.

Another variable to consider when buying a car is whether you want one that runs on diesel fuel or petrol. In the UK, although diesel is ‘greener’, it has gradually become more expensive than petrol. Diesel cars are also more expensive to buy and dearer to service. Although diesel engines generate 10-20% lower carbon emissions per mile than an equivalent petrol engine which means that your car tax will be lower, recently some of the latest small petrol engines deliver fuel efficiency on par with or even greater than that of diesel. Diesel cars obtain 25 to 35 percent better mileage so if you plan to clock up a lot of mileage then buying a diesel car might be worthwhile however if you are a low-mileage driver you could save hundreds of pounds by opting for a petrol model.

In the UK, car taxation is based on CO2 emissions so the less CO2 your car produces, the cheaper your tax will be. Cars that emit 100g/km CO2 or less are exempt from road tax and can travel into the London congestion charge zone for free too so long as they also meet the Euro 5 standard for air quality. That equates to a £2750 per annum saving if you drive into London every day for work!

So when buying a car it is important to take into account all these cost factors. Seems like a nearly new, petrol car (because I will only be using the car during the weekends) that has low CO2 emissions is my best bet! :)

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Comment by italian cheese
2012-04-09 15:04:50

I have been looking into a new car recently as well. I was looking at leasing so I could get a newer car and not have to worry so much about depreciation. I am still in the clouds about what I should do though.

Comment by Hemant Mendi Ratta
2012-07-05 19:25:56

This article will help me take a decision on which is the best car to buy at low prices and best performance.Thanks.

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