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interzone55
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For the past 12 years I've always had new cars, but now I'm think it may not be the best idea.

I've got about £11k budget to replace my current Skoda Fabia. I'm currently driving about 450 miles a week, most of that made up of a 65 mile each way commute three days a week. So economy, comfort, reliability and decent driving experience are important.

In my price range is the Kio Rio Diesel (7 year warranty), Fiat Punto & Panda Diesels (cheap and fun to drive, Fiat 500 too small for my frame unfortunately) and Citroen C3 (cheap to insure)

I also have my eye on a 3-year old Mini Cooper D, which is within my £11k budget.

The Mini is the most economical of my selection, and has good seats and driving dynamics, but it's 3-tears old and has 45,000 miles on the clock.

Has anyone here had a "new" Mini, are they reliable? I used to have a Mini when I first started driving, and I used to repair it with a couple of spanners and a lump hammer, but cars now are a little more complex.

I suppose my question is that now cars are on the whole more reliable than they used to be, is it important to buy new any more, or can I buy a 3-year old car with a reasonable amount of confidence?

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Condom

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My car is still am M plate so new it is not. It starts first time every day and being a very high spec model to begin with I sit in comfort with all the mod cons many new cars are just getting. I have seen my neighbours new cars come and go and the moans and groans they make about how much it is costing them to drive. I smile when mine passes its MOT test every year without spending any money on it and they are constantly forking out hundreds of pounds on repair bills and probably more than my car is worth. You can still see my face in the polish although I wouldn't recommend it as I'm not a pretty sight.

I used to buy new cars but noadays I wouldn't even consider it.

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OTT_B

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alan14

If you're commuting 65 miles each way then the chances are that you are either on 70mph limit roads a lot, or 60mph at least. At this point the 'smaller' town type cars are not economic to drive - they are geared for lower speeds which means that at motorway speeds the engines are revving high and using fuel. A larger engine with higher gear ratios will give the same fuel economy but at lower revs....and therefore probable increased reliability.

With the mileage you cover you've got little economic choice but to go for either diesel or LPG/petrol, with lpg typically being the more economic (not always).

For £11k I'd look at a Renault Megane. The 1.5DCi engines are very economic (as are the 1.9 diesels) and the higher trim level cars are well equipped. A 2010 / 59 plate 1.5 Coupe is around £11k from a main agent. Alternatively have a look at a Ford Focus.

I'd be inclined to avoid the Kia - there's nothing wrong with the, but technologically they're a step in reverse and lack the refinement of other brands.

The Minis are undoubtedly good cars, but have a look at the Megane and Focus as well.

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woodchip

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And New Renaults are not reliable, mine is a old 1.9dti Laguna very low revving. ticks over at just under a 1000rpm but at 40 its only doing 1500 rpm and at 70 25000 rpm starts first time without the wait for heaters, 40 to 45 local running but drops a bit in winter 38 to 42 per gal and 50 on a long run doing 70 miles per hour

as above 200,000 miles on the clock

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OTT_B

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"And New Renaults are not reliable"

What makes you say that? JD Powers surveys are against you there.

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woodchip

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My eldest Son bought a Laguna 2 based on what mine is like. They had it in that many times they said it would have been cheaper to give him a new one. It put him off all French cars, he threatened to drive it through the showroom windows and he is the type that would

Have a Look on the Net for Smoking Renaults

Have a read of this Google Page

Renault Link

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interzone55

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OTT_B

"And New Renaults are not reliable"

I've got to concur with woodchip on this, my brother has a Renault Laguna and had lots of problems, and my mother-in-law has had 3 Scenics and had loads of problems with them (yes - I've no idea why she keeps buying them) including sudden drops in oil pressure, electric windows dropping and staying open, and once the doors locked while she was in the car and wouldn't open, so she had to drive to the nearest Renault garage so they could get her out - not ideal as she's a health visitor and missed a couple of urgent appointments whilst she was being rescued.

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mehim

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We had a run of 10 years with 3 scenics and no problems. last year we decided to drop the scenic as we no longer needed its very handy interior capacity for DIY items etc. After a bit of (soul) searching that's what we ended up with, a Kia Soul. It was half the price of the scenic, a year old and 4 yrs warranty left (it was the pre-7 year warranty) as it was an approved Soul bought from Kia. We do occassionally miss the Scenic with its gizmos (keyless locking, electric mirrors etc) but the inside of the Soul is surprisingly leg friendly and my kids reckon it's better than the Scenic.

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interzone55

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bugle

My better half has a Kia Soul and I really like it, except for the fuel economy, or lack of it. So far the 1.6D, used for a combination of motorway and A road use, is averaging 40mpg, my 1.4D Fabia is averaging 56mpg for my daily 75-80mph motorway runs

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al's left peg

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Renaults suffers BFO's (bits fall off) I had an 03 reg Scenic that my missus badgered me into buying. It was slow, rolled all over the place and cost a fortune to service. I got rid of it last year and replaced it with a 1.6 Ford Focus Zetec 56 reg.

It's a cracking car and I will in all probability replace it with another in a few years time. I have never bought a new car and probably never will, unless I win the lottery and get the Aston Martin I have promised myself. I think you are punished big style on depreciation on a new vehicle and it gets worse if you buy something like a new Kia or Suzuki and cars along them lines. Nobody wants them at 4 to 5 years old so you get hammered again when you trade them in or sell them on.

My advice to you would be to look at a 3 year old 1.6 diesel Focus or 1.7 diesel Astra or better still a Golf TDI or Audi A3. Keep it for 3 to 4 years sell it on and get another. servicing and running costs will be decent on the Focus and Astra whilst the servicing on the Golf and Audi a touch higher.

My wife wants a Mini and to be honest I have heard nothing bad about them, they are very popular and with loads of them about you have a lot of choice. The same can be said about the four vehicles I have already mentioned and someone will always want it when you decide to sell it on.

Cheers, Al.

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interzone55

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al's left peg

Thanks

I have been looking at the Focus as well, but not Astra as I'm never buying from the GM stable.

As for Aston Martin, I've had my eye on one for a why, but a few weeks ago I had the pleasure of driving a Bentley Continental Flying Spur and the combination of luxury and effortless power was very addictive, so the lottery win is going on one of those :-)

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