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Speakers Corner

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New or Second Had


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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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Well I've taken the plinge and bought a three-year old Mini Cooper D.

They seem to be very high demand, as I went to see 3 that had been listed on Autotrader yesterday and they'd all sold by the time I got to the dealerships.

This turned out to be lucky, as I visited a different dealer today and they had a weekend special offer and I managed to bag one with much better spec than anything I was expecting to look at yesterday and it had £1000 off the window price.The dealer also gave me a shade over book price on my current car, so all in all I'm a super happy chap.

Roll on Friday when I pick it up...

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