If you’re thinking about buying your first car, you may not know where to start. There’s so much conflicting advice both online and from friends and family that it’s easy to get overwhelmed and simply make an impulsive choice.
Luckily, a great new infographic by Motorparks aims to make the whole process easier.
Here’s some of the most important points from this great infographic:
One of the hardest choices is whether to buy a new car or one which is pre-owned. New cars give you peace of mind, since most manufacturers will give you at least three years of warranty when you purchase the car, and since they’re brand new they’re often cheaper to run. You’re unlikely to have to keep replacing and fixing parts, and you’ll spend less on petrol since newer engines are more economical.
If you’re the type who likes to do a lot of research before making a purchase, buying a new car can be a good way to get exactly what you want. They’re also far greener than older cars, giving you environmental karma.
Newer cars are far more expensive, and you can expect to pay around £13,000- something which is out of the reach of many first-car buyers. And as soon as you drive it off the lot it begins to depreciate, particularly during that first year. If you’re a new driver you may also find it harder to find finance, and since it take so much energy to make a new car you may be surprised to find that you’re not quite as environmentally friendly as you first assumed.
Buying an older car means less depreciation, and if you buy one which is only a few years old you’re likely to get a great deal, along with a car which is in good condition. If it does break down you’ll find it much cheaper to repair than its newer counterparts, since there are so may salvaged or scrap parts available. Older cars usually guzzle more fuel though, so you could find yourself spending a lot on petrol each week.
Older car buyers are also increasing their carbon footprint due to higher emissions, and you may find yourself spending more to maintain the car as you need to replace engine parts.
If you do choose to shop for an older car, beware of clocking- which is when the seller illegally winds back the odometer so you pay more and assume it has less mileage. Check the vehicle documents and MOT certificates, along with service records to check the mileage. It’s also a good idea to check for signs of chips on the bonnet and grille, wear on steering wheels, pedals, seat belts and seats, and old cars which have newer pedals, gearstick and upholstery.
Always take your car for a test drive and view it during the day in good weather so you can get an accurate look at it. Be sure to check the MOT certificates, along with its status and history.