Reliability : Can you rely on your car?
At some point whilst owning your car you have to decide whether it is worth keeping it running by investing money into it. If you’ve ever owned an unreliable car you’ll know that feeling, where you listen anxiously for every cough and splutter, or find yourself fervently hoping that it's going to start when you come out to it in the morning as you rush to work.
Changing your car for a nearly new car often means that it's going to be more reliable and dependable. Perhaps it's even going to be new enough that it still comes with the peace of mind of the remainder of its manufacturer's warranty.
As a rule, each new generation of cars on the market become more solidly built with more tried and tested technology than the last, so you feel more secure in buying a newer car.
A newer car is less likely to have been mechanically neglected, so newer is often better. Not only this, but the older your car gets, the more it is at risk from age or mileage related factors such as timing belt failures or worn components which could lead to an MOT failure. Owning a car less than three years old keeps you away from the requirement for an MOT.
This is where you look at your needs in greater detail. Plan ahead to make sure the car will still be fit for your needs in a couple of years’ time.
Make sure you ask yourself -
Are you planning on growing your family? Are you about to change jobs and give yourself a longer commute? Perhaps consider a Hybrid or Electric over the classic Diesel and Petrol models for better fuel economy?
Research different cars online or visit dealers to see how they compare in terms of space, equipment and fuel economy. It's also well worth looking at owners' reviews online, to see what current owners think of their cars. This will tell you what real owners think of factors such as; fuel economy, reliability and practicality.
Also take the time to look at less obvious factors such as safety features and environmental considerations. Passenger safety is incredibly important, choosing the safest possible car will be an obvious benefit.
Crash test results and details of safety features fitted to the car will give you some idea of how your car and its occupants would fare if the unthinkable happens.
Owners are now increasingly thinking about environmental factors such as CO2 emissions, and what proportion of components can be recycled at the end of its life.
Recent bad press about Diesel emissions means that a lot of us are now turning back to petrol models, especially now technology has moved forward, and some are nearly as economical as their Diesel counterparts. There are also a growing range of hybrid or electric-only models available, meaning that it's now easier than ever to own an environmentally friendly car.