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Author: Subject: Contemplating the purchase of a small car for my wife to use.
David Jenkins

posted on 2/11/18 at 04:04 PM Reply With Quote
Contemplating the purchase of a small car for my wife to use.

Here's another question for the Locost community: my wife and I are considering whether to get her a little car to run around town, do shopping, and so on. She's been using our Nissan Leaf, but has found it a bit overwhelming and has had a couple of accidents with it (e.g. hitting the accelerator pedal instead of the brake - electric cars can accelerate FAST in reverse, with a LOT of power!). She also finds the vast number of gadgets, options, switches and random beeps/alarms/warning messages a bit daunting (but I love the car... ).

So we're talking about a small car, manual gearbox, preferably 5 door but 3 door acceptable if the car is especially nice, with enough boot space for typical shopping. Good all-round visibility and easy to park. Small engine, probably under 1 litre, decent mpg, but capable of doing 70mph on shortish journeys without making a meal of it. Not bothered about using it for major journeys. Not too many gadgets (she doesn't do gadgets!) or frills, but A/C and electric windows would probably be required. Don't need or want any sort of 'sport' model, and a low insurance group is probably for the best.

My problem is that I'm totally out of touch with modern-ish small cars - recently I've driven a Hyundai i10 that was quite nice, and also a Skoda Fabia that wasn't at all bad. I've had no involvement with any other makes.

Can anyone recommend some makes and models worth looking at? And any that are worth avoiding? I don't like Vauxhall, not overly impressed with Ford, and she hates Smart cars, so that narrows the field a little bit. Will probably be looking for something 3 - 5 years old, as far below £5000 as possible - I know that's an optimistic target, but you have to start somewhere.

This isn't going to happen in the very near future, but we're keen to start looking around.





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softfeet

posted on 2/11/18 at 04:48 PM Reply With Quote
Fiat Panda
It seems to fulfill your criteria. They are honest, totally unpretentious cars.

I have had a Fiat from new for 21 years and it has been generally reliable. Nothing has fallen off that I couldn't reattach by myself.

[Edited on 2/11/18 by softfeet]

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russbost

posted on 2/11/18 at 05:19 PM Reply With Quote
I would go for a Hyundai, I have a 58 plate Getz 1.4gsi & it has been absolutely brilliant, fairly basic car, but has all the important bits like abs, pas e/windows, central locking etc. Absolutely reliable & a great little car to drive, I assume the later "i" models would be a development of the same theme - build quality is excellent





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macc man

posted on 2/11/18 at 05:23 PM Reply With Quote
I hired a Nissan Micra recently and was quite impressed with it. Very nippy car and fair bit of room in boot.
Simple and easy to drive. Worth a look.

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GaryM

posted on 2/11/18 at 05:40 PM Reply With Quote
Toyota Aygo/Citroen C1/Peugeot 107 (all the same car). Just bought a 4 year old one for our daughter to learn in and have been very impressed.
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David Jenkins

posted on 2/11/18 at 06:15 PM Reply With Quote
All good suggestions - keep them coming!

I had one problem with a Nissan Micra... every time I got in I walloped my knee on the driver's-side end of the lower dash! Probably totally different in later models (I hope).





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snapper

posted on 2/11/18 at 06:28 PM Reply With Quote
Ferrari Dino, I grant you it’s only got 2 doors but it won’t loose money and you’ll enjoy driving it as well&#129315;





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ragindave

posted on 2/11/18 at 07:01 PM Reply With Quote
Plus one for the 107 , C1 , Aygo.
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cliftyhanger

posted on 2/11/18 at 07:05 PM Reply With Quote
I'll 2nd the pug 107 and derivatives. Onceyou understand they are a city car and maybe a tad basic, they are just great little cars. We bought ours at almost 3 years old/13K miles for £3750. Now had it 2 1/2 years and nothing to report (apart from scuffed wheel trims and scratches that my daughters know nothing about..... In Brighton and used for short commutes in heavy traffic it is doing a little over 40mpg. Which is very good compared to other cars we have had.

There are probably plenty of other suitable candidates, but I am guessing a city car is what you want in one guise or another...

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SJ

posted on 2/11/18 at 07:21 PM Reply With Quote
We bought a Swift - fab little car and less than £10k pre reg with 20 miles
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steve m

posted on 2/11/18 at 07:23 PM Reply With Quote
I would say NOT a Nissan Micra, as we drive them every day, as runners, and any more than 15 miles, I always feel sick

Nissan Note, is a much ,ore refined car, and I don't seem to have any issues with them





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perksy

posted on 2/11/18 at 07:30 PM Reply With Quote
Mazda 2
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Slimy38

posted on 2/11/18 at 07:46 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by perksy
Mazda 2


I second the 2... We got one for the wife and it's a really nice car. It's a bit light on extras (it does have leccy windows and aircon but not much else) but it's a lovely drive.

It's also right on your limit, we paid 5K for a five year old one.

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907

posted on 2/11/18 at 08:41 PM Reply With Quote
A couple of blokes round here have bought their wives an MX5;

then at the weekend they "borrow" it.


Paul G






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40inches

posted on 2/11/18 at 09:18 PM Reply With Quote
Wife's got a Honda Jazz Auto, it's become the car of choice. Over my SAAB 9-5 TID
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posted on 2/11/18 at 09:30 PM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by 907
A couple of blokes round here have bought their wives an MX5;

then at the weekend they "borrow" it.


Paul G

Mine has an MX5 (Eunos) mk1, she loves it, even though it is getting a bit long in the tooth, she is very possessive of it.

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AdrianH

posted on 2/11/18 at 09:31 PM Reply With Quote
I just bought a 3 year old Skoda Citigo 5 door. I now do around 6,000 miles per annum in a tin top and wanted something cheap to tax, capable of the high 50's mpg small engine but can still do 70 mph.

I have been pleased with it, the £20 per Tax and petrol.

Same as the VW Up and SEAT Mii, all basically the same size, as the typical city car.

There are lots to look at from Hyundai I10, Citroen C1, Peugeot 108, Toyota Aygo all very similar, I just liked the which car reviews of the Skoda.

Good luck with your choice.

Adrian





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overdriver

posted on 2/11/18 at 10:43 PM Reply With Quote
We probably average two foreign trips a year and always rent a small car each time. By far the best in recent visits was a 1.4 Polo tdi. My other half was particularly smitten. So if you want economy with quite gutsy performance (it’s no pocket rocket mind), build quality, reliability etc. and don’t mind an ’oiler’ I’d have no hesitation in recommending one.

You may have to stretch the budget a tad or settle for a slightly older example as they do hold their value.

To avoid? Well, I haven’t met a Fiesta yet that wasn’t in some way irksome.

Michael.

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JC

posted on 2/11/18 at 10:50 PM Reply With Quote
Another plus for the C1/107/Aygo!

I ran a C1 for 5 years and loved it.

Son has an Aygo.....he tried running it without oil with predictable results. Secondhand engine was £160 and not too bad to fit. Been running like a dream ever since!!

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rf900rush

posted on 2/11/18 at 11:32 PM Reply With Quote
My wife has had a used 2012 KIA . 7 years warranty, had 4 years left when purchased. used for 2 very minor faults.
I have just bought it's first part for it, a lost wheel nut.

DO NOT GET A VW with gadgets. I use a GOLF only spoilt by the most stupid "Safety features" one could ever dream up.

I have had it slam the breaks on because it thought a shrub or tree was going to jump out in front of it!

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Angel Acevedo

posted on 3/11/18 at 03:03 AM Reply With Quote
Does Vauxhall has a version of the Chevrolet Spark on that side of the atlantic?
If so I would definitely recommend one.
I think it´s Daewoo originally





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David Jenkins

posted on 3/11/18 at 07:34 AM Reply With Quote
quote:
Originally posted by rf900rush
DO NOT GET A VW with gadgets. I use a GOLF only spoilt by the most stupid "Safety features" one could ever dream up.

I have had it slam the breaks on because it thought a shrub or tree was going to jump out in front of it!


My neighbour has just sold his Skoda as it had exactly that feature (it had loads of VW gadgets). We live in the countryside, and his car was slamming on the brakes because it thought he was too close to the roadside - which he wasn't. You have to drive close into the edge of the road round here, otherwise you'd risk colliding with oncoming traffic.





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Mike Bentley

posted on 3/11/18 at 04:22 PM Reply With Quote
Honda jazz
just get in and go
You will be unlucky to have any breakdowns apart from an old Battery giving out.

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David Jenkins

posted on 3/11/18 at 06:10 PM Reply With Quote
OK - lots of very good suggestions here. I now have a good list of cars to consider.

Now, how about the cars to avoid at all costs? Bad because of unreliability, high maintenance costs, and so on?





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nero1701

posted on 3/11/18 at 06:19 PM Reply With Quote
7's are fairly small.....great aircon...
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