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The KwikGuide to
Buying a used car
Section 1: The Search
what to look for
check the costs
where to look
where to buyarranging to viewSection 2: The Car

oily bits
test driving
Section 3: The Dealhagglingarranging to payI've been conned!
useful links
Kwik checklist
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Buying a used car

what car to look for

One of the first things things you'll need to do is decide on your budget - how much can you afford to spend to buy the car? What's your monthly budget for running costs, including any finance you plan to use?

Then think carefully about what exactly you want the car for, both now and over the years you're likely to keep it. How many people do you expect it to carry? Will growing kids mean you'll shortly need more space in the back? What sort of journeys will you be doing - local or motorway? Will you be carrying shopping bags or towing a caravan? Are you after something practical or fun?

KwikTip: always get a car insurance quote from Direct Line too,
as they don't take part in the price comparison websites.

Start by picking a general category of car: City Car (Skoda Citigo, Mini); Supermini (Fiesta, Corsa); Small family (Golf, Civic); Medium (Mondeo,
Insignia); Executive (Audi A6, Jaguar XF) or Large executive (Jaguar XJ, Audi
A8). Or maybe you're after something a bit more specialist, like an estate
or sports car, a 4x4, SUV or an MPV ('people-carrier').

Unless you're after a hybrid or electric car, next decide whether you'd prefer a petrol or diesel engine. As a general rule, diesels are good for towing, doing high miles and are cheaper to run. On the other hand, they cost more to service and you'll pay more to buy one.

Petrol cars are quieter and faster and these days are catching up with diesels in the economy stakes. If you're not sure about diesels, try test driving a few and
see how they suit you. You might not be able to tell much difference between petrol and diesel in newer cars, but older diesels are likely to be noisy and slow.

Next look at what the different car-makers have to offer in the car category
you've chosen. Which have the features you want? How do prices vary between different makes?

Next page:
buying a used car: check the costs >>


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