Newish Estate with high mileage advice
Hi, I'm buying my first car of my own (been driving for about 2 years) and hoping for some advice
I have a budget of £4000.
The car will be used this summer for commuting 30 miles each way over every road type (literally, country lanes to A-road to motorway to b-road)every day for 10 weeks this summer.
After this it will be taken to my uni and not used during the week.
During the summer and from then onwards it will be used for trips away. This will probably consist of 600ish mile round trips 3/4 weekends out of two months, 200ish mile round trips 3/4 weekends out of two months, and then only short journeys on the remaining weekends. It will also be used for driving down to the alps once (possibly twice a year). The trips away will be mostly group mountineering or kayaking trips, so will be 4/5 people, full kit (lightweight weekend bag - plus possibly tents, extra kit etc), and would quite often have 4 kayaks on the roof. It may also occasionally have to pull a trailer - although if this isn't possible it wouldn't be the end of the world
I'm looking for something reliable, reasonably cheap to run, and I think to meet size requirements would probably be an estate, but would consider large hatchbacks.
With this in mind I've been looking at cars, and am thinking along the lines of
1.7 CDTi Diesel Astra Estate (like this http://goo.gl/GUfpxj)
1.6 or 1.8 CDTi Diesel Focus Estate
Both of these cars with my budget are available from approximatly 2009 with 100,000 to 120,000 miles.
Is this a good idea, particulary as the mileage seems high - or does anyone have any better suggestions
I think 4/5 plus kit in a Focus estate would a considerable crush. I would look at a Mondeo or similar. Big estates like this are often ex company cars and the best place to find one would be at a car auction. I would certainly look for a diesel variant, and they are likely to be the more common anyway. Prices of cars are sensitive to their mileage and 100,000 mile cars are quite a lot cheaper than 90,0000 mile cars. For any individual make/model you should look up any reviews you can find. IMHO, a car with a bigger engine will be less likely to have been thrashed to death than a smaller one.
Buying at an auction is not complicated but there are pitfalls. The sale is very fast - and you have to be both quick off the mark and strong about not bidding more than you should. Always go to one as an observer first - it's an interesting experience anyway.
Welcome to the site AK, with a budget of £4000 you should be able to get a decent car with a lot less then 100K on it.For example, we have recently bought a 09 reg. Citroen C4 with only 21K on it, on EBay for just over £4000, so have a good look round, there are plenty good cars out there, good luck.