What's the "sweet spot" age/mileage for a used car purchase?

What's the "sweet spot" age/mileage for a used car purchase?

Author
Discussion

kayzee

2,005 posts

149 months

Wednesday 7th February 2018
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The newest car I bought was 3 years old with 45k and it was an absolute nail!

For me... the sweet spot seems to be 8-10 years old with just over 100k on lol. That's been my two most reliable cars anyway!

Salamura

473 posts

49 months

Wednesday 7th February 2018
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The sweet spot is surely when the prices have reached rock bottom and the car has depreciated as much as it's going to depreciate. Then, even if it's a bit older and starts to have issues, the money saved on the depreciation makes up for the mechanical gremlins.

Bangernomics FTW!

va1o

15,951 posts

175 months

Wednesday 7th February 2018
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I'm finding I like to buy at 2-3 years old as the car will still likely be current shape and have a chunk of warranty left, but will have taken it's main depreciation hit. I then seem to end up selling at 4-5 years as that's the point they start feeling a little tired (too me anyway) and get minor annoying problems.

Mileage doesn't really bother me that much as it doesn't have much impact as long as they're looked after. I've had cars that've done 100k motorway miles which have been in significantly better condition than cars with 50k town miles. But it does seem to affect how easy/ hard to sell on afterwards!

Valgar

848 posts

103 months

Wednesday 7th February 2018
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So many variables, for example I personally think you'd be insane to buy anything German with an Auto box just out of warranty

va1o

15,951 posts

175 months

Wednesday 7th February 2018
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Valgar said:
So many variables, for example I personally think you'd be insane to buy anything German with an Auto box just out of warranty
It's just a game of luck though. I bought my M135i with the ZF8 Auto at 3-years old and 18k miles for £17.5k. I keep it for a year putting another 11k miles then sold it for £17k. Didn't cost me a penny in unexpected running costs, BMW serviced it for free under the service plan and all I paid for was a couple of new rear tyres and brake pads. Lots of scaremongering online saying it's crazy to run these types of cars without warranty but it's not always true.

LarsG

989 posts

43 months

Friday 9th February 2018
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For any car it is worth going on the https://www.gov.uk/check-mot-status and you can check on the car you are buying.

Any MOTs will be listed complete with the faults so it gives a good idea of how well a car has been looked after.

So that 4 year old car you are looking at might show up 3-4 advisories that haven't been fixed, but that 10 year old 110,000 miler might have sailed through every mot without a hiccup..

It's also fun to check your previously owned cars to see if they are still on the road.