What "Driver's" Car

Author
Discussion

roogi

Original Poster:

245 posts

100 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
This is possibly my first car related thread on PH so I may as well start with a What Car.

I am changing jobs next month and will be doing more travelling and also getting a modest car allowance. I have a rough budget of £1,500 and with that I'd like to get something relatively interesting to drive and hopefully reliable. Also, I might be selling it in 6 - 12 months as I can opt into the company car scheme in the future.

As I'll be doing a fair amount of miles comfort might be a factor, I'm sure others will let me know how important this is.

My car history is not extensive or interesting so this is an opportunity to get something that will be enjoyable to drive. So far I've considered: -

VW Golf - Safe/boring
BMW E46 - High mileage, but interesting?
and of course MX5 - good to drive, but could be uncomfortable (I'm 6'4")

I know What Cars are a bit tedious, but any suggestions would be much appreciated!


Rickyy

6,580 posts

160 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
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Mk1 Focus would be a good alternative to the Golf.

Puma is worth a look too.

kiethton

10,760 posts

121 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
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Skoda Octavia

Taxi drivers use them for a reason. They are cheaper than the golf, share the same engines (1.9 is decent) and are meant to be quite comfortable, not much of a driver car mind, VRS?

roogi

Original Poster:

245 posts

100 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
Focus - already drive one so looking for something different really.

Octavia - will have a look.

I've also seen a nice X Type, but I imagine it will cost a lot to run it. Is it worth it?

Slinky1989

323 posts

123 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
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Don't discount the MX5 just because you're 6ft 4.

I'm 6ft 3 with long legs and found I had loads of leg room and another inch or so to go to the roof.

Ran one as a daily for 3 years and loved it. Just sold it and miss it already!
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Slinky1989

323 posts

123 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
Don't discount the MX5 just because you're 6ft 4.

I'm 6ft 3 with long legs and found I had loads of leg room and another inch or so to go to the roof.

Ran one as a daily for 3 years and loved it. Just sold it and miss it already!

Chris71

21,429 posts

183 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
roogi said:
BMW E46 - High mileage, but interesting?
At the risk of opening up a can of worms, why go for the E46 over the E36? I know the later cars are supposed to be slightly more refined, but at your budget I'd imagine you still get more E36 for your money.

Either way, this is probably where I'd be looking. Nice straight six, good steering, RWD traits and still sufficiently civilised for long distances.

pti

1,042 posts

85 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
Mk2 MR2? No bias whatsoever....

Surprisingly comfortable, decent chassis if correctly maintained, reliable and fast if you manage to get a turbo for your budget (may be a bit ropey at that price though)

Yiliterate

3,749 posts

147 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
Toyota Celica; not sure whether your height would be an issue though...

http://www.pistonheads.com/classifieds/used-cars/t...


roogi

Original Poster:

245 posts

100 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
Chris71 said:
At the risk of opening up a can of worms, why go for the E46 over the E36? I know the later cars are supposed to be slightly more refined, but at your budget I'd imagine you still get more E36 for your money.

Either way, this is probably where I'd be looking. Nice straight six, good steering, RWD traits and still sufficiently civilised for long distances.
I only suggested an E46 as I've seen what looks like quite a nice one near to me - http://goo.gl/W9ezm6. Open to suggestions though so will look at E36s as well.

Captain Muppet

8,537 posts

206 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
pti said:
Mk2 MR2? No bias whatsoever....

Surprisingly comfortable, decent chassis if correctly maintained, reliable and fast if you manage to get a turbo for your budget (may be a bit ropey at that price though)
I loved mine. I had it for 7 years. Only an NA, but still fast enough.

I just bought an E36 for £900. It's terrible. A good one would be lovely.
I'd still rather have an MR2 though.

jamieduff1981

7,186 posts

81 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
roogi said:
I've also seen a nice X Type, but I imagine it will cost a lot to run it. Is it worth it?
Depends what engine. It'll cost the same as a Mondeo to run on maintenance and consumables such as tyres and brakes. If it's a 2.1 V6 then it's unlikely to feel "worth it". All the petrol X-Types burn near enough the same amount of fuel but the 3.0s accelerate well and the 2.1 is dog slow.

Chris71

21,429 posts

183 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
roogi said:
Chris71 said:
At the risk of opening up a can of worms, why go for the E46 over the E36? I know the later cars are supposed to be slightly more refined, but at your budget I'd imagine you still get more E36 for your money.

Either way, this is probably where I'd be looking. Nice straight six, good steering, RWD traits and still sufficiently civilised for long distances.
I only suggested an E46 as I've seen what looks like quite a nice one near to me - http://goo.gl/W9ezm6. Open to suggestions though so will look at E36s as well.
I thought you said driver's car? Get yourself a couple of extra cylinders and lose the auto 'box. smile

james_gt3rs

4,577 posts

132 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
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I'd choose between a mk2 MR2 and MX5. Driven neither, but can't think of anything better for the money...

roogi

Original Poster:

245 posts

100 months

Tuesday 27th August 2013
quotequote all
Chris71 said:
roogi said:
Chris71 said:
At the risk of opening up a can of worms, why go for the E46 over the E36? I know the later cars are supposed to be slightly more refined, but at your budget I'd imagine you still get more E36 for your money.

Either way, this is probably where I'd be looking. Nice straight six, good steering, RWD traits and still sufficiently civilised for long distances.
I only suggested an E46 as I've seen what looks like quite a nice one near to me - http://goo.gl/W9ezm6. Open to suggestions though so will look at E36s as well.
I thought you said driver's car? Get yourself a couple of extra cylinders and lose the auto 'box. smile
The small engine is disappointing, but the auto box is tempting for the amount of travelling. Am I being stupid in thinking a bigger engine will be more expensive to run/insure? How much could it potentially add?

Chris71

21,429 posts

183 months

Wednesday 28th August 2013
quotequote all
roogi said:
Chris71 said:
roogi said:
Chris71 said:
At the risk of opening up a can of worms, why go for the E46 over the E36? I know the later cars are supposed to be slightly more refined, but at your budget I'd imagine you still get more E36 for your money.

Either way, this is probably where I'd be looking. Nice straight six, good steering, RWD traits and still sufficiently civilised for long distances.
I only suggested an E46 as I've seen what looks like quite a nice one near to me - http://goo.gl/W9ezm6. Open to suggestions though so will look at E36s as well.
I thought you said driver's car? Get yourself a couple of extra cylinders and lose the auto 'box. smile
The small engine is disappointing, but the auto box is tempting for the amount of travelling. Am I being stupid in thinking a bigger engine will be more expensive to run/insure? How much could it potentially add?
Depends on the car really. An auto 'box is a godsend in stop-start traffic, but it doesn't make a huge difference if you're on a clear motorway. Around town you will notice a fuel economy penalty on an old fashioned auto, though.

Generally there will be a slight increase, but sometimes it can actually be cheaper to insure the larger engined models. If, say, more boy racers can afford a 318iS than a 328 Sport you might find the crash statistics are higher...

Economy is also hard to call. As a rule of thumb, the bigger the engine and the more cylinders it has, the more fuel it will require. But you might find the larger engined models are higher geared, and hence pull lower revs on the motorway or something like that. I wouldn't be at all surprised if you 'gained' more fuel economy through a manual gearbox (as opposed to an auto) than you lost in going from a 320 to a 325.