Car Problems

I’ve been having a few car problems recently: In early December last year, one of the fuel injectors went. This wasn’t a hugely expensive operation to fix, but it still cost money which could have been used elsewhere! Yesterday, I got into the car and tried to start it. It stalled straight away, so I tried again – and nothing happened. The car turns over, but it’s making a strange sound. I don’t know whether it’s the starter motor or something like that, but either way I’m wondering whether it’s worth hanging onto the car much longer.

The problem is, it’s eight years old now. It’s been quite reliable up until this point, but it’s at the age now where things start going wrong and I don’t know whether it’s worth keeping around given that we only drive the car two or three times a week.

So anyway, I’ve been thinking about getting a new car. My selection criteria would be:

  • Reliable, i.e. doesn’t keep going wrong
  • Midrange size (my current car – a Hyundai Lantra 1.6 GSI – is a little big)…
  • … but still safe enough on motorways (i.e., not a Metro!)
  • Practical
  • … but still a bit fun to drive!
  • Finally, and probably most importantly, it can’t be too expensive (we’re talking second-hand here)!

On the basis of that, my initial thoughts were along the lines of:

  • VW Golf
  • Ford Focus
  • Honda Civic

Interestingly, one of the houses I walk past on the way to work has a Honda Civic Type R for sale, I’ve just noticed it the past week or two.

Anyway, if anyone has any suggestions or comments then please leave a comment below or drop me a line!


2 responses to “Car Problems”

  1. It really does depend on the age of the car you buy. VW Golfs are ok, in that they’re pretty sturdy and dependable, but they’re only really fun if you get one of the new ones – the previous couple of models were rather heavy and lacklustre. The Ford Focus is a superb car, both the new one and the older one. And the Honda Civic is also a good car, at least until it goes wrong, and then it gets very expensive.

    If you’re after affordable, you basically have two approaches – spend a fair amount on a car that’s going to last and last, but be prepared to pay lots when things go wrong, or spend very little and put up with having to spend not very much on a more regular basis to keep it running. Honda falls into the first category, as do a lot of the Jap cars. Ford tends to fall into the latter. I had a Ford Fiesta a few years back, which only cost me £800 but was a fantastic run-around – not exactly sporty, but handled motorway travel fine and was relatively economic.

    Hope that’s helped. If you want more help choosing I’d be happy to pop round and take you through the options… 🙂

    Oh dear, I’m sounding like a car salesman now…

  2. Don’t worry about sounding like a car salesman, Matthew! I think because Ford is so ubiquitous, the cars are easy to get parts for and fairly cheap to service. That is a big plus.

    I guess in the end they probably even out to around the same, although perhaps Ford cars would be slightly better as they got older due to cheap parts.

    Hmmm, tough choices…

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