Replacing a family car

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    • #129818 Reply
      AvatarRod Avissar

      We have a 2008 Nissan Note which we have had for the past two years. Car runs smoothly and we are generally happy with it, and the size (boot, rear legroom etc.) is ideal for our family needs – we love the sort of MPV body type because it makes travelling with the all possible combinations of prams and scooters and bikes easy.

      Unfortunately, a third party’s vehicle crashed into ours, and while the third party accepted responsibility, their insurance company intend to write the car off (Though the damage is minor – it’s still not worth the fix). We weren’t contacted yet but Googling the market value of the car I’ll be lucky to get £1800 for it. We’re quite skint at the moment so won’t be able to add much on top of that. I had a bit of a look around and getting another Nissan Note for circa £2k is near impossible.

      Some cars that did pop up for that price range with the same body type were the Vauxhall Meriva 2009-10, a few Ford C-Max, the occasional Vauxhall Zafira 2009, and quite a few Renault Scenic, also circa 2009.
      Has anyone had any experience with these? Any recommendations? Will it be worth it to give up on an MPV body type and maybe get an estate car?

      (PS I know I could probably get much better value if I add another £1K but that’s really out of the question ATM. Maybe next year).

    • #129981 Reply
      Stuart MassonStuart Masson

      Hi Rod. I’ve been through almost exactly the same pain, when another driver crashed into my car in a Sainsbury’s car park while I was inside buying groceries. Similarly, car was declared a write-off despite only sustaining superficial damage.

      All of those suggested cars are perfectly reasonable, although other than the Meriva they are all a bit bigger than your Note.

      For your budget, it’s essential you are paying attention to service history and visible vehicle condition (tyres/bodywork/interior), as those are likely to be far better indicators of the car’s underlying condition.

      If you don’t have additional money to put into your pot, then it’s even more important to spend as much time as you can looking at multiple examples of the same car(s) to compare what they’re offering. A 2009 car has been on the road for nine years now, so there will be plenty of wear and tear, as well as possibly repaired damage. Trust your instincts, but it’s always helpful to have another car as a comparison point.

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