Saturday, 29 December 2018
Soooooo, I bought a new car today...
To clarify: a new TO ME car.
This is the colour, make, model, etc., etc., although not the car itself. It's a Peugeot 308 1.6 Sport 5 door. Poor petite Renee (my Renault Clio) has finally reached the end of her motoring life and it was time. I put over £700 into her for various reasons since October and I simply can't afford to do that anymore. That's a deposit on a new(er) car.
So, sadly, I started perusing Autotraders and have basically been viewing and reviewing the (same) cars for a couple of weeks. I kept coming back to this one, although it was at the tip-top of my budget (£2500).
Now, I hear you putting on your thinking caps and wondering, how, exactly, did I do this? Well, it's a little bit of borrowing from Peter to pay Paul, but not really. I cashed out an RSP I had sitting in my Canadian bank. The exchange rate is pretty dire right now, but it was of more use to me here than there, so I bit the bullet and brought it over.
What I wanted and what I needed were two different things, of course, but this particular car ticked the most boxes: Newer? Check (10 years - it's an '07). Decent mileage? Check (60k on the clock). Well-maintained? Check. Last service at 59,991 miles. MPG? Reasonable for the engine size. Some comparatively modern bits & pieces on the dash? Check (MP3 player!). Pretty? Right?! That colour... And so solid, drives like a dream once you get yourself positioned properly - there's a bit of fussing about to get the seat up, straight, forward...
I was a bit worried that it might be so sporty as to have bucket seats, but that's not the case and I was really pleased to find that it was so easily adjustable. The engine sounds lovely, and having a bit more room for me felt better too. Currently, the top of my head just grazes the roof of Renee, and I have some proper headroom in the new one.
However - insurance has gone up (almost double!), not least because there's apparently a claim on it which will stick around for five years (three more to go). This I found a bit surprising, as I had notified the insurance about an accident two years ago, but had no idea there had been an actual claim around it, as it certainly wasn't me who claimed anything. The fellow I spoke with was very helpful, but couldn't actually clarify anything around that (basically it shows as a claim, although might not be...?). Anyhoo. There it sits and there it raises my premiums for the foreseeable future, as does the much larger engine.
So, it is what it is. Road tax also goes up, but only by £40 a year, so not substantially (that's based on your vehicle's CO2 emissions). Overall, I feel better for having spent my budget for a decent, solid, reliable vehicle.
I put a deposit of £299 on it, and the garage will have it washed, fully valeted and the brake discs replaced before I pick it up on Thursday. The fellow gritted his teeth and gave me a £200 part exchange on Renee (I do realise that's a fantastic amount, considering her age and state of repair. He even said they'll lose money on that, so I am hugely appreciative of even that amount).
The Renault was struggling along (to be fair, I'm not the best car owner out there), but I had to replace the immobiliser (twice), the antenna, the seals around the sunroof were beginning to leak quite substantially (hence the need to replace the immobiliser - the whole system is all packed in the same place), lost my interior lights weeks ago, and despite a £400 MOT bill, the rear reg lights have gone again. That's all since October.
It was time. Although I'm quite sad to lose the Renault, I have to admit. She's been a very good little car and I believe that with the right owner, she would have lasted another 21 years.
I'm hoping that with the new car, I'll feel more comfortable and confident on the road, too, and get myself out more. I don't feel confident enough in the Renault to go exceptionally long distances too often anymore.
It feels nice to start off the new year with a fresh, new vehicle, and one that makes me feel like I'm spoiling myself a little bit. I'm not good at treating myself very well, so while a decent car at a lower price was tempting, I felt that having another old one would just leave me in the same position I'm currently in, throwing money at it just to keep it going a little bit longer. So, my sums are okay. I'm happy with my purchase price of £2299 (including 9 months left of its annual MOT!). There's a three-month warranty on the car, which I believe is standard for second-hand cars here, and the guys I bought from have been in business since 1979 and are local to where I work.
It feels a bit impulsive and I was feeling a bit sick earlier on, but I know it's the best thing I could do. I genuinely don't know how much longer I'd have Renee, and the last thing I want is to break down somewhere en route to or from work, and feel completely stuck.
Now I have to think of a name.