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12.09.08: Buying a car…

Time 13 years ago

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Shocking admission time: I own a Citroen Saxo. There I’ve said it. It’s out in the open now. And just like an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, I feel strangely better for admitting it.

 

Like most spoilt car journalists I haven’t really had the need to invest my own cash in a car of my own when I’ve had the luxury of driving fully fuelled, taxed and insured models from manufacturers. (I know, you hate me – so do most people).

 

Well, that’s why the Saxo has languished on the drive, unloved and mostly unused apart from the wife’s 2-mile commute to work for too long.

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Thing is, she who must be obeyed has deemed the Saxo (it is a VTR model, does that give me more or less credibility, I never know?) needs to go. 

 

She’s probably right. It’s seven years old, is a bit tired and even I’ve started to realise it’s rather uncomfortable, even if it is fun to drive.

 

So today we’ve been visiting dealers. But here’s the biggest problem – having driven so many cars making the decision as to what to spend our cash on is becoming incredibly hard. There are so many cars in our price bracket that I like I could be choosing all day.

 

Problem is the wife wants a BMW 1-Series. So out we went today looking for cars. We visited a BMW main agent near us and were treated to coffee and a long chat from a rather friendly salesman.


 

He ran us through the figures – we’re looking at PCPs – and then let us try the 118d and the 120d. Nice as both are, neither me or the Mrs were that convinced. They were drastically small, rather uncomfortable and we’d be paying a considerable premium for that blue and white propeller badge.

 

Our salesman tried as hard as he could to convince us that the deal was the ‘best he could do’, but I was unconvinced – I left him my number to see what he could do. He hasn’t called yet. As a matter of principal I never pay the first price offered, even if it was his ‘lowest ever price’.


 

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My mate – who works in the used car section of a Chrysler dealer – had a 57-plate Audi A3 on the lot that we took a drive of too. S-line, 2.0-litre TDCI and with a good spec – the wife loved it but this time I was unconvinced. It’s just a bit, well, boring. Too grown up for me, but with the better half sold I wanted to try something else.

 

So on the way home I stopped off at the local Ford dealer. I’ve always loved the Focus ST and remember the wife loved it when we drove the old shape sometime last year.

 

What’s more it’s stacked with kit, looks great, drives well and comes at a reasonable price. We’re booked in for test drive tomorrow and in the meantime I’m going to check out the best prices online. Hopefully the Mrs will like it – I’ve already been told we’re not having ‘those ridiculous stripes’. 

 

Still, today was a great way to see what you guys do every day and experience the products, services and techniques we’re writing about in the magazine every month first hand. 

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I’ll let you know what happens and what we decide to buy, in the meantime, if you want to offer me a deal on a Focus ST3 in white with Bluetooth then get in touch! (what’s the point in writing a blog if you can’t use it to your advantage?).

 

Anyway, happy selling (especially if you’re selling to me)…

 

James

 

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Car Dealer has been covering the motor trade since 2008 as both a print and digital publication. In 2020 the title went fully digital and now provides daily motoring updates on this website for the car industry. A digital magazine is published once a month.

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