We’re moving on up in our 100 Days of Trading Up challenge

Time 6:33 pm, May 17, 2016

What a difference a day makes! Less than 24 little hours into my 100 Days of Trading Up challenge I’ve not only moved our Lexus on, but traded it up twice more too.

Ok, so I might have the advantage of a national magazine and it’s bulging contacts book behind me, but still you can’t deny that’s pretty impressive stuff, right?

Ok, ok I get it. You hate me. I’ve made this look easy – and frankly it has been, so far.

Especially because I’ve been doing it for such a worthwhile cause. Pleading with motor dealers to give you a good deal when all the proceeds are going to Great Ormond Street Hospital doesn’t half get them to open their cheque books (well it would if they were still a thing).

Today we extracted ourselves from the gypsy-ridden ferry from Belfast to Liverpool at bleary-eyed o’clock and headed northwards to Preston.

A pleading email to Perrys chairman Ken Savage had come up with the goods and the group’s used car boss Clive Freeman had found me our next trade. For those regular followers of the magazine, you’ll know just how delighted I was when I accepted the keys to a silver 1.6-litre Vauxhall Astra Turbo.

Fortunately I can see cars are a commodity in this business – items not to be loved, or admired, or liked, but used for the purposes of generating cash. And in this case generating cash for charity.

The 10-plate Astra was a solid example, with history and 69k miles – and given the badge on the front, I had an extra incentive to move it on quickly.

Perrys Preston used car manager Jason Baker took possession of our Lexus for the grand sum of £3,500 which just goes to show you how much of a bargain we got for our £100 initial stake from Lookers’ subsidiary Charles Hurst. And with the Astra booking CAP Clean at £4,300 we were well on our way.

Thank you Perrys, not only for their generosity but for their sense of humour with their choice too…

As we headed south I made a few phone calls and soon had a solid lead at CarShop in Northampton, so snapper Fleetwood and I darted cross country. There we met director Leo Nelson who’d found us our next step up the ladder – a Peugeot 208 Active.

Not only did this mean I didn’t have to drive the ‘commodity’ any further, but it also meant we’d managed to add even more to our tally. The 1.4-litre diesel has just 60k on the clock, a full service history and books CAP Clean at £4,800 or retail at around £6k. Nice work for 24 hours.

I had one final iron in the fire for a further trade today but they let me down sadly, so I’ll be hitting the contacts book hard again tomorrow to try and set up some more trades.

The plan is to buy and sell as many as I can virtually on email before setting off – that way the next time I can simply be a delivery service that’s making more money as I drive around. Lovely stuff.

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If you can help, then please get in touch – I need all the help I can get.

And in case you were wondering why you should, just take a quick look at this. You’ll soon realise why we picked Great Ormond Street Hospital as our charity of choice for this special feature.


James Baggott's avatar

James is the founder and editor-in-chief of Car Dealer Magazine, and CEO of parent company Baize Group. James has been a motoring journalist for more than 20 years writing about cars and the car industry.

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