Revealed: the least troublesome new cars you can buy today
Car costs cause more worry than mortgage
Running a car is the most fiscally punishing thing about life in double dip Britain, according to a new report by Auto Trader.
In a report into UK motorists’ buying and selling behaviour, Auto Trader found that more than six in ten (63%) of motorists considered running a car to be their most onerous financial commitment. By comparison, only 41% said the mortgage was the main root of their money worries.
According to the newly published Auto Trader Owner’s Guide, more than half of potential car buyers were so concerned about rising running costs that they were actively looking for a smaller, more economical car.
As a result, superminis like the Ford Fiesta, and small family cars like the VW Golf now sit at the top of most buyers’ shopping lists.
The biggest wallet-aches for motorists were cited as fuel costs, with 82% finding prices at the pump a real strain, despite forecourt prices having dropped back in June this year.
Predictably, insurance costs also remain a continual source of woe – with 67% of respondents putting hiked premiums at the top of their motoring whinge-list.
Another side effect of the perennially gloomy economic weather is the proliferation of cars over ten years old in the market place.
According to the Auto Trader Retail Price Index – which tracks the average asking price of used cars – the increased pool of older cars led to a five per cent year-on-year fall in the price of used cars, to £8,620 between April and June 2012.
But with fewer nearly new cars entering the market place, thanks to a reduction in registrations between 2009 and 2011, average prices of cars under one year old are on the up – with values boosted by three per cent over the last quarter.
Tim Peake, Group Strategy Director at Auto Trader said:
“UK drivers love small cars, with good reason. Supermini and small family models tick many boxes for motorists. From a financial point of view, not only are they affordable and fuel efficient, but on a practical level, smaller cars are generally easier to drive and park.”
Amongst other nuggets of fiscal wisdom, Auto Trader identifies that women are keeping a tighter grip on the purse strings than men when it comes to car buying – with 38% prioritising the cheapest deal, compared to 30% of men.
The fairer sex is also more likely to shun used car salesman and pore over the classified ads – favouring the close proximity and trust of a private purchase over the pressure of a dealer forecourt.
Meanwhile, the most prudent place to put your supermini pound is the trendy Fiat 500, which holds its value better than most rivals, including the Mini Cooper and Kia Picanto, according to Auto Trader’s figures.
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