A Yaris or Nissan Qashqai?

I'm a woman and plan to buy a car towards the end of the year. I'm willing to pay R3000 a month, including insurance. I was thinking of a used Yaris hatchback. What are your recommended kilos for a used car, and the price that I can afford on my expected monthly payments?

I'm a woman and plan to buy a car towards the end of the year. I'm willing to pay R3000 a month, including insurance. I was thinking of a used Yaris hatchback. What are your recommended kilos for a used car, and the price that I can afford on my expected monthly payments?

VC

A Yaris is a very sensible choice to buy as a used car. If you allow R500 for insurance and other costs, a monthly instalment of R2500 should get you an excellent two-year-old model.

The motor trade regards anything up to 30000km a year as normal kilos, so you should perhaps be looking at 50000km.

The Yaris comes with a service plan when new which is valid for four years or 60000km, whichever happens first. What is left of this plan is transferred to the new owner when the car is sold. The first or second owner, can also have this plan extended to five years or certain extended kilometre distances, provided it is done before the original service plan expires.

The cost of such an extension depends on the distance chosen. As an example, an extension to five years or 105000km will cost about R4700.

A service plan is a worthwhile thing to have, because it protects you from escalating service charges which can play havoc with your budget.

On the other hand, an extension of the factory's warranty or an extra warranty from the dealer is usually a waste of money.

Ask around about a reputable used car dealer before you even enter a showroom. Even then, take a knowledgeable, hardnosed, unyielding friend along and give any car that catches your fancy a thorough going-over, including a proper road test. Insist on looking at a full service history.

Ask the dealer for the contact details of the previous owner. Speak to this person and ask him about his experience with the car. If there's anything suspect about the car or the salesman, walk away.

I don't know which car to buy. I'm quite in love with the Nissan Qashqai, but my dad believes this car is doomed because it's a Nissan, so it loses its value quickly. He suggests I get a Toyota Auris. Please give me the pros and cons of going with the Qashqai or the Auris.

Sli

Sli, Without in any way wishing to imply that Nissan doesn't build some excellent cars, there is a very good reason why Toyota products are top sellers, and it can be summarised in one word: reliability.

That is also the reason why Toyotas retain such good second-hand value - people have come to believe that even a used Toyota will be relatively trouble-free.

I would, therefore, go with your dad's advice here.

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