/ Cheap motorway car
Needless to say, get as much service history as you can, check on when cam belts were changed and so on, have a good kick at all the tyres and if you're a cash buyer with no PX, negotiate hard. Good luck!
Also read about a guy that drove about 100 miles to work each way in a Peugeot 305, diesel, that had done 440k miles and, was then, still going strong - he was an HGV driver during the day job.
So there maybe limitless scope for a motorway car if you put your mind to it.
If you just want low 40s mpg then you could get that from a petrol car. The advantages being that fuel is cheaper and you avoid the dreaded dual mass fly-wheel issue of having a high milage diesel.
Astra Estate 1.7cdti. Goes on for ages, about 500 ish miles to the tank, £120 a year to tax, cheap parts etc etc.
We had one about 6 years ago and as long as the full cambelt was done checking the pulleys etc, it was bombproof. Used to regularly change the oil, maybe every 300 miles and keep an eye on everything else.Water pump not a major problem as they are cheap, can replace yourself and they are stand alone in the engine. Really good cars. We travelled to Slovenia twice in it from Scotland laden with ski and climbing kit, didn't miss a beat.
Hope this helps and good luck in finding one. Den
Old Deisel Fabia Hatchback?
My gf has a fabia estate 1.9. It is a 55 plate. She paid £2k for it 2 years ago, with 130k miles on the clock. I think it does about 55mpg. It has 180k miles on it and is still going strong.
I imagine the hatch back would be cheaper and more economical.
sorry should read 3000 miles for the oil..
Volvo V40 diesel, if you can find an SE spec they have cruse control, heated seats etc. Good smooth motorway mile muncher and bit cheaper secondhand than similar size offerings.
I get 50+ miles to the gallon out of a 16yr old 150,000 mile banger I bought of Ebay for £260. Its only broke down once (minor fault) in 4yrs.
My plan is to run it until it starts to cost money. :)
You probably know this already but anyway... I've just started doing a shorter commute than you in a 10 year old hatchback, and when I go for my next car, economy will come into it but not at the complete expense of comfort. My Fiesta has poor noise insulation, a bumpy ride, and generally just screams at me to slow down when doing motorway speeds. It's not like it can't do them, it just feels like it wasn't meant to for extended periods, and, personally, this can be fatiguing in the early mornings and after a long day. I certainly underestimated who much this would annoy me on a daily basis, but you may not mind.
For this reason I will be going for a 5 door saloon when it comes to upgrade; something like a second hand Volvo, Saab, VW as mentioned above, or if I'm feeling flush an Audi. I get a bit of car jealousy when I see these cruising past without breaking sweat! Plus, plenty of space in the boot for weekend trips.
I get 60+mpg out of a 1.4L Diesel Fiesta. I frequently drive it to visit my parents in Southern Germany and it's still running strong after about 250k.
Any of the VAG (VW/Audi/Skoda/Seat/etc) Diesels will do. The 1.9 tdi was bombproof, and fitted in more or less every sized VW car from late 1990's onwards. So basically choose the size car you want, and trim level you want, and get it in 1.9tdi guise. It will give you 60+ mpg at motorway speeds, bit more in the smaller cars, bit less in the bigger ones, naturally.
Oh, various people wittering about Dual Mass Flywheels. I've run diesel cars for a decade and never had one fail on me. It's just another high value and generally-difficult-to-get-to item like clutches in cars. They are not "guaranteeed" to fail any more than aircon or the gearbox itself is "guaranteed" to fail. However its certainly a point of technobabble that petrolheads appear to trot out whenever anyone might be thinking about a diesel to make other think thye know what they are talking about and put the person off buying a diesel. I suspect half of the people talking about them don't actually know what the d@mn things are and how they work anyway.
put just 100k miles on an m plate diesel fiesta , it spent a couple of winters buried in snow drifts in cham, and about 70k on diesel pug before that. had cam belts done on both. very little else apart from changing the oil regularly ish. both noisey and a bit rough and ready, but i just used turn the music up loud.
It's also pretty reliable - according to my garage (a Toyota dealership) Toyota have in fact downgraded the recommended service cycle from major-minor-major-minor to major-minor-intermediate-minor - i.e. a major service only every 4 years/40,000 miles.
I'm averaging just over 40mpg on a 1.4 206SW. Not a bad little car to be honest, considering the abuse it's had to tolerate. It cruises well at 80-90mph on the motorway, even with 4 people & hill kit in the back, but could do with a 6th gear.
I used to achieve 40 mph on a mk3 astra 1.8 8V - the MPI 82 bhp petrol engine is "ace". You can get one for about £150 these days. and throw it away if it breaks.
My 1.2 polo averages about 48mpg and I do 75% ofmy driving on motorways no joke
My Octavia Estate 1.4tsi (petrol) averages 44mpg on the motorway unless I really put my foot down -- and that's scarily not legal - but oh so easy to do! My old 1.9tdi diesel would regularly give about 55mph, but at 9 years old it was starting to sound like a tractor! The new 1.4 petrol engined model is almost silent by comparison. Elegance by name, and by comfort!
> I used to achieve 40 mph on a mk3 astra 1.8 8V
Your internal organs would implode at crazy speeds like 40mph. I don't believe you.
And another! Was yours the no-frills version with nothing above third gear ? :-)
i think you will find that such is the popularity of this car on here that prices are unlikely to be £1500, UKC is single handedly driving demand for skodas in uk
Really comfortable, stable and quiet has to be up there with economical if you're going to be spending a big chunk of your year in it.
Sorry, I can't really think of a really economical car in that sort of price range I'd be willing to do that in. Maybe an older E-class diesel? Weekly commute? Train?
1.9tdi Ambiente. Cruise all day on the motorway at 90 in 5th -- no shortage of guts. I had a regular trip from Leyland to Tyneside via Penrith and Alston over Hartside.
My new 1.4tsi is significantly quicker and has better acceleration through the gears when the turbo kicks in, but it does lack a bit of grunt at low revs.
> i think you will find that such is the popularity of this car on here that prices are unlikely to be £1500, UKC is single handedly driving demand for skodas in uk
I did my best -- sold my 9 year old Octy estate for £1900!
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