Can you remember your first car?
Do you have a fondness for it just like I did for my K-reg Volvo 440?
I waited until I was 23 before I bought my first car, I'd had my license for five years but I couldn't afford the petrol, maintainence, insurance and car tax, so waited until I had my first 'proper' job to get my first car. I loved that car, and it's still going strong with over 200,000 miles on the clock. My husband inherited from me after I upgraded and he blew up the engine on his own car, then we sold it onto a colleague of his who is still driving it.
Then I started on a series of Renault Scenics. My favourite was the red one I owned before my last, electric everything and a dream to drive. But unreliable because they kept failing and cost a fortune to fix. Hence purchasing my last Scenic which had minimal electric gizmoes and was a really good family car. I had it for six and a half years and was so proud that I'd paid off the finance on it, keeping it for a year afterwards to enjoy as my car.
This time last year we decided to treat ourselves to a brand new car. As we only have one car between us (my husband cycles to work every day) we wanted to ensure we had a quality family car which was reliable and suited us the best.
So what are my top requirements for our perfect family car?
- A big boot! Despite The Boy becoming older, we still have to fit loads into a car when we go away, particularly to somewhere like Coombe Mill! Bodyboards, swimming stuff, self-catering goods, clothes, beach tent, buckets, spades, scooters, helmets, etc. I've reviewed a beast of a 4×4 before, and the boot was miniscule in comparison to my Scenic! However, we now have a Vauxhall Zafira. Good Lord, it's like the Tardis in there!
- Seating. We may only have one child, but we often take his friends out or use one car as a whole, extended family. Having a seven seater car has been really helpful many times over the past year.
- Air-conditioning. It might not seem like an essential thing, but with my underactive thyroid I can become unbearably hot in the Summer and it cools this grouchy mummy down. The Boy has also hit the hot and sweaty stage of being a boy, and sometimes he needs a good blast of cool air to calm his mood!
- Sensible finance repayments. As I work part-time 0ur budget is still very limited and we need to be careful with our monthly repayments. Before buying this car, we shopped around considerably to find a suitable personal loan which fitted our commitments. For more information to help with car finance decisions, TSB have put together a really useful car financ guide which can help clear up some of the confusion over the different type of car loan agreements there are.
So what makes your car perfect for you?