Advice desk: My Lexus has nearly 190,000 miles now - what would best suit my commute?
Aidan Timmons and Motoring Editor Eddie Cunningham team up to help readers make the right choice with their next car. Aidan visits dealers all over the country to produce a monthly guidebook on the values of used cars. He is co-editor of Motor Trade Publishers, who supply a car-valuing service to the motor trade, insurance companies and finance houses. Eddie is author of former best-seller 'Clever Car Buying'
We have two cars, one a 2006 Lexus IS220d which I drive. I bought it new (nearly 190,000 miles now). I drive to work, 37 miles each way, two of dual carriageway, 35 motorway (M50) off-peak. Despite servicing every 10,000 miles, I have had a number of expensive repetitive issues with the EGR and DPF. Road tax (€994) is high. But with the car running well and no finance outstanding, I felt it is more economical than starting again - at least until it develops a major problem. This might not be far off as my mechanic has indicated the clutch and timing chain are on his radar. The last thing I want is to be forced to change in a hurry and have resigned myself to changing. Do you have any advice what would best suit my commute?
Aidan: There is good value in used diesel saloons now. Also, it is a good time to buy as dealers are cleansing their forecourts of this year's traded in stock. The Mazda 6 would suit you, it's big, spacious and powerful with loads of torque from its 2.2-litre diesel engine. The closer you can get to €20,000, the nearer you are to a 2015-plate model. The Skoda Superb is regularly mentioned by Eddie and I, as it is a good looking, spacious, competent all-rounder. The latest model came out in time for the 152-plate and is worth stumping up the extra few quid for.
Eddie: I think a nice Volkswagen Passat in decent trim with a 2-litre diesel engine would suit you admirably. You won't have to go too far back the years. It is time to move though. No point in waiting for your car to give more trouble and buying under duress.