Tuesday 18 June 2019

What would you recommend for a second car with a budget of €12k?


The venerable Seat Leon (above) will be replaced by a new generation which will come with two variants and is earmarked for arrival next year.
The venerable Seat Leon (above) will be replaced by a new generation which will come with two variants and is earmarked for arrival next year.

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'

I am considering buying a second car. We already have a Seat Alhambra, which caters for the three kids, so the size of the second car is not relevant. Budget is around €12k and we have nothing to trade in. Annual mileage would be about 30k (primarily on motorways). Would appreciate any advice you have.

Aidan: Stick with SEAT and buy a Leon. You will certainly get into the newer shape model (from 2013 onwards). Look for SE models and buy something with low mileage if possible. The interior is a tad less exciting than a Golf, but it's a sensible and practical second family car.

The Leon starts life cheaper than many of its rivals and it tends to stay that way, never losing too much ground but keeping enough distance for it to be considered good value on the used-car market.

A Ford Focus would be ideal, too. With your budget, you are likely to see mostly Edge and Edition models. I don't think a bigger car is needed, but just in case look for a Ford Mondeo. Values of family saloons are struggling a little more than other segments of the market, but the Mondeo is resilient.

For something in-between, look at the Skoda Octavia. It might be the sweet spot in terms of size and budget. Ambition models are the way to go.

Eddie: I must say I'm fond of the KIA cee'd SW (estate) for someone with your needs. That cargo area mops up family accoutrements - I guarantee it will be needed. I'm not clear on whether the 30,000km is your current mileage or that projected for the second car. If it's for a second car, you have to go diesel. If total for two, you'll be okay with a petrol.

Help us help you

We love getting your enquiries and try to reply to as many as possible here or via email. The ones dealt with here often represent a cross section of individual questions. You can help us help you with our free, independent, advice by including the following in your queries:

* Budget (including trade-in).

* Annual mileage (in kms).

* Size of car required (number of seats).

* Present car (make, model, year and mileage) if relevant.


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