'Could you recommend something for €10k? I've been looking at imports'
Car-value expert Gillian Keogh teams up with Motoring Editor Eddie Cunningham to help you make the right choice with your next purchase. Gillian is Editor of a monthly guidebook on the values of used cars produced by the Motor Trade Publishers team. The team supplies a car-valuing service to the motor trade, insurance companies and finance houses.
I'm driving an 05 Nissan Almera which is running well. I want to upgrade at end of year and I'm undecided. I am looking for a larger car as I tend to travel to different parts of country at weekends and squeezing four or five people in is getting tougher as we get older. I do about 13,500km/year, so I don't know if it's worthwhile to get a diesel or stick with petrol. Could you recommend something based on a budget of €10k (I could get finance to bring it to €17-€18k). I've been looking at imports along the lines of VW CC, Honda Accord and Kia Optima.
Gillian: The Kia Optima would be a beauty as they come well specced. Most are Platinum and you could stay away from financing if you are happy to move to a 12-reg - €17/18k would get you a 15-plate but there is no need to stretch yourself. Maybe a '13 or '14 would sit in nicely.
The CC may feel a little smaller in the back for your passengers but you would be looking at 2012-2014 for your budget.
The CC has been discontinued, as has the Accord.
Look for something a bit fresher like the Ford Mondeo. The current model launched in 2015 and you could pick up a 151 1.6 diesel Titanium for the top end of your budget. Plenty of room.
The newer model 1.6 diesel Passat would also be a nice buy. A Mazda6 is still current and available back to 2013 at around €13/13,500, so this might just be the one.
Eddie: I wouldn't buy a diesel on your mileage. I also think getting the extra few euro would serve you well because it would let you buy as fresh a Toyota Prius hybrid (142/151 plate) as you can find. It's frugal, will hold its value and will easily match petrol or diesel fuel consumption in your case. And it has the same interior room as an Avensis.
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