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Topic # 112492 11-Dec-2012 07:56
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I am toying with the idea of buying a car. Living in the CBD and working in Newmarket up until now I have not felt the need for one...however times move on and we wish to venture further out at weekend etc.

I have been looking at Nissan, Toyota rather than the likes of Audi, VW; The reason being, cost of parts/servicing. Now I don't actually have any figures to base my "preference" on and I am somewhat limiting my choice. 

So question is: are European cars more expensive to "keep" than the Japanese brands?

cheers




The little things make the biggest difference.

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  Reply # 730129 11-Dec-2012 08:31
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  Reply # 730131 11-Dec-2012 08:35
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A wise man once told me - "if you can't afford a new European car you certainly can't afford an old one!"




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  Reply # 730132 11-Dec-2012 08:38
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What becomes the definition of a European car? My Focus is built in Germany.

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  Reply # 730137 11-Dec-2012 08:42
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I've got a '06 VW Golf and yeah, the servicing is quite expensive if you go to the dealer. They also don't seem to do/change a whole lot when they service the cars either.

If you want the euro feel then get a Honda or something, they look ok-ish and servicing is cheap.

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  Reply # 730138 11-Dec-2012 08:44
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LookingUp: A wise man once told me - "if you can't afford a new European car you certainly can't afford an old one!"


I have owned Mercedes, Audi, Fiat, Renault ... and it is the over inflated price of parts that determines that Japanese is the better buy in this part of the World.

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  Reply # 730145 11-Dec-2012 08:52
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Assume you're talking about reliability...

Dog and Lemon is very harsh on European cars - possibly unfairly so.

Consumer did a review of car reliability about a year ago (not free to view). Above average (new cars): Toyota/Lexus, Honda, Daihatsu, Suzuki. Average: Audi, BMW, Mazda, Mitsubishi, Nissan, Hyundai, etc. Below average: Ford, Holden, Kia, Peugeot. (Different results for different years).

Buy whatever you enjoy driving around it and just accept that if may break down more often than other brands and budget for it.

If you go European I'd personally avoid the rarer makes like Citroen and Peugeot; stick to the common ones like BMW and Audi/VW. Nothing worse than having to wait for some replacement panel to be shipped over by rowboat from Singapore.





 

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  Reply # 730146 11-Dec-2012 08:54
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Shindig: I am toying with the idea of buying a car. Living in the CBD and working in Newmarket up until now I have not felt the need for one...however times move on and we wish to venture further out at weekend etc.

I have been looking at Nissan, Toyota rather than the likes of Audi, VW; The reason being, cost of parts/servicing. Now I don't actually have any figures to base my "preference" on and I am somewhat limiting my choice. 

So question is: are European cars more expensive to "keep" than the Japanese brands?

cheers


People I've worked with here over the past 10 years  have tried European cars ( marketing status symbol)  and most has said that they would never buy another one due to the high maintenance costs after about 4 years. Even  one we lease had to go for repairs every couple of months..

Stick with Japanese as they have a good track record..




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Master Geek
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  Reply # 730151 11-Dec-2012 08:59
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I have an Alfa 147 which is great fun to drive, and for the money is much more car than the equivalent Corolla, but...

(and it's a big but...)

when I got the cambelt done instead of being $400 (my previous car was a Toyota) or even $800 (the car before was a V6 Mitsi) it was $2200.

That's insane.

That aside, it runs well and because it's second hand (or more) all the new Alfa foibles (wheels falling off, odometer counting backwards, random gear changes etc) have been sorted out for me. I've had nothing major go wrong with it although the car dashboard lights up like a Christmas tree every time I get in with warnings of a dire nature. That's just the dashboard though, so I'm told.

If you go Euro don't go to the distributor for servicing. If you get an Alfa or Fiat let me know - there's a place in Otahuhu that services them far better and far cheaper than the big guy in Newmarket.

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  Reply # 730158 11-Dec-2012 09:08
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PaulBrislen: I have an Alfa 147 which is great fun to drive, and for the money is much more car than the equivalent Corolla, but...

(and it's a big but...)

when I got the cambelt done instead of being $400 (my previous car was a Toyota) or even $800 (the car before was a V6 Mitsi) it was $2200.

That's insane.

That aside, it runs well and because it's second hand (or more) all the new Alfa foibles (wheels falling off, odometer counting backwards, random gear changes etc) have been sorted out for me. I've had nothing major go wrong with it although the car dashboard lights up like a Christmas tree every time I get in with warnings of a dire nature. That's just the dashboard though, so I'm told.

If you go Euro don't go to the distributor for servicing. If you get an Alfa or Fiat let me know - there's a place in Otahuhu that services them far better and far cheaper than the big guy in Newmarket.


If one owns an Alfa one has an intimate relationship with their service agent. After all you meet them as often as a partner or other family members.  

I like Euro boxes but they are more expensive to repair and maintain than other makes and avoid French, they have styling flare and rubbish build quality and reliability. German are very good with the exception of Mercedes Benz they have lazy quality control.




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  Reply # 730159 11-Dec-2012 09:12
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Servicing ANY car is expensive - and gets worse as they age.

For me, its is more important to have a car I like to drive and that is a pleasant place to be.

At the moment that means our family wagon is a 1998 Volvo.

One thing I have noticed with the older europeans is that parts are still available. Volvo at least are able to supply bits for their older vehicles where the japanese have long since dropped them from their inventory

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  Reply # 730301 11-Dec-2012 11:47
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Ask freitasm about how amazing his American PT Cruiser is, and the servicing associated with that ;)

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  Reply # 730308 11-Dec-2012 11:52
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I wouldn't get a Chrysler again - but these are American cars, not European.

This is my second PT Cruiser. Ten years old now, had to replace the windshield due to multiple cracks after some road stones hit it, just to find out the entire frame around the glass was corroded. It wasn't that bad to get it fixed but I didn't expect a ten year old car to have that much rust.

Then there are the services. After five years I stopped going to Chrysler because it's not funny paying that much money for services. This year had a problem with exhaust and was asked $ 2,000 to have the part imported as it wasn't available here. Midas managed to create a part for us from another car which brought the cost down to around $1,000.

I have an air con fault that no one seems to fix. Air con specialists tell me to take to Chrysler as there is some funny readings out of the OBD II, Chrysler told me there is nothing wrong. Midas found the fan belt wasn't going at all - luck never overheated. After they fixed that the temperature gauge barely moves now, while before it was always around 50% of the scale. They thought it could be related to the air con problem, but alas it's not. Still not resolved, and I dread having to drive it to HB during summer now :(





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  Reply # 730314 11-Dec-2012 11:59
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 After they fixed that the temperature gauge barely moves now, while before it was always around 50% of the scale. 


50% of the way up the gauge is normal operating temp, barely moving is bad, means the car is not warming up and is possibly staying in cold start mode the whole time - using more fuel. You might want to get that checked out, could be as simple as a stuck thermostat....although how simple a thermostat is on a PT Cruiser I am unsure. 

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  Reply # 730326 11-Dec-2012 12:00
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This was pretty interesting as well:
http://www.stuff.co.nz/motoring/8013915/Mitsubishi-Lancer-tops-reliability-survey




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  Reply # 730329 11-Dec-2012 12:01
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It does move a bit, but up to the 10% mark instead. The car is not using as much fuel before though because they found a leak that caused it to be always "accelerated" with high revs.





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