So you want to purchase a vehicle. Good, currently there are thousands of models in the market, and some good used ones as well. I will not be focusing on the used ones however, but rather provide priceless tips when purchasing a new vehicle.
1) Budget - A no brainer. Problem is, most people are so excited about buying a new car that they never consider this factor. Of course if you're a rich kid performance and looks is important, but if you just need an affordable run-about, quality is the key. Do not despair however, there are good budget models i would recommend for a daily runabout:
a) Daihatsu Sirion 1.3 - Japanese made, it is sturdy, picks up well, has a good Fuel Consumption rate(16km/l) and parts are affordable.
b) Kia Picanto 1.1 - Do not underestimate the power of the Korean models. They have come a long way since the hyundai pony, and in terms of build quality and sturdiness, match their japanese counterparts well. Fuel consumption is an issue, however, the picanto's smaller engine gives it an edge (Fuel Consumption rate of 17km/l).
2) Country of manufacture- I am not discriminating against any particular nation here, but i do feel that vehicles manufactured out side Japan, US, Europe or Korea tend to be a bit filmsy. If possible, find out if the vehicle was manufactured outside this region. If not, you could take the risk but there are no gurantees.
3) Spare parts - Spare parts from certain make tend to be more expensive. I should know, I worked as a marketing consultant in Fiat and drove a Volkswagen. If you love the handling and feel of a continental car, go for it. Do check up on the price and availabilty of spare parts as you wouldn't want to wait 3 months for clutch replacement.
4) Loan - Another issue my customers face. A good bank will have flexible payment schemes, e. g 10% deposit and the rest on a loan. Banks with rigid payment schemes tend to be in flexible not only in downpayment, but approval and the like. I suggest a financial calculator: bankrate.com
5) Workshop/Service center - Is the workshop/service center near your area? Is there service comprehensive? Service centers have shoddy & slack administration. It would be good if you could check out their service centers 1st.
6) Some companies will sell you a showroom model at a discounted price. Accept at your own risk. Salesmen will think you are desperate if you choose a showroom model and they will try to con more money from you. I have personally seen showroom models abused by noisy kids, nasty buyers and even the salesmen
So there you have it. That's all for a new car, and i will be doing an article on how to purchase a used car soon. In the meantime, happy shopping!
Philip Chan Hou Ping has been in the auto industry for years, working as a marketing consultant in Fiat Professional and Toyota. He brings his knowledge on the car industry onto his automotive portal, http://www.enginestartbutton.org