Category Archives: Saving money

Car running costs more of a worry than paying rent or job security

63% of drivers said running a car is their main financial concern in the current economic climate – above paying rent, a mortgage, or job security. 

As part of the brand new “Auto Trader Owners’ Guide” we asked motorists’ about their buying and selling behaviour and how the economy has impacted on their car purchases.

Over half (55%) of the drivers we asked have less disposable income now than they did at the beginning of this year, so cheaper running costs are now more important than ever. 53% said they were looking for a vehicle that is cheaper to run despite the cost of fuel declining slightly during May and June of this year [i] – filling up the tank remains the primary concern for 82% of motorists, followed by insurance fees (67%).

The recession has also meant that people are holding on to their cars for longer and less new car registrations were made in 2009 – 2011. As a result the number of vehicles aged over ten years old in the used car market has risen and so the average price of a second hand vehicle has fallen by 5% to £8,620 – the lowest since Auto Trader began tracking used car prices in January 2010.

Demand for nearly new vehicles is still on the rise so the price of younger vehicles has increased – vehicles under one year old are now fetching 3% more quarter-on-quarter. The most popular vehicles to buy are more economical and affordable small cars. Amongst motorists that have purchased a car in the past three months, small family cars like the Volkswagen Golf and supermini models such as the Ford Fiesta are most commonly sought after.

32% of new car owners said they chose their car in order to save money on fuel, tax or insurance, compared with 24% of used car owners. With new motors and fuel-efficient technology generally offering more miles to the gallon, new car registrations rose for the fourth successive month by 3.5% in June 2012 – driven by demand from private buyers, who bought 9.8% more cars in June 2012 year-on-year [ii].

Tim Peake, Group Strategy Director at Auto Trader, explains:  “With the average cost of used vehicles declining, it’s easy to make the assumption that now is a good time to buy a used car. However, this average drop in price has been caused by an abundance of older vehicles aged ten years plus in the market, and younger second-hand vehicles are scarce. Therefore, now is also a good time to invest in a new vehicle. Not only will you benefit financially from a more economical motor, but as younger models are in high demand, your car may have a greater chance of holding its value into the future.”

Download the full report for free here.

[i] Based on the The AA Fuel Price Report, May – June 2012
[ii] According to the SMMT (Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders) June 2012 New Car Registration figures

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Filed under Buying and selling, car, credit crunch, Cut car costs, Industry, Insurance, New Cars, Saving money

What was your first car?

Auto Trader's Adrian Hearn owned a Mk1 VW Golf as his first car

Auto Trader's Adrian Hearn owned a Mk1 VW Golf as his first car

Drivers are getting their first car at a younger age than ever before, it was revealed today.

How old were you when you bought yours and when did you buy it?

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Filed under AA, car, car insurance, Cars, Driving, Learning to drive, News, Saving money, Topics

Do you think congestion has dropped?


Congestion on motorways and trunk roads has seen a 31 per cent reduction in the last two years due to the credit crunch, according to a new report.

The AA and Trafficmaster said of those commuters who have lost jobs, 23 per cent have done so in the last 12 months, leading to 15 per cent less congestion in the weekday morning rush-hour.

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Filed under AA, car, Cars, credit crunch, Cut car costs, Driving, Long journeys, News, Petrol, Saving money, Topics

Are you going to buy a new or used car in February?


A mixture of hot coupes and affordable city cars are heading our way in February – including the frugal Smart Fortwo CDi and the face-lifted Porsche Boxster S.

There are plenty of great deals on new and used cars, making now the best time to buy.

Are you going to buy a new or used car this month?

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Filed under Advice, Auto Trader, Bentley, car, Cars, credit crunch, Downsizing, Driving, Porsche, Saving money, Smart

Want us to cut YOUR car costs?

Find out how we can cut your car costs

Find out how we can cut your car costs

With monthly petrol bills over £100 a month, heavy depreciation and a tax increase on its way, there’s never been a better time to cut your motoring costs.

We ran a series of features called ‘troubleshoot your commute’ where we helped one motorist save £1,374 on his annual car costs – now we want to help YOU.

Are you paying too much insurance? Do you have a long commute? Do you want us to cut YOUR car costs?

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Filed under Advice, Auto Trader, Budget, car, Car tax, Cars, Congestion charge, Downsizing, Driving tips, Green cars, Petrol, Saving money