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Your least expensive car?


Dyslexic Viking
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I've had a Volvo S90 and an R53 Cooper S, both for nothing. 
As for ones that cost money, there was the £120 106 a few months ago, and a string of automatic R8s that all cost between £300 and £400. 

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1 hour ago, Conan said:

Anyone ever actually got paid to take a car? There's plenty of free cars for sure so in order to beat that I reckon that's what you need.

Not quite but the 2nd time a family friend gave me their unwanted Escort (MK3 the 1st time, MK4 the 2nd), they were out when I turned up to collect it - so they could brim the petrol tank. Thanks!

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Like others here, I also had a free Mini - a 1976 Clubman in metallic Reynard Brown that had been sitting behind a distant relative's house for some years, and was pretty crispy. I never drove it, instead passing it on to a Mini-mad chum from school for free also. It ended up having its engine robbed, followed by unceremonious scrapping c.2003.

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A completely shagged Datsun Sunny Coupe was procured for £50 as a parts car after my daily was defenestrated by a bunch of twats with golf clubs one night. Other than the glass and some trim bits, there wasn't much else salvageable.

1982 Datsun Sunny B11 Coupé (Spares Car).jpg

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It was lifted and fragged in short order after I'd done with it.

Another £50 purchase was an early Laguna in 2.0 RT Sport spec, with two weeks' MOT and a shagged clutch.

1997 Renault Laguna RT (Scrapper).jpg

It provided a few spares and upgrade goodies for my RN version, but the towbar (my main reason for buying it) turned out to have been mashed in a poorly-repaired collision, and was unsalvageable.

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Swapped for a bottle of decent Rioja from a fellow-shiter who wanted to stick the engine into a Renault 11.

Parts cars and basket cases aside, the cheapest car that I've ever run and driven for any length of time was a £120 Mk2 Fiesta Ghia, bought as a stop-gap in 2001 and which did me proud for two and a half years, needing only a water pump and some tyres to keep it going - plus regular wobbing to disguise the rampant rust that eventually claimed it. Sold for £40 as an MOT failure, and hopefully it had a successful career as a grasstrack car...

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But for me, cheap's usually good...

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 72 Cadillac Coupe de Vile. $500.Phoenix AZ. Sold in New Orleans to a homeless guy for $100. 1988

1950s Ford 100E Poglia. 60 quid. Bought nr Lochaline and never moved it. Sold to Pre 67 Ford Club of Fife at a small profit.1989

Opel Ascona A.  500 Deutcheny Marks.Munich.1992. Swapped for cannabis in equal value-Berlin.

Ford Taunus 17M Turnier. Free. Berlin. Stolen in Munich.

 

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Cheapest was a free Princess that my dad crashed, gave up driving and passed on to me.

Engine flew to bits after about a year, replaced with a 2.2 from a scrapyard.  That one died after another year.

Opel Kadett.  £80 but when we arrived at the sellers the clutch had gone, was going to tow it home as he dropped the price to £40 but had a look underneath (thinner in those days) and it was the ccable had come unhooked.  Slipped it back on and drove it home.

It did sterling service for about three years.  Pretty basic but with an excellent heater, clock and rev counter, all unexpected at that level.  Can't remember what killed it.

A Dolomite Sprint for £60, driver had lost his licence drink driving.  Had it delivered to my dads (Whitby, where the car was) and he had had it inspected and condemned for rust and sent it back.

Went beautifully on the test drive, was quick, quiet and comfortable (after Imps, what wouldn't be).  Shame.

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I've had a couple of freebies. 1960 Austin A40 in 1978; 1971 Vauxhall Viva in 2010; 1991 Mazda 323f in 2011, these last two in Cyprus; not to mention the 1998 X308 from the splendid @HillmanImpnearly two years ago.  I used the A40 with a teenage lack of mechanical sympathy until it died.  Sold the Viva for 200 euros (never even sat in it!); left the Mazda with Andreas when I left.  I part-exed the Jag with @NorthernMonkey for the Famous Five Volvo and more recently took that to @cms206, bringing home what turned out to be a rotten Astra in px.

I've also bought a LOT of cars at two-figure sums, including my beloved 1972 Bedford CF which was only 11 years old at the time, and cost me a whole £65.  Those were the days!  These days the base figure seems to be around £300.

One thing life has taught me is that the less you pay for a car, the better it's likely to be, simply because you have less to lose.

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no freebies here i'm afraid, the cheapest car i have had was a Skoda120.

VKF 145E

no "l" decadence here.

just an "120" with some back panel damage. so thats steel wheels, 4 speed gearbox and nylon trim) cost me £100 with another £20 for the back panel, bumper and engine cover to put the car "right" and all from a local breakers yard.

it needed a test, a carb (£20 quid i think second hand from Derek Slack in Eston) and a rattle can of grey primer to match the "mushroom" grey paint, and i sold it on 6 weeks later at a profit,

the only car that i have EVER soldon at a profit!

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My highlights (lowlights?) are:

1993 Polo Fox - £75 in 2008, broke for spares. Nothing wrong with it but about as desirable as syphillis so didn't sell 

1974 MGB GT - £180 in 2007, flipped after giving up on it, too much rust. A lady bought it for her husband's 40th birthday present, she clearly hated him 

1999 Skoda Octavia TDI estate - £200 in 2009, sold to a polish guy who drove it straight to Poland the night he collected it

 

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4 hours ago, Barry Cade said:

£1.20 for a Saab 900i, off ebay with a slippy clutch. Couple of hours later slippy clutch was fixed and a nice pioneer stereo fitted. Couple of hours later it was gone.. lifted for no tax. I told them to keep it.

You’ve beaten my record for an eBay purchase! £1.24 for a 55 reg Citroen C8 HDI AUTO stuck in limp mode. Smoked it around for a few months, found I couldn’t repair it, broke it up and weighed it in. 

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The cheapest roadworthy one was the ex-Cavcraft Rover 420 I bought off dieselnutjob on here for £50 with a cooling issue.  Picked it up, fitted a replacement coolant cap, drove it 200 miles home with no issue and ran it for a couple of months before it blew its head gasket - between that and the numerous other issues it had, it wasn't worth fixing, shame as it was actually a nice car.  Sold it locally for £100.

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Unroadworthy would be the free Rover 45 1.4 I got off an ex-workmate, sat outside the garage that had fitted a brand new head gasket 2 years back before finding it also had a "tapping" noise from the engine.  We jump started it, spent a considerable time getting it to stay running whilst enjoying the dreadful knocking noise coming from the rocker cover and got it to a nearby garage where it was declared north worth bothering with.  Stripped for parts and squashed, it remains the only car I've ever scrapped.

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I also technically paid £10 for a Vauxhall Victor I "won" on eBay  - it had been sat for 30+ years in the garden of an abandoned local house that was being cleared and was so rotten there was literally nothing left worth saving.  I had a good laugh over the state of it with the seller, gave him his tenner for the 3 saveable hubcaps and the grill and gave him the name of the local scrap dealer to come and scrape up the remains.

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I paid £30 for an E reg Ford Sierra Sapphire that stunk of cigarettes and vomit. I used the gearbox to convert my mk2 escort to 5 speed and my brother used the diff in his Sierra, we scraped the rest which was a shame as the body was mint. 
 

I also bought a F reg 1300 4 door Metro for £10 as it had a recon engine but rotten body - was a seriously fun drive home 😂

A week later my mother gave the metro to the scrapman as it was in the way, I only found out when I got back from school that day 😢

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inherited a few freebies in various states of repair but generally got them all going and tested and ran them for periods of time from say 6 months to many years :

  • Mitsubishi Lancer 1.3 1996  - exhaust needed patching and regular oil topup - gave it to a mate in the end when i was done with it
  • toyota carina 1996 1.6 - again exhaust hole and a few bits, was sat 9 years and i drove it for a good many more - now in Africia sold for €420
  • Toyota Avensis 2005 1.6 - no engine, had one fitted and it liked a drop of oil - think i sold this for over 1500 - was a clean comfortable car in fairness

Cheap ones were

  • Toyota Townace 4x4 2.0td  1991- bought as a non-runner at a wedding after a few too many for €200 - needed electrical work on the diesel pump to get going, new shocks, and i also got a new tailgate (glass was missing) and rear seats as the others were gone. Again loved it but clutch was going and i was skint so sold for 1750
  • Mitsubishi Pajero Junior 4x4 1.3 petrol 1996 - bought for €250, needed camshaft oil seal and new timing belt and i put it through test, was just too small with a couple of kids etc - so away she went for €1000 - a few lads that  go shooting took her apparantly they are so small and light they are ideal for it
  • Currently have a Volvo v50 - got it €600 - has its issues but thats the end of the market i am in i guess :-)
  • Renault Kangoo - 1.2 €200 - want to make a mini camper out of it, didnt get round to it sold it on for €600 - was a handly little thing for going to the dump or moving stuff about.

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14 hours ago, eddyramrod said:

I've had a couple of freebies. 1960 Austin A40 in 1978; 1971 Vauxhall Viva in 2010; 1991 Mazda 323f in 2011, these last two in Cyprus; not to mention the 1998 X308 from the splendid @HillmanImpnearly two years ago.  I used the A40 with a teenage lack of mechanical sympathy until it died.  Sold the Viva for 200 euros (never even sat in it!); left the Mazda with Andreas when I left.  I part-exed the Jag with @NorthernMonkey for the Famous Five Volvo and more recently took that to @cms206, bringing home what turned out to be a rotten Astra in px.

I've also bought a LOT of cars at two-figure sums, including my beloved 1972 Bedford CF which was only 11 years old at the time, and cost me a whole £65.  Those were the days!  These days the base figure seems to be around £300.

One thing life has taught me is that the less you pay for a car, the better it's likely to be, simply because you have less to lose.

I don’t think, unless you were lucky you’d find anything worth having at £3-500 at the moment.

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Mk3 Golf. It lasted 4 years.

Cost £150 It only ever needed £50 - £100 per year to keep it going.

Someone drove into it, insurance write-off payout - headlight = +£270

Took it to the weighbridge after removing anything that would go on ebay. Weigh in price+ £58. Ebay sales + £140

£468 - 150 = £318 profit.

 

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Ford Sierra 1.8 cvh given for free by my uncle after he lost faith in its reliability. He bought it cheap from an old boy who had given up driving on his post round. It must have lacked servicing in its last few years as everything was failing or in desperate need of replacement over the two years he owned it till he lost faith in it and gave it to me as I had saved it only months before due to cambelt snapping, chucked a head (from the breakers) with a head gasket set and cambelt kit on it.
I had over a years reliable driving in it before being given a Ford Escort Si by my dad as he had just bought a Escort Estate 1.8 with a/c and more room for fishing gear.
Gave the Sierra to a friend who used it for at least the next year till he moved away with it.

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Hard one to answer.

Cheapest was my 2000 Subaru Legacy that I bought for £35 a few years ago. Even then, the £35 was for the bottle of whiskey I bought the bloke, who helped himself to it as he drove away. 

Cost me £60 to get it home, £80 on a new battery, £60 on a crank sensor to get it working. Drove it for a few months, sold it for £400. So I made £165 on that.

Cheapest overall though has been my Peugeot 107. Bought brand new for £11,000 (I think), over the 11 years I've owned it the most it's cost me is £250 on a clutch. Had two replacement catalytic converters (ECP one for £120, shite. Second hand OEM one for £60 which is now on it), a new window mechanism for £20, two speakers for £20, various tyres and oil changes etc. I glanced on eBay and my 107 is going for £3,000 on the second hand market. So I think that wins for me.

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In 1988 a GP who lived over the road asked how much it would cost him to have his car scrapped - a 1981 Talbot Sunbeam. My recollection of this car was that it certainly wasn't time for it to go to the GCPITS so I said if it were OK I would take it off his hands. After a new pair of (GRP:oops:) front wings and a paint job it looked very presentable indeed. 

When he saw it the GP asked what I was going to do with it. Being 16 I was very unlikely to be driving it so I said it was going to pay for a notchback. He then asked how much which I was expecting to be awkward because he had given me the damn thing. I ventured that £875 seemed to be the going rate. At which point he suggested that was too low and offered a grand instead. He was, mercifully, a better GP than he was a haggler so I sold it back to him and he ran it for another five years.

Easily the cheapest car I've ever had.

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18 minutes ago, JimH said:

In 1988 a GP who lived over the road asked how much it would cost him to have his car scrapped - a 1981 Talbot Sunbeam. My recollection of this car was that it certainly wasn't time for it to go to the GCPITS so I said if it were OK I would take it off his hands. After a new pair of (GRP:oops:) front wings and a paint job it looked very presentable indeed. 

When he saw it the GP asked what I was going to do with it. Being 16 I was very unlikely to be driving it so I said it was going to pay for a notchback. He then asked how much which I was expecting to be awkward because he had given me the damn thing. I ventured that £875 seemed to be the going rate. At which point he suggested that was too low and offered a grand instead. He was, mercifully, a better GP than he was a haggler so I sold it back to him and he ran it for another five years.

Easily the cheapest car I've ever had.

Why don’t I come across crazy fuckers like that? 🤣

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Bearing in mind I've only been driving for eight years (christ, it feels much longer), I reckon the MoT'd Allegro for £200 (which I went halves on with @garycox) was pretty good going. Probably the most reliable car I've ever had, actually.

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@Three Speed gave me this unregistered Mk1 BX break which gave excellent service until the head gasket went in spectacular fashion one day

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My current semi-daily was also given to me by a mate, but I gave him £100

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There have been several cheap Xantias. One was £112, which did me a turn for a while before expiring, and I think another was £175. I did a deal on one against my knackered 406 and it ended up costing... £200 or something, not sure, which then did 9k miles without so much as a service, that was probably the cheapest mile-on-mile car I've had

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I have had some absolute shockers of cheap cars.  The two that spring to mind:

Talbot Horizon 1.5GL automatic.  Was being driven in to a scrapyard, so I gave the guy the £50 he was going to get from the breakers and very swiftly drove it home.  One weld patch in the driver's floorpan (which I could do myself for cheap as I had the kit to do it) and it gained a clean MOT pass.  Shoved into service for a year and about 15k miles.  Did absolutely nothing to it other than shove fuel in it, then scrapped it after a year and got my £50 back.

Citroen BX 17DTR turbo.  Bought for £60, with 3 months rent and 6 months ticket still on it, and half a tank of fuel.  Needed a water pump, so shoved a cheapo one on it at the same time as a timing belt.  Did a part service (£3 oil filter and £4 of oil).  Lent it to my landlord for a few months as they needed a car, which he then put another 6 months tax on it for me.. most kind.  Then rented it out at £1 a day to a friend who needed a stopgap car.  got it back just befor the MOT was due.  Shoved it through it's MOT, which it passed with no issues.  Then used it for about a year myself, and swapped it for a CX20.  Brilliant car!

These were of course when scrap was somewhere between £0 and £30 a tonne, usually wavering around the £10 mark.  Cars were basically free.  I picked up several no-tax-or-ticket cars at the time for free, as it would have cost the owner actual money for a breaker to come and collect it.

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The cheapest car I actually drove must have been the '83 Mini City E which was rescued from a friend's mother for £50 when it failed its MOT on the rear subframe. A new sub frame and everything was fine. There was a brief interlude when I was unable to drive it following a failed effort to be like John Rhodes followed by close to four years of a 90 mile a day commute. It wasn't the most maintenance free car I have ever driven, however, the local ARG agent gave BP discount on all Unipart badged stuff which meant it was pretty close to being free. By the time the poor thing had given its all I'd put 60K on it and it had asked very little in return other than man hours.

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A 320ise I bought for £70 14 years ago.

Unfortunately the tin worm caught up with it this year. The spares from it made well into four figures, meaning a very cheap 25k+ miles from it.

 

Another one years ago was a Mk1 Cortina 1200, bought for £55 and sold 18 months later for £125. Very little done to it during those 18 months.

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Got this for free on this very forum from Kinkersaab I think (memory is hazy, was a few years ago). 

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Volksy arranged it all and we paid £300 to get it transported down from Scotchland and another £350 on parts, smoked around in it for a few months and flogged it on for something like £1,350 or so.  

Still taxed and tested. 

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