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Values of cars (not just currently...)


Dick Longbridge
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The year is 2004.

I purchase a nine year old Ronda Civic saloon which has been peeeeexed at a local garage. It's a clean and tidy little thing. No rust, straight panelwork and genuine enough. Under 100k on the clock. 

Now, bear in mind in 2022 a nine year old Civic currently sits at around £4.5k+, what would have been a reasonable price to have paid for it? Yes, I'm aware inflation is a thing. 

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I paid £900 for it. That's £900 for the equivalent of a 13 plate Civic today. Allowing for inflation, the same car would cost around £1450 now. 

The thing is, in 2022 a nine year old Civic would now be around £4500. 

Similar thing with our first MX5. It was thirteen years old, so equivalent to a 2009 example now. Bought in 2005 for £1500. Allowing for inflation, it would now cost around £2400.

The equivalent thirteen year old MX5 would currently realistically cost £4k+.

 

I know used car values have crept up a bit in the last 18 months, but really? Cars don't tend to survive any longer than they did 15-20 years ago, yet generally seem to hold their value waaaay better than ever before. It just doesn't stack up.

 

Screenshot_20220115-091704_eBay.jpg

Screenshot_20220115-092909_eBay.jpg

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24 minutes ago, garethj said:

We’re still much cheaper than the rest of Europe, probably most of the world for second hand cars

 

24 minutes ago, bangernomics said:

Never move to Spain or France if you think cars here are overpriced for old shite.

Point missed fellas. Values of second-hand cars abroad is a completely different ball game. 

My point is that buyers and sellers dictate market values. The relative cost of brand new cars here is generally on a par with those from 15-20 years ago.

Not so with used cars though. During that time, there's clearly been a steady increase in values of second-hand motors to the point that the equivalent bargain prices of 15-20 years ago have long gone. Is it just supply and demand, or is it a case of people just value second-hand cars much higher than previously?

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Civic saloons 20 years ago were completely unfashionable and driven by those who didnt particularly care about style. Also, they could be bought as a Rover with a much better interior. 

Civics are now distinctively and fashionably styled while still retaining their rep for durability.

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2 minutes ago, DaveDorson said:

We've hugely under valued what are expensive and complex machines for decades in the UK

Hmm..... I've driven around in 'cheap, shitty crocks & complex as a turnip watch' for years...  Cheap, me? Aye! 😉

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2 hours ago, Out Run said:

I agree with this.

Mostly down to our number plate system, IMO.

Good point; maybe a change to the Continental European system whereby the 'plate stays with you and the car takes it's next owner's number plate would be a sensible move. 

This would stop cars from being seen as old- after six months- and therefore stop the wasteful; throwaway society approach to car buying. 

😎

Edited by Leyland Worldmaster
Oops
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15 minutes ago, Leyland Worldmaster said:

Good point; maybe a change to the Continental European system whereby the 'plate stays with you and the car takes it's next owner's number plate would be a sensible move. 

This would stop cars from being seen as old- after six months- and therefore stop the wasteful; throwaway society approach to car buying. 

😎

Full agreed, mate.

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As much as this is a real nuisance if you're looking to buy a car, I have a feeling it may cut down on the unbelievable amount of wasted resources I've seen when it comes to cars.

I've seen countless examples myself over the years, cars sitting in scrapyards that are in perfect order or even the sheer amount of stuff that enters and is baled immediatley with no parts being reused. I've encountered many people who will have an £800-1000 car that needs £300-400 spent on it, so they go out and spend £2000 on buying and fixing up a simillary priced car instead 😕

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There are still plenty of cheap second hand cars, comparatively speaking anyway, but I think one needs to consider what is cheap and why.  The answer is performance and prestige stuff and the reason is running costs.  Tax is a big one, and also the fact that cars of the past ten years are too complicated for their own good and can be fiercely expensive to maintain.  There are plenty of cheap SUVs on the second hand market, but something as simple as changing the tyres on one is beyond the means of the average earner.  Ditto things like LED light units, touchscreen controlled heaters, electrically adjustable seats, the infamous diesel filter and so on.  A lot of the electronic toys are, ultimately, Chinese rubbish built to last for ten years or so.  Unfortunately, when that time is up, the gadgets expire and take the car with them.  

Older BMWs, Mercedes, Bentleys and so on are something of a bellweather for what is to come at the lower end of the market.  They've had all this fabulously complicated technology for years, and they aren't lasting.  The knock on is that Vauxhalls and Fords with the same stuff in, as they now have, won't last either.  Quality is noticeably going down too, cars of the mid 2000s are nicer, in many ways, than the cheapo black plastic and thin metal one now finds in everything from Dacia to Audi.  I actively don't want a newer car, and would pay a small premium for an older one in better condition.  I think other people are also starting to feel that way, and prices are holding firmer as a result.

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Stuff thats new / nearly new will cost a premium.

Bangers cost more because scrap is worth more.

The stuff in between - £4 -£12k I am not so sure. If it fails you have spent too much on it to scrap it so an expensive repair beckons. Plus most of these are diesels which are now being vilified for their polluting ways. In this range I don't think supply and demand has much bearing - greed is the biggest factor. If you peruse the classifieds you will notice stuff up for sale for months.

As I have said before the economy is not buoyant - wait and see what happens when the cap is removed from energy prices.

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I think it's taken the British public a long time to realise that a 10-15 year old car is still worthwhile.  Back in the 70s some cars barely lasted 5 years before the rot was terminal and the ones that did survive had worn out the engine well before 100k.

Southern Europe's warmer, drier climate didn't see cars dieing by age, just by use so they would gradually thin out over time.  When they started to last longer mechanically, they kept their value longer and only became really cheap when utterly worn out.  Being LHD once the wall came down old cars started heading east, keeping second hand values high while ours stayed low.

The chip shortage has pushed second hand values higher than they've ever been and the 2030 ban on internal combustion engines will see them stay there until they aren't economically viable for daily use.

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41 minutes ago, Missy Charm said:

touchscreen controlled heaters

How could we live without them, huh?

I had the misfortune of seeing some Ford selling materials recently. The first points said nothing about safety, economic engine, style/design, value for money, comfort or anything else I would really be interested in. It was some babbling about "improved connectivity". WTF?

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I think Sierraman has got the just of this.. I messed around with old "bangers' for most of my life. A weeks wages on something unwanted, but interesting, enjoy it,improve it, learn about it, then sell it to fund the next one.  Mostly playing around with  4 or 500 quid. Plenty help yourself scrappies to get bits. These days are gone. I constantly search gumtree, ebay and marketplace, just in case something pops up.. even buying cars has gone to shit.. there used to be some sort of integrity , and a handshake over the phone meant you could confidently drive an hour or so to look at something. I stopped that after getting cash out, organising a mate to give me a lift, and driving 60 miles of a 70 mile journey to get a text.. " sorry, sold mate." 

Selling cheap stuff is even worse.. I don't do that anymore either.. it goes to scrap. 

So my hobby,pastime,weekend fun is gone. My W124 for £250, My Volvo 850T5 for £550, My Alfa GTVs for £600 the pair..Saab 900 T16s £200.. now just memories and photographs, thus was all over the space of 25 years or so..it was a constant. Sorry,but a T16s going from £200 to £15000 isn't inflation. I've had 17 Fiat X1/9s. Dearest one was £750.. one on Marketplace now not as good, Fifteen grand...  come on..

All the people that have this sort of thing now just go on about how much they're worth, and make YouTube videos about how values can only go up.. buy one now..

sorry.. can't afford it anymore.

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20 minutes ago, artdjones said:

There's 3755 cars on Auto Trader UK between £500 & £1500, and, looking at the first page there are several reasonable bets, so I'm not sure that the age of the disposable car is really over.

Are they around nine years old though? My bet is they'll be much older at that price point. 

My whole point is the equivalent money which would have bought us a ten year old car a few years ago will now only afford us a fifteen year old car. 

That's a major shift in values of second-hand motors. 

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In relative terms, the increase is huge.

I can remember paying £650 in 2013 for an up and together 2003 MGZR, which was 10yr old at the time, 67000 miles

Then in 2014, paid £2500 for a 2005 Fester ST150, which was 9 year old.  Better paintwork examples were £3500.  Miles were 90,000

The guys at Salavage Rebuids have just rebuild a 2013 Fester ST which was an unrecorded total loss, but they have priced accordingly to its history, at £7500 ish

it is almost that everything has doubled in the last 10 years, what was a £750 10 year old is now £1500 and so on.  Low end stuff  is flying off the forecourts if you listen to the likes of Chops Garage on YouTube.  

Tyre Kickers on YouTube has just rattled out a 62 Insignia, which admittedly is a top spec, low mileage, well presented (after issues were sorted) for what I consider to be an obscene amount of money for the age and model, £7500 ish.  12 Months advisory free MOt and one of those ''covers everything but normal wear and tear warranties where unfortunately the item that has failed is normal wear and tear'  but as long as people are paying it then the market price level is set.

The thing is, there  to be thousands of cars for sale, so is it really supply and demand.  There must be a rake of 2018's dropping of a 4 year pcp, 2019's dropping of 3 year pcps.  Sure, not so many 2020's dropping off 2 year deals.  

Wait for interest rates to rise and then we might see some market correction.  

My daughter has just purchased a replacement car, five years old and it was a jaw dropping amount of money.  She has been running an old car for 6 years and felt she wanted something newer.  She's put if off several times but didn't want to wait for market correction, which might be a long time happening, or might not.  

 

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Gave £1,500 on an ‘05 plate Focus last week for a mate looking for a cheap motor. Over the odds compared to 2 years ago but cheap still for transport for a few years. Brand new clutch and had the belt done as well. And believe it or not the front wings are rot free. If it lasts 2 years it’ll have more then paid for itself.

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Every car I've ever owned has been at the bottom of it's depreciation curve, I spend whatever I can afford at the time and run it until it's not viable to fix due to shitting something expensive. The problem is at the moment any old chod is worth at least a grand which is more than I've spent on all but one previous car purchase, so I'll probably have to put a clutch in the V70, an MOT on the 940 and a timing chain in the Cube and hold onto them all for now. 

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9 minutes ago, mk1_4dr said:

Every car I've ever owned has been at the bottom of it's depreciation curve, I spend whatever I can afford at the time and run it until it's not viable to fix due to shitting something expensive. The problem is at the moment any old chod is worth at least a grand which is more than I've spent on all but one previous car purchase, so I'll probably have to put a clutch in the V70, an MOT on the 940 and a timing chain in the Cube and hold onto them all for now. 

Cube? For reasons beyond my comprehension, I really like the look of the mk1s. Thread on here?

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