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Thread: What to look for buying 2nd hand car in NZ??

  1. #1
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    Jun 2009
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    Question What to look for buying 2nd hand car in NZ??

    Hello everyone,

    I appreciate this is an emigration forum not a forum for motor enthusiasts but...

    Me and the OH now need to buy a car sharp-ish as OH's new job which he's just finalising () will require driving to different sites and we can't be nicking his mum's old beetle until we move out in a few months as it's not fair! It's all good so far...except we have never done this before. In fact I don't yet drive and because he lived in London for ages in his 20's he has only ever driven the beetle he bought off his parents for a set period when he was at uni - double.

    So any good tips on what to look for (apart from obvious signs of rust!) to make sure we don't end up buying a dud or a stolen vehicle (!) when buying from a private seller on trademe and what paperwork etc should be handed over? We are looking at getting something like a peugeot 206/307, in region of $8-10k. Sorry to be such a dunce but we need some help here!

  2. #2
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    VTNZ or AA will run a paperwork and basic mechanical check for you I think! I know nothing about cars but I do know you need to look like you know something about cars when looking at them. Don't be afraid to give it a good test run in- take it up to speed fast etc. And HAGGLE! They'll expect it!

    BTW $8-10 is a good budget for a second hand car here but have you considered a Nissan? Cheap for parts and labour and seem to run and run.

    That's it, that's the sum total of my car buying knowledge apart from the critical NEVER EVER buy a red car, which is pure superstition backed up by the three times in the 15 yrs (and 11 second hand cars) we've been together and my partner has flouted the rule and brought a red one home they have been total and utter duds. White or silver are the most reliable closely follwed by green or yellow.

  3. #3

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    carjam.co.nz is good as far as checking that the car is clear of liens (finance owing), it's not stolen, the mileage is genuine, the WOF and Rego are correct.

    As for mechanical inspections the AA are usually good, but most likely the seller will require you to pay for the inspection regardless of whether you decide to buy the car.

    If you plan to do your own inspection be sure to look for rust, look at hinges under the bonnet and in the doors, look at seals around the windscreens and sunroof. Check for oil and other fluid leaks, drive the car long enough for it to get warmed up, as some cars with faulty transmission will only play up after it gets hot, also when the headgasket is blown it may take a bit for it to start running hotter than normal or have excess smoke. Look for uneven wear on the tyres as this can indicate worn suspension.

    Once and a while you can find a good buy on a used car at a dealer but in my opinion dealers are usually way over priced on used cars because they have overhead and need to make as much profit as possible from each sale.

    Turners auctions may be an option, I've had both good and bad experiences there. They will make sure the car isn't stolen and there is no finance owing. They also do mechanical inspections on cars with a reserve over $2000, these are a basic inspection that will pick up obvious faults but it's not as thorough as an AA check.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
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    Be aware that if you actually buy a Peugeot (as opposed to something LIKE a Peugeot), you would be letting yourself in for highly priced spares any time you need work done - this goes for any/all European brands. Nothing against Peugeots in themselves, of which I've very happily owned several, but there is this issue of the cost of components having to be imported from a long distance away.

    (I have this knowledge from my son, who, since living in NZ, has nevertheless driven a whole string of European cars!)

  5. #5
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    Not to mention that european cars are less reliable than the japanese counterpart.

    Not highly advised to buy an old 2nd hard european car (10+ years old) as cost of parts will kill ya. If something mega breaks (ie. engine or transmission), you'll pay mega for shop rate per/hr). Most garage shops found behind local petro stations usually won't touch European.

    But in answering the OP questions, I don't think you have to worry much about the reliability of a car as say buying from America. Routine WOF checks generally keep a car in top shape for road use. Stuff like rust is checked so it's not like you're ever going to get a rust bucket.

  6. #6
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    We have two Jags that have been very reliable, I just don't understand it. They even warm nicely when it's cold and once we had to leave one outside for the night, the next morning it started just fine at -35 C. They must be lemons.

  7. #7
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    Thanks guys!

  8. #8
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    A link to a link with lots of links about cars!

    http://www.enz.org/forum/showthread.php?t=25875

    Cheers

    Tia

  9. #9
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    Apr 2009
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kitten Witten View Post
    So any good tips on what to look for (apart from obvious signs of rust!)
    Make sure the expensive looking TV/DVD/Navi/back up cam/who knows what else speaks English. Alternatively, make sure you speak Japanese.

    Anyone want to buy a paperweight?

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