Six tips for buy­ing stu­dent wheels

Eyethu Baywatch - - MOTORING • EZEZIMOTO -

Jeff Os­borne, Head of Gumtree Au­to­mo­tive, has some im­por­tant words of ad­vice for stu­dents (and their par­ents) who are in the pre-owned mar­ket:

Safety first

What­ever your price range, do not com­pro­mise on the safety of the ve­hi­cle.

Get the brakes, shocks, lights, mir­rors and wipers checked out.

Bud­get for re­plac­ing tyres and wiper blades if nec­es­sary and also for re­pair­ing any flaws in the wind­screen.

Re­li­a­bil­ity is a pri­or­ity

Check the ser­vice his­tory of the car and ques­tion the cur­rent owner about any re­cur­ring main­te­nance is­sues.

Buy­ing from some­one you know, who can vouch for the ve­hi­cle’s per­for­mance, is a good idea if pos­si­ble.

Don’t be dis­tracted

Colour and style must take sec­ond place to buy­ing a ve­hi­cle that will start first time, ev­ery time.

Don’t over-ac­ces­sorise

Ex­pen­sive sound sys­tems and trendy mags might be de­sir­able for a stu­dent driver but they’re also de­sir­able for others.

It’s a sad fact of South African life that ve­hi­cles, es­pe­cially when parked where stu­dents of­ten park them, are vul­ner­a­ble to crime.

If the ve­hi­cle doesn’t have good elec- tronic se­cu­rity then in­vest in a gear or a wheel lock.

Buy the best

Look for solid brands both for your own con­fi­dence and for ul­ti­mate re-sale.

The 2017 Gumtree Pre-Owned Car Awards ac­knowl­edged the Kia Pi­canto 1.0LS and the Honda Brio Trend as the best two-year-old ve­hi­cles un­der R110k, and the VW Polo Vivo GP 1.4 Con­cep­tion and the Hyundai Grand i10 1.25 Mo­tion as the best un­der R140k.

Shop around – far and wide

By us­ing on­line trad­ing sites and tools like the Gumtree Price Checker you can find re­ally good value any­where in the coun­try.

If the per­fect ve­hi­cle is only avail­able in another prov­ince, it might still save you in the long run by paying the money to travel the dis­tance to col­lect it.

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