What to Look for in a Used Car

The second hand car market can be a very risky place, as one can never be really sure that the vehicle is in fact, as described. Clever dealers are very adept at smoothing over dents, and with the right attention, a noisy engine can appear to run smoothly, at least long enough to fool the buyer. That is not to say there aren’t good, reliable cars out there, but by following certain guidelines, you can reduce the risk of not getting value for money.

Manufacturer Approved

If you are looking to buy a hi-end used vehicle, such as a BMW, the best place to start your search would be a BMW approved dealer who sells both new and used cars. A dealer such as this would only deal with one make of car, and as many people trade yearly, and if the dealership is officially approved by the manufacturer to resell their vehicles, they must have attained a very high standard of service. This is akin to a seal of approval, and a 12-month old BMW is a considerable investment, therefore you need certain assurances. If you live in the north of England and are looking for that dream car, BMW Huddersfield has used cars that are warrantied.


If the dealer is approved by the manufacturer, they would typically offer a 12-month unlimited mileage warranty, as the car would have been thoroughly inspected before going on the forecourt. If you buy a car from a private individual, it is typically sold as seen, which means after you have taken possession of the vehicle, any issues are your responsibility.

Value for Money

Ideally, a car that is 12 months old would be the best value, as the huge depreciation has left a price that would be 15-20% cheaper than new. The vehicle is still in pristine condition, and the mileage would be very low, yet the price is so much lower. Of course your budget will define the vehicle, but if you are looking for the best value for money, a relatively new car gives you the most bang for your bucks. Some astute motorists trade in their car every year, which not only gives them variation, they are always driving a car that is only a year old, and therefore in perfect condition.

Full Service History

Irrespective of how many owners the vehicle has had, there should be a service history at the very back of the owner’s manual, and this is where all the details of any services or repairs would be logged. The garage that carried out a particular service would stamp their rubber seal in the space provided, along with details of the work. FSH is essential, as it is proof that the vehicle has been properly maintained, and without it, the resale price would be lower, and the car a little less attractive to the buyer.

Buying a used car needn’t be a risky affair, and by dealing with a reputable supplier who is approved by the manufacturer, you can be sure of getting a good vehicle at a fair price.