20k Budget - P Plate Car - What Should I Purchase?

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  • +6

    Why $20k? Spend $10k and invest the rest.

    • +2

      Im with this guy spend under 10K

    • invest in? what?

  • +3


    • Im with this guy, Corolla/Camry and spend under 10K.

      • Some of these are only slightly above tbat

        • +4

          They're all really high 100k mileage though.

          A Toyota will give you reliability, safety and cheap parts/service for your budget.

          German cars are generally expensive to maintain. Don't even think about going French. Especially here in Aus.

          That Audi is nice enough but it's been driven quite a lot and you'll have no idea how harsh. Also tiny weak engine.

          • @Hybroid: How expensive are we talking?
            How can I view numbers etc?

            • @SILENT: If I were going to go for that Audi, I would pay for an independent mechanic check up of the vehicle to find out if it has any hidden issues. Check service history and any OBD errors. Then check wear and tear items like brakes, suspension, aircon gas, filters, oil, belts etc etc.

              Speak to Audi and find out what services cost and typical repair costs for standard issues like say a timing belt change. Also check if any applicable recalls have been done e.g. airbag.

              You might end up with a perfect car with zero issues and serves you well for many years to come. But you might end up with a right lemon sinking thousands in repairs. It's a gamble with used cars especially 8 years old with 100k.

              A Toyota will be much much simpler, less to go wrong and much cheaper to fix if it does with parts readily available and literally any mechanic able to fix them. Especially if it's your first car which it seems to be.

              • -1

                @Hybroid: Yeah I definitely understand the direction you are coming from. It's just the interiors and features of these cars are so boring haha

                • @SILENT: Completely agree, even driving a Camry is super boring and lacks any feeling or character.

                  But, it's good at being a solid reliable car which for that budget is probably what you need. Choice is yours though, that's only my opinion.

                • +3

                  @SILENT: What feature do you need apart from a reverse camera and bluetooth? Everything else is a dumb gimmick.

                  • @smuggler: Depends on your driving style and what you're using it for. Cruise control is pretty useful for long highway stretches. Auto rain sensing and auto headlights are quite handy too.

                    Also I didn't mention insurance costs previously as altomic is quite correct.

                    • +2


                      Auto rain sensing and auto headlights are quite handy too.

                      Give me a break. Turn the knob.

                      Cruise control

                      Most modern cars have this these days including corollas.

                    • +1


                      Auto rain sensing and auto headlights are quite handy too.

                      These are very handy. You can add them to any car using an inexpensive kit. Just need to be good with wiring.

                • +2

                  @SILENT: all of these cars you've posted have horrid bland interiors and have zero personality

                  these are cars a 35yo nobody who tries to spice up their life with a basemodel A4 or Passat would buy…

                  a camry is a much better purchase and has (in my opinion) better interiors than these basemodel cars

  • +5

    If youre after a european car you better save half of your budget for maintenance costs

  • +6

    Mazda 3.

  • +3

    Spend $5k on a Corolla, invest the other $15k. In five years time you'll be glad you did, especially when you've spent what was left of the $20k keeping your VW/Audi going.

  • +1

    Buy something a bit more fun than a corolla for 10k, invest the other 10k. I made the mistake of doing what you wanna do.

    • What's a bit more fun? Hehe

      • Not a peugeot. If you want fun - go with cheap(er), newer Japanese sports cars. They'll be older, less reliable (but still probably better than most of your options), and a hell of a sight more fun. Plus cheap as chips to maintain with spare parts everywhere. And simple enough you could do your own repairs and maintenance for the most part. Honda S2ks, MX-5s, 350Zs, etc.

  • +10

    20k Budget - P Plate Car - What Should I Purchase?

    car insurance

    • Yeah this made me laugh a bit too much, good comedy

  • Spend no more than $5K on a beater, it's only going to get damaged no matter how much you take care of it, probably not by you but definitely cause of you.

  • +4

    Plz don't buy a German car. You sound young and naive. Get a Mazda 3 used.

    • Also recommend a Mazda 3 used. My partner drives an SP25 and it's a seriously great car.

  • Just get a used Mazda my boy

  • Factor in you are a P plater- and perhaps your age? = Higher insurance costs especially if you get on the luxury side

  • +4

    Im an 18 year old on my red ps aswell and was grown up in the car industry selling and going to auctions etc.
    Given your budget of 20k, I would be looking at getting a ~2012-13 VW Golf TSI. Lets be honest, everyone will reccomend a camry but it really doesnt appeal to most teenagers (assuming you are one). Golf's are surprisingly reliable and I feel they are the sweet-spot of european cars to value on how much you pay. Service costs are also not as expensive as they used to be (still not as cheap as japanese or korean but still very competitively priced).
    edit. also before buying any car I highly recommend you going over your own research as well as running costs and service pricing to see if they fit within your budget

  • +1

    Get a rear wheel drive, I aways regretted that, and soon sold my 1st only for that reason.

  • you could get a near new golf and still be way under budget. those cars are great, they are awesome to drive and feel very nice inside

    but my suggestion is to spend $5k on a 15 year old Yaris. more fun than a camry, super reliable, not a dumb amount of money to spend

    • I agree 100% re the Golf - I recently sold my 3 year old one with only 7000 km for under 15k. They are utterly reliable, have a classy interior and nearly all mod cons and great to drive.

      Or if you really want new I'd go a Polo over anything v like a corolla or Mazda 2 - the Polo is awesome little car! Standard VW services for small cars like the golf or polo are about $300 so not too bad.

  • You need to up your budget and buy new. If you don’t youll regret it for the rest of your life. /sarcasm.

    Don’t spend so much, it’s your first car and you’ll probably work out what you really need once you start driving more and will want to change.

  • +2

    Unless you are a "car guy" and need something 'cool', I would stick with something simple, until you get your full license.

    older mazda3/6 are always my goto. Reliable, comfortable, economical, cheap to repair and uper spec models have all the bells and whistles.

    something like this:

    • +5

      he doesnt sound like a car guy, he sounds like someone who values branding and trying look like he is in a higher socioeconomic class

      None of these cars are drivers cars

      • +1

        I'm a car guy and i never understood this…

        I drive a mazda 121 to work (think early 90's bubble!) with nearly 300,000km's on it. I have another car for evenings/weekends (PRB Clubman)

        • +2

          Most people who buy "higher end" brands are probably not buying them for all the tech, research and design into them, more so to show off they have the big bux!

          Cars can definitely be used as a status symbol, thats why the MX-5 is really only popular with proper car people ;)

          • +1

            @m0tyrider: *thats why the MX-5 is really only popular with proper car people who are short

            Love the cars, but no room for a tall man

            • +2

              @Slippage: Thats true, If you are 6 foot or more I can see it being a very uncomfortable car.

  • +1

    What about a kia cerato?Demo with good warranty.You need a reliable cost effective car. Or even a small Hyundai. Euro cars are expensive to maintain.Hence why everyone starts out with a Corolla or Japanese brand. Reliable and maintenance not excessive.

  • Service the car yourself or learn how to, then get a VW Golf tsi or GTI. I have a VW and servicing is no more than a Holden or Ford. Buy service parts like oil filter, cabin filter serpentine belt from eBay, get decent oil from Supercheap when they have a sale!

  • +1

    If it had to be one from this list, then the Lexus, only because it is a Toyota, but I agree with comments above. Spend $10K on Toyota and invest the rest. Don't know what to invest in? Shares are easy enough. $10K Toyota will go for ages. You see them everywhere 20+ years old.

  • +1

    I got a 2014 mazda3 sp25 on my P's last year, great car. Only downside is probably the road noise

  • P Plater = Considered High risker driver = Super high insurnace

    Buy something super cheap ($1.5K - $3K) with under 150,000km and just insure third party until you are at least over 21 but better until 25 when insurnace premiums drop signirficantly

    Assuming OP is only 18 as not stated.
    If over 24 then waiting till you are off your Ps all together

  • Depends on your vocation and hobbies.

    A tradie that goes hunting on the weekend will want something different to say Walter White.

  • +2

    As a new driver you are better off buying a cheaper Japanese or Korean car for a couple of reasons.
    Firstly you will more than likely do some sort of damage to it (scraps, scratches or (hopefully not) have an accident) and secondly the ongoing maintenance and running of the car will be cheaper.
    You can get most, if not all the safety features found in some of those European cars for a lot less.
    Have a look at this purely as an example: https://www.racq.com.au/cars-and-driving/cars/owning-and-mai...

    Save the remaining money for running costs or towards the purchase of a better car in a couple of years when you are off your P's and have a better idea of what you need to get around.

  • +1

    You talk about mundane cars being boring and that you are wanting fun.

    It's clear that you have little driving experience.
    My advice is to spend the least amount of money as possible on your first car until you have learnt "how to drive".

    Someone in a Corolla or a Camry or a Commodore or a Falcon or a Kia - that knows "how to drive" - will have so much fun putting you in your place, no matter what you buy from your list.

    So go and get some advanced driving tuition before you make a fool of yourself.

    Learn how to drive, not "pose".

  • Heart says the Lexus. Head (and all logic and reason) says uh…. none of those. Wtf, why do you have only one Japanese option? The Lexus should be the most expensive, luxury, and irrational option for a first P-plater car. Go with a Toyota, Honda, Hyundai (only the newer ones) or a Kia (again, only newer ones).

  • http://stock.mawsonlakesmazda.com.au/details/207594/2018-maz...

    This has recently popped up, what are the thoughts on this ozbargainers

    • Mazda 2? I would probably go for a 3 if I could find it. The two is pretty small. Will be good on fuel though.

  • OP - Decide what you want out of the car (Comfort/Economy/Power/Sporty Drive/SUV/Offroad/Handling/Reliability/Maintenance Costs etc), then buy the car that suits your wants.

    You don't sound like you really care, so go for economy and low cost of ownership - screams a jap hatch back (Toyota corolla).

    If you have zero interest in fixing or maintaining the vehicle yourself avoid anything "higher end" - Euro's especially. Cost of ownership is going to be more.

    End of the day, make a decision YOU will be happy with, no point everybody saying buy XYZ if you think the car is ugly/crap/don't like it.