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It’s Mondeo man!

Long time readers will know that I have a thing for Saab cars: I think the 9-5 Estate is a work of automotive art, my buttocks reckon the seats are the best in the business and I love the interiors, even when they’re orange – as many were in the 80s.

Despite all of these things, I’ve just got shot of my Saab 9-5.

Unfortunately the 9-5 was starting to cost an absolute fortune. 24 MPG in this day and age isn’t brilliant. £122.50 for six months’ road tax was pretty hefty. And at nine years old, it was just a matter of time before the big bills started. The problem with big cars is that when things go wrong, they go wrong expensively.

So what did I get? The title of the post is what we writers call “a clue”. And here’s another one.

I’ve got a three-year-old Mondeo. A diesel one.

Is it sexy? No, it is not.

Is it as characterful as a Saab? Not on your nelly.

Is it much cheaper to run and to insure, does it handle better, does it go faster where it matters and is it cheaper to fix than the Saab? Oh yes.

So, yeah. I’ve become Mondeo Man. It’s a brilliant car and I like it a lot.

The stereo’s bloody awful, mind you.

Incidentally, if you’re changing cars and want to annoy the dealer, why not get a valuation from Glass’s Guide? Then, when the dealer does the “hiding in the office for 20 minutes” thing before telling you that Glass’s Guide says your car is worth three pounds, you can whip out your printout and go “AHA! YOU LIE!”

They’ll still screw you, of course, but the screwing won’t be quite so bad. And Vauxhall will pick up the tab for the valuation.

Here’s where to go: Vauxhall.co.uk > Finance > Value Your Car. I’m amazed they haven’t stopped doing this yet: at £3.50 a pop it must be costing them a few bob.

8 replies on “It’s Mondeo man!”

I had one for a while, and loved it, I have to say. Unfortunately, so did a group of neds looking for a fun night out jumping kerbs around Belfast. But I’d get one again, definitely.

My brother-in-law the mechanic swears by them. Says you can always always get the parts cheap.

Definitely a sensible choice. But then so are Hondas and Lexuses (Lexi?) and, to me, a bit more acceptable. Maybe that’s my delusion though…

Parker’s have a brilliant iPhone app that lets you get a value for your car, and any other car you’re interested in…

>>But then so are Hondas and Lexuses (Lexi?)

Not sure about recently, but in the past both have had much higher insurance groups than Ford (I used to drive a 1.5 Civic which had an insurance group 6 higher than the Escort or Astra) and, at least with Honda, the parts were much more expensive than Ford.

Lexuses are many things, sir, but cheap to buy, run and repair they ain’t. As mupwangle says, Hondas are a good bit more pricey than Ford etc: the same thing that makes Fords a terrible private buy, the fleet discounts, means that pound for pound it’s very hard to get a better value car second hand. To take Honda as an example, the closest equivalent to my car is the Accord – and that’s a good three grand more expensive for the same age and mileage. Great if you’ve already got one, not so good if you haven’t :)

I like the Parkers app a lot but car dealers don’t pay Parkers any mind. I find it tends to be considerably more optimistic than Glass – usually by several hundred quid.

It’s not as dramatic as it used to be, but there’s still a gap. I’m in group 9; equivalent Honda is 12, Lexus is 13. The Saab was 14.

I did love my Honda Accord too, and would like another one one day. And you’re buying relatively new cars. At the age I go for — around 1994 — an Accord’s more expensive than a Mondeo by maybe a tenner.

>>At the age I go for — around 1994 — an Accord’s more expensive than a Mondeo by maybe a tenner.

Bloody hell, that’s almost double!?!

Ok Lexus not exactly cheap, but as S2 says Hondas not bad second-hand: my ’98 Accord coupe cost £1.5k and I probably overpaid (although the 3 litre V6 is fantastic). Insurance is OK although probably would be cheaper with a Ford. Parts are expensive new but can be gotten second-hand much cheaper, and you hardly ever need them- in three Hondas over seven years I’ve only needed an aircon compressor.

But as you say for a newer car it would be hard to beat the Ford on price.

Interesting about Parkers/Glass: need to check what my car’s worth on Glass…

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