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General Chat Thread, Buying a Car in General; Hello, Im looking to buying a car for my other half, it will be her first car. We want one ...
  1. #1

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    Buying a Car

    Im looking to buying a car for my other half, it will be her first car. We want one that is cheap and reliable. I have seen a Nissan Micra 1.2 SE 2003 53 with 73k on the clock has anyone got any experiance of this car good or bad any advice will be much appreciated, it also has full service history, its the version with the intelligent key. Also what should I look at when buying the car, if reviews are positive.

  2. #2

    Millgate's Avatar
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    I don't know a great deal about buying cars but when I bought the car for the wife, I found the What Car website very useful. You can choose the car your buying and it'll tell you the good & bad points as well as what to look out for.

    Good luck

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    VeryPC's Avatar
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    Hi LukeC,

    Probably teaching you to suck eggs but - When buying your car the main hurdle you'll have is cost of ownership.

    So - Looking at the micra it will be awesome based on

    Insurance group - Car Insurance Groups | UK Car Insurance Advice | Advice on Motor Car Insurance | Parkers - lower the better

    Tax- Road tax costs - The cost of vehicle tax for cars, motorcycles, light goods vehicles and trade licences : Directgov - Motoring - lower emission the lower cost

    Service and Parts cost -

    but... Although the Micra has medium mileage, its a low cost budget car so the parts will be cheaper and more on the side of budget, 73k is quite a lot for a very small car.

    Important to look at -

    What's already been changed on the service history?
    Is the mileage consistant with MOT certificates?
    Has the vehicle been involved in accident or could be repaired (CATD) - look at - is paint job even , do the doors shut evenly , does the car seem to fit together ok.
    Does the interior condition suggest the mileage is genuine ?
    Are you buying Private or from trade?
    Is there a warranty?

    This is a good resource for buying used cars .
    Inspecting a used car - Buying advice - Auto Trader UK - Auto Trader UK - buying

    Good luck -


  4. #4

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    New & Used Cars, UK Car Dealers | Parkers is a useful source of information about buying cars too. Price/value guides, professional reviews, owner reviews, spec guides etc.

    You may want to look at this page: Nissan Micra K12 2003 - Car Review | Honest John suggests they are not great, especially with 'intelligent key'

  5. #5
    BatchFile's Avatar
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    With 10 year old cars it's often a case of follow your gut instinct, get as much warranty as you can and to misquote Monty Python "don't forget to haggle"!
    When I was looking recently I put together the attached checklist to take with me when looking at cars as it's all too easy to get swept away in the moment and miss something - use and abuse it if it's any use - and if you're not sure what any of the checks or items on the sheet are post em here and we'll explain them
    (the bits about freewheeling hubs and transfer boxes are because I was thinking about a 4x4 at the time)

    Used car checklist.docx

  6. 2 Thanks to BatchFile:

    NDW (18th September 2012)

  7. #6
    Disaster's Avatar
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    Nissan Micra drivers can't drive. Fact. Get her a BMW!

  8. Thanks to Disaster from:

    Andrew_C (24th September 2012)

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    broc's Avatar
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    My daughter(53 reg), son(06 reg), and daughter-in-law(05 reg) are(were) all K12 Micra owners (daughter has just sold her53 reg K12 1.4) so as a family we have had some experience.

    All three cars have been reliable & not let them down. They are pretty durable, bodywork & trim seems ok. I think Nissan reliability suffered when they went into partnership with Renault & started to use Renault electrics.... I had to replace the electric release boot lock mechanism due to water ingress on the 53 reg car... easy to do, but part was not cheap. (£70). All three cars have had minor electrical issues, bad earth... corroded or loose connections. Nothing major or expensive has broken on any of them.

    Service parts seem reasonable. Tyres (on 1.4) expensive, Nissan seems to favour unusual sizes which are less popular & cost more. The 53 plate car had new exhaust, front brake discs, track rod ends..... things you would expect to have been replaced on most cars of that vintage. It's alternator was sounding a bit noisy when it was sold last month.... I think it was living on borrowed time

    Petrol engines are Nissan design & seem pretty robust, I gather the Renault diesels are not as reliable

    VED on 1.4 was quite high ..... older engine design than 1.2, more pollution.

    I would say they were content with their Micra ownership......

  10. #8
    Gibbo's Avatar
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    The early facelifted Micra had a few issues, but that's common with a lot of new models which enter the market. The buyers become the guinea pigs, and based on their long term ownership experience and feedback, that goes to improving the later models and ironing out the bugs that don't appear for the short time manufacturers test the cars.

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    Get her a Peugeot 107, Toyota Aygo or a Citroen C1.

    Lowest insurance (Im 21 years of age and paying just over £500 a year)
    Tax is £20 a year, or free if you get the new 2012 model
    I can fill my tank up full for £48 and get over 400 miles

    And it holds its own on the motorway, will sit at 70 comfortably, and if you need to over take it will hit 80 without struggle.

    Its no powerplant but lovely to drive, quite smooth for a small car... well worth the money!


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    have a look at the citroen C4 1.6d if you find the right model its Group4 insurance, and £30 road tax and a nice car

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