Ex-display & Used Cars Buyer's Guide

Ex-display & Used Cars Buyer's Guide

A used car is the best way to save money on a vehicle. There are many great deals on new and ex-display cars, but it is not hard to see that nearly every new car loses half of its value once it leaves the lot. The used car market is vast and has many pitfalls. It is crucial to be aware of what you are doing and how to best buy used cars. This guide is designed to provide all the information needed to help potential buyers of used cars find a great deal and a great car.

The UK has seen an increase in demand for used cars. This is due to a shortage of new cars and people being more comfortable behind the wheel than public transport. We'll explain what these risks are and how to avoid them in this guide. You should be careful before you hand over any cash. One in three used cars has something to hide. This article will show you how you can find a used vehicle that fits your needs perfectly and that you feel comfortable driving in.

Create a budget

You should consider the cost of the car as an initial cost, but also the unavoidable costs such as tax, insurance, MOT, or fuel consumption when determining your budget. Before you go to the dealership, it is important to know your price range and what you can afford to finance.

A 'black box' can be added to your car that monitors your driving habits and provides information to your insurance company about how careful you are. A few new car manufacturers offer finance options that combine the cost of a car with insurance, servicing and maintenance.

What if you are looking to part-exchange a car?

Part-exchanging a car for a new vehicle is a good idea. It's not worth getting a discount and then having to give it back.  Consider the value of your car. It should be compared with other similar vehicles of the same age and mileage offered by the dealer. There are many valuation tools available, but most dealers will use CAP.

Be sure that a trader you are dealing with is trustworthy

  • Look for a reputable firm with a strong reputation.
  • Look for signs indicating that they are a member of a trade organization (e.g., the Retail Motor Industry Federation and the Scottish Motor Trade Association). This means you can contact a trade group if there is a problem.
  • Look for traders whose cars have been inspected and certified by an independent engineer.
  • Are you looking for vehicle financing through a dealership? Sometimes shopping around is cheaper
  • You will need the registration number, MOT number, mileage, make and model. These will be provided by the seller, but it is always best to verify them yourself. Online verification is possible with the DVLA.

Look at the history

The police may seize a vehicle you purchase if it has outstanding finance, appears on an insurance write-off, or is stolen. If the vehicle is a write off, all cars sold by car dealers must be displayed. Private advertisers are not required to display the car if it is a write-off. Therefore, you should do your research and obtain a complete vehicle HPI check. You can also request a private history. Private histories include details about car thefts and accidents, as well as other important information.

Test drive


Although this should be obvious, many people choose cars based solely on their looks. If you don't want to be given a test drive, ask for one. You will most likely be driving the car for many years. It's a great opportunity to listen for any noises or bangs that indicate the car is not in its best condition.

Fuel Consumption

Global warming will be lessened by cars that use less fuel. This is because more fuel consumption means that you will emit more CO2. Private road transport accounts for 85% of the transport-derived greenhouse gases. CO2 is the major greenhouse gas. Another reason is that vehicle excise tax (VED, or car tax), is calculated based on CO 2 emission levels. Therefore, fewer polluting vehicles pay less road tax. One litre of petrol will produce 2.5kg CO2. The average car emits twice as much CO2 each year than it uses. Our only option to reduce our carbon emissions is to use less fuel and drive more efficiently.

Hybrid and electric used cars

As more manufacturers introduce hybrid and electric vehicles and governments end the sale of combustion engines, it is inevitable that more cars will be powered by electricity.

Although electric cars are not new, they have been enjoying a long-awaited rise in popularity. In October 2021, there were just over 141,000 registered EVs. This is an 86% increase on the previous year. A second-hand electric vehicle is becoming more popular because of increased awareness about the importance of zero-emissions motoring.

You should be aware of all the charging options available to you, depending on what car you choose. Each model will come with a charging cable that has a standard UK 3-pin plug. This allows you to plug your car directly into the mains. This is the slowest method of charging an electric vehicle.

There are pros and cons to buying a used vehicle online

It is possible to buy a used car online as easily as you would purchase a sofa or a latop online. You can compare and research as many as you like, so you can get exactly what you want without having to sell your car. You are fully informed about what you are purchasing. You should receive excellent customer service, a time slot that suits you, and a handover that is as special as a new car.

Taxing and insurance for your car

Insurance and taxes will make up a large portion of your operating costs. It's a good idea not to buy a powerful car and choose a lower-insured group for your first car. These cars will often have lower road taxes, while others may not have any.