As we often point out, you can write off VAT, car tax and a large percentage of the price you paid within seconds of driving a new car out of the showroom. But a car that has been registered, or used for less than a year will still have the balance of the manufacturer's warranty and anything from delivery mileage to 10,000 miles on the clock.Although there are plenty of these cars at huge car supermarkets, you may also find them at your local dealer. To prop up sales figures for August, they may have registered some cars, so you can instantly save a few thousand pounds and buy an identical model but with an 03 plate. Many buyers prefer the March registration because that indicates the year, and the September 53 is meaningless. At resale time, that may help.New car savings are substantial at present.
With about 665,075 private registrations in the first half of 2003, CarPricecheck.Com have calculated the average saving has jumped from £795.96 in June 2002 to £988.69 this summer. But the difference between the average saving and the best can be enormous. For example, on a £20,000 MG MGTF 1.8 VVC 160, the average discount is £1,787 but the cheapest source will offer £4,000 off.Here is the proof that you have to shop around and that research is vital. The carpricecheck website is a good place to start and allows you to compare deals through dealers and brokers.Manufacturers are keen to boost their sales figures and that means special many offers for September.
Honda is saving buyers an average of £1,000 with special-edition Civics, the Inspire models having extra kit. To shift Land Rover Freelanders, there are special edition Maasai models and a no deposit finance deal that also applies to Discoveries. For the youngsters who may find insurance a problem, there are selected Renault Clios with a year's free cover and also the SEAT Ibiza.There are also posh cars on special offer. Saab 9-5s can come with either £1,000 of extras or three years' free servicing. Audi is giving £500 of extras on the A4 SE and BMW is offering a five-year, 60,000-mile free servicing package on all diesel models.The car trade is overrun with cars, auction halls are full and the classified advertisements are packed with private sellers keen to sell. In theory you will be spoilt for choice.But look around for the best deals and sort out finance and insurance rather than leaving that to the car dealer who can arrange it all, at a price.HOW YOU CAN SAVE YOURSELF THOUSANDSBUYING USEDThere are plenty of buying options but only the bravest will bid at auction. Yet the temptation to buy at wholesale time at this busy time of year is overwhelming.At a recent auction we spotted a three-year-old, low mileage Toyota Yaris which went under the hammer for £4,900.