A family member has said 100K+ mile Avensis that whist cost little
(400 quid), has cost a few quid in parts along the way (battery,
exhaust (£500), n/s/r damper (£400), tyres and so on.
The Ibiza has come up cheap via a mate that has done 50K, single,
local lady owner from new, full MOT, everything works (inc a/c) etc
Now I know nothing of Seat's or VW's (FWIW) as I've never known or
dealt with either so does the panel think this Ibiza could be a good
local runabout / shopping cart for someone on low income please?
Whilst it's a shame she's spent so much on the parts (and labour),
especially if she gets rid (she actually like and likes driving the
Avensis, when it's not costing her money) and go for the Seat, on the
grounds that it's over half the mileage, probably cheaper to tax,
insure and fuel and hopefully cost less to maintain, are there any
other gotchas please?
Cheers, T i m
Ok, but she rarely uses a fraction of it so not a real selling point
in this case. Plus with no real family to lug about (1 kid and a dog)
she could always fold a back seat down if she did need the space?
Well yes, but so far they haven't been. ;-(
That's about the only advantage atm (and then only for a couple of
years) and the Ibiza is also 'known' in so much my mate has been
servicing it for a while?
It looks like the tax is ~£145-185 (depending on when it was first
registered) so cheaper than the £270 I think she said she was paying
on the Avensis and I'm guessing the insurance on a small Spanish /
German(?) car will be cheaper than a big Japanese one?
Don't get me wrong, I've been the grateful recipient of an old car
that had had some money spent on it recently and then cost me little
for the next 7 years (the Rover 218SD) but then I did all my own
servicing as was 'lucky'?
She has had a couple of perfectly tidy older cars written off by other
people (one pulled out in front of her Fiesta and someone ran into the
back of her Rover) and really isn't a 'car person' (she's not into
cars as such).
And then there is the parking ... the Avensis is a big lump to park
Thanks for your thoughts though MrC and no decisions have been made
Cheers, T i m
But those prices weren't even Toyota dealer or genuine Toyota parts
prices I quoted. ;-(
Quite, and something I might be more inclined to help her with if it
wasn't truck sized or fairly complex engineering. ;-)
We (the Mrs and I) built the MkII Escort based kitcar and I've done
most other things on yer more basic / small vehicles but when I've
considered jacking up and working on (under) the Avensis I've thought
better of it (for all sorts of reasons but the sheer size of it being
That said, I did some fairly big stuff on my LWB Bedford CF camper
(inc changing the rear road springs and front suspension bushes) but
the stuff was pretty simple, cheap and easy to get at (being a 'van').
I was also much younger then. ;-)
They were all also mine and it was my problem if it broke and I
couldn't get to work. ;-)
Even replacing the front disks on ex SIL's HiLux was pretty easy
because of the simplicity and ease of access. Not sure I'd want to
remove the transfer box or gearbox though.
Daughter changed the rear road springs on her Corsa herself and it
cost 'nothing' for the parts and she did it in about an hour.
Cheers, T i m
the tyre is about 75 quid for a really good one and half for rubbish,
the battery is 75 quid for a bosch, the exhaust would depend on the need
for a cat, but think 50 quid per bit say 150 and another 100 for a cat,
shocks are 50 quid a pair for pattern plus up to about a hundred and
fifty to fit the lot, these costs would be close to identical for the seat.
And how for a branded Ibiza tyre (185/60 14 82R is it)? 40 quid
fitted for an Avon for example? That's 140 quid less for the set.
Ok, probably a bit less for the Ibiza (027?)
I think it cost her £500 fitted for all but the cat (because they
couldn't get matching bits and few places had anything at all in
Hmm, when we rang around at the time there was nothing worth having
under £100 each and the cheapest were more like £60 (each)?
So, are we saying the pattern Seat bits for a 1.4 are just as
expensive as pattern bits for a 2l Toyota? That seems to fly in the
face of the whole 'Jap stuff it always expensive' thing?
When looking at Nissan Cabstars recently, why did everone say 'they
are good but the parts are *very* expensive'?
Cheers, T i m
My neighbour and his brother have avensises, neither has needed very
much at all, the only thing I did not replace which needed to be was the
HEGO sensor on the petrol one, but it was a hundred quid and only
occasionally put the mil light on, he eventually traded it in for a
Corolla and almost immediately regretted it, it was just too small for him.
No, you can be lucky I guess, depending on how much the person you get
it from has spent on it, how well it was looked after, how well it was
That won't be the case in this case as she doesn't need a 'big car'
(for anything) and in fact a smaller car would be an advantage in most
I can see how if you like or need 'a big car' the Avensis could be a
good choice but in this case it was only chosen because it was there
and partly 'known' (as she knew the couple who owned it).
Assuming there was some space to put a child and small dog, she could
probably get away with a Smart car and defiantly find it easier to
park and drive (though the traffic and narrow gaps. That's partly the
reason why our daughter loves her Connect over a std Transit).
So, know anyone who would like this Avensis MrC? Newish exhaust,
battery, n/s/r damper, tyre(s) and MOT? Happy to deliver for the right
money. If you don't, what would you think it was worth (for a quick
Cheers, T i m
There's some on Autotrader with full MOT from a dealer in the 500UKP area;
as a private sale I wouldn't expect it to be worth more than 400.
FWIW, I would advise keeping the Avensis as a no-brainer. It was a
significantly better car when new, and its history is known.
That was my thought Chris (as that's what she paid for it).
Really, it's that black and white?
Better in what way though? I'm not sure how many of the 'fancy
features' are still working (like a/c, if it ever had it) and I'm not
sure how many of them (outside the radio) she would use in any case?
I know it's a 'big car' and so by some peoples view that makes it
'better' (probably a better ride (because it's heavier) and may well
be safer (because it's 'bigger')) and it could probably carry more.
Apart from any inherent safety because of it's size, I don't think
*she* would count any of the others as a good enough advantage to
outweigh any of the potential cost and size disadvantages.
Well, ~1+ years of it's 15 are known, versus the 5 my mate has been
servicing the Seat.
Is this not like an old CRT TV versus a new TFT one? The chances are
the old CRT cost more to make, was better built and ignoring the
rounded screen, probably worked and certainly sounded (with it's
decent speaker enclosures) better in use. But if you want to carry it
up stairs on your own or hang it on a wall the things that made it
good, also made it bad?
So why don't more people buy and run these big old cars (even Rollers)
when you can often get them for next to nothing? Isn't it because they
are expensive to run and often just 'too big' for most people today?
And ignoring the fact it may be a 'better car' by some people views
(and I'm not saying it isn't, when new and everything working I could
imagine it would have been a cool thing to have, if you liked big cars
etc) it *IS* more expensive to insure (she's checked, by nearly
double), it *is* more expensive to tax (by a third) may be more
expensive to fuel (I think it also drinks oil).
There are several lights that can come up on the dash and I'd hate to
think how expensive any of them would be to fix if they suggested an
issue that caused an MOT fail.
As I said, I'm sure it was a nice car in it's day and if you like big
cars (or wanted to go banger racing <g>) I'm sure it's still good now
but I'm not sure it's appropriate for one girl her kid and a dog on a
pretty basic wage (I'm not suggesting the kid or dog are working). ;-)
What I was really listening out for is some guidance to tell me / us
why the Ibiza isn't ok and I don't think I've heard anything as such.
Maybe it was my fault for posting with the Versus in the title
(although it was and is still relevant).
Maybe I should have started ... 'Given a TCO of £750/ year (ignoring
fuel, tyres and servicing etc), would the Ibiza be a reasonable
candidate' (as the Avensis never can be, just with it's cost to Tax
and insure)? The issue is would the extra justify any real world
advantages for this particular driver?
And thanks again (to all) for the feedback. I am listening and that's
why it's not a done deal yet.
Cheers, T i m
To me, yes.
Any car of this age is a gamble, and you might only expect it to provide
economic transport for a year or so, but the fact that the Avensis has had
outstanding issues fixed are a bonus.
The only way she could lose is if the Avensis repairs cost more in the next
year than the purchase price of the Ibiza.
BTW, try to sort her out with a sensible garage. An Avensis rear shock is 75
quid max, and fitting time 1.8 hours. She paid more than double what was a
reasonable price for this repair.
Which it would, as we will probably buy her the Ibiza. ;-)
But no, I take your point but it is (all) a gamble and potentially a
bigger and therefore more expensive gamble with the Avensis over the
Ibiza? Two *knowns* are the greater cost of tax and insurance.
Typically we have, a local guy now good mate of 30+ years. However, he
didn't want to touch the Avensis.
Well, unless things have changed (and there could be different models
etc), when I gave the reg to our local car spares place 1) they didn't
have anything in stock and 2) whilst the cheapest was around 75 quid,
it wasn't recommended for use on that sort of car and the next one up
was nearer 150 (and still way short of a genuine one). My point is I
don't think even a genuine Seat rear damper would be anything like
that sort of money and would be sufficiently say to fit that I would
do it for her (for nothing).
I think with hindsight I might have misled slightly as the price I
quoted for 'the job' also included the MOT. I bought the HBOL and
looking at the job myself suggested it wasn't something I really
wanted to do in the road. 21 steps up to 'Reassembly is the reverse
...' and including compressing what is probably a pretty heavy coil
spring. If it were mine and I had a spare car I might have looked at
it myself. As it was and with her needing it for work, a sheared bold
or incompatible spare might have stranded it somewhere requiring extra
recovery. In spite of her not having much spare cash, she had it done
because she 'needed' the transport.
Better because it was bigger Chris? Better because it was more
sophisticated (clever suspension over a more crude / simple setup).
Better because it used higher quality components?
I'm trying to get to grips with those things that would provide a
positive impact on *her*?
Those things being 'does it have a CD player' and what will it cost me
each year (or at least they are the only things she can really
Now, say the Seat cost us 400 quid, it has half the mileage and twice
the known history of the Avensis and could be maintained by me or my
mate, assuming it needs no more things from now on than the Avensis
and *even* if they were the same price, it will still cost her less
for the tax and insurance, may cost her less for the fuel and could
cost her less to have serviced and repaired as my mate would do it for
her (if I couldn't). Unlike the Avensis. So we would be able to
control some of the other variables.
It would still be more of a car than she needs for her purposes
(commuting and shopping) and has the advantage of being smaller and
has aircon, if she can justify the mpg hit by turning it on. <shrug>
I guess a good test of just how desirable an 11 month MOT'd Avensis is
how quickly it sells (if she goes that way)?
Cheers, T i m
Not sure about anything pre the 4-5 years ago when my mate took it on
in his garage.
Well, 'legal' tyres at least as it just went through the MOT but I'm
due to have a better look at the car soon so I'll check the tyres when
Good enough to pass the MOT but no idea of the condition personally.
However, if my mate has serviced it (rather than just fixed stuff as
it happened) then I am reasonably confident the brakes will be ok as
he always takes all 4 wheels and drums / hubs off if fitted.
Again, no holes or missing brackets as it's just gone though the MOT
but no idea what general condition it's in. If she goes for it I might
get mate to pop it up on one of his lifts and have a look (generally)
Seems pretty clean. No major dents or holes that I've spotted and has
had a quick run over with the DA.
So is this a duplicate of a Polo but just made in Spain or is it very
different would you know Nick (JOOI)?
According to this site:
The timing belt should be changed every 4 years?
Cheers, T i m
p.s. FWIW, he was lining this car up for his Son but at the last
knockings he decided to keep whatever he has now (for space reasons)
so I'm guessing it should be in reasonable condition or he wouldn't
have offered it to him?
Both the Polo and Ibiza are made in Spain. They share 'essentials', but a
lot of the minor stuff, interiors etc, are different and often Ibiza use
Confirmed via Autodata.
There are two 1.4 engines shown for that MY:
AKK has a single cam belt, repair time is 1.6 hours.
APE has a secondary cam belt driving the exhaust camshaft, repair time 2.2
So, engine suspension parts say. A Polo wishbone of that year / model
would fit the matching Seat etc?
For our purposes that's 'a good thing'. ;-)
Crikey. That seems quite short? I think the Meriva (1.6 8V) was 10
years or 60k?
Thanks for that Chris. Would such markings be on the engine somewhere
or would someone be able to tell from the reg (eg, a car spares
Were there any specific holding / locking tools mentioned can you
remember please, or were they something you could fabricate (bolts /
turned pins)? I'm guessing this isn't generally so much of an issue
when replacing a good cambelt.
Cheers, T i m
p.s. This 4 year cambelt change *could* add another constant into the
TCO mix. After a quick Google it looks like a belt kit would be around
60 quid and about the same in labour (assuming the 1.6 hours)? £120
every 4 years so 30 quid a year? That's less than the difference
between the tax on the Avensis and Ibiza but negates the advantages a
touch (and I think that 2l VVi is cam chain)?
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