Investing in Reliability: Your Guide to Buying a Trusted, Long-lasting Car

Reliability is an essential quality to look for when considering a new car. If you spend a large chunk of your time talking to mechanics or waiting by the roadside for a recovery vehicle, then you’ll probably have made a bad decision. An unreliable vehicle can cause problems even when nothing has gone wrong – since you’ll spend quite a lot of your time worrying about when disaster is going to strike again.

How to identify a reliable and long-lasting vehicle

While there’s no foolproof way to secure a totally reliable vehicle, especially on the used market, there are a number of rules of thumb that will help to limit the risk.

Pick the right manufacturers

Certain models and manufacturers enjoy stellar records when it comes to reliability. This information is available, thanks to large-scale polling of the motoring public.

Volvo is a Swedish manufacturer that’s especially famed for the reliability of its cars. The company has, throughout its history, been building cars capable of standing up to the harsh Scandinavian winter. You can pick up a used Volvo and be reasonably sure that it will be reliable for years to come.

Check the mileage

The number of miles that a vehicle has covered will tend to correlate with the amount of wear and tear that it’s suffered. Be aware, however, that it’s possible to conceal the vehicle’s true mileage via a number of tricks. Check the vehicle’s apparent mileage before you go to buy, and make sure that the figures align. If you’re buying from a private seller, and the deal looks too good to be true, then it might be time to walk away.

Take a test drive

If you don’t drive the car before you buy it, then you’re vulnerable to nasty surprises later on. During the drive, pay particular attention to the way that the car handles and sounds. Drive it on a variety of roads, too.

Choose a popular model

Niche models tend to offer features that you won’t find elsewhere. But there’s a downside: they haven’t been exposed to the same amount of stress testing as the more popular ones. Plus, your mechanic might not be familiar with as many of the problems that might develop.

Buy from a reputable dealer

Approved used dealers stake their reputations on being able to provide a reliable vehicle for their customers. Buy from one, and make sure that you have recourse in the event that something should go wrong. While you might be able to scoop a discount by buying directly from the previous owner, you’re assuming a degree of risk. If something should go wrong, then it’ll be down to you to shoulder the cost.