4 cheap to run, practical and completely affordable first cars

You would have thought that this would have been my very first post but I’m only getting around to doing this now. Young drivers find it hard to get insured on any car these days but insurance companies do do the best they can to help. Here’s a list of cars that I thought are appropriate as first cars or just something cheap and cheerful to run:

Volkswagen Polo
This was a pretty obvious choice. The Polo combines German reliability, good looks and high practicality.  Since its launch in 1975, the Polo has had 5 face lifts.  We can see that the Polo is a very popular car as Done Deal currently has 982 of them for sale. The model I would go for is the fourth generation face lift. It has almost as good looks as the fifth gen but at a fraction of the price. One can be snapped up for under €5000. This particular one is for sale by a Co.Dublin dealer:  http://cars.donedeal.ie/cars-for-sale/volkswagen-polo-1-2-litre-petrol/6666988
The cost? €4950.
Volkswagen Polo 1.2 Litre Petrol
Unfortunately this car is nine years old so mileage is going to be quite high. This particular one has 81,000 miles but is for sale by a dealer so there is some re-assurance there. This car has the 1.2 litre petrol so has decent economy. It is also the desired 4 door hatchback so all your mates can fit in the back on those late night cruises up to Howth Summit. Tax is only €330 a year and it has a fuel tank size of around 45 litres so it should only cost you about €60 to fill the tank. It will average about 8.1litres/100km (35mpg).

The interior is of good quality in the VW. It looks like pretty much all the VW interiors of that era so its not very exciting.  It comes with a pretty standard radio but the sound quality is not half bad for what you get.
Volkswagen Polo 1.2 E 55BHP CALL 0867738792 (2006)
To drive it is quite under powered. This one has a 55bhp engine but for your first car you cannot expect much. Overall, this Polo seems to be pretty ideal for ones first car. It looks good, won’t break the bank to run and can even fit the rents when you have to collect them from the local on a Friday night. Believe me, it happens!

Next up, I have the Ford Fiesta
Introduced in 1976, the Fiesta has always been popular amongst, well, everybody. It’s a pretty lovable car. It is also considered quite nippy too. Most models feature a 1.25 petrol engine and weigh in or around a 1000kg. The one I’ve picked is this metallic silver 2005 Five door hatchback: http://cars.donedeal.ie/cars-for-sale/ford-fiesta-1-2-litre-petrol/6820778
Ford Fiesta 1.2 Litre Petrol
It has a 60bhp 1.25 petrol engine. The best part about this car is that it has just over 47,000 miles! For a 9 year old car, that’s not that bad. This car features alloy wheels and electric windows, both of which the Polo hadn’t got, and a CD player.
Photo for ad ref: 1057581
The Fiesta is said to be not as economical as its competitors. It costs about €65 to fill the tank. It averages about 9litres/100km (31.4mpg).
Again, the Ford can fit up to four adults.  The cabin is quite a comfortable place to be. It has a basic cabin with not many things to play around with. This particular car with cost you €4450. Worth every penny in my opinion.

Fiat Punto:
Ah there had to be an Italian in here somewhere. The Punto is one of the best looking when it comes to small hatchs. It offers Italian styling along with decent practicality. It, from what I hear, is quite reliable. Just keep maintaining it and you can get away with any hassle. This one I have chosen for you is for sale for €3,950 and with only 63,803 miles. http://cars.donedeal.ie/cars-for-sale/fiat-punto-grande-1-2l-active-5dr/7071517
Photo for ad ref: 1077050
It offers a CD player, electric windows and central locking. It’s one of the roomiest and best looking of the cars I’m going to show you. It has a sporty multi-functional steering wheel.
Photo for ad ref: 1077050
The 1.2 litre petrol gets about 7litres/100km (40mpg). Its not that slow either with a 64bhp engine and weighing in at just over 1000kg. So the Punto Grande is one of the cheapest, the best looking, the most practical and the most economical. It ticks all the boxes pretty much. But wait, the Clio…

Lastly, we have the Renault Clio:
The Clio has always been a favorite of mine. If I had the money to throw at one, I would definitely have the Renaultsport Clio 172. But seeing as we’re doing first cars here, that wouldn’t be a viable option. Although, this one would: http://cars.donedeal.ie/cars-for-sale/renault-clio-renault-clio-1-1-2006-/7365085
The same price as the Punto Grande, this Clio is available for €3,950. It is also a little bit better equipped than the Punto too. It comes with a CD player, leather steering wheel and front fog lights. It is the Mark 3, 5 door hatchback and is finished in a metallic silver.
Renault Clio Renault Clio 1.1 - 2006 -
The 1.1 litre petrol engine averages about 8.3litres/100km (34mpg) and costs about €60 to fill it. The boot space is about 288 litres and can also fit up to five adults. The rear seats fold down to increase this to 1028 litres.
Light steering in the Clio makes it easy to drive at low speeds so urban driving is said to be a joy. A little body roll makes for a interesting drive but overall the Clio is a good city car. It handles the motorway as well as any modern city car does nowadays.

So what car would I have out of all of these? Well, It would probably be the Renault Clio. Its such a light and well designed car and that particular one is pretty much a bargain at €3,950.
I hoped this helped anyone who is in the market for a small and cheap to run car.  If you have any questions don’t hesitate to contact me!

Belfast Motor Show

Honestly, I was going to the Belfast Motor Show with quite high expectations. It turned out to be not as quite as big as I had hoped although the standard of cars were quite high! The BMS team had gotten Noble Automotive on board and my god did they choose wisely. The Noble M600 was on display and it was just, well, noble! It looks amazing. They had two cars there, an Orange and a Very Dark Blue one.


Noble is a small British car manufacturer that is based in Leicester. It debuted with its M10 in 1999 but really made a name for itself in 2001 with the M12. It had a 3 litre V6 producing 352bhp. Not bad for a car that only weighed 1,050kg and can be bought second hand today for as little as £22,000. Noble now have only one model on the go, the M600. It has a 4.4 litre Yamaha V8 producing 650 bhp. It only weighs 1198kg.  That gives it a power to weight ratio of 542bhp per tonne. I can only imagine how crazy this car is to drive!


The next exhibit to impress me were the two cars that Charles Hurst had on display. The Maserati Ghibli Diesel and Quattroporte Diesel.  Unfortunately there wasn’t anyone to talk to about the cars so thats all I have to say about that…

he QP is still quite a looker. It definitely doesn’t appeal to me as much as the first generation one but I wouldn’t say no. What I would say no to though is a diesel one. It just wouldn’t seem right.

Outside in the courtyard there were, what looked like, car club stands. There were a few modified cars, classics and the Rover Club of Northern Ireland even made an appearance with 3 P4’s, 2 SD1’s and a P6.

So overall the Belfast Motor Show wasn’t as spectacular as it set out to be.  Although, with a few more exciting stands there , they could be on to something. It was the first Belfast Motor Show in 12 years so atleast they made an effort. I really do hope that they run it again next year.

I will leave you with a few pictures:

Please do forgive me for my photography skills.


Porsche 911 Turbo S GB Edition

Since it first went on sale in 1974, the Porsche 911 Turbo has become a much sought after model by car enthusiasts and has become a famed high performance sports coupé which many companies try to beat. Since 1986, Porsche has been offer tailored sports cars to customers who want something a little different from their Porsche, including performance and styling.


As the name suggests, the Porsche 911 Turbo S GB Edition will only be made available to UK customers and are limited to 40 units. It will be powered by a 560bhp flat six-cylinder twin-turbocharged engine with an all-wheel drive chassis. As with the standard Turbo S model, handling is improved by the addition of PDCC, Porsche Dynamic Chassis Control. The 911 Turbo S can sprint from 0-100km/h in just 3.1 seconds and achieve a top speed of 317km/h. Of course Porsche hasn’t forgotten, they set a lap time of 7 minutes and 27 seconds around the Nürburgring-Nordschleife.

Th 911 Turbo S GB Edition adds features from previous Porsche models. In particular, the 911 Turbo 930 from ’74. This idea sound familiar? Yes, the Porsche 911 Sport Classic of 2009. Only 250 ever made.

The Porsche 911 Sport Classic - Exclusive For 250 Fans Of The 911

In profile, the 911 Turbo S Exclusive GB Edition shows a clear link to the first 911 Turbo – the black rear upper spoiler, Sport Classic wheels in black, black finished exterior door handles, and the black ‘Porsche’ script along the sills pays tribute to its ancestor. Inside the motif is continued. The black leather upholstery features Guards Red contrasting stitching and unique highlights include an embossed Union flag on the centre storage compartment lid.


So you want your Turbo S GB edition in red, sir?, no problem. White, sir?, no problem. Blue, sir?, Sorry no can do! The GB Edition comes in three different colours, White, Guards Red and GT Silver metallic. Ah sure who needs the colours of the flag anyway…The wheels are 20″ Sport Classic alloys in Gloss Black. Here is a lost of the special features:

  • Porsche logo script in black along door sills
  • Storage compartment lid with embossed Union flag
  • SportDesign steering wheel with centre marking in Guards Red and rim with Guards Red stitching
  • Black leather interior with Guards Red stitching
  • Privacy glazing
  • Porsche crest embossed on head restraints
  • Seat belts in Guards Red
  • Personalised carbon door sill guards with ‘911 Turbo S – Exclusive GB Edition’ in illuminated lettering
  • Carbon interior trim, including PDK gear lever, with chrome logo on dash insert
  • Bespoke floor mats with leather edging and decorative stitching in Guards Red

Each lucky customer receives a complementary accessory pack including a personalised indoor car cover, a photo book of the build process and a key pouch in leather with decorative Guards Red stitching.


So you want one? Well you can for as little as £150,237! Just a mere £8,000 more than a standard Turbo S. With places only limited to 40 units you would want to get your hands on one quick! Ah of course, only for UK customers… Dream on I suppose

Sometimes 2 wheels are as fun as 4

As some of you may know I am into cycling. So I thought it would only be fair to share both my passions on the blog. I have nothing interesting to tell you at the moment but I have a new bike on order and I will have something up about that soon. So hold on, all will be revealed soon!

In the meantime enjoy some bike porn:

Zero 7-BlueZero 7


Wilier Zero 7                                                    Wilier Zero 7

Cento1SR-Matt RedCento1SR-Fluo Yellow


Wilier Cento1SR Dark Red w/ Matt finish    Cento1SR Yellow Fluo



Cento1SR-Dark WhiteCento1SR Disc- Dark White


Wilier Cento1SR Dark White w/ Matt finish  Cento1SR DiscDark White w/ Matt Finish

Aernario Basic Aernario Signature


Storck Aernario Basic                                      Storck Aernario Signature


Scenero G2 Scentron


Storck Scenero G2                                            Storck Scentron


If anyone wants anymore info on these bikes, don’t hesitate to contact me. I know a guy!

The XC90 bids you farewell

After 636,143 units and 12 years of fine motoring, the current model of the Volvo XC90 comes to an end. Since its launch in January 2002, the XC90 has changed the way an SUV should be. It combined robust motoring with fine luxury. 110714volvo_ie2 On the 7 January 2002, Volvo Car Corp. launched the Volvo XC90 to the public at the Detroit Motor Show. In its 12 years, the successful SUV won more than 100 international distinctions, even SUV of the Year in 2003. It was also named Sweden’s most valuable export product with a value of SEK 40bn per annum, just over €4.3bn, in its peak years.  Volvo dealers had received 15,000 orders before its production in 2003! After producing 636,143 XC90s, production came to an end today in Volvos plant in Torslanda, Sweden. The last XC90 will be driven straight from the factory to the museum, both located in Gothenburg. The current XC90 production will be moved to the plant in Daging and will be renamed to the XC Classic but will only be sold in China. The all new XC90 will be revealed in August and production will start at the end of January 2015. Here’s a little history of the XC90: “In August 1998, Volvo Cars project director Hans Wikman was commissioned to develop a proposal for a modern, 7-seater SUV that was not too large. The car project was named P28, was to be based on the same platform as the Volvo S80 and should be launched in 2002. The aim was to sell 50,000 cars a year, a goal that would be beaten by a clear margin – during the peak years 2004-2007, around 85,000 cars were sold each year. The USA has been the largest single market for the XC90, with record figures achieved in 2004 (38,800 cars sold) and 2005 (36,200)”. 110714volvo_ie1 Lex Kerssemakers from Volvo Car Corp. hopes that the next generation of the Volvo XC90 will be as successful as the last. I’m sure there are a few anxious customers out there waiting for the new XC90. So until August, the XC90 bids you farewell.

Interested in a first generation XC90? Well you can get one for a fraction of the original price. Here is a well specced 2004 XC90 with the 2.4 diesel engine for only €14,900. http://www.carzone.ie/search/Volvo/XC90/D5-SE-5D/42313967005826680/advert?channel=CARS

Citroën C1 – Preview

For Citroën lovers, French car enthusiasts and general city drivers August cannot come quicker. The new Citroën C1 will arrive in Irish showrooms this August. Its perky and cheerful styling and remarkable efficiency will make it a serious contender amongst its rivals such as the Volkswagen up!, Toyota Aygo and Peugeot 108.


First off the new C1 is available in 3 different trims; the Touch, Feel and Flair. The Airscape versions are available in the Feel and Flair trims. This is a fabric retractable roof, sometimes known as a Webasto roof.

So whats new you ask? Well the new C1’s design includes more dynamic lines. The new face looks well and is brought together by bold headlights. The Airscape models can be finished in bi-tone colour schemes and bright interior fabrics. Just to bring out the best in the cars character. The C1 is said to be agile and nippy and I can see this being true as it can be powered by either a petrol VTi 62 or a petrol PureTech 82 engine. This mighn’t sound like a lot but in a car that is less that 3.5m long, 1.7m wide and 1.5m tall this could have some poke. Even with its small dimensions, the C1 can fit up to 4 adults and has a 196 litre boot space. This is on par with its French la concurrence, the Peugeot 108.

Technology is said to be improved. It includes a 7″ Touch Drive interface and Mirror Screen technology. This allows the driver to run certain apps from their smartphone onto the touch screen. To make the C1 even more functional, keyless entry and start and a reversing camera options are available.


The Touch, Feel and Flair models are all available in both three and five door models. The Airscape body option is available on both the three and five door versions of the Feel and Flair models. The C1 range starts at €10,995 for the Touch VTi 68 manual 3 door model. This then increase to €15,195 Airscape Flair PureTech 82 manual 5 door model.

Customers will be able to choose from eight different body colours including four metallic options. Three different wheel designs and three different upholstery finishes will also be available. The fabric roof for the Airscape models can be either Black, Grey or Sunrise Red.


Two latest-generation petrol engines will power the new C1 range. The VTi 68, available with either a 5 speed manual or a 5 speed clutchless Efficient Tronic Gearbox (ETG). The 3-cylinder PureTech 82 engine is also available but only with a 5 speed manual transmission.

Model by Model: 

C1 Touch: Standard spec on the Touch trim inlcudes ABS, EBA, ESC, power-steering, central locking, front electric windows, six airbags, MP3 compatible audio system, a USB socket and LED daytime running lights. Quite generous for the base model.

C1 Feel: There is the addition of air con, DAB digital radio, a 7″ Touch Drive interface with mirror Screen technology and steering mount controls on the Feel trim. You also get body colour door mirrors and door handles.


C1 Flair: The Flair gives you sports 15″ ‘Planet’ alloys, reversing camera, heated seats, adjustable door mirrors, a leather steering wheel AND tinted rear windows. Not bad!

Here I have the full price list of the new Citroën C1:

C1 Touch VTi 68 manual 3-door €10,995
C1 Touch VTi 68 manual 5 door €11,595
C1 Feel VTi 68 manual 5-door €13,095
C1 Feel VTi 68 ETG 5-door €13,895
C1 Flair PureTech 82 manual 5-door €14,195
C1 Airscape Feel VTi 68 manual 5-door €14,095
C1 Airscape Flair Pure Tech 82 manual 5-door €15,195

Donc, Pensez-Vous qu’il est beau? Commentez dessous

(Do you think it sounds nice? Comment below)

Seat Leon Van

This mightn’t sound very exciting but if you think the Leon looks as good as I do you will like the Leon Van. It will come with 2 different specifications, the S and SE. The S will be priced at€15,450 and the SE at €16,285.

Leon VanIt will feature a 1.6 TDi 90bhp engine. Standard equipment on the S model will be; air conditioning, front electric windows, a multi-function steering wheel with an on-board computer, sport seats and a media system. Outside trim will include electric and heated mirrors in body colour. Electric and electronic stability control and a tyre pressure warning light will also feature.

The SE trim will include everything that the S trim has and more! It boasts 16″ alloys and cruise control. A leather multi-functioning steering wheel, leather gear knob and a leather handbrake are also additions to this model along with fog lights with cornering function, driver seat lumbar support and a centre console with an armrest. For those tricky hills you have hill hold control and for the race track you have traction control (XDS).

2013 saw SEAT increase its sales by 62% and enjoy a record market share of 3%. Well done SEAT!

But what I want to know is when the Leon Van Cupra is out…

New Volkswagen Polo

VW’s new model Polo has reached Irish shores and to celebrate Volkswagen retailers are offering very attractive finance offers. The new Polo starts at €14,995 and comes with a whole new range of engines.

Der neue Volkswagen Polo

The front and rear of the Polo has been totally redesigned and the equipment that comes as standard has been radically improved. Aswell as changes to the standard Polo, there have been new engines added to the Cross Polo range. These include 90bhp 1.2 TSI and 90bhp 1.4 TDI engines. At the top of the range sits the Polo BlueGT. It features a 1.4 TSI 150bhp engine with a 7 speed DSG gearbox but only has emissions as low as 108g/km. Thats €190 a year! Impressive!

The new Polo is available in Trendline, Bluemotion, Comfortline, Comfortline+, Cross Polo and BlueGT specs. You can get the Polo from as little as €142 per month through Volkswagen Bank and comes with 3 years roadside assistance and 3 years warranty. 142 customers can avail of 0% APR finance or €500 celebration bonus.