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Trying to buy a van!

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I have been online for days looking at used van prices in the UK. I need to buy one next week to start moving furniture and stuff over to France, and as a runaround while I get floor tiles, appliances, etc etc over there. I will eventually swop it for a horse box but meanwhile I want something cheap and reliable that will last me a year or so. Since I will be driving in both UK and France I don't mind if it is RHD or LHD but it must be something I can drive on a normal car licence, not HGV.

And it is hard - there are lots on ebay but I am scared to buy unseen. ANd I have never owned a van so am not sure what would be best. I think I want a diesel, and power steering would be nice, but I don't know what brand is best. I don't care what it looks like as long as there is not too much rust and it won't break down half way! I have been looking at Ford Transits, Citroen C15s, LDV vans etc. Does anyone out there swear by a particular make? Or tell me what to avoid?
post #2 of 10
Well this won't help much being as I'm from the US but personally I like the Chrysler line of mini vans. I have a 15 yr. old Plymouth Voyager with 220k miles and it is still going strong. I bought it 2 yrs. ago for $500.00 .
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Wow, that was cheap! It seems to me that I will have to pay at least £800-£1000 ($1500 - $2000) to get anything that won't fall apart.
post #4 of 10
Well the Chryslers don't seem to hold their value like the Japanese mini's do but I have'nt had any real probs with mine. I have spent perhaps another 5-600.00 on things like shocks and brakes and a tune-up since I bought it but it gets the job done for me just fine.
post #5 of 10
Jenny, my father-in-law, who "always" drove Fords, swears by the VW Transporter. He just traded in his 15-year-old one for a new one (both diesels). I think he paid €24,000 for the new one, but it's the 2004 model, and fire-engine red, so he got about €6,000 off the list price. A used one would be much, much cheaper. He drove the old one to Hungary about 6 times a year (1,400 km round trip), and never had a single problem with it. The only reason he replaced it was because he felt that, at 81, he wanted "one last new car", and felt the air conditioning would make the long drives to Hungary more comfortable. The Transporter is pretty big - it seats nine comfortably, and the second and third rows of seats can easily be removed. One plus is that the martens don't seem to like VWs (they love Renaults and Toyotas), so if your new house is in a place with lots of martens, you might want to consider that.
post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks - that was one I was considering!
post #7 of 10
Yes, do try and get power steering!
post #8 of 10
Good luck, Jenny!
post #9 of 10
VW Transporters are pretty good - and reliable too!

Have you thought of having an AA check on the van? If you see one on eBay that you are pretty sure about, you can get the AA to do a full check on it! It costs about £140, but it will make sure that you have confidence in the vehicle you are buying!

Good luck with it!
post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 
Yes, I called hte AA and RAC but they need about 10 days' notice inthe SEof England right now, and most Ebay listings are 7 days or less. SO it doesn't really help. I have been listing private vans for sale, and also dealers areound South London and Bristol, which is where I shall be first, and go and look on Monday and Tuesday next week. It's funny, as I drive around now I am looking at all the vans and seeing which ones I like the look of on the road, as opposed to in a picture.
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