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For many young drivers, the cost of insuring their first car will be an important factor when choosing what to buy. The average premium for a 17-year-old in 2018 was £1,964, which is around 46% of what drivers in 2018 spent on average for their first car.

“New drivers spend an average of £4,276 buying their first car but those from the north west and London splash out more than £5,000 on their first set of wheels.” said Simon Joyce, managing director of Anchor Vans, the UK’s largest commercial vehicle hypermarket.

“If you’re being nagged to buy their first car, don’t worry. You’re not alone! According to 41 percent of UK parents said they bought their child’s first car for them.” continued Simon.

Anchor Vans provide their top tips and tricks to follow upon buying your offspring’s first car:

Choose a sensible car – Young drivers’ insurance premiums will be lower if they drive a standard car with a small engine (under 1000cc) in a low insurance group. Cars with modifications such as body kits can also push up the price of insurance.

Buy used – Buying a used car saves you money. On average, used car prices are almost 50% lower than new cars! You don’t have to settle for expensive dealership add-ons when buying a used car from a dealership. You may install your own at a lower cost. What a great way to spend the money you saved when buying a used car. Look for mileage, service history and MOT expiry date. As these are things you don’t want to be shelling out for weeks after you’ve put down potentially thousands on their new car.

Consider alternative financing options – With many second-hand dealerships offering great finance options, it’s hard to stay focused on one. Make sure you buy from an approved, trusted and experienced reseller. Nowadays you have 4 popular options:


  • Hire purchase (HP) to finance a new car – After paying a relatively low deposit, you hire your car with the option to but it by the end of the contract.
  • Low interest bank loan – specifically for car buying.
  • Personal contract purchase (PCP) – The most popular way of financing a car. It’s often seen as a way of buying a car over three or five years, but most people don’t go on to buy the car.
  • Leasing – Personal contract hire (PCH) – It’s like long-term rental, letting you use the car until the contract ends, with an option to buy it.

Get a car inspected – Find a car that is in good condition inside and out. Don’t visit the car in the evening as you won’t see much in the dark. Make sure you bring along someone else who can help in the inspection process – they may spot things you don’t.

Warranty – Buy with warranty! This is a must; the warranty bracket can save you thousands. They normally work off the usage of the car, for example at the first 3,000 miles or 3 months (whichever is sooner), the “return-to-base cover” expires but you can upgrade to an excellent 12, 24 or 36-month MBI warranty for just a few pounds a week. Make a note in your diary or just add it to the price of the car on the day of the order.

Test Drive – If you’re seriously interested in buying the car the dealership should let you test drive the car. All you need is your full UK driver’s license (the learner can’t drive) and your national insurance number. Test drives help as you can test the performance of the car.

What should you be looking for in the test drive?

  • Engine Performance – Turn the music down and open the window, listening out for any unusual ticking and catching sounds. Typically, older cars have cam belts – check it as this can be a true test of the engine performance.


  • Suspension – Try and find speed bumps on your test drive. You’ll soon realise if there is major problem with the suspension.


  • Steering & Brakes – At, the best test of the steering and brakes is to drive and accelerate in a straight line and loosely take your hands off the wheel still keeping in close control of the car, suddenly brake. If you find the brake steers you to your left or right, then the tracking of the car must be assessed as well as brake pads.


  • Tyres – Ask how old the tyres are, check for tread make sure there is a minimum tread depth of 1.6mm.



About Anchor Vans:

Anchor Vans is one of the UK’s leading independent van dealerships thanks to 30 years of high-quality service from their hard-working teams. The company’s expansive open court holds an impressive array of new and used vans for customers across the country. They currently hold a position as one of the top 50 independent motor dealers in the UK by Motor Trader, as well as being recognised in the UK Van Dealer of the Year awards.

To find out more about Anchors Vans, the services the company offers and about their dedication to raising money for good causes, please get in touch with their friendly team on 0118 9710 230 or visit

Anchor Vans now sells cars. visit for more information.

To find our more, contact or call 0131 357 8977.