How to choose a used car

Buying a used car is a sound decision, allowing you to get a complete version for little money. The advantages of such a purchase are many: rich equipment, confirmed condition, as well as amenities, like paid insurance and all sorts of improvements. However such purchase – “a pig in a poke”, and so as not to be available problematic option, the choice should be approached from the whole responsibility.

How to choose a used car

The best car manufacturers. Which to choose?

The advantage of buying a used car is the opportunity to choose a high-quality model of high class for the same money, who ask for a new “state employee”. It is not surprising that, once in a similar situation, buyers look towards premium auto brands:

  1. BMW

  2. Lexus

  3. Mercedes Benz;

  4. Audi

  5. Acura;

  6. Infiniti

  7. Honda

Before choosing a specific car model, it’s useful to study user reviews and identify problem areas of the car. Them condition and should be given attention in the first place. Familiarize with information of this kind is easiest on thematic forums in Internet, as well as social networks in groups dedicated to specific brand of car.

Car classes

All modern cars are divided into types depending on wheelbase size, weight, engine displacement and other operational characteristics.

Class A cars

Class A cars

Compact cars designed for urban use. The body has a short base with minimal overhangs, which ensures the ability to park in tight places and alleys, as well as turn around and perform maneuvers in cramped conditions.


  • Miniature sizes;

  • Low taxes and insurance;

  • Maneuverability and dynamism due to light weight;

  • Small turning radius;


  • Low power motors;

  • At speeds over 130 km \ h you do not feel comfortable;

  • Poor cross;

  • Tiny trunk;

Class B cars

Class B cars

Larger machines designed for everyday use operation and short trips out of town. Wheelbase such cars does not exceed 3000 mm, and engines mounted on most models cannot be called powerful. Are in demand in mostly among those who pick up the first car in their life.


  • Compact wheelbase;

  • Economical;

  • Available in hatchback, sedan and wagon classes;

  • Maneuverable and compact;

  • Small overhangs on the bumpers;


  • Miniature interior dimensions;

  • The drive in the bulk of the front;

  • Fair passability;

  • Small clearance;

  • Unable to develop significant speed;

Class C

Class C cars

The most popular class in our country. Already enough roomy, but their dimensions still do not create a hassle to the owner. Suitable for everyday use thanks to low fuel consumption, affordable price tag and acceptable dynamics. Available in classes hatchback, sedan, wagon, and coupe.


  • Spacious lounge;

  • Low-cost maintenance

  • Low fuel consumption;

  • Ground clearance is 15-17 centimeters;

  • Roomy trunk;


  • The turning radius is greater than that of a B-class car;

  • Mediocre dynamics;

D class


Full-size middle class cars, featuring large body dimensions (up to 4.5-4.7 meters), various types of drive and powerful motors (volume can reach 3-4 liters). Spacious interior, roomy trunk. Maneuverable and capable of good accelerate, do not feel uncomfortable in the stream.


  • Spaciousness;

  • Good dynamics;

  • High-torque engines;

  • 5 full seats in the cabin;

  • Spacious trunk


  • Expensive repairs;

  • High fuel consumption;

  • Large turning radius;



Representative class cars. Length reaches 5-5.2 meters. Complete with all-wheel drive systems, and also a wide variety of helpers contributing providing exchange rate stability. Quality interior decoration, many diverse functions that directly affect comfort. Roomy trunk and a spacious lounge.


  • Spaciousness;

  • Extensive functionality;

  • A wide variety of models and trim levels;

  • Hardy motors;

  • Workmanship;


  • A lot of systems that can malfunction with mileage;

  • Substantial amounts of transport tax;

  • Good options cost money;

  • Consume a lot of fuel;

  • Roads to maintain;

The main criteria for choosing a used car

used car selection criteria

Having decided on the brand and class of a particular car, it is necessary to study the condition of the main components and assemblies that can become potential sources of problems and, as a result, financial investments. You should pay attention to the nuances that are indirect signs of repair work and a consequence of the fact that the car was in an accident.

Car mileage

Figures showing the number of kilometers traveled by a car for all my “life”. Without confirmation, stories can be absolutely Anyone – Unwind the car’s odometer is not currently makes no difficulty. The average numbers are as follows: 15-20 thousand kilometers of the annual run “winding up” the Russians and 30-40 thousand – Europeans. Multiplying this figure by age, you can approximately calculate the mileage of the car. The numbers will be averaged, however close enough to reality. Afraid of used cars in 200-250 thousand kilometers should not be – with timely maintenance and use of quality parts and technical liquids the car is quite capable of “running back” as much. Of course, only if the mileage is real.

Vehicle Release Date

The age of a car is a psychological figure rather than having any practical application, because often older machines work better than their young “brothers.”

Pay attention to the presence of so-called “restyling” – global model line updates, elimination of identified shortcomings and modernization of appearance.

We should not forget about the difference in generations. Often age of cars may vary by 1 year, and the difference in price reach 50-70%. This is due to the fact that a younger car refers to a newer model line and is relevant in present moment.

The condition of the car body and paintwork

Body condition is the determining criterion when buying used car. In order to determine the thickness of the paintwork and to detect hidden repairs, use a thickness gauge. This is a special device that allows you to determine the thickness of the layer. paints, varnishes and other polymeric materials that separate the sensor and metal surface of the body. Read the article in more detail – recommendations for choosing a thickness gauge.

  1. A value of not more than 150-180 microns indicates factory car coloring;

  2. A 300-400 micron layer indicates that the vehicle has been secondary coloring;

  3. A layer of more than 500 microns suggests that under the paint of the car contains putty, indicating an accident, which he visited;

Evidence that the car was in an accident can serve as Clearances between car body panels. In the factory In the state they all have the same width and are completely symmetrical each other. If their width is different, and to join the wings, the bumper and other elements as a whole is not possible, we can draw conclusions about the displacement of the power elements of the frame structure. You should refuse to buy such a car.

Suspension and suspension condition

In most cases, the chassis and suspension are “consumables” requiring regular replacement, regardless of Moreover, a new car is bought either “used”. To to carry out a suspension diagnosis, it is necessary to raise the car to lift or carry out a dynamic test on a special stand. Pay attention to silent blocks, ball joints, levers and rods, as well as springs and shock absorbers.

Gearbox operation

  1. The manual must have a hard input and a clear gear shifting. The clutch should engage in the middle of the stroke pedals either at the very beginning, when changing gears extraneous sounds, crunching and clicking should be absent. Availability vibrations, crunches and clicks may indicate a strong flywheel wear, “grabbing” at the very end indicates that the clutch kit will require an immediate replacement;

  2. Automatic gear should shift gears smoothly, without jerks and delays, regardless of whether the car is warm or not. Shocks and bumps indicate failure executive block automatic transmission, change in speed by 100-150 at even distribution of the gas pedal – a sign of an early exit from torque converter building;

Engine and its operation

Cold start of the engine should be carried out clearly and accurately, revolutions after the start should not “swim”, extraneous sounds, whistle, clatter and knocking – missing. It’s very cold often indicates engine condition;

  1. During the ride, the speed should change in parallel with pressing accelerator pedal, failures and self-enhancement not to be must;

  2. The dynamics of the car should be uniform, devoid of failures and power surges;

  3. There should be no smoke during engine operation. (exception – diesel engines for which the presence of a small amount of black smoke is a feature of work). Availability gray smoke indicates that the engine consumes oil, white smoke indicates a malfunction of the cooling system and a leak antifreeze;

  4. The level of technical fluids must be on the same same mark and do not change regardless of driving style. Consumption oil of 500 ml or more per thousand kilometers may indicate that the engine will require serious repairs soon. An indirect sign of oil consumption problems may be testify to a canister of oil in the trunk of a car, the so-called “topping up”;

  5. Fuel consumption should be at the factory level plus minus 15-20% when operating in the cold season. Excessive gas mileage may indicate a malfunction. fuel equipment;

Vehicle Interior Condition

  1. The general condition of the passenger compartment must not cause rejection by its view. Door seals and rubber bands must have softness and fit snugly to the doors and car body;

  2. Interior details with which the driver contacts must have good condition, not to be peeled and scratched. Jammed steering wheel, “bald” gear knob, shabby buttons may indicate that the mileage in a car is far beyond 200 thousand kilometers;

  3. The seats can also say a lot. Lateral support, lower roller the popliteal support, back and pillow should be intact, not having serious creases, traces of operation and defects;

Electrics and Electronics

  1. The dashboard and trip computer must not have any additional characters, excluding workers. Check engine service lamps for pressure and oil level, as well as other indicators indicate serious problems.

  2. Once in the cabin, you need to check all the electrical equipment. Air conditioning, climate control, lighting, multimedia – all this equipment should work the way provided by the manufacturer;

  3. After the initial inspection, you must resort to use dealer equipment. It makes it possible to determine the true mileage, current and old errors, diagnose equipment and identify those malfunctions that will soon must require intervention;

type of drive

Front-wheel drive is installed on most modern cars. The engine is mounted transversely and using special devices – SHRUS transmits torque to the front wheels.

Rear-wheel drive involves transmitting torque to the rear wheels. For this purpose, a number of additional devices – driveshaft, gearbox. Installed on powerful and sports cars and shows excellent performance characteristics on dry asphalt.

Four-wheel drive combines the two above-described mechanisms and capable of transmitting torque to all four wheels. Allocate permanent four-wheel drive, in which all four wheels rotate, the moment and degree of rotation of each of them is controlled electronics, and plug-in – default drive wheels are front or rear, and when they slip the system forcibly connects the second pair.


In the following articles we tell you how to choose the right reliable car alarms and which tinting is better to install on auto.

Attention! This material is subjective opinion of the authors of the project and is not a buying guide.

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