Car hunting

Our car is about to reach 300.000 km, and the bills of the garage tell us that it is time to say goodbye to our Fiat Punto and start looking for something else.

The first question,new or second hand?, was quickly answered; as the second hand market is almost inexistent here in Spain. Everybody buys new and keeps driving it until the car reaches the same stage as our current car. We will probably end up buying a new car, unless we are lucky enough to buy a showroom model.

The second question, what kind of car?, was also easily answered: we live in the city centre, so big cars are out of the question. And considered my length and the fact that we regularly use the car to go away with our friends, really small cars are also not suited for us. So that leaves us with the regular tourist cars and MPVs.

Since every brand offers these models, we made up a list of all dealers in Lleida and started to visit them last Saturday. Unfortunately, almost all of them were closed, since the day before was a bank holiday! In the end we managed to visit the dealers for Peugeot and Renault, and came home with a lot of information about these cars.

We also bought some magazines with the typical list of all brands and models in the back, and while browsing all that information I quickly noticed that I simply had way too much information. I need a way to get rid of all surplus of information, I won’t buy a Ferrari and don’t have the slightest idea whether 150 Nm is OK or not, so fired up Google to search for the table in the car magazines in text or Excel format to play with.

Without success. It seems like all the car sites have been made only for car-enthusiasts. Usually the first selection you have to make is the brand and the model, which is exactly the information I want the site to give me! I am very disappointed in what I found.

When I am looking for a mobile phone of €50, I have hundreds of sites to help me, but when I am making one of the biggest purchases of my life, I fall into the hands of the salesmen without any help from the Internet.

Jeroen Sangers @jeroensangers