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  • in reply to: Honda e #121977

    £3K is very steep for a small car.  On the flip side, £3K for small, very nippy car with all the bells and whistles is quite reasonable.

    I like the VW Golf Mk1 styling.  Range is dire.  Less than 1 lap of the M25 before needing a charge is unacceptable from something so small although unsurprising for 1.5 tonnes of bleeding edge technology.  It weighs more than my Skoda Octavia 2.0 diesel with the same power output.

    I’d have one if I had a drive but I don’t like the idea of a trailing charge cable winding across the pavement.

    in reply to: Lease Extended on the VRS #120622

    The latest information I got from Motability – admittedly just before the lockdown – was:

    Any customer can extend the lease of any three-year-car now by up to two years and irrespective of AP.

    The Good condition bonus increases too.

    £600 after three years.
    £700 after four years.
    £900 after five years.

    After five years, no dice unless the replacement vehicle has been ordered.

    If one decides to terminate a lease extension, the GCB is paid out on whole years only.

    A quick search of the Motability web shows different information.

    I would call and get MOp to email the options.

    in reply to: Mitsubishi to pull out of UK/European Market #120620

    Nissan, Renault and Mitsubishi are all part of the same group.

    It makes sense to rationalise production and markets around the globe.  It’ll be a big kick in the nads for the Sunderland plant if the powers that be shut it down.

    However, don’t forget that although a relatively small area geographically, the UK is outside of Europe and there will still be a market for compact, right-hand-drive cars.  The same cars that can be driven in Japan, Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, South Africa and so on.  None of which are in Europe either.

    in reply to: Car numbers on the Motability Scheme today #106629

    I had a long chat with an MO member of staff yesterday mainly to have a bit of a whinge.

    The basis of my whinge was that as customer, it was becoming increasingly difficult to research a possible replacement for the current car. With cars coming on for short periods, e.g. Ford Kuga, Audi A4, it was making things even more difficult.  The new car is due to be ordered in June and I can’t find a replacement that will have the space for everything, the power to pull a trailer with a scooter loaded on it.  I have an AP budget of £1500.

    The person at the other of the end sounded sympathetic and officially confirmed that the chopping and changing of cars coming on and off the list was causing difficulties and confusion for MO and customers alike.  One little thing that was mentioned was that there are going to be a lot of changes to the cars available.  The explanation being that manufacturers are pretty much racing each other to produce mild hybrids and reduce the number of diesels in their ranges.

    I asked what would be the best way forward given that I’m now in my 27th year with Motability and don’t want to leave the scheme.  I was very surprised that applying for a grant wasn’t mentioned.  Neither was moving across to a WAV that could accommodate both my wheelchair and a scooter.  Lease extensions were mooted.  Buying the existing car also but finding sufficient money to do that would be nigh on impossible within the time frame left available.

    The best solution looks like I will have to extend the lease.  In theory at least I will be able to save a bit more for a larger AP (and a tow bar).  To be fair, I like my current car and all the toys it came with.  Unfortunately all I’ll be doing is delaying the inevitable but at least I’ll be in a  more flexible position as I could potentially take advantage of a quick deal.

    The only thing I will want to check is the good condition bonus.  It’s increased again recently and I don’t want any extension to decrease what I get back.  I’ve not missed one yet since they were introduced.

    Please don’t rely on any of this information as gospel as it wasn’t an official approach just a “chat and whinge”.

    in reply to: My Amazing Fuel Economy from my BMW X1 2.0i X-Drive #105243

    Mine has LED headlights/tail lights but antique bulbs for stop/indicator.

    The current Skoda Octavia (Mk3FL) is similar.

    LEDs everywhere except the front fogs, reversing lights and rear indicators.

    To make things worse, they’re all a bugger to change.


    Q1 of every year sees a cull, although this year has been particularly bad.

    The net reduction from Q4 2019 is still over 200.

    Adding 200 cars in a month would be unprecedented.

    Personally, I think the problem is that all of the manufacturers are falling over themselves to add hybrids to their existing ranges.  The 48V systems seem to be very popular but it will still take time to filter down to Motability level.

    There’s a lot of contradiction taking place in the media that isn’t helping.  Petrol and diesels will, allegedly disappearing.  No they won’t.  Petrol and diesels will just have 48V micro-hybrids installed.

    The hybrids bring a secondary problem.  Engine size reduction.  In order to install a simple, under-the-bonnet system, internal combustion engines will be smaller and have to work harder to keep the hybrid batteries charged.

    Most recently, the press have also started having a go at diesel cars (again) over the ineffectiveness of particulate filters and asking why petrol engines shouldn’t also be fitted with similar systems.  Also, the press have found a study that the next major hazard to the environment is brake dust from vehicles.

    Advance payments have been creeping up and up over the last couple of years, some by ridiculous amounts.  The Citroen Berlingo and Peugeot Partner (now Rifter) automatics had APs of just £495 and £499 and a couple of years ago, now both are now well over £1000.

    The Audi A4 is only on the scheme as there is probably a lot of RHD stock to get of.  (Brexit effect anyone)  On top of that 150BHP from a modern 2.0 petrol is a joke.

    If anyone is due to change cars this quarter, be brave and wait.  Call Motability and tell them you’re struggling to find the extra money for an advance payment.  Particularly if you have a larger car.  I’ve done it more than once.

    My current lease is up in September this year so I’m quite fortunate.  I will get my letter in June.  I’ll be able to order a car on 30th June and, if necessary, cancel it on 1st July in the event that something spectacular happens to the AP.  Last time I saved over £1000 on the AP by not cancelling but still had the reassurance that it was possible.

    The only other thing we can “hope” for is another Daily Mail exposé and Motability are forced to reign in the APs.  It’s not that long ago that the maximum AP was £2000 for a manual and £2500 for an auto.  The number of cars on the scheme reduced but not by much.  It was the manufacturers that were forced to reconsider their pricing structure.  The last thing we want again is a repeat of when APs could reach just shy of £20,000 – yes, twenty thousand pounds – for a car.

    in reply to: Refuelling habits… #103712

    Ordinarily I wait until the warning comes on the infotainment screen and fill up within a day or two.

    I’ve been very good over the last 2 1/2 years and used fuelly.  I only missed the first two tank fulls.

    My Octy is also a caravan puller (see June/July 2018 for towing figures when I covered more than 4,500 miles).

    Today she cracked 40,000 miles and there’s another set of touring figures to add.

    Officially my best mpg is 54.5 for a tank full.  However, I managed 69.9 for a drive from Cornwall to Teesside.

    The amount spent on fuel is inaccurate due to the inability to enter local currency conversions.  In Hungary it was 330HUF for a litre – about the same per litre in Sterling.


    Ordered from a dealership in Durham, serviced by a different dealership in Darlington.

    Sales team in Durham were great, service team not so.

    Reverse order for dealership in Darlington.

    in reply to: Q1 Pricing Information & News #102578

    I realise that public relations departments are given some leeway when quoting figures but claiming a total of “over 2,000” vehicles is a bit naughty when Motability’s homepage total has below that since the new prices were announced.

    No doubt Motability will claim that WAVs are included in the total too.

    As a 25+ year Motability veteran, this quarter really does seem poor.

    APs are rising and trim levels are falling.

    I try to go for something with a little comfort but nearly £4000 as an AP when it was capped at half that just a few years back is a getting a bit much.

    I’m due to change in Q3 this year and haven’t got a clue what I’ll be going for.  I prefer larger capacity diesels as I pull a 1300kg caravan for several thousand miles a year.  There is just one hybrid on the scheme that can do that (Kia Niro Self-charging).  The missus likes things like heated seats and multi-zone A/C.  I like things like adaptive cruise control, especially when touring.

    My AP budget will be around £1500 as I’ll have to find around £500 for a tow bar.

    Based on the current price list and recent history, I’ll be struggling to find anything come the summer.

    The greatest irony has to be that it was Motability that suggested getting a car with towing ability for the two scooters that we use on days out.  We tried for a larger WAV but were given a flat, “No.”  Despite both myself and my wife qualifying for a vehicle each.


    Just over 200 cars (net) removed from the list – almost half of them diesel.

    Looks like there are some manufacturers still negotiating.

    The Audi A4 made it at £3749 AP (PIP/DLA) but no sign of the Volvo or Skoda hybrids.

    Thankfully, cars can be added at almost any point.

    in reply to: Oops by Motability #27857
    in reply to: What you need v What you can afford #27595

    Before you commit to signing up for anything new, have word with Motability and see if they will extend the existing lease.  If the current car meets all of your existing needs, they are encouraging customers to extend, particularly if you might need financial help (grant) to make a purchase.


    The VW dealer is completely on the level.

    We considered the Golf mk7 estate GTD, however, as of lunchtime today there are only three available in the UK with just one on the way from Germany.  All four are loaded with factory fitted extras and are therefore nowhere near the published AP.

    We need to order our next bus and thinking of waiting until the next quarter and hoping some prices drop.

    in reply to: Any discounts???? #27434

    Unfortunately, the chances of getting any discount on the AP of any car are about the same as finding rocking horse poo. The dealership only gets a couple of hundred quid for processing an order. Factory fit options are a different kettle of fish. The dealership gets a bucket full of commission for selling them. Just take a look how much any manufacturer charges for a factory-fit tow bar. £650 is about the minimum. A local fitter can do one for half that. Saying all that, I went to a VW showroom today and was offered £200 off the AP of a Golf Estate. Probably due to the fact that the dealership had the car in stock and VW are trying to shift all the Mk 7 models before 1st April when the Mk 8 is released.

    in reply to: Dealers #27433

    My experience of dealerships has been extremely varied, especially in the last 12/13 years.

    I have tried large companies and small independents. Generally, for me, the bigger the company, the worse the experience. This was perfectly demonstrated when I got a Seat. The dealership was a small independent when the car was ordered. By the time the car was delivered, a large national group had taken over. The exchange was a nightmare as they had lost the grant notification. The after-sales service resulted in several complaints to Motability not least when the car was in my possession for only a 2 week period during the last 4 months of the lease.

    My current car was ordered from a small independent in Fife. The Motability salesman there is a gem. Unfortunately, I live 200 miles from the dealership so getting it serviced was tricky and I went to our nearest franchise, huge company, we were treated with nothing less than complete contempt. Remarks like, “You only live 3 miles away, why do you need a courtesy car?”, really don’t help.

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