Before every person who has recently passed an exam at the traffic police and received the right to drive a car, there is a problem of choosing a vehicle. Choosing a car is sometimes as difficult as choosing a movie for the evening or a blackjack online version of the game.
In this article, we will try to suggest how to choose a car for a beginner: we will tell you in detail what to look for, what the choice should be based on, and also tell you about the advantages and disadvantages of new and used cars. We will also provide a rating comparison of suitable cars.
New or used?
The advantages of a used car are, as it was said, in the possibility of becoming the owner of a high-end car for a relatively modest amount, since such cars seem to be more reliable than budget options. There is a pitfall here: they are really more reliable, but only if compared with inexpensive cars of the same model years. In addition, you do not know how the car was operated: whether the engine overheated, whether the body was bit and rebuilt, whether the gearbox was worn out (first of all, automatic), whether the electronics were “drowned”, etc.
It is also important to take into account that offers in the secondary market in the overwhelming majority of cases require additional investments for pre-operational maintenance (for example, maintenance, elimination of minor faults that were not identified during the inspection of the car).
When buying a new car, things are much more pleasant:
- There is no need for additional investments (not counting additional options), and operating costs are quite predictable;
- The car is fully operational and ready for use;
- Excellent insurance policies are offered with maximum coverage of potential problems;
- An official vehicle manufacturer’s warranty is provided.
Big or Small?
When choosing according to this criterion, large crossovers and SUVs should be immediately excluded.
Of course, they have many advantages: four-wheel drive, visibility, a more durable body. However, there are disadvantages: first of all, they are guaranteed to be less maneuverable and, as a rule, feel worse in terms of size and control than compact cars. For a beginner, all this plays an important role: it becomes more difficult to reverse, diagonal parking, change lane, overtake and outrun. And this is not to mention maneuvering in confined areas.
Bottom line: safety, compact size and affordability should be the benchmarks when looking for your first car. The best options for a beginner are cars of the “A”, “B”, “B +” segments, as well as relatively small crossovers, the dimensions of which are close to the hatchbacks of the corresponding classes.
Type of Drive
Front-Wheel Drive Benefits:
- Simplicity, reliability, and low cost of construction
- Relatively safe cornering, since the front wheels do not push into it, but “pull in”;
- Increased, in comparison with the rear-wheel drive, cross-country ability. This is due to the fact that the drive wheels are loaded with a mass of units located in the engine compartment, which increases traction on the surface.
Front-Wheel Drive Disadvantages:
- Reduced maximum steering angles of the front wheels due to the presence of CV joints on the wheels being steered;
- Perceptibly worsened “stall” and slipping (with a sharp press on the gas pedal), because the center of gravity of the car is transferred to the rear axle, reducing the grip of the front wheels with the coating.
Rear-Wheel Drive Advantages:
- High acceleration efficiency due to the fact that the center of gravity is transferred to the driving axle;
- Improved information content of management.
Rear-Wheel Drive Disadvantages:
- Increased likelihood of rear axle skidding (especially on wet or uneven roads) due to overseer, increased rear mass, and torque transfer to the rear wheels.
All-Wheel Drive Advantages:
- Improved handling and road stability;
- The best acceleration dynamics (with other variables being equal) due to the transmission of torque to all wheels with a minimum of lost power when slipping;</li>
- The best cross-country ability due to the possibility of redistributing torque between the axles and/or wheels, if necessary.
Disadvantages of All-Wheel Drive:
- Relatively expensive repair and maintenance due to the complexity of the design.
“Mechanics” or “Automatic”?
Manual switching is a matter of habit, only for some, it is not necessary. Objectively, for a city car spending time in slow traffic, “jerking” with a manual transmission is superfluous. Automatic transmissions are often accused of low efficiency, but modern “automatic machines” have learned to conserve fuel, and even faster than a person they shift gears.
Powerful or Low Power?
A beginner’s car should have sufficient power for safe overtaking and driving at traffic levels. This is quite consistent with motors up to 150 hp. regardless of the type and size of the car.
The Best Cars for Newbies
- Renault Logan. An inexpensive car for a beginner, equipped with proven, reliable and unpretentious units. A spacious interior and a spacious trunk make this car also an optimal family transport solution.
- Renault Duster. The budget compact crossover will provide an opportunity to improve driving skills in all conditions – from urban roads to moderate off-road conditions. This car can be called one of the most practical in the category for beginners.
- KIA Picanto. Small dimensions, excellent maneuverability, and high efficiency make this car an ideal option for comfortable driving around the city with its heavy traffic and frequent traffic jams.
- Volkswagen Polo. One of the best-selling compact cars, deservedly earned its fame. Durable units, components and mechanisms, elegant design, comfortable interior, 5-star safety, and affordable price allow it to claim the title of one of the best options for a beginner.
Skoda Rapid. Inexpensive, but solid lift back with a cozy interior and a spacious trunk, a line of economical and trouble-free motors.