Owning a 4×4 is never a cheap option so you’ll understandably be looking to save money wherever possible. So what factors make it so expensive:
- Fuel: This used to a bigger factor than it is now. I remember (and will never forget) owning a 4 Litre Petrol Range Rover, which drank fuel at a cost of 50p per mile. It’s certainly enough to make you think twice about every journey. Just turning on the engine seemed to push the fuel guage down. If you compare that to a new Golf today that can easily achieve less than 10p a mile, it does make you wonder how much you do actually love your 4×4! That said, it’s getting a lot cheaper now as 4×4’s are getting more fuel efficient. You’ll probably find you get a mile for around 15p now a days which is not too bad.
- Tax: Road tax is again more expensive on four wheel drives than the new super dooper £0 tax, fuel efficient jobbies. At least this is a fixed cost and as above, the newer your 4×4 the more likely it is to fall into a cheaper road tax category.
- Insurance: Driving a moving tank around the UK can be a dangerous past time! Of course, it’s safer for you than it is the person you hit, especially if they are driving a litte eco car, but hey, you pay for your safety. The best way to keep your insurance costs down is to go for a 4×4 with an immobilser fitted, make sure it has no modifications on it and make sure you compare quotes using a 4×4 comparison site. These sites will assess your information and return a variety of quotes from insurers all over the country. Every insruance provider is different, assessing risks in various ways, so making sure you compare a full range of quotes is definitely the best way to go.
- Wear and tear: Another area that is costly is the general upkeep of the car, those big old tyres aren’t cheap, neither are many of the other parts. You can expect to find a tyre for a four wheel drive costing two-four times the amount of a normal car. If you are looking to buy a second hand 4×4 then it would be prudent to make sure you get one that has a good lease of life left on the tyres. The last thing you want it to fork out some good money for a car and then find you have to spend a grand on replacing a tyre or two.
- Where are you keeping the car and where do you live!: I know this is not a particularly flexible point; I’m yet to meet someone willing to relocate their home to find cheaper insurance, but you’ll be amazed at the cost different between insurance in London and the countryside for example. Equally if you keep your car on the road at night expect to pay a higher price.
Sorry to be the doom and gloom of your plan to buy a new 4×4 but let’s face it, it’s best to know the facts before you venture off into the world of the four wheel driver owners club. At the end of the day, if you can afford it, life’s too short so make the decision now to get out there and buy your dream car.