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Head vs heart decision!


eldavo69
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I'm at the point of ordering a new company car, our list of manufacturers is:

Volvo

Seat

Skoda

VW

Audi

BMW

Mercedes

Ford

I want a diesel estate that's well specced and fun to drive. There is an element of badge snobbery if I'm honest but I'm trying to be cost effective as any money I save goes towards trackday fun. Company car tax is at 40%. I don't actually do that many business miles any more, 40-60 per day is typical.

I don't want a Volvo, next door's drive is next to ours and they have 2 Volvos - unless there a very very strong case for one.

I'm not that taken by the A4 Avant if I'm honest, I find them not that satisfying to drive and quite underspecced as standard, they're also quite expensive on our list.

BMW is out this time, too small in the back seats, boot not that great size-wise, and the equivalent to what I have now is £200 per month in tax and £95 per month contribution.

I've come down on 2 models, the Mercedes 220cdi AMG Premium and the Skoda Octavia vRS.

Mercedes is a 34k car so would be £200 per month in tax and £22 per month in contributions when lightly specced - standard 17" wheels, the premium pack and sun protection glass. Total cost £222 per month. I haven't driven one yet but a friend has one and it's a very good looking car. Badge appeals too but after having an E class coupe last year for a few weeks I can't help feeling it's a bit old fashioned, especially tech wise.

Skoda is a £26k car so would be £130 per month in tax and £9 per month in contributions when specced up - leather, sun protection glass, black design pack, iphone link - it's a very well appointed spec as standard, DAB, Xenons, drive select, etc. - it's also huge inside. Total cost £139 per month. I enjoyed the test drive a lot and it appeals despite the badge.

Now I'm happy to admit that if it were my money I wouldn't be looking at the Mercedes at all, but it's not - £80 doesn't seem a huge difference and would in real terms see me £55 per month worse off than I currently am.

Help!

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Skoda makes a good case for itself but is it really goiing to be much different from the Audi to drive which you already dismissed as unsatisfying? Probably if you went with the Skoda, which is a fne car, you might find yourself wishing you had got the Merc but I suspect that would not happen the other way around which is the way it works with head v heart

 

How much do you care about performance since I expect the Skoda to be quicker?

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That's where Volvo have gone down in my estimation.  They had a USP with that 5 cylinder.  I am sure they could have made it more emmisions compliant, but no, they had to drop it and go for a drone box.  ho hum.

 

My mate has a Skoda company car.

Octavia VRS.  He was so impressed, he got another one!

He has had Seat V5 Toledo, original IS200 and then went down the Skoda route.

 

Very well made, well specced and his is 2 years old now.

 

Teh Merc C220 will be replaced soon, so you might end up with a last gen car, depending upon when you order etc etc

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I'm with Mook, all the VAG stuff is just a bit, boring really, even in VRS guise, the interiors seem nice at first, but they soon show up where the cost savings have been made.

If the rear space in the BMW is really too small (rear legroom in BMW's is one of their only real failings), i'd be looking at Volvo personally.

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Sounds to me like the decision is already made.

 

If it was me, out of what you've mentioned, I'd get the Mercedes (or the BMW but you've said no on the grounds of contribution).

 

I might get flamed for saying this but all I ever see when I encounter a vRS is a car driven by wannabe boy racers who are eager to prove a point to the world.  Call it a stereotype, egotistical nonsense or whatever you want, but I'd wager I'm not the only one on here who thinks it.

 

Oh and I'd get the Volvo.  Lovely cars and I couldn't careless if the neighbour had 10.  I don't see what that has to do with buying a car!

Edited by NewNiceMrMe
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Opt out!!

 

Take the allowance and buy what you want!

I think I said that once and he's not allowed.

 

I'd go for the Volvo.  A BMW/Audi/Mercedes/ etc etc is hardly 'exclusive' these days.   That's the good thing with company cars - you get to pick something you might not normally pick for fear of the depreciation fairies murdering you in your sleep.

 

The VRS is a bit old hat now, or has it been re-fettled?  The engine is good but I couldn't cope with the wheelspinnyness if it's anything like an Audi.

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Otherwise, the Octavia and bollocks to badge snobs. It's definitely the best of the VAG bunch.

 

Except of course....we've owned one.  Two in fact.

 

A Fabia and an Octavia.

 

The Fabia lasted 3 months.  The Octavia about 2 months.

 

Badge snobbery is ofted touted as an excuse for when something just isn't as fecking good as those who own them might like you to think they are.+++

 

Skoda have come on leaps and bounds and are nothing like the brand of the past.  However, their progress has been over-hyped in my opinion and they're just not that good.

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I might get flamed for saying this but all I ever see when I encounter a vRS is a car driven by wannabe boy racers who are eager to prove a point to the world. Call it a stereotype, egotistical nonsense or whatever you want, but I'd wager I'm not the only one on here who thinks it.

You're not :coffee:

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You're right that's not badge snobbery. If you've tried it and it ain't that good that's fine and dandy. But it does still prevail and part of me likes to react against that - hence I've always had a bit of a soft spot for Skodas despite their obvious limitations.

 

(Which reminds me, why is the Superb only available in 14 different shades of brown?  :unsure: )

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I'm missing something here anyway, all I see is a list of sensibly boring diesel family cars.

Where is the 'heart' list?

 

 

You're missing the fact it's a company car, supplied for business use, limited to certain manufacturers by his employer, and it will come with a hefty bill from HMRC for all but the most sensible options.

 

Would you pick an M3 for your taxi?

Edited by Milo
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Let me ask eldavo another question.

 

If it wasn't the vRS with all the boy racer bling (which they do have, and looks tacky and not well done like other brands manage), would you even contemplate the Skoda Octavia?

 

I think I know the answer to that, but I'll also apologise if I'm incorrect.

 

We knew we'd have our cars for a short time, which in some respects should mean we could put up with their faults more easily.  However, the Fabia was a loud rattly plasticky little heap with seats made out of fabric so tough it was like sliding down a bank made of Brillo pads in the nude (yes, I've tried that).

 

The Octavia was just a cheap Passat and a Passat is just a cheap A4.   Nothing snobby in that by the way, but in terms of where the brands sit under the VAG umbrella, it's a simple fact.

Edited by NewNiceMrMe
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No I can't opt out

Yes my car is the sensible family bus

No I wouldn't consider a regular Octavia, I'm not a taxi driver ;)

The BMW is still small in the back, I only like the M Sport looks and driving dynamics, the 320d tourer is £350 per month all in. I like my current car but fancy a change.

The Skoda handles so much better than an A4 I was genuinely amazed. It is a brand new model too.

I think the Merc is out, don't think that engine is Euro6 so the tax will go up more.

Does the Skoda have an image problem, I can't say the new one appears overly blingy at all - I'm looking at Meteor Grey with anthracite wheels though - then again my taste has been questioned on the 944 Twbo and I don't really do subtle it would seem!

I will look at a Vulva estate, as Milo said not worrying about depreciation is nice; I quite like the asphyxiated smurf blue too (welcome back TS)

One of colleagues suggested ordering the Skoda and then forget all about it. When it comes, stick £100 a month in a bank account and have that warm fuzzy feeling that the company is funding your track habit in the Porsche - he makes a good point!

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I've run the figures through our system based upon my preferred spec for each car, figures are totals for tax plus employee contribution per month.

Octavia vRS - £166.54

220CDI AMG - £248.11

V60 D4 R-design - £207.98

The merc is horrendous for tax and this rises sharply over the next 2 years as it's only Euro5 not Euro6 so it's out.

I need to get involved with the S60 better, it's come from nowhere to be quite a decent car on paper. Integral booster seats for the kids too! Off to the dealers as the website configuration is awful.

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