Top 5 reasons to buy petrol cars

01 May 2015

Top 5 reasons to buy petrol cars


Petrol cars have been second-class citizens in our diesel-dominated market. But is it time to take a new look at them?

Over the past few years, especially, the technology used in petrol engines has begun to catch up in a big way. They are beginning to perform as well as diesels, and fuel consumption has been improving all the time.

Some good petrol models are coming back on to the secondhand market now so should you consider buying one? Here are the top 5 reasons for doing so.

1 – They are usually cheaper

Diesels usually cost more. Some say they shouldn’t because vast quantities are made and the individual cost should be lower. But they cost what the market will bear and we have been prepared to pay a premium.

On the secondhand market an ordinary small-family diesel saloon will set you back upwards of €2,000 more than its petrol equivalent. That’s being conservative. In some cases it could easily be twice that. In larger cars the gap is huge. But few larger cars have petrols any more. They’re nearly all diesels.

So if you have your heart set on a big petrol, sorry, you’ll have to wait until the petrol revolution gains even more momentum.


2 – Better Return on Investment

Lots of motoring experts have worked it out that you would be more than a decade getting back the extra you paid for the diesel car through lower fuel consumption. So even if your diesel is doing 45mpg while your petrol is managing a mere 35mpg, you will still be years and years saving a total of €2,000 on fuel costs. It’s a long wait for a payback.

3 – Lower Mileage

Petrol cars usually have fewer miles on them; and usually less wear and tear. Those who buy petrol cars usually need them only for short journeys. But some people went diesel crazy over the last seven or eight years. There are cases of diesels being used to cover only 5,000km – 8,000km a year. To justify a diesel you need to cover 15,000km a year. That’s a minimum.

4 – Less Maintenance

Remember too, if you only potter around in a diesel you are risking trouble. Diesel engines that are not driven at high enough revs on a regular basis build up noxious residues. These are blockages in what they call the DPF (diesel particulate filter). And that can mean spending a lot of money to repair or replace catalytic convertors. There goes your premium.

To keep a diesel in top nick, you need to change the oil and filter more frequently. That’s another cost that eats into what you think you are saving on fuel.

5 – Lower Service Costs

Because most diesels cover longer distances, there are going to be more wear-and-tear running costs. Cue more frequent repairs and higher garage bills. It is difficult to get a decent secondhand diesel that doesn’t have high mileage on it.



So don’t be a ‘diesel snob’ and ‘consider petrol’ if you need a car to drive fewer than 15,000km a year. There is no need to be envious when your friends are boasting about how many kilometres they can cover on a tank of diesel. Just tell them you read on that it will take them a long, long time to haul back the extra thousands – the price of a good holiday – they spent on their car.

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