Its been a week since we announced our trading up challenge and we’ve already got our foot to the floor in trading our way from a cheap run around up to a £10,000 performance car. With just £500 we had to make our way out into the big bad world of motor trading to find our first car to turn into a profit.
We weren’t entirely sure where to begin but we focused on our first task. Finding ways to source our car. We hear all the time that there are lots of bargains to be found on eBay so we thought we would begin there. Unfortunately we drew a blank. Despite finding a number of brilliant cars they seemed to be going for much higher then what would allow us to make a tidy sum on top of once all the kinks had been ironed out. So we were back to the drawing board. This is when we thought where do all these dealerships source their cars? The auctions surely.
We visited our local auction house after having a good idea on what cars we would be interested in thanks to the sales catalogue. There were five cars that had our attention. Unfortunately they were the last five that day. Cars were going through the auction house all day with many achieving well below their expected trade value. Thats when ours came through. Unfortunately it appears there is a huge interest in cheap cars and because of this they ended up going for top money. Eventually after a couple of attempts we won our first car. A stunning little ’56’ plate Renault Clio 1.2 Campus Sport.
Chuffed with our little purchase and well within our budget we thought that there would be a good profit margin in our little runner. However, despite having a good look around before the auction there was some surprises with the car that we didn’t expect. On our way back the airbag light came on which can be a very costly thing to fix, followed by discovering that one of the wheel bolts had been sheered off by the previous owner. These two little things we hadn’t budgeted for. Now we knew that it was possible that our little runner could leave us out of pocket before we had even started our trading up challenge.
Saving money by avoiding garages we managed to find out that the cause of the airbag light was a loose wire under the passenger seat which was a brilliant result and meant no huge bill. We turned our attention onto the wheel bolt. After one hour of drilling and the use of a special extraction tool we manage to remove the old bolt and replace with a brand new one. We felt at this point we would be on to a winner again. Sourcing a cheap replacement bumper was on the cars as the one on the car was cracked and had paint flaking off. Discovering a new bumper plus painting was in excess of £300 we managed to source a great quality used one from a local breakers. In addition to this we had to replace the two front tyres due to being worn although still legal. Something that we had accounted for but was a huge drain on our budget.
With a good clean inside and polishing the paintwork to bring the little Renault Clio back to it’s shiny former glory we are now tasked with marketing it ready for sale. It’s going to be a short series if we don’t manage to move the Renault on but were confident that our challenge will be successful. She will be going up for sale this week and were unsure if social media or the classic autotrader/eBay route would be best. Were let you know next week.
Author – Matthew Pearson