Advice and Tips

Daryl Gurney’s top tips for buying a car!

Amelia Scholey, Brand and Content Specialist
Thursday, 07 January 2021

As partners of the PDC, we met with professional darts player Daryl Gurney, A.K.A. Superchin!

For those of you that don’t know, he is currently the #21 darts player in the world. He’s also a former winner of the World Grand Prix and Players Championship Finals.

What you might not know, is he’s also a collector of cars. So he knows a thing or two about how to buy and sell them.

In his collection of cars, he has around 20 old Vauxhalls, which he has bought and repaired, and currently drives a 2011 Vauxhall Insignia.

We asked Daryl what his top tips where for buying a used car…

Q. Where’s best to look when buying a car?

A. I think the best for buying depends on your area. In England, Auto Trader and Exchange and Mart are best I think but in Northern Ireland, Gumtree and Facebook are good. When you’re going to buy a big thing it’s important to check for damage, get the details and also look for lines on the equivalent sides – panels not matching can be a sign of damage repair or an accident.

Q. How do you get a good deal on a used car?

A. The best way to get a good deal is to know the car you’re buying, know the faults of the car and do your research to make you know for definite what the car should be like.

Q. What are the pros and cons of car supermarkets?

A. The pros are probably finding a car you want very easily – if you want a yellow Mercedes with leather seats and 20-inch alloys then you can search easily! The cons are that you don’t know what you’re buying until you get it home – you don’t know if you’ve got a peach or a lemon. They have pros and cons but if you’re on the wrong side of buying one, you’re stuck with it and will probably end up having to take it to auction.

Daryl Gurney
Q. Should you always look out for on a test drive?

A. Always have the radio off so you’re listening to the car, the engine noises, the wheel bearings, suspension movement and gearbox selection. One good thing is to make sure the engine is cold before you start so you know what it’s like every time you’re starting it.

Q. What’s more important: a lower mileage or a newer vehicle?

A. Newer vehicles should have lower mileage anyway, but it depends who’s owned it previously. A car might be newer but have been driven hard or an older car could have been driven gently around town only twice a week – but as a guide often the newer cars have little wrong with them.

Q. How can you make sure the car is right for you?

A. That’s very much a personal choice. If you do a lot of long journeys, then you’re better with a diesel, if it’s smaller journeys around town then a hybrid or petrol car is best. But most importantly you need to be comfortable too and you don’t want a car that’s too big or too powerful for you or your driving style.

Q. How can you make sure you’re paying a good price?

A. Go and see the car at face value, and you can make your own judgement. We’re all different. Anyone can charge more money online and project a certain image in photographs or the description. Seeing the car means you can see if it’s worth the asking price or if you need to do work to it. I always recommend seeing the car in person before buying.

Q. What paperwork should you always get with your new car?

A. Make sure you get the V5 or the Tax Book to make sure you have the vehicle in your name. Service logs are useful too. They will tell you what work’s been done, and that the mileage is genuine. Try to get the manufacturing handbook too with the car.

Q. When is the best time to buy?

A. The best time to buy is probably just after Christmas. Cars are often cheaper then, and a lot of people are selling because they’ve got a new car for Christmas. Also coming into summer, people want to buy cars like convertibles so you might be able to cash in when selling then, if you have one.

Q. What should you consider when buying from friends or family?

A. Buying off friends or family could be a bad thing and I don’t recommend it. If something goes wrong, you’ll always go back to them – whether it was their fault or not. It’s not good for a healthy friendship!

Q. What advice do you have when buying at auction?

A. Have a good look as they bring the car in. Always stand beside the car when someone gives it a start, ask how it drives, ask what the clutch is like – just ask as many questions as possible. Stick your head in the window and look for warning lights to

Q. How can you make sure you can afford maintenance of the car?

A. Again this is about doing your research before buying. Certain cars are always going to be more expensive to maintain, and other cars will naturally be cheaper. If you spend more on a car, then expect a bigger bill for maintenance!

Amelia Scholey, Brand and Content Specialist
Bringing you information on how to look after your vehicle, save money and enjoy your life on the road.