New car on your mind? Consider a classic!

Now that dealerships are back open, there are some unbelievable deals on new vehicles in the market. Whilst we all dream of selecting an ideal car, choosing the colour, the trim and accessories, have you ever thought of a more exciting vehicle, one that doesn’t depreciate like a stone as soon as it drives off the forecourt? One that doesn’t lose up to 20% of its value every year?

Our Mechanic in Residence at ClickMechanic, Nigel, who has owned classic Jaguars and Alfa Romeos, takes a look at the alternatives to buying a new car.

New Mini v Classic Mini

  • New Mini
    The cheapest new Mini is £16,200 on the road. This gets you the 3 door hatch one, with a 1.5, 3 cylinder engine. This vehicle is estimated to be worth £12k in three years.
  • Classic Mini
    A 2000, classic Mini Cooper Sport with just 18,000 miles in British Racing Green for the same money. These cars are gaining in value more and more, so look after it and it is likely to rise in value.

Jaguar XF v Jaguar Mk II

  • Jaguar XF
    A new introduction level Jaguar XF will cost you in the region of £35k. With an estimated depreciation of 40% over three years, that means you could lose £14,000 in that time.
  • Jaguar MkII
    A 1960s Jaguar MKII 3.8 in Old English White. Just think of glinting chrome work, the wire wheels and driving up the gravelled drive of a National Trust mansion with your wicker picnic basket in the back. (Just don’t get a red one or you will forever be called Inspector Morse!)

VW Golf MK8 v VW Golf MK1

  • VW Golf MK8
    The ever popular Golf in its latest incarnation starts at just over £20k for the base model, the epitome of average!
  • VW Golf MK1
    OK, this one is trickier! So I am going to opt for a double purchase. A MK1 Golf GTi AND a MK1 Golf Cabriolet for when the sun comes out! Scruff of the neck fun on one hand and probably one of the prettiest average car drop tops made. Both are holding their value well and certainly won’t lose you money.

So, what else?

What would £20k get you? How about a 1993 Rolls Royce Silver Spirit II in Brooklands Green, perhaps a TVR Chimera 5.0 in stunning yellow, maybe an awesome Mercedes CL600 5.5? The choices are endless and with networks of owners clubs, readily available spares and advice – what’s not to like about the idea?

If buying a second-hand car, it’s always best to have a professional check over the car. ClickMechanic can help with a Contact-Free Pre-Purchase Inspection, book yours here today.

Book Your Pre-Purchase Inspection Now

The Top 5 Personalised Gifts for Car Lovers This Valentine’s Day!

Valentine’s Day is just over two weeks away, and if you’re a little fed up with the traditional flowers, chocolate and restaurant combination, why not try a more personal approach? Before you jump to conclusions, we’re talking about the perfect, personalised gifts to suit car lovers. Read on to see our top 5 gift ideas for motor-enthused loved ones this Valentine’s Day.

Andrew Jervis, Co-Founder of ClickMechanic, said: “Any motoring enthusiast would welcome these creative, personalised gifts. Whether you’re shopping on a budget or looking to splurge, there’s something for everyone!”

1. Hand Drawn Car Illustration

Want to add a bit of culture to this Valentine’s Day – why not request a hand-drawn illustration of your other half’s pride and joy? You can transform a favourite photo into ink and watercolour, giving the car a truly timeless presentation. You can even personalise it further by adding wording and selecting from an array of frames!

Should you be stuck between two photos or, indeed, two cars, there’s also the option to order two illustrations in a double mount.

Personalised Hand Drawn Car Illustrations are available from notonthehighstreet from £67.

2. Milk Chocolate Car

OK, so we said no chocolate, but when is chocolate unwelcome? Thorntons’ Milk Chocolate Car is a sweet and simple gift; the perfect choice for any car-loving chocoholic. To make it more special, you can add a personalised name or message on the car for free. This sweet ride won’t be around for long this Valentine’s Day!

The Milk Chocolate Car is available from Thorntons for £6.

3. Personalised Salt and Pepper Cars

Why not introduce your gift alongside dinner this year? These sleek looking salt and pepper cars come with removable satin-finished ‘drivers’ and can even be rolled across the table to your partner! This is an affordable, yet luxurious gift which is bound to impress any vintage racing fans.

Each can be personalised with your favourite racing numbers or with initials of your choice. No doubt, bringing these to the dinner table will give a whole new meaning to fast food!

The Personalised Salt and Pepper Racing Cars are available from Me and My Car from £30.

4. Personalised License Plate

If your partner has always been keen to personalise their license plate, but struggles to choose, perhaps you could make the decision for them? The options really are limitless and, of course, you have the dangerous responsibility of deciding what it will read!

Using the DVLA, you can register to auction, or buy outright, specific initials and can even see what the plate would look like on the car in question. The classic, rarer plates are obviously much more expensive and can arguably be seen as an investment. However, the simpler initials are more affordable – minimum bids in the auction start from under £100.

Personalised licence plates are available to buy from the DVLA.

5. Supercar Driving for Two

The Supercar Driving for Two experience is perfect for those who are interested in the core fundamentals of cars – namely the driving. What’s more, it’s an ideal gift for this romantic day as you can both take part and select one vehicle each from your favourite supercars. The impressive list of options includes: Ferrari 360, Lamborghini Gallardo, Aston Martin AMV8 and Audi R8.

Available to book in several locations across the UK, you will take to the track for 3 to 4 laps (depending on the location) and see what your chosen supercar can do!

The Supercar Driving for 2 package is available from Experience Days from £149.

The Top 7 Gifts for Every Car Lover This Christmas!

Christmas is now less than a month away and, if you haven’t already, it’s time to make a start on the present shopping. This grows trickier and usually more daunting every year, however, fear not if you’re looking to buy for an obvious car enthusiast; we have scoured the market to find the best ideas for you. Read on to find the top 7 gifts to suit every car lover this Christmas!

Andrew Jervis, Co-Founder of ClickMechanic, said: “The traditional car experience packages are still a safe option, however, the below gift ideas are bound to impress any true car enthusiast. There’s a present to suit every taste and price range!”

1. Midi Bonnie Car – Playforever

This retro-inspired toy will actually suit car lovers of all ages. Its robust build means it can withstand even the most unforgiving of playtimes and it can also feature as a decorative piece for vintage fans. It’s available in multiple colours and the range offers several shapes and styles including a motorbike with a sidecar and even an aeroplane.

If you recognise the design, it may be because Playforever has also recently partnered with Hugo Boss to create a collaborative collection, including an inspired clothing line. You can even see the toy cars dotted throughout Hugo Boss stores!

The Midi Bonnie Car is available from Playforever from £38.

2. Tim Layzell Artwork

Why not offer your loved one a little motorist culture this Christmas? Tim Layzell has become a renowned motoring artist and sells an array of originals as well as prints. His work features alternative art styles including his own ‘pop art’ take on races as well as a range of ‘realism’ styled pieces which are designed to reflect the motoring world in the 50’s and 60’s.

These paintings would make a brilliant addition to any car enthusiast’s art collection or it would be a fantastic start for one!

Tim Layzell’s artwork is available from his own website. Originals are priced on request and prints start from £75.

3. Garmin – DriveAssist

The Garmin DriveAssist is unique in that it combines a sat nav with a dashcam. This useful piece of tech offers numerous smart features including advanced camera-assisted driver alerts and real-time services, such as live parking and weather. If you are unfortunate enough to be involved in a collision, on impact, the camera will automatically save all recorded footage and can even text a contact to alert them of the incident. Such a gift will bring any driver added security and peace of mind.

The Garmin DriveAssist 51 is available from Garmin for £309.99.

4. Chocolate Tool Kit

You can never really go wrong with chocolate, especially if it has a personal twist! This chocolate tool kit is bound to please any keen mechanic or engineer. The set comes complete with two spanners, a pair of pliers, a drill bit, nut, bolt, and washer. The parts look so real, it will almost be a shame to eat them… almost.

The Chocolate Tool Kit is available from Not on the High Street for £25.50.

5. Classic Car Parts Chess Set

If you’re looking for a truly unique gift and the price is no object, then look no further! The Classic Car Parts Chess Set combines luxury with sophistication; the steel and alloy pieces are handcrafted using recycled parts from Aston Martin, Range Rover, and Lotus vehicles.

Made in the United States, the chessboard itself is also handcrafted and the set comes with a signed certificate of authenticity. It is an elegant gift for any keen motorist, to say the least.

The Classic Car Parts Chess Set is available from Me and My Car for £1,500.

6. Micro Scalextric Set – James Bond

A classic gift for racers of all ages! Scalextric has always been a popular game to challenge friends and family to, and the modifiable track really does make each race different from the last. On top of this, Scalextric also offer themed cars and sets to suit all kinds of motoring tastes including Formula One, Touring Cars and, our choice, James Bond.

This set would be perfect for any competitive Bond fan; it includes a classic Aston Martin DB5 and an Aston Martin DBS. Being of the Micro range, it would also suit the younger racers and take up less space than the standard sets.

The James Bond Micro Scalextric set is available from Scalextric for £55.99.

7. Home Charging Station

Whilst a home charging station does not sound like a traditional Christmas present, if you’re buying for someone who uses an electric vehicle, it will certainly be a useful addition to the house. Using a home charging station will charge the car much quicker (30-60% quicker according to Energy Saving Trust), and it is safer to use than a regular plug socket.

It sounds pricey, however, the OLEV is currently offering an Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme which offers applicants grant funding to cover up to 75% of the cost to install one. It’s certainly a convenient gift for any green driver.

Home Charging Stations are available from Franklin Energy from £299 + VAT.