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Buying A Preregistered Car


When you go to a car dealership, you are faced with a dilemma – should you buy a new car or a used car; but what people tend to forget is that you can also buy a pre-registered (commonly known as pre-reg) car.

A pre-reg car is bought by a dealership and sold at less than the recommended price – it is one way for manufacturers and dealers to hit particular targets. In short, a pre-reg is actually a new car with delivery mileage but is legally registered with a dealership, thus making it technically second hand.

Pre-reg cars account for up to 30% of all new car sales each year and we want you to know what to look out for when you buy your next car. The upside of buying a pre-reg is that you are getting a car at a lower price - and is technically a new one - however you lack the choice of optional extras you want.

Below are our top tips to look out for when buying a new pre-reg car:

  1. Do your research
    List what you want in a car and search through the listings via Exchange and Mart/s1cars. You should note down the prices of each model you find just in case you want to negotiate a better offer.

  2. Check the mileage of the car before you go any further
    It is important to find the car you want has the mileage as the one you found, if it is much higher than anticipated you should move on and find another car. When you’ve found the car you want to buy, make sure to check the mileage is not much higher than stated.  If it is you should continue looking to find another one. 

  3. Test drive the car
    If the car is definitely the one you want, take a test drive so you can see what it is like to drive that car.

  4. Look for chips and scrapes
    Check out the car inside and out, look for minor chips, bumps, scrapes, before you commit yourself to buying it.

  5. Check if there is a log book
    Cars should have the log book. If the car doesn’t have one for any reason, you should ask and negotiate with the dealer to provide it by requesting a new one.

  6. Find out about the warranty of the car
    The moment a car is registered with the dealer, the warranty on the car starts. By the time you drive away with your new car, you will inherit whatever is left on the warranty, it won’t be a problem if the car is only a few weeks old, but if the car is any older you may want to negotiate the warranty before you buy it or move on.

  7. Avoid buying an ex-demo
    An ex-demo car is a car that is of a higher spec with lots of optional extras added which is taken on a test drive by prospective customers and these cars will have covered a lot of mileage before it is sold on. Even though the price of an ex-demo is lower than a pre-reg car, you don’t know how many people have driven the car or what condition the engine, gearbox and brakes is in.

  8. Section 10 from the V5C
    Before you drive off in your new car, make sure you get the Section 10 tear off from the V5C document from the dealer. The dealer will send off the documentation to the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) to confirm that you are the new keeper of the car and you should have your new V5C document in about 2-4 weeks. Make sure you don’t lose the V5C certificate as the DVLA will charge you for a new copy and you need this when you decide to sell the car on.

We hope this helps when buying a pre-registered car, if you have not decided yet which car will you go for, get some inspiration for your next car at Exchange and Mart and s1cars.

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