New drivers in Wales are forking out just over £3,900 for their first car.
In the North West and London they splash out more than £5,000 on their first wheels.
The average amount of money spent on buying a new driver’s first car is now £4,276, an increase of 42% on the 2017 figure of £3,005.
According to GoCompare Car Insurance new drivers in the North West spend the most on their first car at £5,274, pushing last year’s car big spenders, young Londoners, into second spot at £5,092 but in the South West spent the least at £3,492.
|Region||Average spent on young drivers’ first cars|
|1st – North West||£5,274|
|2nd – London||£5,092|
|3rd – Scotland||£4,750|
|4th – North East||£4,731|
|5th – South East||£4,385|
|6th – Yorkshire & Humber||£4,109|
|7th – Wales||£3,909|
|8th – Northern Ireland||£3,841|
|9th – East Midlands||£3,784|
|10th – West Midlands||£3,731|
|11th – East of England||£3,696|
|12th – South West||£3,492|
What to buy?
|For many young drivers the cost of insuring their first car will be an important factor when choosing what to buy.
The average premium for a 17-year-old in 2018 was £1,964 which is around 46% of what drivers in 2018 spent on average for their first car.
As a rule of thumb, the smaller the engine the lower the insurance premium so although there are some bigger engine bargains around, they will cost substantially more to insure making them not such a good deal when you factor in the running costs.
For example, looking at cars currently available to buy on Autotrader in Liverpool in the North West, GoCompare found a 3-year old Peugeot 108 1.0 Active with less than 12,000 miles on the clock for sale at £5,299, around the average price paid for a first car by new drivers in that area.
The cheapest comprehensive, telematics car insurance premium for this car for a 17-year-old newly qualified driver was £1,121.62.
By comparison, in the same area £5,290 would also get you an 11-year old BMW 3 Series 320i M Sport with just under 90,000 miles on the clock.
However, the cheapest insurance premium for that car with the same driver and terms comes in at a hefty £4,974, with only one insurer offering a quote.
|Matt Oliver, car insurance spokesperson for GoCompare said, “Buying your first car is a real rite of passage but the cost of independence can be high if you don’t choose wisely.
“Insurance premiums can be high in your first few years of driving, reflecting the fact that young drivers generally have more serious accidents resulting in expensive claims for damage to vehicles and injuries to passengers. Whatever first car young drivers have in mind, they must compare the cost of the insurance before committing themselves to buying something they can’t afford to run.
“The cheapest premiums for new drivers tend to be ‘telematics’ policies where a tracking device is fitted to the car to monitor how the car is driven. These ‘black box’ policies can also potentially accelerate premiums to reduce more quickly than with a traditional policy, if the driver shows they are a responsible and safe driver and therefore less likely to have to make a claim.”
GoCompare has produced a guide to new drivers’ car insurance: https://www.gocompare.com/car-insurance/young-drivers-car-insurance/ and tips to help younger drivers keep down their premiums.
Dan Hutson, Head of Motor Insurance at comparethemarket.com, said that the cost of driving for many young people has become unsustainable.
“The average premium for a young driver now stands at £1,281, in part due to the costly changes to the personal injury discount rate, otherwise known as the ‘Ogden rate’. Our estimates indicated that the change made in 2017 would add around £107 to premiums for people under the age of 25.
“This is on top of the fact that they have been hit with an average addition of £165 to premiums on the back of successive hikes to Insurance Premium Tax. These costs are clearly prohibitive to many people who rely on cars to get to work or study.
“The update from the Lord Chancellor on potential changes to the Ogden rate is welcome news, and given last week’s Spring Statement announcement of an operational review of Insurance Premium Tax, we hope that those with the power to effect change are now looking at the bigger picture for young drivers.”