Cheapest ‘expensive-looking’ cars

We get it, you want to look wealthy and successful but you’re not all that keen to spend loads of cash on your new car. Luckily, there are a few cars in the used market that exude wealth, success and sophistication that were once very expensive and are now, well, very affordable…to buy.

5. Mercedes-Benz S Class W220 (1999 – 2005)

The S Class has long been a symbol of subtle affluence. The fourth-generation W220 S Class, produced from 1999 to 2005, marked Mercedes’ transition from bold, straight-line styling to a more swoopy and curvaceous aesthetic. Even today, it looks expensive.


The real bargains of the W220 S Class range are the S320 and S430 models, which can be found in Australia for as little as $9000. In 2005, a brand new S430 cost around $230,000 in Australia, making the current price tag a steal.

4. Porsche Cayenne Turbo (2003 – 2010)

Luxury SUVs are designed to exude wealth, but the Porsche Cayenne Turbo takes it to another level. With its Porsche badge and Turbo designation, people will assume you spent a fortune on it.


The first-generation Cayenne Turbos, produced from 2003 to 2006, are the real bargains. In 2021, the $230,000 price tag when new would be equivalent to $347,000, but today you can find them for as little as $15,000.


It’s worth noting that running costs and potential repairs could be expensive, but for the price, it’s a lot of car.

3. Range Rover Voque (2002 – 2021)

In third, it’s the Range Rover Vogue, a beloved luxury SUV that has become an icon in the automotive industry.


While the newer models can set you back a pretty penny, savvy buyers can find great deals on used models from 2002 to 2012, particularly the Vogue Supercharged models from 2002 to 2006.


Originally priced at around $175,000, these models can now be found for as little as $9,000. Of course, keep in mind that maintenance and repairs can be costly, but if you’re willing to take the risk, the Range Rover Vogue offers an affluent image that’s hard to beat.

2. Maserati Quattroporte (2003 – 2012)

In second, the Maserati Quattroporte. A sleek Italian car that exudes cool sophistication. With styling by Pinninfarina and power by Ferrari, this car is truly a work of art.


While new models can cost over $320,000 in Australia, you can find used Quattroportes from 2003 to 2012 for around $25,000. Sure, maintenance costs can be high, but the feeling of driving a V8-engined Italian super saloon is worth the investment. And trust us, it even smells expensive.

1. Rolls Royce Silver Spirit MKI (1980 – 1988)

When it comes to cars that exude wealth and luxury, there’s only one brand that truly stands out – Rolls Royce. And within the brand, the Rolls Royce Silver Spirit takes first place.


Despite its age, the Mark 1 Silver Spirit still emanates the same class, sophistication, and affluence that Rolls Royce is renowned for. Imagine the prestige of telling someone, “I drive a Rolls Royce.”


In the early 1980s, a brand new big Roller in Australia would cost around $300,000. Adjusted for inflation, that’s approximately $965,000 today. However, nowadays, you can own a Rolls Royce for as little as $15,000.


Yes, a $15,000 Rolls Royce may require significant maintenance and repairs, and keeping it running smoothly can be costly. But let’s ignore those details for a moment – the fact that you can own an actual Rolls Royce for $15,000 is remarkable.


In the market for a used car? Check out all our ReDriven Cheat Sheets.


Find all our video reviews over on YouTube.


NOTE: This article was originally published in August 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

Bargain Supercars

Supercars and bargains – two phrases that aren’t often used together. However, we have scoured the market to find some exceptional vehicles that offer great value (ignoring maintenance and upkeep costs, of course). For the purposes of this list, we define a supercar as a street-legal, high-performance luxury sports car.

Note that we have only included globally available models, so apologies to fans of TVR, Corvette, and Elfin. Anyway, here are our top five bargain supercars.


5. Aston Martin V8 Vantage (2005-2017)

Representing the front-engined rear-drive coupe category, we have the gorgeous Aston Martin V8 Vantage. This car is special and the Aston Martin brand is synonymous with luxury. With a 4.3-4.7 litre quad-cam 32-valve V8 engine, the Vantage was priced at around $250,000 when new in Australia.


However, today you can pick up a 2007 or 2008 model for around $80,000. In the US and UK, it’s even cheaper at $45,000 and $35,000 pounds, respectively. The Vantage can go from 0 to 100km/h in under 5 seconds, and boasts superb chassis balance, a luxurious leather interior, and an iconic design. Plus, it’s now more affordable than the base model AMG Mercedes and RS model Audis.


4. Porsche 996/911 Turbo (2000-2006)

No supercar list is complete without a Porsche, and our pick for this list is the 996 Turbo. While the 996 Carreras are more affordable, the Turbo offers genuine supercar performance with a 0-100km/h time of just over 4 seconds and a quarter-mile time in the 12s. As a 911, it’s easy to use daily, reliable, and all-wheel-drive for outstanding dynamics in any weather condition.


The price started at around $300,000 in Australia, but nowadays you can get behind the wheel for around $120,000. In the US, you only need to spend around $50,000, and in the UK, you’ll be in the mid-40,000 pound region. Although it’s aging, the 996 Turbo is hard to beat in terms of value and luxury.


3. Audi R8 (2006 – 2015)

The Audi R8, produced from 2006 to 2015, is a timeless supercar that delivers outstanding driving dynamics and a stunning mid-engined design. It was designed to compete with the Porsche 911, and it arguably outperformed it in many ways. The R8 has an understated coolness that makes it stand out, and its impressive chassis balance and driving dynamics are matched by its brilliant 4.2-litre V8 engine.


When the R8 was first introduced in Australia, it was priced at just under $300,000, but nowadays, you can get a first-gen R8 for as little as $110,000. In the US, the price is around $70,000, while in the UK, it is approximately 40,000 pounds. Although early R8s have some faults and may come with the controversial R Tronic automated transmission, they are still incredible vehicles that are worth considering.


2. Lamborghini Gallardo (2004 – 2014)

Coming in at second place on our list is the Lamborghini Gallardo, an Italian supercar that has become a household name. Although it might be stretching the definition of “bargain” a little, the Gallardo is an incredible value considering its capabilities. In Australia, you can find a Gallardo for around $150,000, which is a steal compared to the $450,000 price tag when it was new.


In the US, the Gallardo is even more of a bargain, with prices under $100,000. In the UK, pricing starts from around 60,000 pounds. Although you’ll likely have to settle for an E Gear-equipped base model Gallardo at this price, you’ll still get to experience the incredible naturally aspirated V10 engine that makes this car so special.


1. Lotus Evora (2010 – 2021)

While many car enthusiasts immediately think of a Lamborghini or Ferrari when discussing supercars, we believe the Evora deserves recognition as a true bargain supercar.


This Lotus model boasts impressive performance that matches the acceleration of high-end supercars such as the Gallardo and 911 Turbo, while outperforming the R8 and Vantage. The mid-engine rear-wheel drive layout, combined with its extroverted design and leather interior, gives the Evora a unique and special feel.


What sets the Evora apart from other supercars is its affordability. In Australia, you can own an Evora for around $75,000, making it nearly $100,000 cheaper than the flashy Italian models. Even when new, the Evora is a bargain compared to other supercars, with pricing averaging around $190,000 depending on year, trim level, and specs. In the US, early models can be purchased for less than $50,000, while UK buyers can get behind the wheel for as little as 28,000 pounds.


Finally, the Evora’s Supercharged Toyota V6 power plant ensures reliability, meaning that you won’t have to worry about high maintenance costs. Despite being overlooked by many, the Lotus Evora proves that you don’t need to spend a fortune to experience supercar performance and style.


In the market for a used car? Check out all our ReDriven Cheat Sheets.


Find all our video reviews over on YouTube.


NOTE: This article was originally published in August 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

Cars under $10,000

We’d all love to be able to justify dropping hundreds of thousands of dollars on our daily transport, but in reality, the vast majority of us are on a pretty tight budget. But the good news is, there are some awesome cars out there for under $10 grand.


Now, we’re going to do this list a little differently. Rather than have these cars as place-getters, we’re going to split the list up into categories. So 5th will be our pick for smallish cars under 10 grand, 4th is larger cars, 3rd is Medium-ish SUVs, 2nd is Large SUVs/off-roaders and finally, 1st is something a little more luxurious and performance-oriented

5. Small Car – Mazda 3 (2nd gen BL, 2008 – 2013)

In fifth place, taking out the smallish car segment, it’s the Mazda 3.


Here in Australia, 10 grand should get you into a second-generation 2008 to 2013 Mazda 3 and the trim level we’d go for is the SP25.


The 2.5-litre SP25 offers more power, torque and engaging driving dynamics than its smaller displacement siblings and even though an SP25 at this price will probably have well over 100,000kms on it, as long as it has a solid service history and has been cared for, should provide years of reliable motoring.


Plus, the SP25 is supremely practical, in both hatch and sedan body styles have a stylish interior for this price, especially in the SP25 trim looks great with its subtle body kit and alloy wheels.

4. Large Car – Honda Accord (8th-gen 2008 – 2015)

In fourth place, taking out the larger car segment, it’s the Honda Accord.


For the $10,000 budget, we’d recommend looking at 8th-generation Honda Accords from 2008 to 2015. In the US, this was actually called an Acura TSX.


This generation Accord is superb to drive, totally practical, it looks fantastic and the interior is aging really well both in terms of design and fit and finish.


Plus being a Honda, has excellent build quality and as long as it has been serviced and maintained correctly, should be incredibly reliable.


Plus, if you’re enthusiastic about your driving, they can be had with a manual transmission, lovely.

3. Med SUV – Toyota RAV4 (3rd Gen XA30 2006 – 2012)

This next category feels like it’s taking over the world, it’s the medium-ish SUV and our pick is arguably the name plate that started it all, it’s the Toyota RAV4.


For the $10,000 budget, the RAV4 you’ll be looking at is the 3rd-gen, 2006 to 2012 and the trim levels we’d recommend is either the 4-cylinder Cruiser spec or, if you can find one, the 6-cylinder CV6 spec.


While it might be tempting to spec up to the leather-lined models, we’re finding the fabric trim interiors on the lower spec models are standing the tests of time a little better, and even though all RAV4s at this price point will have loads of kilometres on them, mechanically, as long as they have a thorough service history, should provide years of trouble free motoring.

2. Large SUV/Off-Road – Mitsubishi Pajero (NM 1999 – 2006)

Next up we have large SUVs/off-roader and this was tough one because there are actually a few vehicles that are all excellent for this category.


But we’ve decided to go with a vehicle we feel is really underrated, it’s the Mitsubishi Pajero, or Montero or Shogun.


Here in Australia, for $10,000, you’ll be looking at 3rd-gen, 1999 to 2006 Pajeros and yes, chances are they’ll have loads of kilometres on them and they might not be in pristine condition.


But look, as long as they have a solid service history, haven’t been abused, you should end up with a great buy for this budget.


The Pajero is more of a grand tourer than a true rock crawler but with some intelligent mods, these things can eat up kilometres as well as tackling some seriously tough terrain plus they’re really spacious, offer loads of practicality and are available as 7-seaters.

1. Fun/Performance/Luxury – Lexus IS250 (2005 – 2013)

Finally, taking out the luxury slash fun slash performance category, it’s the Lexus IS250.


Here in Australia, 10 grand should get you behind the wheel of a second-generation 2005 to around about 2009 IS250.


Ok yes, there are better outright performance cars available for under 10 grand but, we feel the IS250 perfectly blends luxury and sophistication with genuine practicality, really good levels of safety, excellent driving dynamics and a genuinely respectable amount of performance.


Plus being a Lexus, it should be ultra reliable, beautifully built and at under 10 grand, offers so much car for the money.


We’ve reviewed versions of the Lexus IS, Mitsubishi Pajero, Honda Accord, Toyota RAV4 and Mazda 3.


In the market for a used car? Check out all our ReDriven Cheat Sheets.


Find all our video reviews over on YouTube.


NOTE: This article was originally published in July 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

Forgotten JDM classics

Japan, is a country that has given us everything from the sensible yet boring Toyota Camry to the outrageous and breathtaking Lexus LFA. But there are a bunch of Japanese classics that most have forgotten about, actually unless you’re a hardcore JDM fan, there’s a chance you never know these existed in the first place.


5. Mazda Eunos Cosmo (1990-1996)

In fifth place, it’s the Mazda Eunos Cosmo.


The Cosmo nameplate had been around since 1967 when it was first attached to the beautiful series 1 and while the series 1 is itself an absolute classic, it’s the Series JC that everyone seems to have forgotten about.


The Series JC Eunos Cosmo was the top-line grand touring flagship of Mazdas Eunos luxury sub-brand.


Powered by either Mazda’s 13B-RE or 20B-REW rotary engines, the twin-turbo triple rotor 20B really set the Cosmo apart.


It wasn’t just the powerplant that made the Cosmo stand out from the crowd, it was also the first production car to feature built-in satellite navigation and one of the first production vehicles fitted standard with a colour touch-screen controlling climate control, mobile phone and infotainment functions.


Only 3550 Triple Rotor Eunos Cosmos were ever made meaning there are more Ferrari 458 Speciales in the world than Eunos Cosmos, you want exclusivity? Forget the Ferrari, you want a Cosmo.


4. Subaru SVX (1991-1996)

Next on the list and sculpted by Italian design god Giorgetto Giugiaro, it’s the Subaru SVX


Having the bloke that designed classics like the DeLorean, BMW M1 and Lotus Esprit S1 pen the incredibly unique Subaru coupe adds a very healthy dose of legitimacy to the SVX.


Under the wedge-like bodywork lays a 3.3-litre flat six which was essentially a 6-cylinder version of the EJ22 four-cylinder found in Subaru’s legacy and Impreza models and while it was no rocketship with a zero to 100 time of 7.4 seconds, the SVX offered more of a grand touring experience with a decent sized boot and back seats. Although the back seats are really only for small kids.


Even though many have forgotten about the SVX, it actually sold in pretty decent numbers and these days, if you can find one, they’re actually pretty affordable.


Here in Australia, you’ll be looking at around $25 grand to get behind the wheel of this classic.


3. Mitsubishi Starion (1982-1989)

In third, it’s a turbocharged, front-engined, rear-wheel-drive sports car that might just be the quintessential 80s Mitsubishi, it’s the Starion.


Depending on the year, the Starion was available with either narrow or wide body styling and has also been known as a Colt Starion and Chrysler, Dodge or Plymouth Conquest.


No matter what it was called, Mitsubishi created the Starion to go into battle against Nissans various Z cars, Toyota’s Supra, Mazda’s RX7 and to a lesser extent, Honda’s Prelude and Isuzu’s Piazza.


During its life, the Starion could easily match, and in many cases better it’s Japanese rivals for both performance and dynamic ability. The tuning and motorsport communities have also shown that with some fettling, the Starion could become a true giant killer.


Here’s a fun fact, the 2.0-litre turbocharged G63B engine in the Starion was the basis for what became the 4G63 engine that went on to power Mitsubishi Lancer Evolutions to multiple world rally wins and not so legal street races.


2. Toyota Mega Cruiser (1995 – 2001)

In second place, it’s the Toyota Mega Cruiser.


If I asked you what is the biggest toughest Toyota, chances are you’d say it’s a 70 or 200 Series LandCruiser yeah? Well, they’re not.


This is what happens when Toyota are given the job of creating a basically indestructible beast of an off-roader for the Japanese military, prefectural police and fire and rescue departments.


But, like the Hummer that may have been something of an inspiration, Toyota released a small quantity of mega cruisers to the general public.


When we say small quantity, 133 were made with only 12 of those being right-hand drive.


That’s right there are more LaFerrari Apertas in the world then there are road going Mega Cruisers.


The Mega Cruiser is huge, being able to fit up to 14 people in the back while it’s 4-wheel steering, portal axles and central tire pressure system give it phenomenal off-roading ability.

1. Datsun/Nissan Silvia CSP311 (1965 – 1968)

Ok, finally we have the car that is arguably the great grandfather to Nissans that exude drifting prowess, it’s the Silvia CSP311.


Designed by the same bloke that penned the absolutely gorgeous BMW 507 and with engineering expertise from both Nissan and Yamaha, the CSP311 was originally called the Datsun Coupe 1500 when first shown at the 1964 Tokyo motor show.


But for production, the 1500cc engine was swapped out for a 1600cc unit and mated to twin SU carburettors, the body was crafted by hand and by the time production ceased in 1968, a mere 554 CSP311s were ever produced.


49 of those 554 actually ended up here in Australia with 10 being exported to other countries, and if you have or know of one of those 49 that made it here, please let us know, we want to see it.


After the tedious production process ceased, we wouldn’t see the Silvia name grace another Nissan until 1974 and if it weren’t for the CSP311, who knows, we may not have seen the S13, 14 or 15 even come to fruition.


In the market for a used car? Check out all our ReDriven Cheat Sheets.


Find all our video reviews over on YouTube.


NOTE: This article was originally published in July 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

Cheap but fast cars

So you want a car to get you from where you are to somewhere else as fast as possible while spending minimal cash, yes. Well, this list is for you. Here are our top 5


5. Mercedes Benz CLK430

In fifth, it’s a rear-wheel drive 4.3-litre V8 platform wrapped in a classy German body, it’s the 1997 to 2003 Mercedes-Benz CLK430.


0-100km/h in 6.3 seconds, loads of delicious V8 torque meaning its mid-gear acceleration is also very impressive and a price of around $12,000 here in Australia, the svelt looking German will provide some serious class to your performance driving attributes.


Ok, the costs involved in keeping these things maintained and actually working is eye-watering, but ignoring that, this is a load of performance for not much cash, again, if you ignore the running costs.


4. Mazda 3 MPS (Mazdaspeed 3)

In fourth place, it’s a hot hatch and it’s from Japan, it’s the Mazda 3 MPS or depending on where you’re watching this from, it might be called a Mazdaspeed 3


You can pick up the first-gen 196kW Mazda 3 MPS for around 10 grand here in Australia.


Unlike the CLK430, the hatch puts its power down through the front wheels via a 6-speed manual gearbox and is one of the hardest working limited front diffs in the business.


While the German may have more torque and power, the Japanese pocket rocket beats the V8 Merc in acceleration and price. The Mazda is slightly quicker to 100km/h and should cost you a couple of grand less.


Plus it’s still a practical 5-door hatch.


3. BMW 545i

In third it’s another V8 German, it’s the BMW E60 545i.


0-100km/h in under 6 seconds and again, like the Mercedes-Benz CLK430, with loads of V8 torque for excellent mid-gear acceleration, the 2003 to 2005 BMW 545i beat out its more powerful replacement, the 550i as it is so much more cheaper on the used car market yet it retains the same excellent balance and handling characteristics.


Also, like the CLK430, the cost to keep the 545i running properly is probably best ignored, hence why you can pick up a BMW 545i for just $10,000, but the 545i brings some practicality to this list and with a bit of an exhaust modification, can sound amazing.


2. Mercedes-Benz E500

In second, it’s another V8 but this time we’re up to a 5-litre and it’s again from Germany, it’s the Mercedes-Benz W211 E500.


The larger displacement turns up the wick to 225kW and 459Nm of torque and even though the Mercedes-Benz E500 is 4kg heavier than the BMW 545i and shares the same 5.8 0-100km/h time, where the big Merc beats the previous 3 is in price.


We’ve seen E500s sell for under $10,000 here in Australia. That’s a luxurious 300hp leather-lined V8 Mercedes from the early 2000s for under 10 grand, amazing.


Again, we’ll ignore the running costs but when nothing goes wrong, these 2003 to 2006 E500s are a bargain, until something goes wrong.


1. Subaru Impreza WRX

In first place, it’s the ugly duckling of an iconic range of performance cars, it’s the second-generation 2000 to 2002 Subaru Impreza WRX.


While it’s less powerful than the others, the WRX wins for two reasons. One is traction. It’s all good and well-having hundreds of horsepower but power is nothing without traction and the WRX, with its symmetrical all-wheel drive, has traction in abundance.


Even in standard form, the WRX will rip you out of corners in even bad weather conditions faster than the others and if mechanical sympathy is not something you care for, dumping the clutch with a load of revs on board will propel it to 100km/h in just over 6 seconds.


Ok, while it might be slightly slower to 100km/h than the Mercedes-Benz E500 and even the BMW, it’s the lightest of the group by 70kg meaning it’s super nimble through the corners. But, where the WRX wins is price.


Here in Australia, you can pick up these second-gen WRXs for as little as $8000. Ok sure, at that price, it’s going to be in a pretty interesting condition, but when it comes to maximum performance for minimal spending, the WRX is extremely hard to beat.


We’ve reviewed versions of the Subaru WRX here.


In the market for a used car? Check out all our ReDriven Cheat Sheets.


Find all our video reviews over on YouTube.


NOTE: This article was originally published in July 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

Serious 4x4s under $15,000


With the recent explosion of the used car market, it seems vehicles that can go properly adventuring are asking an even higher price, but what if you don’t want to spend loads of cash on something that you’re just going to throw through the wilderness? What are the best serious off-roaders for under $15,000? Here are our top 5.


5. Mitsubishi Pajero (Montero/Shogun)

In fifth place, it’s the Mitsubishi Pajero, or for overseas readers, it may be called the Shogun.


For $15,000, here in Australia you’ll be looking at third-generation 1999 to 2006 Mitsubishi Pajeros and the good news is for that money, you should be able to find a great condition turbo diesel model with under 200,000km on the clock.


A petrol model is also available, but which you should buy is a bit of a challenge. The diesel is arguably better for off-roading but the petrol should be easier and more affordable to maintain.


As far as off-road ability goes, the Mitsubishi Pajero is fitted with Mitsubishi’s excellent super select four-wheel-drive system and while in standard form, it’s probably more suited to grand touring rather than anything approaching serious rock crawling, with some intelligent accessories and modifications, the big Mitsubishi Pajero is incredibly capable.


4. Suzuki Jimny (Sierra/Samurai)

In fourth place, it’s the Suzuki Sierra, or Jimny or Samurai.


For those of you in the North American market, you’ll be looking at SJ series Samurais from 1985 to 1995 and for Australia, the UK and pretty much the rest of the globe, we’ll be looking at the third-generation Jimny Sierra from 1998 to 2018.


Either way, if it’s a little Suzuki 4×4, it’s an absolute mountain goat of an off-roader.


Where bigger and heavier vehicles either won’t fit or just get stuck, the little Suzuki can almost skip and jump over obstacles.


Ok, they’re not the greatest form of transport for long journeys on road and can be genuinely terrifying at speed when it rains but for off-road fun and ability, the little tank of a Suzuki is hard to beat.


3. Nissan Patrol (Infiniti QX56)

In third place, it’s two 4x4s that are the same thing, sort of. It’s the Nissan Patrol and Infiniti QX56


For our North American friends, you’ll be looking at 2011 to 2015 Infiniti QX56s, which is basically a more luxurious Y62 Patrol, so if the budget is $15 grand US and you want a Nissan that can go just about anywhere, get a QX56 but for the rest of us, the Patrol is the Y61 or GU Patrol


Now this generation of Patrol was around for nearly 20 years and in that time received countless updates and it feels like there are thousands of different variants, but just know, they’re all awesome at off-roading.


Yes some are better than others but even within the Nissan Patrol community, there are differences of opinions on which power plant is better than another and which variant is best, our tip is to check out our Nissan Patrol Cheat Sheet, then find the best condition, lowest kilometre, most cared for Patrol your budget will allow. They’re bloody awesome.


2. Jeep Wrangler

In second place it’s the Jeep Wrangler.


$15,000 will just sneak you into a JK Jeep Wrangler and at that price, it will most likely have loads of kilometres on it or it might need some TLC but, there’s no denying the Wrangler’s incredible off-roading ability.


Ok, the Wrangler and Jeep, in general, have an…interesting…reputation when it comes to reliability but look at it this way, you’ll get to know your Wrangler on an intimate level as you fix and repair it.


Ignoring any potential gremlins, the Jeep Wrangler is a true icon of motoring and almost nothing else for this budget offers the off-road ability and awesome driving experience that the Wrangler can provide.


1. Toyota HiLux

And taking out this list, even though everything in this list is all great, it’s the Toyota HiLux or for those in the North American market, it’s the Toyota HiLux


Top Gear, terrorists and the harsh Australian outback have proven the incredible reliability of the mighty HiLux but while its indestructibility is without question, it’s also an immensely capable off-roader.


In the US, 15 grand should get you behind the wheel of an excellent condition and potentially fully restored fifth-generation 1989 to 1995 Toyota Pickup possibly in full Marty McFly spec.


Everywhere else in the world, we’ll most likely be looking at seventh-generation 2007 to 2015 HiLuxs but, don’t be afraid of getting into a fifth- or sixth-generation HiLux as the sixth-generation was the last HiLux to be made in Japan and, as has been proven countless times, age and kilometres or mileage do little to impact the HiLux’s ability and longevity.


As the thousands of videos on youtube have proven, with the right off-road accessories and modifications, the HiLux is pretty much unbeatable off-road and when mixed with its phenomenal reliability record, for this budget, it’s a winner.


In the market for a used car? Check out all our ReDriven Cheat Sheets.


Find all our video reviews over on YouTube.


NOTE: This article was originally published in July 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

Reasons why you should buy a used car

Lower cost


One of the most obvious benefits of buying a used car is that it is generally less expensive than buying a new car. Sure, some used cars can be very expensive and the with used car price explosion during the pandemic, it isn’t uncommon for some highly sought after cars to go up in price purely because of demand, e.g. Suzuki Jimny. But generally speaking, even if you bought a one-year-old car, you can get it for thousands cheaper than if you’d bought it brand new.


Less depreciation


Another advantage of buying a used car is that it has already experienced a significant amount of its depreciation. Depreciation is the biggest single cost you will have over the course of owning a vehicle, so you’d be silly to ignore it.


New cars depreciate quickly, they can lose up to 10-15% of their value as soon as you drive them off the lot. Think about that, say you buy a car for $50,000, you sign the dotted line, grab the keys and start it up. In the split second, the car rolls out of the dealership, it’s worth 10-15% less valuable than it was 30 seconds prior. That’s up to $7,500 for a car worth that much. Why?! Well, it has to do with the relationship between a few things; the retail price (the price you bought it for), the wholesale price (the price the dealer paid from the manufacturer) and the fact that that car is now a ‘used’ car, which naturally commands a lower premium.

Basically, if you wanted to sell that same car that afternoon, the next buyer doesn’t want to pay as much for a used car, therefore the dealer, to make a profit once more (because capitalism), will buy the car back off you at a further reduced price, so they can add their mark-up to sell it on again.


Ignoring special examples, the vast majority of cars depreciate in value, but it’s an effect that reduces over time, so our tip is to buy a car in the sweet spot where it has already suffered its big initial loss in value, but still has a few years of warranty, for that ‘new-car-peace-of-mind’.


More options


When buying a used car, there are more options available to you, including a wider range of makes, models, and years, mostly because you can usually cast a wider net with your budget. Plus, used cars are available from a variety of sources, including private sellers, dealerships, and auction houses. This wider range of options can make it easier to find the perfect car to suit your needs and budget.


No hidden fees


New cars often come with hidden fees such as delivery charges, advertising fees, and dealer preparation fees. These fees can add hundreds or even thousands of dollars to the final price of the car. When buying a used car, these hidden fees are typically not present, allowing you to get a better deal.


No wait times


Buying a used car without wait times is great because you can get behind the wheel of your new ride much faster than if you were buying a new car. You don’t have to wait for it to be built and shipped to the dealership, you can drive it off the lot right away. Plus, test-driving a used car before you buy it is a big plus. You can check for any issues, see how it handles and make sure it meets your needs. It also gives you more flexibility when it comes to financing and budget, you can compare different used cars, negotiate the price and get a great deal.


Need finance on your next car purchase? We’ve partnered with Fast ‘N Finance to bring you the best possible deals. For more info, head to


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Worst Luxury SUVs Under $50,000

So you want a luxury SUV. Understandably, when you buy luxury you expect quality, class and sophistication. But, luxury brands spend millions of dollars on marketing trying to convince people why you should pay their inflated prices. When they’re new, it might be easier to see where your money is going, but it’s a whole other story when they’re used. Here are five luxury SUVs we think you should avoid if it’s longevity you’re after.

5. Range Rover Evoque

In fifth place, it’s the Range Rover you buy when you can’t afford a real Ranger Rover, it’s the Evoque.


The smallest SUV in this list still comes with a huge list of potential problems, many of them quite serious.


Reports included a loss of steering control, gearboxes catastrophically failing, fuel leaks, oil leaks, major suspension failures, a vast array of never-ending electronic issues to the point that these things just stop working.


Plus in a recent reliability survey, the Evoque finished dead last in the family SUV category.


4.  Alfa Romeo Stelvio

It’s beautiful, it drives incredibly well and it exudes that fantastic Italian charm, it’s just a shame the quality doesn’t match any of that, in fourth, it’s the Alfa Romeo Stelvio.


What goes wrong with the gorgeous Italian? Well, where do we start… The Stelvio can suffer from major engine and transmission issues, fuel pump and delivery issues and electronic problems that can disable everything from the infotainment to engine management systems.


Then there are the drive shaft, axle and CV joint issues and problems with the all-wheel-drive system.


The biggest issue we’ve read with the Stelvio is inconsistency. We know of owners that love these and have never had an issue, but we also know of reports where the problems are catastrophic.


At least it will look gorgeous while being broken down on the side of the road.


3. Land Rover Disco Sport

In third, it’s the Land Rover Discovery Sport. Now I’m going to let you in on a little secret, I had one of these as a press car to review a few years ago and even when brand new and on the press fleet, it just died. I was parking it, it just turned off and wouldn’t restart for a few hours.


It has been reported that a shocking 43% of Discovery Sport owners have experienced major problems with their Disco Sport, with faults covering everything from major engine and transmission issues, electrical malfunctions, interior and exterior trim faults and brake and suspension issues.


That means that 57% of Disco Sport owners haven’t experienced any major issues, yet.

2. Range Rover Velar

In second place, it’s the Range Rover Velar. These things are a design masterpiece and the interior is just beautiful, but that doesn’t mean they’re any good.


The Velar is the automotive equivalent to Steve Buschemi wearing a Ryan Gosling mask and Tom Ford suit, underneath, it’s still Steve Buschemi. Only unlike Mr Buscemi, the Velar is lacking in talent and doesn’t seem to last the test of time.


Reportedly, nearly half of all Velars suffer from some issue or another, and as one report puts it, the Velar is a hotbed of frustration and unreliability. So much goes wrong.


The main issue is the immense amount electronic failures which, considering that the Velar is drenched in touch screens, the engine, transmission, suspension, braking and basically all functionality is electronically controlled, just spells disaster for the attractive Brit.


There are even multiple reports that the door handles that come out to greet you, fail to greet you, leaving you stranded outside your expensive waste of money.


1. Range Rover Sport and Range Rover

Now in first place, we actually have a tie. This is the first time this has happened but even though it’s a tie, it kind of isn’t at the same time. In first place, it’s the Range Rover and the Range Rover Sport.


Both of these SUVs can suffer from such incredibly long lists of faults and failures, we just don’t have time to go through them here.


Almost all years of both of these feature at the very bottom of countless reliability and consumer satisfaction reports, some reports even show that more than half of all Range Rover and Range Rover Sports suffer from some sort of major issue


More than half! And as you may have noticed, Land Rover and Range Rover take out all but one spot on this list.


Look, it’s important to know that while Land Rover and Range Rover may promote themselves as classy English brands, Land Rover as a company has been sold and bought and tossed around by everyone from BMW to Ford and now the brand is part owned by Indian manufacturer Tata and Chinese company Chery.


We’re not saying that there’s anything wrong with that of course but if you’re thinking of buying a Land Rover or Range Rover because of its sense of English class and sophistication, you need to be ok that what you’re buying is no longer an English brand and as our experts and countless reports and articles state, it’s probably best to avoid them.


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NOTE: This article was originally published in June 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

Luxury SUVs under $50,000


We understand you’ve worked hard and you want an SUV that you’re proud of. Something that exudes class and sophistication. However, just because a car has a luxury badge, doesn’t mean it’s reliable or will provide years of trouble-free motoring. So, we asked mechanics, car dealers, and motoring journalists to find the top 5 most reliable luxury SUVs for under 50 grand. Here’s our list.

5. 2012 Infiniti FX50

In fifth place, the 2012 Infiniti FX50 may have polarising looks, but it’s unique and worth hunting down. With a price tag of around $115,000 when new in Australia, this funky, leather-lined, V8-powered SUV can be found for under $50,000 if you’re lucky.


The technology may be a bit outdated, but the 5.0L V8 engine is near bulletproof. It handles, rides, and performs just as well as many of its European rivals.


The interior is beautifully appointed and you’re almost guaranteed to stand out from the crowd with this unpredictable alternative.

4. Porsche Cayenne 3.6 (2013/14)

In fourth place, it’s important to note that this is a specific variant of the Porsche Cayenne – the 2013 and 2014 2nd-generation 3.6-litre petrol model.


Many models before, after, and around this one can be riddled with issues. However, these 6-cylinder models have proven to be reliable as long as they’ve been serviced and well maintained.


In Australia, this base model Cayenne had an asking price of around $105,000 when new, meaning just seven years later, you can find one for half the price.


While it may be the base model and may lack some of the luxury features of higher-spec models, it’s still a Porsche, which instantly gives it more brand credibility than the likes of Audi, BMW, and Mercedes.

3. Lexus LX570 (2007-2010)

Coming in third place, it’s the third-generation J200 Lexus LX570 is based on one of the most formidable SUVs ever and brings serious off-roading capabilities to this luxurious list.


While it may be getting a bit older and is essentially a Toyota LandCruiser 200 Series with a nicer exterior, it’s still a great option for those looking for a luxury SUV that can handle off-roading.


Forget worrying about unreliable Range Rovers, for this budget, this is the one to get. The Lexus LX570 may be built like a tank and is likely to outlast humanity, but the spacious interior is lined with leather, the 5.7-litre V8 engine gives it some serious power, and even the level of safety and infotainment technology is still impressive considering its age.


Plus, these vehicles were over $160,000 when new in Australia, making it a great bargain if you can find one around the $50,000 mark.

2. Lexus NX300 Luxury (2017-2018)

In second place, we have the 2018 and 2019 Lexus NX300 Luxury in two-wheel drive.


While it may not be the most accomplished when it comes to off-roading, let’s be realistic – how much serious off-roading are you actually going to do? Even though it may not take you deep into the wilderness, it still has the raised ride height of an SUV and can easily handle anything around town as long as it’s not snowing at blizzard levels or flooding.


The NX300 has a funky design, a beautiful interior, is built to typical flawless Lexus standards, is equipped with the latest technology and, as a current model, will most likely still be covered under a full factory warranty.


The level of luxury and value for money offered by the Lexus NX300 is unmatched, until you see the top pick on our list.

1. Lexus RX350 F Sport (2016)

In first place, we have another Lexus model, the 2016 RX350 F Sport. When we think of luxury, we think of quality, precision, comfort, and elegance, and the Lexus RX350 embodies all of these traits. Plus, being a Lexus, it’s likely to maintain these traits for many years to come.


While other luxury SUVs may be equal to the RX350 when new, after a few years of use, the fit and finish of other brands may start to deteriorate. The RX350 F Sport is the best option in the RX range, it’s powered by a quiet, refined, and proven drivetrain, the quality of the build, fit, and finish exceeds its asking price, and it’s loaded with all the technology and features you’ll ever need.


We weren’t expecting Lexus models to take the top three spots, but when you strip away the marketing and branding hype surrounding luxury car brands and judge these SUVs based on quality, reliability, and substance, it’s clear which luxury brand our motoring experts recommend.


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Find all our video reviews over on YouTube.


NOTE: This article was originally published in June 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

Family cars under $30,000. (NO SUVs)

SUVs may be all the rage right now, but it’s important to remember how good a family car can be. Unless you’re planning on doing some off-roading or need a higher seating position, a car is generally nicer to drive than an SUV, it should cost less to run and maintain, and can be just as safe and practical. But which cars make the best family transport for under $30,000? Here are our top 5 picks:

5. Honda Accord V6L (2017-current)

From a manufacturer renowned for exceptional engineering, the Honda Accord has been around in one form or another since 1976. For $30,000, you’ll be looking at ninth-generation 2013-2017 Accords and we highly recommend finding a post-facelift 2016 or 2017 V6L.


The engine is silky smooth and with 206kW, it’s also responsive and fun to drive. They have an excellent ride quality and the handling makes the Accord genuinely engaging to drive. The interior is spacious and beautifully laid out and the boot is huge. Plus, these things look and feel far more expensive than they are.

4. Subaru Legacy/Liberty 3.6R sedan/wagon (2014-2019)

In 4th place, here in Australia we call them a Liberty, everywhere else they’re called a Legacy.


Regardless of what they’re called, they’re bloody good. For $30,000, you’ll be able to find a sixth-generation 2014-2019 Liberty or Legacy and we’d recommend going for a 3.6R.


These 6-cylinder Subaru engines were great when first introduced back in the late 90s but now they’ve been refined and improved through the years, they’re a superb power plant.


Yes they can be a bit thirsty but when combined with Subaru’s symmetrical all-wheel-drive system and performance-oriented suspension tune, the Liberty feels supremely safe, confident on road and incredibly enjoyable to drive.

3. Toyota Camry SL V6 (2018-now)

In third, they might be a little boring, incredibly sensible, and the automotive equivalent to buying a microwave, it’s the Toyota Camry.


From another brand renowned for superb engineering and mechanical reliability, for $30,000, the Camry we’d recommend is an eighth and still current generation in the SL trim spec with the 3.5-litre V6.


Ok, finding one of these for $30,000 could be a challenge but they are out there, they just may require some haggling. This current-gen Camry received a host of mechanical and equipment updates, a new platform equates to more interior space and a huge boot.


The all new 3.5i-litre V6 is silky smooth, pumps out an impressive 224kW and even sounds great. Safety tech is top notch, infotainment is hugely improved over earlier models and while the Hybrid variant is the way to go for fuel savings, the V6 will handle the weight of kids and their stuff more convincingly and is more fun to drive.

2. Lexus GS350 F Sport (2011-2015)

Bringing some luxury to the list, in second place, it’s the Lexus GS350 and in particular the F Sport. Ok, GS350 F Sports at this price will have quite a few kilometres on them but being a Lexus, that shouldn’t make much of a difference.


The GS350 in standard form is an exceptionally good car. Precision Japanese engineering, superb reliability and typical Toyota and Lexus build quality but the F Sport adds just the right amount of flair.


Equipped with a huge array of electronic gadgetry including a high-end 17-speaker Mark Levinson sound system, Head-Up Display and a super-sized 12.3-inch infotainment screen plus for the kids, the back seat is spacious and comfortable.


Plus it looks cool, drives incredibly well, the ride and handling more than matches its European rivals and it exudes a class and sophistication that will surely help when dropping the kids off at school.

1. Mazda 6 GT Wagon (2018-current)

In first place, it was a tough call between this car and the Lexus in 2nd, but for its practicality, we have to give the top spot to the 2018 Mazda 6 GT Wagon. We highly recommend trying to find one of these with the 2.5-litre turbo-petrol engine, which for $30,000, may be a challenge but trust us, they are out there and the hunt will be worth it.


The Mazda 6 GT Wagon is a fantastic car, it looks great, the interior is beautifully designed, challenging even more expensive luxury cars, the wagon form is supremely practical, the levels of tech and safety are excellent and with the turbo petrol engine, it has performance abilities to match its near perfect ride and handling. And being a Mazda, the build quality is superb and reputation for reliability is near faultless. We’ve seen this with our CX5 and Mazda 3 reviews, they have fantastic longevity.


In the market for a used car? Check out all our ReDriven Cheat Sheets.


Find all our video reviews over on YouTube.


NOTE: This article was originally published in June 2021, so some pricing information may have changed.

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