What risks do I run driving an older car (15yrs old)

Watch
mew_156
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#1
Report Thread starter 9 years ago
#1
I drive a 1996 Corsa LS 1.2l, 67,000 miles. Its a nice little runner...everything works and it flew through its last MOT with just the wiper blade motor replacement as an advisory (I'm quite nervous about driving too fast so I dont care about having a fast car for the pure enjoyment of driving....i just want to be able to get to uni and back each day and make the odd excursion to see my family down south (around 300miles) every so often.

I was having a look at the Young marmalade website, and while their scheme is good for drivers who have to pay high insurance, my insurance is quite low due to the area i live in (I only have to pay 700 pounds p.a. fully comp as a 21 yr old, no claims, first time insured) so its alot cheaper for me to have an older car. I would have certainly considered buying a car from the YM scheme had my insurance been alot higher, say 1500-2000 p.a.

However, the website goes on to say how driving a car older than 10 years is a lot more dangerous than driving a newer car with better safety features blah blah blah. Since my car is pre 1997 (when modern car safety really started kicking in), am I putting myself at risk driving this thing? I'd say I'm a safe driver, and I never speed. I passed my test 3 years ago but this is my first car and i havent really done much driving since i passed so its all still quite new to me and im a little rusty. I have green P plates which do help. But any info regarding the safety records of older cars would be great!

Thanks.
0
reply
OMG TOOTHBRUSH
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#2
Report 9 years ago
#2
if you're only 15 years old you shouldn't be driving at all
8
reply
mew_156
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#3
Report Thread starter 9 years ago
#3
I'm not sure if you're being sarcastic, or just atrociously thick. But yeah, if it is sarcasm then lololololomgzifindyousofunnyrofl .
3
reply
MilkyC
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#4
Report 9 years ago
#4
Don't do a Ryan Dunn.



(What? Too soon?)
2
reply
mew_156
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#5
Report Thread starter 9 years ago
#5
I'm not really into drink driving tbh.
0
reply
Nuffles
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#6
Report 9 years ago
#6
Ignore the website, it sounds like BS to me to get you to pay extortionately more money than you need to for their service. My first car was a 1990, my current car is a 1968 and I'm looking to buy something now which is 1994-95. Sure you don't have the safety net of things like ABS, but what if that safety net fails? You're ****ed. Learn how to drive without the safety net and let it catch you if you need it, rather than rely on it totally. Having never owned a car with ABS I know how to control my car when the wheels lock under braking, how to go against my instincts and release some pressure off the pedal to let the tyres regain grip. Too many new drivers nowadays are taught to rely soley on driving aids built into modern cars and it breeds drivers that can't drive properly.
2
reply
RAPSTER
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#7
Report 9 years ago
#7
There are risks wiht many newer cars the computer and electric parts go on newwer cars whihc make it more expense to run.....

My Dad own two Austin 1300 which WERE 1973 AND 1974 and they have out run his fiat doblo van which was a 2009

personally its how you look after the car to prevent bad things happening

e.g.

Washing under teh wheel arches to prevent rusting etc
0
reply
Hanvyj
Badges: 17
Rep:
?
#8
Report 9 years ago
#8
(Original post by mew_156)
I drive a 1996 Corsa LS 1.2l, 67,000 miles. Its a nice little runner...everything works and it flew through its last MOT with just the wiper blade motor replacement as an advisory (I'm quite nervous about driving too fast so I dont care about having a fast car for the pure enjoyment of driving....i just want to be able to get to uni and back each day and make the odd excursion to see my family down south (around 300miles) every so often.

I was having a look at the Young marmalade website, and while their scheme is good for drivers who have to pay high insurance, my insurance is quite low due to the area i live in (I only have to pay 700 pounds p.a. fully comp as a 21 yr old, no claims, first time insured) so its alot cheaper for me to have an older car. I would have certainly considered buying a car from the YM scheme had my insurance been alot higher, say 1500-2000 p.a.

However, the website goes on to say how driving a car older than 10 years is a lot more dangerous than driving a newer car with better safety features blah blah blah. Since my car is pre 1997 (when modern car safety really started kicking in), am I putting myself at risk driving this thing? I'd say I'm a safe driver, and I never speed. I passed my test 3 years ago but this is my first car and i havent really done much driving since i passed so its all still quite new to me and im a little rusty. I have green P plates which do help. But any info regarding the safety records of older cars would be great!

Thanks.
I'm going to look at a morris minor at the weekend... Old cars are fun! If you are rusty get a few lessons from an instructor to make you a bit more confident.

Old cars are more unsafe, often not having air-bags or carefully designed with crumple-zones etc but if you are a sensible driver its probably not going to make a huge difference... I wouldn't worry about it, its not like you are going to have the car for ever.
0
reply
Blindsailor
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#9
Report 9 years ago
#9
My car is a '96 Renault Clio Oasis and it's a beauty. It doesn't get any computer malfunctions etc, though the lack of a wiper fluid light and a revometer is a bit annoying!

It's not been cheap having it, have had to replace loads of bits of it (the alternator, the battery, and the suspension coils to name the most pricey fixes) but when I collided with a deer last year and destroyed my bumper and left headlight, it wasn't too difficult to repair it out of 2nd hand parts, which is not a luxury you'll get with newer cars.
0
reply
Joinedup
Badges: 20
Rep:
?
#10
Report 9 years ago
#10
Wiper fluid light :eek:

I wouldn't worry - modern cars generally have better passive safety but that doesn't make 90s cars death traps, just means things have moved on and you get better protection if you can afford to buy new.

can't speak for your corsa specifically but side beams and crumple zones started making their way into smaller cars in the 90's

best thing to do is keep driving safely
0
reply
rY4uGD1fMzBj4xe2
Badges: 14
#11
Report 9 years ago
#11
I had a 1989 VW polo and it was quite literally the bees knees (twas gold, don't 'cha know?). Anywho, problems you'll experience with an older car are:
1) No power steering
2) No power brakes
3) No air bags
4) Very little electronics (mine had an analogue clock where a rev counter usually is. **** you, revs)
5) No central locking
6) The little things count, such as windscreen cleaning technology (yes, it's a real thing). Old windscreen wipers are ****.
7) Seat belts have changed a bit over time, and very old cars didn't have back seat belts at all as it wasn't a legal requirement back then.
8) Some say you look less cool. That's a risk, right?
9) New rules and regulations have been brought in in regards to the crumple zone. Today they're considerably more safe than the original Mini where if you had a head on collision over 30 MPH the engine drops into your lap.
10) Engine technology has come a long way, my VW was carburettor and was less efficient as injection and all the other wonderful inventions over the past 20 years.
1
reply
mew_156
Badges: 8
Rep:
?
#12
Report Thread starter 9 years ago
#12
Thanks for all the info! I couldnt afford much you see, and i didnt see the point in forking out all the extra for a newer model since the car ive got runs well and has a low mileage for its age! I just wanted to know whether having no ABS or other features that newer cars have would make driving a whole lot more risky.

Would a car of this age be suitable for a learner to practise in (with separate proper driving lessons with an instructor of course) Thanks a lot for the info everyones given!!

@ritche888 - i saw an awesome looking 1990 VW polo....i really wanted it but it was before i could afford anything! It was so well looked after! Not a patch of rust! I would have driven it away immediately if i could have!
0
reply
Emma:-)
Badges: 19
Rep:
?
#13
Report 9 years ago
#13
(Original post by mew_156)
I drive a 1996 Corsa LS 1.2l, 67,000 miles. Its a nice little runner...everything works and it flew through its last MOT with just the wiper blade motor replacement as an advisory (I'm quite nervous about driving too fast so I dont care about having a fast car for the pure enjoyment of driving....i just want to be able to get to uni and back each day and make the odd excursion to see my family down south (around 300miles) every so often.

I was having a look at the Young marmalade website, and while their scheme is good for drivers who have to pay high insurance, my insurance is quite low due to the area i live in (I only have to pay 700 pounds p.a. fully comp as a 21 yr old, no claims, first time insured) so its alot cheaper for me to have an older car. I would have certainly considered buying a car from the YM scheme had my insurance been alot higher, say 1500-2000 p.a.

However, the website goes on to say how driving a car older than 10 years is a lot more dangerous than driving a newer car with better safety features blah blah blah. Since my car is pre 1997 (when modern car safety really started kicking in), am I putting myself at risk driving this thing? I'd say I'm a safe driver, and I never speed. I passed my test 3 years ago but this is my first car and i havent really done much driving since i passed so its all still quite new to me and im a little rusty. I have green P plates which do help. But any info regarding the safety records of older cars would be great!

Thanks.
Older cars can have more things go wrong with them, but overall, as long as your car is running ok, been looked after relatively well, isnt struggling to get through its mot etc then you should be fine.
0
reply
gbduo
Badges: 15
Rep:
?
#14
Report 9 years ago
#14
I think if you can afford to get a car with ABS you should.

Other than that, just be sensible and you will be fine. Get a full check by RAC/AA before buying.
0
reply
michael321
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#15
Report 9 years ago
#15
(Original post by mew_156)
I drive a 1996 Corsa LS 1.2l, 67,000 miles. Its a nice little runner...everything works and it flew through its last MOT with just the wiper blade motor replacement as an advisory (I'm quite nervous about driving too fast so I dont care about having a fast car for the pure enjoyment of driving....i just want to be able to get to uni and back each day and make the odd excursion to see my family down south (around 300miles) every so often.

I was having a look at the Young marmalade website, and while their scheme is good for drivers who have to pay high insurance, my insurance is quite low due to the area i live in (I only have to pay 700 pounds p.a. fully comp as a 21 yr old, no claims, first time insured) so its alot cheaper for me to have an older car. I would have certainly considered buying a car from the YM scheme had my insurance been alot higher, say 1500-2000 p.a.

However, the website goes on to say how driving a car older than 10 years is a lot more dangerous than driving a newer car with better safety features blah blah blah. Since my car is pre 1997 (when modern car safety really started kicking in), am I putting myself at risk driving this thing? I'd say I'm a safe driver, and I never speed. I passed my test 3 years ago but this is my first car and i havent really done much driving since i passed so its all still quite new to me and im a little rusty. I have green P plates which do help. But any info regarding the safety records of older cars would be great!

Thanks.
It's just as you'd expect really, as others have said.

You probably have no/worse ABS/ESP/airbags/collision protection design and so on. But if you're a careful driver, you ensure your speed is safe for the conditions, keep plenty of tread on your tyres and so on, you can mitigate the risks very thoroughly. Maybe go down to the skid pan and have a practice, to learn how to control the car in a skid.

Slightly more dangerous than a modern car (a great many of which now have side airbags, ESP, etc.), but not by loads. If you are a careful driver, you vastly reduce the chance of hitting anything - it's just being hit you gotta worry about.

If I were you, unless I had loads of cash kicking around I'd drive the 15yo.
0
reply
Erich Hartmann
Badges: 13
Rep:
?
#16
Report 9 years ago
#16
(Original post by mew_156)
I drive a 1996 Corsa LS 1.2l, 67,000 miles. Its a nice little runner...everything works and it flew through its last MOT with just the wiper blade motor replacement as an advisory (I'm quite nervous about driving too fast so I dont care about having a fast car for the pure enjoyment of driving....i just want to be able to get to uni and back each day and make the odd excursion to see my family down south (around 300miles) every so often.

I was having a look at the Young marmalade website, and while their scheme is good for drivers who have to pay high insurance, my insurance is quite low due to the area i live in (I only have to pay 700 pounds p.a. fully comp as a 21 yr old, no claims, first time insured) so its alot cheaper for me to have an older car. I would have certainly considered buying a car from the YM scheme had my insurance been alot higher, say 1500-2000 p.a.

However, the website goes on to say how driving a car older than 10 years is a lot more dangerous than driving a newer car with better safety features blah blah blah. Since my car is pre 1997 (when modern car safety really started kicking in), am I putting myself at risk driving this thing? I'd say I'm a safe driver, and I never speed. I passed my test 3 years ago but this is my first car and i havent really done much driving since i passed so its all still quite new to me and im a little rusty. I have green P plates which do help. But any info regarding the safety records of older cars would be great!

Thanks.
Seems quite expensive for a 21 year old female. My wife is 20, 2 years NCB and it cost me less than £700 for her to drive a Mini One D that's brand new. Cost a bit more than £700 for her to drive the 10 Land Rover Defender, and that's for regular business use. Look around a bit more, may find some cheaper insurance, my name isn't on either of that 2 vehicles any longer..... she doesn't like me driving her prized car and I'm not allowed to drive the Land Rover due to safety reasons.

Older cars being unsafe, it depends on how you look at it. Some older cars were indeed death traps but some aren't as bad, though generally these that weren't bad tended to be more expensive cars in their era. Take for example a Mercedes W124, it first came out in 1984.... that car is as solid as a tank and is easily safer to have a crash in that than say a 90s era Toyota Corolla or even a Nissan Primera. Simply it is due to it being a heavier car and it was also a very well built one. Of course if you crash one of those against a modern day Mercedes then it would no longer be as safe since obviously technology has changed things around.

They say a picture says a thousand words....


Your car vs a Mercedes note the difference between this video and the one below.


A modern small car vs a larger car, more than likely occupants of the small car would have survived the crash.


A very small modern car, which supposedly is one of the safest small cars around vs a much larger and taller car...... the occupants of the smaller car most likely would have survived.



This is your car's crash test results.


This is the crash of the brand new Corsa, notice the difference, especially in regards to the door pillar, more than likely after these crashes you could open the door and get out of it.... probably be shaken up or have some bruises here and there more than likely from the airbag which does feel like someone punching you..... but you would more than likely not be having any serious injury.


A video of a crap British car designed by British Leyland being crashed using standards of 1997. Note the windscreen pillars and how the door mangles, that's because this car doesn't have a reinforced occupant safety cell.

Modern cars do have a lot of safety features in it, largely designed to help you avoid injury. While they say older cars are unsafe, yes it is true because the chassis in itself is somewhat weaker when compared to newer cars, advances in steel technology and impact dispersion has allowed modern cars to be much safer than older cars. The other thing is even where cars that are 15 years old old or so have things like ABS or Airbags, it isn't the same as the ones fitted in modern cars, where a lot of older cars have airbags that are very unsafe if you're a driver below 5'8" most modern cars are safe for any sized driver. ABS has also changed in recent years, they have gotten a lot more intelligent. Contrary to popular believe ABS does not improve braking performance of a vehicle, it merely prevents the wheels from locking up during an emergency braking, usually on wet roads is when you would most likely see it activating.

Seatbelt technology, this too has improved in recent years, most modern cars have pre-tensioned seatbelts.

Traction control/stability programs, for the most part this is a good thing to have though very rarely necessary.

As for dangers due to fires, many cars of the 90s did have one major hiccup, it had plenty of electrical issues and many had electronic failures.... cars of the 80s were even worst in this respect, simply because it was new then and it still had teething issues. Old cars, old wiring or worn wiring.... for the most part it is usually just an annoyance but having said that it can cause a fire if it is serious enough..... having said that many modern cars can catch fire too, including BMWs and Ferraris

But having said it all, as long as you're alert when driving and you pay attention while driving, for the most part you could avoid the vast majority of issues when it comes to driving..... reliability problems. Well all cars can give trouble
1
reply
warninglight
Badges: 0
Rep:
?
#17
Report 9 years ago
#17
(Original post by RAPSTER)
There are risks wiht many newer cars the computer and electric parts go on newwer cars whihc make it more expense to run.....

My Dad own two Austin 1300 which WERE 1973 AND 1974 and they have out run his fiat doblo van which was a 2009

personally its how you look after the car to prevent bad things happening

e.g.

Washing under teh wheel arches to prevent rusting etc

Sorry to go a bit O/T here but have you any photos of the 1300s? I have an 1100 which was my daily motor up until very recently, now it's about to get a lot of welding... Best cars in the world!

I very rarely drive cars with any aids at all, even the single airbag in the Saxo I'm now reduced to driving is a novelty, but as Nuffles says, you learn more driving a car with none of the aids. The saxo may not have ABS but it'll stop in half the distance of my old Austin, but it's a habit now where I automatically sit well back from the car in front, and know exactly how far I can push it on wet roundabouts before it starts to let go!
0
reply
FXX
Badges: 18
#18
Report 9 years ago
#18
My 99 Corsa B (yours will be a Corsa B too) has a Euro NCAP 2 star safety rating, so I'm not looking forward to the day I have a major accident. But my car has also done 101000 miles and has very little wrong with it - listen out for things that sound different and fix them before they become a major issue and you won't have to spend that much to keep it going.
0
reply
z0tx
Badges: 12
Rep:
?
#19
Report 9 years ago
#19
Dying
0
reply
clarusblue
Badges: 14
Rep:
?
#20
Report 9 years ago
#20
probably a stupid comment but i have it in my mind that if a car gets past say, 10 years, with no major problems, it's clearly very well built so will last for ages longer.
0
reply
X

Quick Reply

Attached files
Write a reply...
Reply
new posts
Back
to top
Latest
My Feed

See more of what you like on
The Student Room

You can personalise what you see on TSR. Tell us a little about yourself to get started.

Personalise

How are you feeling ahead of starting University?

I am excited and looking forward to starting (49)
13.73%
I am excited but have some apprehension around Covid-19 measures (50)
14.01%
I am concerned I will miss out on aspects of the uni experience due to new measures (130)
36.41%
I am concerned the Covid-19 measures at uni are not strong enough (38)
10.64%
I am nervous and feel I don't have enough information (69)
19.33%
Something else (let us know in the thread!) (21)
5.88%

Watched Threads

View All