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Old 11-05-2012   #1
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Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Hi there!

I am seriously thinking about changing my 2001 Mini Cooper Auto for a 500 Auto (Dualogic), either a 1.2 Lounge or a Twin Air 0.9.

My Mini is very expensive to run (@300 pa tax and only approx 29mpg) and has some gearbox issues that I seem to have sorted, yet I am nervous about them returning.

I love the 500 and would want to look into getting a nearly new automatic version but have a few questions -

In the last couple of years, we have gotten some bad credit, due to my husbands wages being reduced and working hours cut and thus falling behind with some payments. After starting our own company, we are back on track now, but the facts are there and it will make credit hard to come by and I will now have to face paying huge APR rates I have some credit left on the Mini and therefore, even with a loan offer in place, am finding the deposit needed a stumbling block.

Is it worth approaching FIAT themselves to obtain a new car, or are they pretty strict about bad credit? Will they take my car in p/ex at all against a new car/almost new car?

Is it not worth trying?

I am a decent person, who has just had some bad luck - but still very much want to be a happy 500 owner!!!!

Twin Air Dualogic or 1.2 Lounge Dualogic, whatever route I go down????
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Old 11-05-2012   #2
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

If you have credit outstanding on an 11 year old car should you be burdening yourself with even more credit?
If you are "back on track" why not save up?
The 500 is a great car but it's not worth being made bankrupt over.


That is just my opinion so feel free to not listen to me.
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Old 11-05-2012   #3
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Thanks for your reply - yes I do have some credit left on the Mini, but only as I bought it a year ago with a deposit and the remainder financed, as I couldn't afford the full amount. However, I am finding it not cost effective to run and would rather my monies go into something a)worth more, b) newer and c) more cost effective.

The added gearbox problems on the Mini (well documented on the internet - CVT box) mean I am not 100% satisfied with the Mini's reliability, being alone Monday to Friday with hubbie working away and two children.

It is important for all of these reasons, that I have a secure, reliable, economic car, that unfortunately, like the majority of people, I will have to fund through financing. Getting 'back on track' doesn't mean I can save 8k all of a sudden!

Would a 500 Dualogic do more than the 29mpg I am getting from the Cooper and are the Dualogic boxes reliable?
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Old 11-05-2012   #4
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

I am not aware of any problems with the gearbox and it should get 45mpg minimum on the 1.2.
Don't bother with the twinair as it will cost more and will not save you much on fuel.
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Old 11-05-2012   #5
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Quote Originally Posted by RUI View Post
I am not aware of any problems with the gearbox and it should get 45mpg minimum on the 1.2.
Don't bother with the twinair as it will cost more and will not save you much on fuel.
This is perfect advice. The Dualogic gearbox is good if you want economy. It is no worse than a manual.

Do think about if you need the auto though. As a percentage of the car's price it is very expensive.

So far as finance is concerned, I don't know the answers to the questions you have raised but one very important thing to bear in mind is that Fiat offer much lower interest on finance deals on new cars (if you qualify) and MUCH cheaper than you will get anywhere for a second hand one, or if you go into the High Street.

Added to the fact that 500s hold their value well, this often means a new car is cheaper monthly than a used one, if you are financing it.

Good luck.
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Old 11-05-2012   #6
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Quote Originally Posted by Mini2500 View Post
Thanks for your reply - yes I do have some credit left on the Mini, but only as I bought it a year ago with a deposit and the remainder financed, as I couldn't afford the full amount. However, I am finding it not cost effective to run and would rather my monies go into something a)worth more, b) newer and c) more cost effective.

The added gearbox problems on the Mini (well documented on the internet - CVT box) mean I am not 100% satisfied with the Mini's reliability, being alone Monday to Friday with hubbie working away and two children.

It is important for all of these reasons, that I have a secure, reliable, economic car, that unfortunately, like the majority of people, I will have to fund through financing. Getting 'back on track' doesn't mean I can save 8k all of a sudden!

Would a 500 Dualogic do more than the 29mpg I am getting from the Cooper and are the Dualogic boxes reliable?
Just had a quick check on the difference between a Pop 1.2 Dualogic (10,820) and a Lounge 1.2 Dualogic and it is 1,280 (12,110).

Unsure if the same credit checks are used on the i-deal offers but it might be worthwhile speaking with a financial advisor. There are tax advantages to offsetting the cost of a car over a number of years against the business including the running costs. If you MINI is proving to be unreliable with the Auto box then it might work out cheaper in the long term to get rid of it. From a previous thread on here on a final student looking to buy a 500 for herself there were recommendations on buying an old shape Panda for half the money. It may not have the look of a 500 but it has the gene and will prove to be more practical for the kids and for carrying any goods that would be related to the business.
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Old 11-05-2012   #7
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Thats great advice, buy an old shape panda they are very cheap and a LOT cheaper.
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Old 11-05-2012   #8
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Quote Originally Posted by RUI View Post
Thats great advice, buy an old shape panda they are very cheap and a LOT cheaper.
Very cheap AND a lot cheaper? Blimey, that is cheap then....
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Old 11-05-2012   #9
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

That's what happens when I answer the phone 1/2 way through typing the post.
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Old 11-05-2012   #10
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Quote Originally Posted by RobinPJ View Post
Very cheap AND a lot cheaper? Blimey, that is cheap then....
You can buy a brand new one today for 6650, essentially a 1.2 500 pop with a couple of extra doors & a bigger boot. But you won't have a hope of getting i-deal finance rates at that price.

I've also noticed the Ka is now being significantly discounted, but the Mk3 Panda is still cheaper & IMO better value.
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Old 11-05-2012   #11
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Quote Originally Posted by Mini2500 View Post
Hi there!

I am seriously thinking about changing my 2001 Mini Cooper Auto for a 500 Auto (Dualogic), either a 1.2 Lounge or a Twin Air 0.9.

My Mini is very expensive to run (@300 pa tax and only approx 29mpg) and has some gearbox issues that I seem to have sorted, yet I am nervous about them returning.

I love the 500 and would want to look into getting a nearly new automatic version but have a few questions -

In the last couple of years, we have gotten some bad credit, due to my husbands wages being reduced and working hours cut and thus falling behind with some payments. After starting our own company, we are back on track now, but the facts are there and it will make credit hard to come by and I will now have to face paying huge APR rates I have some credit left on the Mini and therefore, even with a loan offer in place, am finding the deposit needed a stumbling block.

Is it worth approaching FIAT themselves to obtain a new car, or are they pretty strict about bad credit? Will they take my car in p/ex at all against a new car/almost new car?

Is it not worth trying?

I am a decent person, who has just had some bad luck - but still very much want to be a happy 500 owner!!!!

Twin Air Dualogic or 1.2 Lounge Dualogic, whatever route I go down????

Sorry to put a downer on this but you are being unrealistic. And tbh as someone who has already been in money troubles just stacking yourself up for more misery tbh.

1) Money issues in the past
2) Difficulty getting new finance (You will get bent over for it if you manage to get offered any)
3) Lack of deposit available
4) Owe money on an old car (Do you owe more than it is worth?)

And still you think its a good idea to spend money on a brand new car which will basically lose you money from the moment you buy it.

If you want good advice then you need to get a settlement figure on your existing finance. Then call We buy any car dot com and see what its worth (In general). If that figure comes to a minus then unless you have a lump of cash you cant do anything. If its a positive then i would go out and buy a 5yr old punto/fiesta/Ka type car as cheaply as possible and get your savings from that.

I see your point about not being a bad person, but just because you are a good person doesnt mean you can afford a new car...........
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Old 17-05-2012   #12
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Thanks for your replies everyone! Some were 'uplifting' - good job I have a thick skin and that I never give up hope because........

A fantastic week and a sold surplus vehicle (husbands old van) later, mean we now have a deposit in place, have settled the finance on the Mini and have sourced a few 2 year old 500 Dualogics to look at this weekend. Been offered some finance too at a decent rate, so looking forward to sourcing/owning a 500 and making savings on fuel and tax!

Are there any things I should look out for with regards to the gearbox when test driving? Are there any points that show a dualogic box needs attention?

Any other points that should veer me away from a particular car?

I love the Cha Cha Cha Azure, Funk White and another colour I have seen, but am unsure of the name of........ it is a mink brown colour? Ideas on correct name?

As I said, things are looking up and I am excited to soon be a 500 owner!!!!
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Old 17-05-2012   #13
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

I have a friend that has very bad credit rating due to being made redundant a couple of years ago, but like I told him, at some point you need to take the plunge and get credit (even though it is at an expensive rate) just so you can build up your credit rating again.
I know some people are against getting anything on credit/hire purchase/loans but I have done it all my life, maybe because I'm impatient and if I want something I just go get it, but I have an excellent credit rating and usualy get near 0% apr for everything I buy.
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Old 18-05-2012   #14
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Quote Originally Posted by Mini2500 View Post
Thanks for your replies everyone! Some were 'uplifting' - good job I have a thick skin and that I never give up hope because........

A fantastic week and a sold surplus vehicle (husbands old van) later, mean we now have a deposit in place, have settled the finance on the Mini and have sourced a few 2 year old 500 Dualogics to look at this weekend. Been offered some finance too at a decent rate, so looking forward to sourcing/owning a 500 and making savings on fuel and tax!

Are there any things I should look out for with regards to the gearbox when test driving? Are there any points that show a dualogic box needs attention?

Any other points that should veer me away from a particular car?

I love the Cha Cha Cha Azure, Funk White and another colour I have seen, but am unsure of the name of........ it is a mink brown colour? Ideas on correct name?

As I said, things are looking up and I am excited to soon be a 500 owner!!!!
Congrats on taking some steps to getting your finances in order & wish you the best of luck on your hunt for a decent 500.

The mink brown colour you are referring to is called Punk Grey which is confusing name (pic attached). A colour that didn't sell so if you are buying that colour remember when you go to sell it has a limited market.

Pearlescent white are as it's called Funk white. I had that colour and loved it but not too sure I could live the repair costs of repairing it. Plus the bumpers go creamy and don't match the bodywork. But it does look expensive.

Cha Cha Cha Azure is probably THE most popular discounted colour and possibly attracts a premium. Quite a sought after colour but from a distant you could think it was Bossa Nova White in poor light.

Can't advise on what to look for in the dualogic but make sure that the car has been serviced correctly and look for copies of the original invoices. Work out if you can live with a 'newer' POP model or an older speced up Lounge model.
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Old 18-05-2012   #15
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Re: Mini Cooper to 500 1.2 Lounge Dualogic/0.9 Twin Air dualogic - Finance question

Well thats points 2,3 & 4 taken care of. Sounds like you didnt owe too much on the mini so things werent so bad.

Good luck on the 500 and remember the bigger the deposit you have the more flexible and easier things are if you ever want out of your new car.

Havent heard anything bad about the gearboxes. They arent particularly powerful cars so cant see any gearbox problems
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