Dec 312015

With potholes estimated to cause as many as 1 in 10 mechanical failures on UK roads and costing motorists an estimated £730 million every year, has been created to help you avoid the cost and misery they cause thanks to Warranty Direct.

The website can provide information advising how to make a claim against a local council regarding pothole damage to your car or if you just want to report a poor piece of road. With access to similar stories and related news, aims to help motorists fight back against this road misery.

You can also follow’s Facebook page where the latest stories regarding pothole disasters and triumphs are shared. Here’s a selection of recently shared news stories.

Santa appeals to council over Stone potholes – Staffordshire Newsletter







Keeping with the recent festive holidays, residents of a potholes riddled lane in Stone have turned to Santa Claus for help in fixing the roads. Mark Willows and his neighbours have been asking Staffordshire County Council to repair the roads to avoid further flooding over the winter period. To raise awareness, a poem sent to the council’s highways team, tells of Santa wondering why his elves have left out the affected lane from his Christmas route.

New £2.5m fund for pothole repaires announced by Lancashire County Council – Lancaster & Morecambe Citizen


A new £2.5 million pound fund for pothole and pavement repairs was recently announced by Lancashire County Council. The cash, saved out of underspending on other road projects, will be split between the authority’s 12 boroughs.

Pothole road still hasn’t been fixed despite Fife Council admitting work is ‘substandard’ – Dunfermline Press


A  main route affected by potholes still hasn’t been fixed despite the Fife Council apologising and admitted that the repair work to the road was “substandard.” The council has refused to pay the current contractor assigned to the resurfacing task and discussions have so far stalled. The road is unlikely to be fixed until well in 2016.

To see more stories from the world of potholes, you can follow’s Facebook and Twitter feeds.

Dec 292015






Superminis can be stylish and fun and great value. So which is best? The Italian or the Spaniard?

Why Buy?

The Punto has it all really, looks stylish, is spacious inside, is very sporty to drive and there is lots of standard equipment and safety kit. Built by VW but cheaper is the main appeal, SEAT’s though have a sporty style too, but the handling is not as sharp and ride bumpy.

Which models?

This is the pretty restyled Punto launched in 2006 and made until 2010. All had electric windows, CD player and great brakes, Dynamic model has air con. The revised Seat Ibiza from 2008 has very sharp and distinctive styling and decently equipped. The S model has air conditioning.

Are they reliable?

Both cars are easy to live with and cheap to service, however, the stand out Warranty Direct statistic is the repair costs as the Fiat is significantly cheaper to fix. Electrical issues are always annoying, but the engine problems with SEAT are always going to cost more to sort out.

How much do they cost?

Prices start at around £1800 and that will get a very tidy 2006 1.2 Active model. If you want to spend £4000 and get a very recent 2012 1.2 POP. £2700 buys a 2009 1.4 TDI Ecomotive from a dealer with a warranty. £4000 will get a 1.2 S 5 door with a petrol engine.

Sum Up

Although there is a lot to like about the more modern SEAT, the Warranty Direct figures indicate that the Punto is the better used buy.

Fiat Grande Punto

Average Repair Cost: £212.87

Axle and Suspension: 28.57%*

Electrical: 38.10%*

Steering: 19.05%*

Warranty Direct Rating: Above Average

* – failure rate

SEAT Ibiza 

Average Repair Cost: £367.69

Steering: 21.05*

Electrical: 10.53%*

Engine: 47.37*

Warranty Direct Rating: Below Average

* Failure rate

Dec 282015







New data analysis from automotive technology solutions provider, HPI, reveals that Scotland has the greatest number of used cars for sale hitting the HPI outstanding finance register. The North West of England and Wales follow close behind.

Although, the analysis is aimed at buyers, it is a good indication to private buyers as to where they should be careful. A vehicle that has outstanding finance registered against it legally belongs to the finance house, which means unwary buyers could lose the car and the money they paid for it.  With as many as 1 in 4 used cars hitting the HPI finance register, buyers need to protect themselves from the finance fraudsters.

The chances of buying a car that still has finance owing against it is much more likely in some regions across the UK than others.   Buyers in the regions London, East Anglia and the South West are the least likely to find themselves with a car that is legally owned by someone else. High volumes of HPI Checks conducted by buyers in the City of London, Isle of Lewis, Isle of Man, South Glamorgan and Ayrshire are hitting the HPI finance register the most, meaning these cars are likely to be owned by the finance house.

Private buyers stand to lose the car and the money they paid for it if it later turns out to have finance against it. The only safeguard buyers have against putting their reputation and their business at risk, is to conduct a vehicle provenance check.

Most provenance checks are backed by a Guarantee* and the provider will negotiate with the finance house on behalf of the dealer. HPI holds details of over 7 million live finance interests, which represents in excess of 98% of the UK’s motor finance market, making the HPI Check one of strongest defences against finance fraud.

* – subject to terms and conditions

Dec 272015






The UK used car market continues to grow, with recent DVLA statistics showing that used car transactions have grown by three per cent year on year during late summer/autumn 2015. Year to date used car transactions have also increased, by 4.2% and 225,000 units year-on-year according to

The 4×4 segment showed the strongest performance with used sales of large and small 4x4s growing by 9.1% year on year as the UK moved towards winter, and savvy shoppers prepare for weather warnings. So right now, and not surprisingly, it costs more to buy a 4 x 4.

Auto Trader, the UK’s largest digital automotive marketplace for buying and selling new and used vehicles, have revealed the Top 10 most searched for 4x4s.

  • BMW X5
  • Land Rover Range Rover
  • Land Rover Range Rover Sport
  • BMW X3
  • Mercedes-Benz M-Class
  • Honda CR-V
  • VW Touareg
  • Land Rover Range Rover Evoque
  • Toyota RAV4
  • Audi Q5

Auto Trader’s Retailer and Consumer Products Director Karolina Edwards-Smajda, said; “The current increasing levels of used car transactions are a bi-product of the strong new car registrations that have been experienced over the last few years, with these vehicles now re-entering the used car market. Transactions for nearly new cars less than one year old and cars between one and three years old are fueling the growth, showing an increase of 8% and 15% year-on-year respectively.

Dec 262015







If you want some expert advice on the latest scams, plus paperwork and checklists to give you the edge when buying a used car then HPI has the answer, or rather its free guide is here to help.

HPI provider of the HPI Check® is helping used car buyers get it right, when it comes to parting with their hard earned money, with the launch of its digital HPI Used Car Buyer’s Guide. In all the excitement of buying a car, it’s easy to overlook the essentials or even fall prey to common scams. HPI’s comprehensive guide aims to encourage consumers to do their homework to minimise the risks, as well as highlighting the latest scams fraud sellers are carrying out.  It also acts as an important reminder to buyers to conduct a vehicle history check via

Buying a used car is exciting, but it can also be daunting, which is why HPI has created the Used Car Buyer’s Guide,” explains Neil Hodson, Managing Director for HPI. “Throughout the online pages of this guide, consumers will get advice on how to decide what the best buy is for them, what to look out for when viewing and test driving a potential purchase and how to get the best deal.”

The HPI Used Car Buyer’s Guide gives advice on what to do if people are buying privately or from a dealer, the importance of conducting professional inspections, as well as practical top tips on conducting a thorough test drive. Crucially, HPI’s expert advice includes a section on the most common used car buying scams – clocking, cloning, ringing and cut ‘n’ shuts – giving advice on how to spot one and explaining what the very real risks are.

The guide doesn’t stop at the point when someone decides they want to purchase a vehicle. HPI offers tips on negotiating a good price with the seller, as well as looking into getting the best warranty and insurance deals to make the buyer’s purchase decision financially sound.     Fundamentally, the Guide gives buyers advice on what to do if the purchase goes wrong; 1 in 3 cars checked with HPI have something to hide.

Neil Hodson concludes, “The launch of our new Used Car Buyer’s Guide is part of HPI’s ongoing commitment to helping consumers understand the risks, giving them the tools they need to shop and buy with confidence. Of course, a vehicle check, such as the remains one of the best ways to ensure a vehicle isn’t a write-off, recorded with the police as stolen, clocked or on outstanding finance. Together with this new guide, HPI is helping used car buyers avoid purchasing a lemon, ensuring they drive off into the sunset with the car of their dreams.”

The HPI Check includes a mileage check against the National Mileage Register as standard, now with over 200 million mileage readings. HPI also confirms whether a vehicle is currently recorded as stolen with the police, has outstanding finance against it or has been written off, making it the best way for consumers to protect themselves from fraudsters looking to make a fast profit. In addition, the HPI Check offers a £30,000 Guarantee* in the event of the information it provides being inaccurate, offering added financial peace of mind to used car buyers.

* – subject to terms and conditions. See HPI Check website for more details.