Tips to Find Your ‘Finally In The Driver’s Seat Car’

First Car Advise

Congratulations! Passing your driver’s license test is a rite of passage, a step towards independence. But with that shiny new license in hand, what comes next? For many, it’s the exhilarating journey of purchasing their first car. While the prospect can be thrilling, it’s also filled with questions: Which car suits my needs? What should my budget be? How do I ensure safety?

According to, there are few things to consider in the search to find your finally in the driver’s seat car and how to better navigate your newly-acquired road freedom.

Determine Your Budget

Before getting starry-eyed over luxury models or sporty convertibles, decide on a realistic budget. Apart from the car’s price, consider other expenses such as insurance, maintenance, fuel, and potential loan interest. Remember, sometimes less is more for a first car.

Prioritise Safety

As a new driver, safety should be paramount. Look for vehicles with high safety ratings from reputable organisations. Features such as anti-lock brakes, airbags, and electronic stability control can be lifesavers.

Assess Your Needs

Are you a city dweller needing a compact car for tight parking spots? Or do you plan on road trips requiring a spacious trunk? Evaluate your lifestyle and driving needs to determine the right car type.

Fuel Efficiency Matters

Especially if you’re on a tight budget, a car with good fuel efficiency can save you a significant amount over time. Check the car’s fuel efficiency ratings, and consider hybrid or electric options if they align with your budget and infrastructure.

New vs. Used

While the allure of a brand-new car is undeniable, sometimes opting for a used car, especially as a first-time driver, is more practical. They’re often more affordable, and the bulk of depreciation has already occurred.

Research & Reviews

Spend time on automotive websites, reading reviews, and gathering insights from current owners. Websites like can provide valuable information on reliability, resale value, and common issues.

Take Test Drives

Nothing beats the experience of being behind the wheel. Test drive multiple models to gauge comfort, visibility, handling, and noise levels. It’ll also give you a feel for the car’s size and responsiveness.

Insurance Estimates

Before finalising your choice, get insurance quotes for the shortlisted models. As a new driver, insurance can be pricey, so it’s wise to know what you’re getting into.

Negotiate with Confidence

Once you’ve made a choice, remember that the sticker price is often just a starting point. Do your homework on fair prices for the model in your region, and don’t be afraid to negotiate.

Post-Purchase Maintenance

Once the car is yours, the responsibility shifts to maintenance. Regular oil changes, tire checks, and periodic inspections will ensure your car remains reliable and extends its lifespan. If you’re trying to decide on whether to choose between a maintenance plan versus a service plan, click here.

Embracing the journey of buying your first car is an adventure in itself. So, make an informed decision that suits your needs, budget, and newly minted driver status.

Remember, at, we understand getting your driver’s license is a milestone towards freedom, yet it often leads to the exciting yet daunting task of choosing the right first car. Make visiting SA’s largest online vehicle showroom your first stop! With over 10,000 Motus-owned cars, we offer a wide selection of new and used cars to choose from in South Africa, all in one place. Whether you’re a first-time car buyer, a growing family in need of more space, or someone who puts safety and reliability above all else, our mission is to help you find the car that fits your unique personality, lifestyle, and needs.

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