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Help define my car needs

How do you choose the car that's right for you?

You know you need (or want) to buy a car. You've seen some models on the road that you like the look of, but how do you choose which one's right for you?

A good place to start is to work out what you need, and what you don't. At a minimum, you need to consider what sort of driving you do, the role of your car day-to-day and your budget. From there it's a process of elimination.

Things to consider

  • Are you an every-day commuter or a weekend cruiser?
  • Are you more for the functional A-B driving or a long-haul road-tripper?
  • Are you a sealed-road only City driver, or an off-road adventurer?
  • Do you spend your weekends hauling kids, dogs and groceries?
  • Do you like to drive just for the sake of driving?

Make the match

Identifying the kind of driver you are makes it much easier to narrow down your options.

Commuters will want something fuel-efficient, reliable and easy-to-operate. Those trying to find a city parking spot every morning will also want compact styling and a small turning circle.

Weekend drivers have the luxury of focusing on the head-turners, even if they may be slightly more expensive to run. Your mantra is: Whatever's fun, whatever's lush.

The family unit needs something spacious, versatile and packed to the gills with safety technology (headrest monitors don't hurt either).

For the road trippers and adventure nuts it's all about grunt, range and specialised design (SUV, anyone?).

Distance drivers know what they need! Comfort is the big one, followed by power and reliability.