Buying a used taxi can be an investment, but make sure you check things over thoroughly.
Buying a used taxi - rather than a new one - can be an economical option for taxi drivers looking to purchase a new vehicle. There are a number of things you're advised to consider first.
One key thing to consider is durability. Realistically, taxis are made to work longer and harder than many standard vehicles. This means that you will need to consider the mileage that has already been clocked up on a used taxi.
However, even second-hand cabs with high mileages can be sought-after, because of their unique features. Taxis are built and designed to last, and that's why many people are confident buying one on a second-hand basis.
You will also need to consider the service history of any used vehicle you are thinking about buying. A taxi that has been well maintained will be a better investment than one that has not been looked after properly. The taxi's service log book should be able to give you this information.
Usually, taxis are required by cab firms and/or local authorities to keep to certain maintenance standards, so you'll probably find that many used cabs are well serviced.
It's also advisable to do a good visual inspection of the car. Are there any signs of damage or serious wear and tear? Does the cab look as if it's been in any accidents?
If any marks or damage are not too serious, you may be able to pay less for the car, and fix them up yourself.
You should also take the cab for a test drive, and any reputable seller will allow you to do this. Pay attention to key functional aspects of the car, such as the suspension, the brakes, the clutch and gears. You may also want to have a mechanic look over the vehicle to give their professional opinion.
One option for buying a used taxi is to buy one which has been reconditioned. A second-hand cab that has been reconditioned will have had all these things checked over - and will have had a good, all-over service.
A reconditioned cab will also come with a warranty - usually of at least a year - which will provide peace of mind.
Obviously, you'll also want to consider the features of the car itself, and how this can help you with your business. Consider how spacious the taxi is. The boot capacity is also very important for carrying customers luggage.
You'll also want to think about what is comfortable for you. As a taxi driver, you'll be spending a lot of time inside the car, so look for a second-hand vehicle which has the features that are important to you.
You may want to think about special features, such as air conditioning, and what type of music system the car has. Sit in the car and assess how comfortable the seats are.
You might think these are minor details - but they are worth thinking about - as at the end of the day, they can have an impact on your enjoyment of your job.
A used taxi can be a reliable car at a good price, but make sure you choose one that's suitable for you.