SA’s cheapest cars to service

2017-07-12 06:00
Toyota features in the top list of cars that not too expensive to service.Photo: sourced

Toyota features in the top list of cars that not too expensive to service.Photo: sourced

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DO you drive a Toyota Corolla Quest, a Citroen Cactus, a Toyota Fortuner, Tata Xenon, Nissan NP200 or a Peugeot 208?

Well, if you do you’ll be happy to know that according to the latest Kinsey Report you own one of the cheapest vehicles in its class locally to service or repair. But if you possess a Spark or a Sonic, an Elantra, Ecosport or X5, a Navara or an Amarok, perhaps not so much so.

The report, annually compiled by veteran journalist Malcolm Kinsey, this year covers 69 vehicles divided into nine categories, and compares the prices of 34 common parts needed in servicing, repairs and crashes.

According to Kinsey there has been increases in the cost of the 2016 basket of 34 parts, some quite astounding, such as wheel rims which in some cases are now over R20 000 each, and doors in excess of R15 000.

He also notes that a replacement for cars fitted with “intelligent lights” may cost between R30 000 to
R45 000 and states that increases were steepest in the crash parts category, while service and repair parts have remained more affordable. All prices in the study were sourced in July 2016, almost exclusively from dealers in Durban and surrounding areas.

Kinsey admits the report may be of lesser importance to those who own new vehicles still covered by service or maintenance plans, but it should be of interest, and possibly dismay, to buyers or owners of used vehicles where repair and servicing costs are relevant.



Kinsey’s nine categories include three for crossovers and SUV’s due to these vehicles’ popularity, covering the greatest number of “similar” vehicles, from fairly basic to high end luxury.

Entry level and city cars

This spans cars priced from just under R120 000 – from the Datsun Go to the Ford Figo hatch at close on R174 000.

The results mirror those of last year – with the Datsun again the winner – at R43 193 (last year R37 631) for its parts basket, followed by the Nissan Micra with R55 071 (R44 479) and VW Polo Vivo with R56 968 (R49 805).

Service costs are lowest for the Datsun Go with the Chevrolet Spark next best but the Chev suffers greatly from comparatively high crash parts prices.


In this category prices vary from around R163 000 for the Renault Sandero to R243 300 for the VW Polo.

Surprisingly, the Peugeot 208 with a basket price of R79 690 (R67 463) pips last year’s winner, the Renault Sandero (overall cost of R83 783 versus last year’s R65 517), defying the notion that parts for French cars are expensive.

The VW Polo 1.2 TSi comes in in third with a basket price of R90 161 (R82 583 last year), but the Sandero has the most competitive service parts basket at R3 016 followed by the Polo at R3 279.

Family cars

The Toyota Corolla Quest is the least expensive in this class at R199 400 and prices increase up to the VW Golf 7 at R329 900. Based on their respective sales two similar cars, the Quest (600 a month) and Corolla Prestige (800 per month), are both included, but the inclusion of the Honda Jazz (a supermini) can be questioned...

The Toyota pair head this highly competitive class, the Quest this year with the cheaper parts basket at
R72 659 (R69 446) versus the R76 267 (R67 078) for the Prestige. In a surprise third position is the Mazda3 at R97 343 (down from R133 327 last year).

The Golf 7 is the cheapest to service at R3 968, followed by Chevrolet Cruze at R4 361. In terms of repairs the Mazda3 is tops with a repair basket at
R13 272 or the Jazz at R13 520.

Compact crossovers

With all of them costing in the region of R250 000, the Toyota Avanza is the most affordable at R232 900, with the Ford Ecosport the most expensive at R268 900.

The Citroën Cactus is first in this category with a small increase from 2015 with a parts basket price of R87 422 (versus R86 706), displacing the Avanza at R90 060 (R67 786) with the

Renault Duster retaining third position with a basket of R91 609
(R79 693).

Sport Utility Vehicles

Ranging in price from R362 900 (Toyota RAV) to R533 100 (Chev Trailblazer) these are for many the vehicle of choice in South Africa. The Toyota Fortuner takes top spot again with a total parts basket price of R91 250
(R77 413).

The Trailblazer is second at R98 574 – a price reduction from 2015
(R109 801) while the new Hyundai Tucson, with a basket of R114 721, is third.

The Mitsubishi ASX has the least expensive service basket at R3 152 (but is the most expensive overall) followed by the Nissan X-Trail at R3 996.

Executive SUVs

These luxury SUV’s prices range from R743 858 for the Range Rover Evoque to R968 104 for the BMW X5.

The less expensive Toyota Prado model, with a parts basket of R156 851 (against R173 713 for last year’s more expensive model) this year displaces the Volvo XC90 with a basket of R179 563 (versus R164 508 in 2015).

Third this year, one place higher than last year, is the Range Rover Evoque with a complete basket of R228 823 (R180 247). Service parts are least expensive for the XC90 at R5 143 against the Evoque’s R6 516.

Double Cabs

Prices in this class vary from R264 995 for the Tata Xenon to R519 200 for the VW Amarok.

Tata again has the most economical parts basket – R67 623 (R58 527) – while the Toyota Hilux is second with R76 274 (R85 986), with the GWM Steed taking third with a basket price of R92 355 (R89 437).

In the servicing section the GWM is lowest at R2 291, substantially ahead of the Ford Ranger at R4 405 and the Xenon (R4 811).

Single Cabs

From two small workhorses – the Nissan NP 200 (R157 900) and the Chev Utility, prices range up to R298 800 for the VW Amarok 2.0.

The NP200, Chev Ute and the Nissan NP300 slot into the podium places, the Ute splitting the Nissans with basket costs of R43 967 (R47 026), R54 347 (R59 096) and R58 134 (R49 314) respectively.

Executive sedans

Prices for these full-house exec models range from R458 996 for the Volvo S60 TR to R743 600 for the Jaguar XE 2.0.

Interestingly, the locally built BMW 3-Series has lost its first place for best overall basket to the imported Volvo S60.

The S60 parts basket is R113 822 this year (R141 197) and the BMW R134 630 (R106 194) while the Jaguar XE 200, at R154 748 (R189 537) is third.

The Volvo is the most economical to service (R4 656), ahead of the Mercedes-Benz C200 at R5 596.

- Wheels24

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