End of the line for my sons Agila

Just reaching out to the Mx5 community.
My sons Vauxhall Agila has come to the end of the line, new gearbox required but I was wandering whether any of you knew of a relatively reasonable reliable smallish car, not an Mx5 as he requires four seats as he’s a community physiotherapist and requires the room if and when any special equipment needs to be carried.
West Midlands ideally but would travel to source for my lad.
TIA.

I would look at a Honda Jazz if you’re after reliable with a bit of space.

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As said above, Jazz is good, as is Civic if he wants a bit more space. Also consider small Kia/Hyundai models. Kia Venga is an excellent value white goods vehicle.
If he enjoys driving, a Fiesta would be my choice. Loads around and in a different league to other small hatches imo.
A budget would help with suggestions…

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I thought that a Jazz would be bulletproof, so I bought one for my son last year - it was a few years old, but only 70k miles. He only drives an auto, so it had to be one of those. He had it a month and the gearbox started acting as if it was going to fail, so I quickly part ex-ed it for a Corsa and he loves it! The garage did not even look at his part-ex. It has bene reliable so far and there are a lot around.

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The Jazz’s CVT auto gearbox is as horrible as all CVT’s, but at least it’s reliable compared to some (Nissan)
You must have had a unicorn🙂

My lad has put 32,000 miles on a basic 1.25cc Zetec Fiesty over 3 years now. I bought it at 2 years & 7.4k miles on in showroom pristine nick form a main dealer…one genuine elderly previous owner.
It’s be ruddy epic…not one issue. Just needed new tyres and discs, and it gets serviced on the button.
I’d recommend a well chosen Fiesty all day. Decent build quality for the price, and cheap as chips to run including the paltry £40.00 tax & 40-odd mpg.
Chassis still fresh, though I might Hammerite the wishbones and stuff this summer.
Every useful cabin extra you need.
Mind you, our lad really does look after it very well.
He knows I’m watching…
We will be buying it off him when he upgrades. 5s are going nowhere but a shopping trolley will be very handy. Cruises at motorway speeds very well. Quiet, airconned, nice enough ICE and comfortable with a big boot before you fold the seats. Brilliant wee tool. Japanese ( Yamaha?) inspired Zetec twincam is a good mill, very smooth & revvy. Paltry power but who cares.

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MK8 Honda Civic.

It has a big boot when, you can put 150cm boxes in the back of the car with the seats folded. It also has magic seats that fold up like cinema chairs so the rear of the car becomes a storage compartment.

The 1.8 engine is 140hp, 40mpg and very reliable.

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You can get a lemon from any brand, reliability is never guaranteed.
My Punto was ace for space, economical, reliable, and not bad to drive.
However, I rented a Fiesta in Rome and found it much better for driving fun. A workmate has a 14 years old Fiesta which has never failed an MOT and has only ever needed service parts.

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Fiesta all the way, we sell a few and have not had one back. So much so I bought the wife one five years ago and it was brilliant.

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Mazda2, nippy, fuel efficient and roomy for its size had 3 in our family and all reliable.

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There’s an awful lot of Fiesta in a Mazda 2, a hangover from the Ford days, but in general the Ford engines are better plus there’s more choice of powertrains in a Fiesta. No doubt the rust protection is better as well🤣.

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All info great fully received and we are picking up a 60 plate Fiesta 1.4TDCi tomorrow 54000 miles.

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Great if you need a diesel engine, but in a Fiesta of that age, I would go for the petrol 1.25 litre with 82bhp.
Enjoy your shopping spree.

Do some research on those small diesel engines, they are Citroen made and tend to blow injector seals that lead to masses of work to correct.

I agree, unfortunately the 1.4 diesel is a horrible not particularly reliable, rough old engine imo, and in real life is no more economical than one of the petrols available in that age Fiesta, partly due to higher running costs.

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My son has a 2009 1.25 Fiesta Zetec and loves it to bits. Bought with a full service history and low mileage for year, it really is a great little car. Uses no oil at all and starts first time evertime. Still looks modern compared with newer cars. Excellent handling and ride and also very economical. Services his at Ford, but any good garage would be ok. Highly recommended.

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I agree. Drove a 1.4 TDCi Fiesta once. Horrible noisy thing. Verdict. Nice car, shame about the engine. Petrols are far better.
JS

Oh well…bit late now chaps! Good luck to OP’s lad though.