Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class

CY Foong · Jul 24, 2021 12:00 PM

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 01

One of the most asked questions posed in our forum and Facebook group is “What car should I get if I earn RM xxx?”. If you decide on buying a new car, you won’t have many choices especially if you earn around RM 4k a month.

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 02

You could get a brand-new Honda City, albeit the base spec.

Malaysians aren’t quite as blessed with options as some of our neighbours but if you want variety, then the used car market is your only option. It’s a near-endless smorgasbord of choices with really tempting prices.

Also read: Indonesians get more choices than us - Toyota Raize fights Kia Sonet, Nissan Magnite

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Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 01

Tempting, aren't they?

Which comes to another question, which is the exact car for you? For that, we have divided this list into six different categories depending on the body style and what kind of buyer you are. If these six cars aren’t to your liking, we do have alternate options.

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 02

As these are used cars, there are some factors to consider compared to buying a brand-new car:

  1. The cars in this list are no older than 10 years as most used car bank loans must be settled before the car turns 13. Eg. A car from 2011 is only allowed a maximum 2-year loan.
  2. The interest rate for used cars is about 1% higher than new cars.
  3. Most used cars require a higher downpayment than new cars - some up to 20%.
  4. The loan amount for used sports cars/2-door coupes is only 75 to 85%.

Also read: New or used car, which should you buy after MCO?

Having said that, if you are looking for a car, be it used or new, do remember the recommended guideline that you should not be paying more than 20% of your monthly salary on the car's monthly repayment and an additional 10% for maintenance.

Also read: If you need a 9-year loan, you can’t afford the car, and do understand Rule of 78

The interest rates in these articles are examples. As such, do check your bank to see their latest rates.

For buyers wanting an SUV
3-year-old Proton X70, RM 75,700, RM 740/month*

*Factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 9-year loan

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 03

A brand-new Proton X70 starts from RM 94,800 but if you dive into the used car market, you can get an early X70 from RM 75,700. These early models were fully imported (CBU) from China and sported a different transmission (6-speed automatic instead of 7-DCT) but were essentially the same overall.

Also read: 2020 Proton X70 CKD - is it as good as the China-made CBU model?

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 04

Quality-wise, both are also almost the same. We even did a noise level test for both the CBU and CKD X70s and found both share an almost similar result. It is one of the quietest and most comfortable SUVs in its segment.

Also read: Top Rank: What is the quietest C-seg SUV on sale in Malaysia?

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 05

As the earliest X70s are only around three years old, the warranty for some of these second-hand units still applies. Provided that Proton has resolved its spare parts shortage issue, the X70 is also mostly problem-free and is simply great value.

Also read: Proton acknowledges spare parts shortage problem, reaches out to customers in need

Alternate options:

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 06

  • 6-year-old Honda CR-VRM 63,800, RM 760/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 7-year loan)
  • 4-year-old Hyundai Tucson TLRM 65,800, RM 780/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 7-year loan)

For buyers wanting 7 seats
5-year-old Nissan Serena S-Hybrid, RM 65,000, RM 690/month*

*Factoring 3.5% interest rate with an 8-year loan

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 07

The Nissan Serena S-Hybrid has all the hallmarks of a traditional JDM minivan – from its tall design to the dual electric sliding doors. The C26 Serena marked a return of the popular nameplate to Malaysia having skipped the previous generation.

Also read: Poor door choices are what killed off the Toyota Wish and Honda Stream

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 08

Though the tall body recipe is maintained, the C26 Serena introduced the S-Hybrid technology to mainstream MPV buyers. Even with a supposed unpopular technology, the Serena proved to be a hit among Malaysian families.

Also read: Owner Review: A Dad's take on a Soccer Mom's Car - 2013 Nissan Serena S-Hybrid

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 09

Now that prices fall at an attainable price, the hybrid MPV is a worthy purchase for those that prioritise family and comfort. It's a grand cruiser or to simply lift off its trim, a highway star.

Alternate options:

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 10

  • 7-year-old Mazda 5 – RM 54,000, RM 730/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 6-year loan)
  • 3-year-old Toyota InnovaRM 69,900, RM 680/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 9-year loan)

For petrolheads
6-year-old Peugeot 208 GTi, RM 62,888, RM 750/month*

*Factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 7-year loan

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 11

Pre-facelift model shown

As far as hot hatches are concerned, the Peugeot 208 GTi is an underrated one in this part of the world. When it was launched in Malaysia in 2013, prices started from RM 139,888 but eight years later, you can get one for nearly half.

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 12

Facelift 208 GTi shown

With a turbocharged 1.6-litre Prince THP engine that produced 200 PS (the facelift got 208 PS, coincidentally) and 275 Nm (300 Nm on the facelift), the French hot hatch isn’t something to trifle with. Paired with a 6-speed close-ratio manual gearbox and it immediately gets the petrolheads’ seal of approval.

Also read: Here's why the manual transmission still matters

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 13

While the 208 GTi doesn’t command the same presence as a Fiesta ST, its sleeper nature does hide some kind of beast within. It’s a chuckle when it gets chucked around corners but is light and quite easy to drive. It’s a steal not worth missing out on.

Also read: Top 5 used manual cars that you can buy in Malaysia

Alternate options:

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 14

For buyers wanting executive
8-year old Mercedes-Benz C-Class, RM 49,900, RM 780/month*

*Factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 5-year loan

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 15

If there is a generation that saw the Mercedes-Benz C-Class transform from being an entry-level executive sedan into an S-Class for less, it would be the W204 generation. Looking more grown-up than its predecessor, the W204 is considered a good entry point for those wanting to own a three-pointed star.

Also read: Owner Review: First time owning an Euro car - My Mercedes-Benz C200

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 16

Prices for the W204 are pretty tempting with an eight-year-old model starting from around RM 50,000. However, even if prices are close to a brand-new Perodua Myvi, bear in mind that parts and maintenance would be costly. Cars may depreciate in value but parts won't.

Also read: Why do flagship sedans depreciate like there's no tomorrow?

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 17

It is advisable to put aside a maintenance fund of around RM 5k to 10k especially for Continental cars, no matter how reliable or cheap it might be. Before you decide to hop on this route, you might want to check on our used car guide on the W204 done by our BM colleagues.

Also read: Owner Review: The Kompressor Engine - How I met my Mercedes-Benz C200K

Alternate options:

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 18

  • 5-year-old Volkswagen PassatRM 46,800, RM 550/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 7-year loan)
  • 7-year-old Mazda 6RM 55,800, RM 750/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 6-year loan)

For those wanting something quirky
6-year-old Citroen DS3, RM 49,900, RM 590/month*

*Factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 7-year loan

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 19

Sometimes, you might want something that just stands out from the rest and this is a suitable car for all those hipsters. The Citroen DS3 is French and if there’s one thing French cars are known for in Malaysia is their horrible depreciation uniquely quirky appearance.

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 20

The DS3 is pretty much that, a quirky French hatchback that is as much a fashion statement as a MINI. It’s around the same size too but comes with a funkier design that is just timeless.

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 21

To be fair, the DS3 is also quite rare compared to the MINI and even though prices can fall around RM 50k, parts will not be cheap. So, be prepared to put aside a maintenance fund of at least RM 5k.

Still, if you want something entirely different from the norm, the DS3 has that je ne sais quoi that is quintessentially French.

Alternate options:

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 22

  • 8-year-old Hyundai VelosterRM 39,800, RM 620/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 5-year loan)
  • 8-year-old Chevrolet SonicRM 24,000, RM 370/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 5-year loan)

The safe choice
5-year-old Honda Civic FC, RM 72,800, RM 780/month*

*Factoring 3.5% interest rate with an 8-year loan

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 23

Now on the opposite side of the previous category, we have the buyer that simply wanted a car with no frills and no surprises. Well, for around the same price of a brand-new previous-gen Nissan Almera, why not get a used Honda Civic FC?

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 24

It will be some time before the next-gen FE Civic comes to Malaysia and the pre-facelift Civic FC looks almost a mirror image of the facelifted model. Hence, a used Civic is easily a safe option as these sedans are quite flawless.

Also read: COTY 2020 – Why younger rivals still can’t unseat the 2020 Honda Civic (FC) from its throne?

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 25

We even ranked the Civic FC as one of the best cars to hold its value in its segment. Maintaining a Civic is also quite affordable. So, consider the used Civic instead of getting the flawed Almera which is surprisingly still on sale alongside its superior successor.

Also read: A Honda Civic holds 2x better value than a Fluence? Which C-segment sedan is the resale value king?

Alternate options:

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 26

  • 6-year-old E170 Toyota Corolla AltisRM 53,800, RM 640/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 7-year loan)
  • 6-year-old 9th-gen Honda AccordRM 61,800, RM 730/month (factoring 3.5% interest rate with a 7-year loan)

Those are some of the cars that we suggest for those earning a monthly salary of RM 4,000. Some of these options do come with the caveat of higher maintenance costs. For instance, cars with bigger tyres would require a bigger budget for replacements.

Earn RM 4k a month? Here are 6 great used cars, from Civic to C-Class 27

Both the Yaris and Vios are sound choices for new cars

Having said that, should you want better peace of mind, the new cars' route would be a better choice for you with their warranty coverage. Do be aware when considering a used car as tempting as prices are.

Also read: Buying a used car online? Here's how to avoid accident or flood-damaged cars

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CY Foong

Writer

Traded advertising for a career that fits his passion for cars. Enjoys spotting cars during his free time and has a soft spot for Japanese Kei cars but drives a thirsty manual sedan.

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