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Want to keep car ownership costs low? Here are five car models that are perfect to be given a new lease of life with a COE renewal.

Category: Car Ownership Advice


Yes, we had an article that explained how renewing the COE of your car might be a fatal mistake. However, if you have read the article, you would have known that it doesn't apply to all cars in the market, as with all kinds of decisions, there are pros and cons to consider, and the best course of action is undoubtedly the one where the former outweighs the latter.

So how do you determine what's a good car for COE renewal?

Here are the factors that you should consider when choosing a car for COE renewal:

There are some factors to consider before renewing your car - some cars are more suitable than others to be renewed
1. PARF rebate
When you deregister a car in Singapore towards the end of its COE, you will be eligible for a PARF rebate of 50% of the ARF paid (the ARF is derived from the car's Open Market Value). When you choose to renew the COE, you will be forfeiting this sum of money, effectively adding to the depreciation of the car.

2. Engine capacity
The road tax of cars in Singapore is derived from the engine capacity. Additionally, cars that are over 10 years of age is subjected to an increasing surcharge of 10% per annum up till a maximum of 50% on the 15th year(effectively 150% of the car's original road tax amount). It will make little sense to renew the COE of a car with 6000cc.

3. Parts availability
Parts availability can be a headache for older cars that have long stopped being produced, the problem gets worse with rare and uncommon cars. Hence renewing the COE of a common car with great parts support will make more sense here.

4. Desirability
Much like choosing what new car to buy, the car has to be good. The lower cost of a COE-renewed car can also mean that you will be able to enjoy a car that was much more expensive or when new. Imagine being able to drive a luxurious European sedan with an annual depreciation that is less than $10,000!

Honda Jazz 1.3 A

The Honda Jazz is a popular car in Singapore, there is no need to worry about parts availability 
You won't go wrong with an economical hatchback in Singapore - the city environment makes these cars the perfect choice here. Since the first iteration, the Honda Jazz has been a favourite around this part of the world, this second generation Jazz offers increased space as well as a smoother and quieter ride than before.

It is also economical to run, being reliable, cheap to maintain, low priced as well as having a low road tax thanks to its 1.3-litre engine. Despite its small footprint, the Jazz packs in 384 litres of boot space with full passenger capacity, excellent for a hatchback of this size! The low PARF rebate and used pricing of the Jazz makes it a smart pick for COE renewal. It is also one of the winner in the 2010 SGCM Car of The Year awards.

Used price before COE renewal: $14,889
Used price with 5-year COE renewal: $26,800 - $31,800
PARF rebate: ~$9,500
Annual depreciation after COE renewal (for existing owners): ~$4250
Max annual road tax: $886

Want to buy a Honda Jazz? Check out the listings here.

Mazda 3 1.6 A

The 1.6-litre engine means that road tax costs will never go out of hand
This generation of Mazda3 is easily recognisable thanks to its 'smiley-face' front fascia, it also features a fresh and modern body design with various styling cues from the Mazda RX-8 sports car. Inside the Mazda3 is a well-built interior that is sophisticated and plush, with great headroom as well as sufficient legroom.

The performance-oriented chassis tuning by Mazda also gives it a fun and sporty drive that will put a smile on the driver's face. The Mazda3 is a reliable and practical choice of a car for COE renewal, its relatively low PARF rebate of around $10,000 also means a lower depreciation, furthermore, it was the winner of SGCM's Car of The Year awards back in 2010!

Used price before COE renewal: $12,900 - $15,800
Used price with 5-year COE renewal: $29,800 - $34,900
Used price with 10-year COE renewal: $46,800
PARF rebate: ~$10,000
Annual depreciation after COE renewal (for existing owners): ~$4300
Max annual road tax: $1114

Want to buy a Mazda3? Check out the listings here.

Volkswagen Scirocco 1.4A

Don't be afraid, mechanics these days are familiar with the advanced DSG gearbox
Looking for a sporty car for COE renewal? You can't go wrong with a Volkswagen Scirocco! Based on the Golf, some might say that the Scirocco is simply the former in a different dress, and they might be right, but only to a certain extent. If you have read our review of the car back in 2009, you would've known how much we loved the handling of this car, in fact we even found it to outperform the Golf by far.

Design wise there is no doubt, the Scirocco is a work of beauty, and for something with such a sleek shape, there is surprisingly, plenty of room inside - complete with a reasonable boot space of 292 litres. The base model's 1.4-litre engine is twin-charged and offers much room for improvement should you wish to go down that route. The Scirocco is available in the 1.4-litre, 2.0-litre Sport as well as 2.0-litre R form - which was also a winner in the 2010 SGCM Car of The Year awards.

Used price before COE renewal: $20,500 - $25,888
Used price with 5-year COE renewal: from $35,800 to $41,800
Used price with 10-year COE renewal: from $53,800 to $67,998
PARF rebate: ~$13,000
Annual depreciation after COE renewal (for existing owners): ~$5100
Max annual road tax: $930

Want to buy a VW Scirocco? Check out the listings here.

BMW 5 Series 523i

A COE-renewed mid-tier BMW that costs around the price of a brand new Japanese sedan, what more do you need?
The F10 BMW 5 Series is just one generation away from the current, unsurprisingly its classy and refined design still looks fresh and good till date. As expected of an executive sedan from the Bavarian marque, it features a plush and tasteful interior with an impressive list of amenities such as electric memory seats, auto hold assist, parking assist and cruise control.

While the 523i is a base model 5 Series, it is powered by a smooth 2.5-litre straight-six engine. Although the PARF rebate on these cars are rather high, at around $20,000, the resulting depreciation after a COE renewal is still much lesser than what you would need to fork out for a brand new mid-sized luxury sedan!

Used price before COE renewal: $31,800 - $53,000
Used price with 5-year COE renewal: $52,555
Used price with 10-year COE renewal: $69,800 - $114,900
PARF rebate: ~$20,000
Annual depreciation after COE renewal (for existing owners): ~$5800
Max annual road tax: $2694

Want to buy a BMW 523i? Check out the listings here.

Toyota Alphard 2.4

The ultimate MPV for almost half its original price, COE renewal sure seems attractive for the Alphard
You can never miss an Alphard cruising on the street - its sheer size and presence ensures so. With maximum space that fits seven comfortably and a well built interior that feels like a Lexus, there is no better choice than the Alphard if you are looking for maximum capacity, space and comfort on the road.

On the topic of comfort, the Alphard is also equipped with motorised automatic doors on both sides as well as front passenger and middle row seats that can be fully reclined, with foldable leg-rests - no sore backs even on extended road trips! While the PARF rebate of these cars are rather high at around $20,000, you have to consider that getting one of this with a fresh COE renewal will set you back only around half of its original price! Oh did we mention that it is also a winner in 2010's SGCM Car of The Year awards?

Used price with 10-year COE renewal: $75,888 - $86,888
PARF rebate: ~$20,000
Annual depreciation after COE renewal (for existing owners): ~$5800
Max annual road tax: $2458

*All prices are accurate at the time of writing. Used prices are based on SGCM used car listings.

Want to buy a Toyota Alphard? Check out the listings here.

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