Re: hm, it's about that time.
Definitely start with a used car. Also, if you finance the car, get the gap insurance. IT IS NOT A GIMMICK. It saved me over 20,000 USD in the long run.
I'd go with Ford as a brand. IMO, they make very decent cars that are perfect for first time drivers. Try a Fiesta or Focus (I know Fiesta is in UK, not sure about Focus.) They are not too big, not too small, very comfortable, and fun to drive.
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