Main image for post: New Year, New You - Start the year off in a stylish new motor

Whether your current car broke down over winter or you just fancy a fresh start as the new year gets underway, it's a great time to invest in a stylish new motor that really meets your needs.

There's only two months at the start of the year before the new number plates come out on March 1st, which in 2018 will be the 18-plate, followed by the 68-plate in the autumn.

While some people will tell you to wait for that to happen, it's a much more hectic market once the new registration plates land on March 1st, so if you want an easier life, get a new car before the end of February and it's a much calmer buyer's market.

Top of the range

For the most stylish cars of all, look at the top end of the price range and you'll find some amazing deals that are only a couple of years old.

This is where you'll find futuristic models like the BMW i8 and M4, along with cars built for luxurious comfort like the Range Rover Vogue.

Prices can top the £50,000 mark, but even below that you'll still find some stylish options, such as the Jaguar F-Pace or Lexus RC sports coupe, again just a year or two old and with just a few thousand miles on the clock.

Family favourites

If you need something that's suitable for the whole family, it doesn't have to mean abandoning your sense of style, as MPVs have become one of the biggest categories over the past few years.

Top-end used MPVs start from below £25,000, making this a hugely economical category for what you get - common examples include the Toyota Prius and Seat Alhambra, both seven-seaters.

Again, you can save substantially by looking just one year further back or adding a few thousand miles to the mileage you're looking for - and remember as we're early in the year, a September 2015 model is still not much over two years old.

Sports and Spyders

Looking for something that's fun to drive, rather than something you can fit several child seats into? Sports cars and Spyders (AKA convertibles or soft-tops) have to be the most stylish category for solo drivers and couples.

Just over £35,000 will get you a Porsche Cayman, while again those BMW and Lexus models mentioned earlier are well represented here.

In convertibles, the BMW 4 Series is huge right now at prices sub-£25,000 for a 2015 model with just 23,000 miles on the clock, and under £20,000 for a BMW Z4 of the same age with 25,000 miles driven.

The list goes on and on, and as always when you're looking for a great deal on a used car of any type, it's worth being vigilant as the stock list changes all the time.

You might find your dream car is available right now - so why wait until March 1st? Or if not, then keep an open mind and consider your options throughout February, so you're ready to make a move in that more frantic used car market when the 18-plate arrives in the spring.