diesel may be the way forward. I wouldnt dare get her a V6! You havent seen her drive or park M8!
ha ha! i hear you mate.
not much to look for on the jtd's, but i would make sure you get a decent drive, and check for smooth clutch from the bite point out, and juddering could indicate clutch and dual mass flywheel are about rerady for changing, and thats costly!
also, the intercooler hoses are sh4t!
so check for good turbo boost and tug, without excess noise such as hissing.
try to have someone rev the car pretty hard whilst you watch and feel the hoses, they will expand like buggery if they are getting a little tired, and indicates that they might not be far from splitting, which al, JTD's are prone too,
take some gloves, they can be filthy underneath mate
mileage isn't usually an issue if well maintained, but the 1.9's can be a little sensitive on the things like boost sensor and stuff, so again make sure you get a decent drive, and don't be afraid to boot the thing to make sure you don't have a dash like a christmas tree, or excessive soot or smoke either,
the later 16'vs are really quite lively if they are healthy, and even revvy for an oil cooker, and the boost should hold on well nto the high rev's, so if it tails off sharply, or too early, its another indicator towards hoses or a turbo issue.
happy hunting mate, and if you spot anything in my direction, give me a shout and i'll go nail the thing for you!