Best used cars under £6,000

Cars under £6,000 don't get much better than these

Murray Scullion James Wilson BuyaCar team
Jan 30, 2019

Statistics suggest that a new car will lose around 19 per cent of its value in its first year.

In fact, research from experts at CAP Automotive says that depreciation should be a bigger concern than fuel economy for new buyers.

A medium-sized family car (think Ford Focus or Vauxhall Astra) will have lost around £12,559 in value within three years. But the car’s fuel cost would have only been around £4,000 over the three years, assuming it covered 12,000 miles a year.

In other words, depreciation is a major influence in the car market. And the good news is that cars costing £6,000 have already done most of their depreciating.

The most expensive car from new on the list is the Citroen C3 Picasso. It cost £17,995 new in 2015. Flash forward a few years and it now costs around £6,000 – saving you a massive £11,995.


Ford Fiesta 

Best car under £6,000 for all-round ability 

Our pick Ford Fiesta 1.25 Style
Latest Ford Fiesta deals from £5,727
Finance from £101 per month

The Ford Fiesta has been a common sight on UK roads for decades, and is perennially the best-selling car in the UK. Pound for pound, a new Fiesta is one of the best cars available and for the most part, that holds true on the secondhand market as well. 

As a new generation Fiesta has been released, prices for older models have gone down slightly. The Fiesta is a great drive, partly thanks to its fun driving style and ability to cruise happily on the motorway - plus there is a good selection of petrol and diesel engines.

It’s not the biggest in class though. The Vauxhall Corsa and Citroen C3 offer more passenger and boot space.
Ford Fiesta buying guide

Renault Zoe

Best car under £6,000 for electric power 

Our pick Renault Zoe Dynamique 

One of the cheapest ways into electric motoring, unsurprisingly, remains cheap on the second hand market too.

The Zoe doesn’t shout about its electric credentials though, the only giveaway is the large bonnet badge that conceals its charging point.

For this kind of money, you’re looking at the less powerful model with a range of about 100 miles - which is still long enough of most people’s commute. And you’ll have to rent the battery separately - which is no bad thing when looking at second hand cars as it means you don't need to fork out for a new battery if it goes wrong.
Renault Zoe buying guide

Vauxhall Astra

Best car under £6,000 for family life

Our pick Vauxhall Astra 1.7 CDTi Excite
Latest Vauxhall Astra deals from £5,690
Finance from £108 per month

Vauxhall isn’t typically seen as the most glamorous or luxurious car marque, but then again, there is a good reason for this. For years Vauxhall has been making solid (albeit at times boring) cars that will get you, your kids and a boot full of shopping from A to B in relative comfort.

Both petrol and diesel models are available in this price range, but diesels are much more common. The Astra was updated in 2015, so for under £6,000 you will likely be looking at a last of the previous generation – although prices for the newest shape are not far behind.

The Astra houses a useful 351 litres of boot space and enough room for five occupants. Go for an Excite model car and you’ll be rewarded with cruise control and air conditioning.


Seat Ibiza

Best car under £6,000 for sporty looks

Our pick Seat Ibiza 1.2 TSI FR
Latest Seat Ibiza Coupe deals from £5,880
Finance from £101 per month

Confusingly, Seat refers to its three-door Ibiza as a coupè, despite quite clearly being a hatchback. Strange nomenclature aside, the previous generation Ibiza is a cracking looking car thanks to a subtle yet sporty look.

The £6,000 budget gives you a wide selection of options, but won’t get you the sportiest Ibiza. However, you can just about get the keys for a 1.2 TSI with 105hp and a 0-62mph time of 9.5 seconds. FR spec throws in sporty-looking alloy wheels too.
Seat Ibiza buying guide

Honda Jazz

Best car under £6,000 for reliable motoring

Our pick Honda Jazz 1.4 i-VTEC ES Plus
Latest Honda Jazz deals from £7,000
Finance from £121 per month

Honda is a brand that simultaneously has a reputation for making slightly boring and incredibly reliable cars, and fantastically fizzy hot hatches. The Jazz is the smallest car in the range, and falls under the boring and reliable category.

The latest generation is off limits with a budget of £6,000, but older models still come reasonably well specced with electric windows and remote locking coming as standard. Moving up to models such as ES Plus brings the possibility of cruise and climate control, which, let’s face it, are great to have.

Thanks to Honda’s reputation for reliability, residual values are strong for the Jazz, so don’t be surprised by seemingly high prices.


Volkswagen Polo

Best car under £6,000 for quality

Our pick Volkswagen Polo S
Latest Peugeot Volkswagen Polo deals from £6,123
Finance from £106 per month

A new Volkswagen Polo went on sale 2018, driving the prices of these old model cars down further. For £6,000, you can just about get your hands on one of these previous-generation cars.

It looks and feels like a mini version of the Volkswagen Golf, with comfort and (low) noise levels of a much larger, and more expensive car.

£6,000 will get you a 2014 model, in base S specification. These don’t come with a great deal of options (you won’t even find air con) but, there’s no denying that this a Polo is a great deal more premium feeling than many other cars on this list.
Volkswagen Polo buying guide


Citroen C3 Picasso

Best car under £6,000 for MPV lovers 

Our pick Citroen C3 Picasso 1.6 VTR Plus HDI
Latest Citroen C3 Picasso deals from £5,795
Finance from £111 per month

You can’t buy a new Citroen C3 Picasso, as they are now sold under the moniker of ‘Spacetourers’. That doesn’t change the fact that for £6,000 you can buy a Picasso second-hand and get an incredibly practical, incredibly cheap MPV.

It has funky styling inside and out, and petrol and diesel models are on offer. Pick the right model and you will be treated to niceties such as heated seats, cruise control and air conditioning – with VTR Plus being one of the sweeter spots in the range.
Citroen C3 Picasso buying guide


Kia Rio

Best car under £6,000 for for crunching motorway mile

Our pick Kia Rio 2 CRDI
Latest Kia Rio deals from £5,500
Finance from £95 per month

The Kia Rio is often overlooked when buying new. And with good reason too - the Ford Fiesta and Volkswagen Polo are much better.

But on the used market, the Rio has an ace up its sleeve. Just like the Picanto below, it gets Kia’s seven-year warranty. And unlike the Picanto, the Rio has petrol, and diesel engines.

While a diesel supermini is not the most popular type of car, brilliant official economy figures (around 80mpg) mean they find popularity with those who spend a lot of their time ploughing up, down, and across the UK’s motorway network.
Kia Rio buying guide 

Dacia Logan

Best car under £6,000 for space

Our pick Dacia Logan 1.2 16V Ambiance
Latest Dacia Logan deals from £5,990
Finance from £98 per month

Dacia is best-known for making the cheapest new car for sale in the UK - the Sandero. The Logan is similar mechanically, but is an estate, rather than a hatchback. This means it has an impressive 573 litres of boot space - enough room for wellies, dogs, and any misbehaving in-laws and/or children.

Our £6,000 budget will get your an entry-level Ambiance models – perfect if you aren’t bothered about frivolities like air conditioning or electric windows. Ambiance spec models at least come with electric front windows, CD player and remote locking.
Dacia Logan buying guide


Kia Picanto

Best car under £6,000 for warranty

Our pick Kia Picanto 1
Latest Kia Picanto deals from £4,495
Finance from £76 per month

£6000 gets you an awful lot with a Kia Picanto. It’s a decent effort in most respects, and from new, came with an epic seven-year warranty.

2016 models are in this price range, meaning these cars will still have around four-years warranty on them. Admittedly, for this price you’ll be looking at a 1.0-litre Picanto with an achingly slow 0-62mph time of 14.3 seconds. Realistically, it’s better as a city car than a true all-rounder.
Kia Picanto buying guide


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