Best used cars under £7,000

Bargains don't have to be boring: check out these cars for under £7,000

Murray Scullion John Evans
Feb 4, 2019

We live in a time where house prices are historically high, pints of beer in London are getting towards the £6 mark, and handbags can set you back tens of thousands of pounds.

But isn’t it refreshing to know that in Britain, we have some of the cheapest used cars in Europe. £7,000 is plenty of money to bag yourself a great family car, something to power down the motorway in, or even something with some off-road credentials.

So if you have £7,000 saved up for a car, take a look at our list and revel in the value for money. And remember, if you can’t find anything you like for under £7,000, try increasing the budget by just a few hundred pounds. This will allow a few more cars into your search, but will only have a slight impact on monthly payments.

Best cars under £7,000

Peugeot 308

Best car under £7,000 for motorway mileage 

Our pick Peugeot 308 1.6 HDI Active

Latest Peugeot 308 deals from £5,967
Finance from £101 per month

The Peugeot 308 competes with family hatchbacks like the VW Golf and Ford Focus.

And while it’s not the one you’d choose if you were buying from new, it does make a supreme used bargain. For under £7,000, a 2014 model, with an economical 1.6-litre diesel engine is well within reach. A similarly specced Golf will set you back at least £8,500.

Save for the fact that that the driving position can take some getting used to (the seat is high and the steering wheel is small with the instruments placed above it), it more than holds its own against the likes of the Golf and Focus.

It’s boosted by a ride that’s smooth and comfortable, and handling that’s fun in the corners.
Peugeot 308 buying guide

Mini 

Best car under £7,000 for the fashion conscious

Our pick Mini Hatchback 1.6 One

Latest Mini deals from £6,320
Finance from £94 per month

Minis are wonderful cars to drive, and own. Having one perched outside of your home ready for the commute to work is enough to warm your heart, even on the dreariest of days.

For sub-£7k you’re looking at a fairly low-spec car, not that it matters. All Mini Hatchbacks look chic, and are inherently fun to drive too.

Vauxhall Zafira

Best car under £7,000 for growing families

Our pick Vauxhall Zafira 1.8 Exclusiv

Latest Vauxhall Zafira deals from £5,899
Finance from £101 per month

Seven-seaters are endlessly helpful. They load kids, dogs, sports equipment, and pretty much anything else with aplomb, but they're much better to own than something van-derived because by and large, they drive like a normal car.

The Vauxhall Zafira is one of the best-selling and most freely available on the used market. Naturally, the more expensive diesel version is pretty economical and a good choice for high-mileage driver. But for general duties, and kid-ferrying abilities, the 1.8-litre petrol is a good value-for-money alternative.

Volkswagen Polo

Best car under £7,000 for German build quality

Our pick Volkswagen Polo 1.0 S 

Latest Volkswagen Polo deals from £6,450
Finance from £96 per month

The Volkswagen Polo is a very grown up-feeling hatchback, and has the interior quality to match much larger and more expensive cars.

Put this down to the build quality, and the fact that it feels like little brother of the excellent Volkswagen Golf. Inside, it continues to be grown up with features like Bluetooth and digital radio. It’s worth going for a diesel if you cover more than 12,000 miles a year.
Volkswagen Polo buying guide

Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer

Best car under £7,000 for boot space

Our pick Vauxhall Astra 1.7 CDTi SRi

Latest Vauxhall Astra Sports Tourer deals from £6,499
Finance from £97 per month

If load-carrying is your thing, the Astra estate won't disappoint. With the back seats up it has a more than useful 540 litres of space, but fold them down and there’s 1630 litres worth.

Not only that, but it’s also a wide open space with minimal wheel arch intrusion and no fussy details to spoil things. Some versions even have a feature that allows you to waggle your foot under the rear bumper to open the tailgate – handy if you're struggling with bags.

Don't expect the last word in driving thrills but otherwise you’ll find the Astra a comfortable and undemanding car that does exactly what it says on the tin.

Fiat 500 Convertible

Best car under £7,000 for open-top thrills

Our pick Fiat 500 1.2 Lounge convertible

Latest Fiat 500 Convertible deals from £5,890
Finance from £97 per month

Even with its roof on, the Fiat 500 is a thrilling little car: cute, chic and fun to drive.

Take off its roof, though, and let the sun pour in and everything is times 10. You might be threading your way around London’s Elephant & Castle but in your imagination, you’re bounding around some sun-soaked Italian hill town on the look out for a cappuccino.

Don't expect a fancy powered folding roof, though. It’s just a push-back affair that stows concertina-like behind you. Still, it works and looks the part. Lounge is the trim to have with its touchscreen and clear-sounding DAB digital radio, while the 1.2 petrol engine is a good, all-round affair offering decent performance and economy.
Fiat 500 buying guide

Ford Fiesta

Best car under £7,000 for family runaround duties

Our pick Ford Fiesta 1.0 Ecoboost 100 Titanium 

Latest Ford Fiesta deals from £5,694
Finance from £89 per month

The Ford Fiesta is Britain’s best selling car, and as soon as you spend any time with one, you’ll see why. It’s reliable, practical, and fun to drive. For £7,000 you’re spoilt for choice too.

We recommend the feisty little 1.0-litre Ecoboost engine. It’s won various awards through its lifetime, as it’s economical and punchy. In terms of spec, we recommend the top-level Titanium. It was the most popular among new buyers, so they’re easy to find, and they’re packed with technology like cruise control, climate control, and automatic headlights.
Ford Fiesta buying guide 

Skoda Citigo

Best car under £7,000 for city driving

Our pick Skoda Citigo 1.0 MPI

Latest Skoda Citigo deals from £4,995
Finance from £81 per month

If you think the Citigo looks a lot like the VW up! and the Seat Mii, you’re right, it does. Mostly because all three of these cars are virtually identical.

Inside it’s all pretty much the same too. But, all three are fine city cars, great at nipping in and out of traffic, while being small enough to park easily, but big enough on the inside for most people’s needs. The reason we choose the Citigo is that they tend to be cheaper than the VW and Seat. Opt for the 75hp 1.0MPI engine over the 60hp.
Skoda Citigo buying guide 

DS 3

Best car under £7,000 for posh interiors

Our pick DS3 1.6 Bluehdi Dstyle 

Latest DS 3 deals from £6,590
Finance from £104 per month

You might identify this as a Citroen, because when it first went on sale in 2010 it was called the Citroen DS3. But the car was so popular, Citroen turned DS into an entirely separate sub-brand. This means that later cars are referred to as just the DS 3.

It sells itself on its customisation, and has plenty of options from new. Inside the materials are soft and plush, and are much more upmarket than many people would expect.
DS 3 buying guide

Citroen C4 Cactus

Best car under £7,000 for quirky looks

Our pick Citroen C4 Cactus 1.6 BlueHDI 

Latest Citroen C4 Cactus deals from £6,495
Finance from £97 per month

Quirky, yet sensible family machinery is pretty scarce on the used market. Luckily, the C4 Cactus is one of the quirkiest cars out there, plus, comes in at under £7,000.

The first thing you’ll clock are those protective rubber body panels, called Airbumps. These protect against car park bumps and scrapes.

It’s a comfortable too, with soft suspension, which makes it glide over Britain’s poorly surfaced roads. And while it won’t raise the hair on the back of your neck, its engines bring excellent efficiency. Expect around 45mpg from the 1.2-litre petrol engine, and over 60mpg from the 1.6-litre diesel.
Citroen C4 Cactus buying guide

         
      

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