Cheap luxury cars

Cheap needn't be nasty, and cut-price luxury cars are abundant. Here are ten of the best

Murray Scullion
Jan 8, 2019

A cheap luxury car might seem a bit of a contradiction, but as this list of affordable yet sumptuous motors proves, they do exist, and in large numbers too.

Your definition of luxury might vary from the next person, but whether you put the latest technology or comfiest of leather seats above all else, rest assured there is something on this list for you.

Gone are the days when you could be safe in assuming certain manufacturers produced only luxury cars – yes Audi, BMW, and Mercedes-Benz are the norms. But for years now, Peugeot and Citroen have been trying to muscle in on the luxury car game too. And of course, the Japanese companies have their luxury sub brands. Lexus is the frilly Toyota, while Nissan has Infiniti. Then of course there are the Brits – Jaguar has been a mainstay of the Waitrose car park since the invention of the Waitrose car park.

But what makes luxury cars all the more delicious is that they lose value faster than they accelerate. Some big and expensive cars can lose around 30 per cent of their value in the first year alone.

All of the cars listed here are five years old or less, and are among the 3401 luxury vehicles currently on sale at BuyaCar. Luxury cars start from £9,290 on BuyaCar, or from £153 per month on finance. 

Best cheap luxury cars 

Cheap luxury cars

1. BMW 3 Series

Latest BMW 3 Series deals from £10,495
Finance from £144 per month

The sixth-generation BMW 3 Series first reached the UK in 2012. This is great news for the luxury buyer looking to snap up a bargain, because thousands have been sold in that time, and thousands are re-emerging on the second-hand market.

It received a facelift in 2015, and the sub £10,000 cars will be all before this. This is no bad thing, as the facelift was only very minor, and the old car is well built, has economical engines, and is also one of the best handling cars in its class.

The next generation 3 Series is set to go on sale soon, so you may find that prices of the model picturer will fall when the new one hits the showrooms.

2. Peugeot 508

Latest Peugeot 508 deals from £7,899
Finance from £140 per month

The 508 is well finished inside, with the fixtures and fittings stylishly interlinked with one another, plus there’s loads of tech for the money too, including Emergency Brake Assist (it will brake for you in an emergency), DAB radio, and sat nav. When gliding down a motorway, it is incredibly smooth, and remains untroubled when you’re on poorly maintained British B roads too. 

The main criticism of the car when it was new was that it was excessively expensive in top spec. These came close to £35,000 - a lot for a Peugeot saloon.

Fast forward a few years and the very same cars can be bought for around a third of that – less well equipped models are drifting dangerously close to the £5,000 mark. We’d recommend top-of-the-line GT spec as you get even more pliant suspension and nicer looking alloy wheels. A new 508 has just been released too - which should drive prices of these older models down further.

3. BMW Z4

Latest BMW Z4 deals from £14,794
Finance from £220 per month

The BMW Z4 treds the line of of both luxury car and sports car extremely well. It isn’t quite as engaging as the Porsche Boxster, but it will still show you a good time if you let it loose on a twisting B road.

The interior was classic BMW of the time, with up-market materials commonplace throughout.

All Z4s come equipped with climate control, Bluetooth and DAB radio as standard. M Sport models add larger wheels, a sporty body kit and leather upholstery.


4. Jaguar XF

Latest Jaguar XF deals from £12,300
Finance from £181 per month

For this kind of cash, you’re not going to be able to get the latest Jaguar XF, made from 2015. You’ll be looking at the previous generation, which was made from 2008-2015.

Some of the electronics feel clunky and outdated if you’re comparing them to a brand-new Jaguar, but it’s still a solidly classy car. Looks wise, the XF is a handsome, and there are a raft of engines on offer too.

The big petrol-powered ones are fast and sound great - but are very expensive to run. With our sensible shoes on, we’d opt for the 2.2-litre diesel. It’s swift enough for most people, and will return in the region of 50+ mpg. Luxury trim gets you 17-inch alloy wheels, eight-way electrically adjustable seats and rear parking sensors.

5. Infiniti Q50

Latest Infiniti Q50 deals from £10,500
Finance from £155 per month

The Infiniti Q50 is definitely one for the left-field thinkers. Infiniti is Nissan’s luxury brand offshoot, and the Q50 is aimed at the Mercedes-Benz C-Class, Jaguar XE, and Lexus IS.

In fact, it's so left-field, that demand for them is pretty low, which makes them a bargain if you like the idea of having something much rarer than the standard-fit Mercedes or BMW. Not only is it rare, but it’s eye-catching too, and more handsome than rivals. It’s also bigger in the rear than many of them.

The interior isn’t quite up to scratch, and the diesel-engines can be noisy. Saying that, we’d still suggest the diesel because it’s much more economical than the fast but thirsty petrols. Premium spec cars come with a treasure trove of options, most notably a BOSE 14 speaker sound system teamed with subwoofers.

6. Lexus IS

Latest Lexus IS deals from £14,480
Finance from £226 per month

Another left field choice here, although admittedly, not as left field as the Infiniti above. Lexus is the luxury arm of Toyota, and prides itself on its build-quality and bold looks.

For the lower end of the price range, you’re looking at a pre-facelift model. So something registered between 2013 and 2016.

The hybrid is a good option as it’s smooth, powerful, quiet, and capable of 67mpg. It can also run completely on electricity at low speeds for short journeys, which is a)cheap and b)very smooth and quiet. The automatic gearbox (a CVT type) may be slow and dimwitted at times, but there is no escaping the fact that the IS is a wonderfully put together alternative choice to a luxury saloon.

7. Volvo S80

Volvo’s S80 is massive and similar in dimensions to the Audi A6 and BMW 5 Series. But importantly, it’s nowhere near as expensive as them.

It’s no longer for sale, which has helped bring prices down. And to some, it may feel outdated in the way it looks, but we think it’s minimal and non-fussy.

Considering the huge depreciation figures, you may as well treat yourself to the top spec D5 Lux. Featuring a 2.4-litre diesel engine and an automatic gearbox, it’s powerful and smooth, and best suited to those travelling quite far quite regularly. Opt for the adaptive chassis control for a more comfortable ride too.


8. Mercedes E-Class

Latest Mercedes E-Class deals from £13,099
Finance from £199 per month

A new E-Class came onto the scene in 2016, driving the price down for this model in question.

The quality of the interior in this E-Class is nothing short of superb. It’s not flashy, but everything is laid out in a simple and easy to understand way, and everything fits and shuts with a reassuring clunk.

A variety of different trims and engines are available, and it should be known that chassis set up is different depending on trim level. SE level has softer suspension, making it smoother over bumps. Whereas the AMG Sport trim has harder, more sporty suspension. We’d recommend this as it comes with nice exterior touches and makes the E-Class look even more premium than it is.

9. Alfa Romeo Giulia 

Latest Alfa Romeo Giulia deals from £19,495
Finance from £277 per month

Alfa Romeo is firmly aiming its Giulia at those seeking luxury away from the big German marques.

The Giulia is a similar size to the BMW 3 Series, Audi A4, and Mercedes-Benz C-Class, but we reckon it’s a better looking proposition, especially when optioned with bigger wheels. And there are some nice touches inside too - like the ability to control the dashboard screen with a centrally mounted controller and not via a touchscreen.

Because there’s only been one generation of this type of Giulia, (save for the models made in the Sixties and Seventies) your used luxury car will still look brand new. Plump for the 2.0-litre turbo - it’s sporty with 276hp, but nowhere near as expensive as the bigger and frighteningly fast Quadrifoglio model.


10. Maserati Ghibli

Latest Maserati Ghibli deals from £20,980
Finance from £339 per month

This may be the cheapest model Maserati makes, but it’s still a Maserati. It was subject to a facelift in 2016, driving the prices of older cars down. Even the pre-facelift model is still a stunning car, likely to draw crowds and admirers.

Ghiblis start at around £24,995, although we’d pony up some more cash for the V6 petrol. It’s fast and sounds great, and really suits the Maserati image more than the diesel.

Although it’s the most expensive car here, it has actually lost more than 50 per cent of its value from new...


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