If you’re looking to switch cars but are on a limited budget, it can be hard knowing how to make the most of your money. Luckily we’ve rounded up our top 10 cheap second-hand cars under £10,000 to make your choice that bit easier.
We’ll assess what each car has to offer, to give you an idea about whether it suits your requirements. But it doesn’t stop there as we will also discuss some of the most frequently asked questions about buying a used model. So you can buy a used car with confidence.
Dacia is a relative newcomer to the UK car market but has quickly made a name for itself with its no-nonsense approach to motoring. So it is hardly surprising that this practical model features in our top 10 cheap second-hand cars under £10,000.
You can bag a brand new model for just short of £10,000, so you can be sure of fantastic value for money when buying second hand while also enjoying affordable running costs.
The frugal engine line-up includes petrol and diesel engines with mpg capabilities ranging from the high 40s to low 80s. Plus should you choose a diesel used Dacia Sandero registered before April 2017 you benefit from free road tax.
As a five-seat, five-door model it is one of the most spacious cars in its class. Everyone can enjoy ample leg and headroom, making it the ideal choice if you regularly carry passengers. Plus with a useful 320-litre, there is room for luggage and the practicality of folding rear seats to enhance capacity to 1,200-litres.
The basic specification offers the basics, but if you opt for a higher specification used Sandero, you gain the likes of electric windows, a 12V socket and a touchscreen. Comfort models post December 2018 even come with smartphone mirroring. For driving convenience, there’s cruise control, speed limiter, hill start assist, front and rear sensors and a reversing camera.
Meanwhile, helping you to stay safe comes the likes of emergency brake assist, electronic stability control, anti-skid systems, tyre pressure monitoring and Isofix child seat mounts.
You can buy this small city car for as little as £4,550. It is equipped with basic features and is great for those not fussed about horsepower. Fiat 500 has a retro look in a wide variety of colours. The car is fuel-efficient and has a comfortable interior.
One of the most recognised models on the market, the used Fiat 500 is ideal for anyone who likes to make a statement. With outstanding kerb appeal and agile handling, it is the epitome of the chic city car.
The engine line-up consists mainly of petrol, however, a 1.3-litre diesel was an option so you may find a diesel available. There’s even the choice of mild hybrid and fully electric models, although as more recent additions you may find these more expensive. Whichever you opt for you can enjoy decent mpg capabilities, low road tax and good insurance rates.
Space up front is ample in the 500 but is less generous in the back. Some may find access to the rear tricky too since the 500 is a three-door model.
The three main trims you will find are Pop, Popstar (later known as Sport) and Lounge. Entry-level Pop comes with functions to help make commutes more seamless, including a UConnect infotainment system and LED daytime running lights. Popstar adds the functionality of rear splitting seats and the comfort of air-conditioning. Meanwhile, top-spec Lounge models come with comprehensive benefits like rear parking sensors and Bluetooth connectivity.
As new, the Fiat 500 offers impressive exterior and interior customisation options, so it’s possible to find second hand 500 models which stand out.
Another Dacia to make our list is the Dacia Duster. As one of the most affordable 4×4 models on the market, it is a fantastic choice if you’re budget is limited but you want an SUV. You can grab Dacia Duster from Stoneacre with prices for a used model starting at £8,989.
The Dacia Duster combines desirable SUV qualities like rugged features, the option of four-wheel-drive, additional practicality and impressive flexibility. With five doors and five seats, it offers easy access and plenty of space for everyone on board.
Basic models come with the essentials like power steering and remote central locking. However, head up the extensive trim range, and you can access functions like air-conditioning, DAB radio and Bluetooth connectivity as well as a touchscreen infotainment system.
Not only is the used Duster cheap to buy, but it is also affordable to run. You can choose from a 1.2-litre or 1.6-litre petrol engine or a 1.5-litre diesel. The diesel is the most economical, but all offer decent efficiency for an SUV. What’s more, thanks to manageable road tax and low car insurance costs, overall costs won’t break the bank. But do bear in mind that the four-wheel-drive models are both more expensive to buy and run.
For a small car that is truly distinctive, the Aygo is a fantastic model. Second hand the Toyota Aygo is not only cheap (you can find prices from £3,999 on older Toyota models) to buy and insure but has a strong reputation for reliability so has plenty of appeals. So if you want to stand out without putting a strain on your wallet, the Aygo won’t let you down.
On the road, it drives and handles well. Plus thanks to its compact dimensions it is ideal for nipping around city streets as well as being a doddle to park. However, that does mean that while front space is ample, room for rear passengers is more cramped. The plus is that as the Aygo is available in three and five-door variants, you can opt for the best model for your usage.
When it comes to equipment, basic models come with plenty of functions to make commutes less stressful. From LED daytime running lights, front electric windows and USB connectivity, it offers everything you need. Step up the range for more extensive features like a seven-inch touchscreen, DAB radio, heated door mirrors and air conditioning.
Another highly desirable second-hand model available for under £10,000 is the Peugeot 108. Sharing the same platform as the Aygo, you benefit from compact dimensions, making it perfect for city living. So whether you are attempting tricky parking manoeuvres or nipping through traffic, the 108 won’t let you down.
Standard models come with the essentials to ensure you commute runs smoothly. Opt for a higher specification model, and you gain the added convenience of smartphone connectivity via the seven-inch touchscreen. This enables you to use your favourite apps on the go.
The 108 comes with the choice of two frugal petrol engines; a one-litre 68bhp variant as well as a 1.2-litre 81bhp three-cylinder powertrain. As well as getting you further for less the engines deliver low CO2 emissions meaning those models registered before 2017 benefit from free road tax.
As the Peugeot 108 shares many similarities to the Aygo, you can assume it has a similar reputation for reliability. However, bear in mind that Peugeot as a brand does not usually fare as well as Toyota in reliability surveys.
Kia Picanto has received mainly positive reviews from critics, such as TopGear and What Car?
With a seven-year or 100,000-mile warranty when you buy a second hand Kia Picanto, there is a good chance you will benefit from some existing warranty. Meaning you can enjoy peace of mind motoring even when buying used.
Pre-2017 models are available in both three and five-door variants, while those built after 2017 come as five-door. On board is surprisingly spacious interior with room for two adults upfront as well as decent rear passenger room.
On top of this, an extensive trim range means finding a model specified to your motoring needs is easy. While generally well-equipped, you’re probably best opting for a model 2 or higher, which sold as new in higher numbers than the Picanto Model 1. Higher specification features include alloy wheels, air-conditioning, Bluetooth, a colour touchscreen with satnav and parking sensors.
GT-Line and GT-Line S models offer sportier finishes and more luxurious interior ambience. But those looking for something different, the SUV inspired X-Line model is sure to delight with its raised ride height and chunky bumpers.
The choice of petrol engines offers enough oomph for motoring in urban environments while still delivering impressive efficiency to ensure running costs remain low.
The Fiat Panda offers something unique to the market with its quirky styling yet impressive handling. Falling in insurance Groups 3-10 it offers more affordable insurance premiums freeing your hard-earned money up for other things. Plus many will be pleased to learn aftersales costs are reasonable too, with cheap servicing reducing annual charges.
A simple trim range starts with the entry-level Pop edition featuring the likes of electric front windows, a height-adjustable steering wheel and hill hold assist.
Move up to the Easy specification, and you gain the convenience of remote central locking and the practicality of roof rails as well as air-conditioning and an upgraded stereo. But it is top spec Lounge models that offer a Fiat UConnect infotainment system, Bluetooth connectivity and a six-speaker sound system.
Pre 2020 models come with the choice of three engines; a 68bhp 1.2-litre petrol, a 0.9-litre Twinair with 84bhp and a 74bhp diesel engine. However, the facelifted model is available with only a one-litre three-cylinder mild-hybrid engine.
Despite having safe and predictable handling, which delivers remarkable on-road confidence, the Panda scored poorly in stricter Euro NCAP testing in 2019, but things have improved in the facelifted model.
This small practical car has unbeatable prices – from £4,995 to £6,000 even for newer 2019 models.
When efficiency, space, comfort and equipment are your top priorities, but budget is a restraint, the second hand Suzuki Celerio is the ideal model. Not only is it incredibly capable in urban environments, but it also makes lighter work of longer journeys than other models in this list.
The Suzuki Celerio is available with a one-litre three-cylinder petrol engine. However, it does come in either standard or dualjet guises. The dualjet version is the more efficient with up to 78.4mpg reported, yet is sparser on the used market.
No matter which engine you choose, you benefit from thrifty running costs and CO2 emissions below 100g/km. A quiet and smooth power delivery gives you additional confidence on the road. Meanwhile, a good driving position and plenty of space make it ideal for carrying passengers.
With three trim levels available, finding the one to meet your needs is a breeze. Entry-level SZ2 models come with the basics like a CD player, DAB radio and steel wheels. SZ3 models feature the likes of air conditioning, remote central locking and Bluetooth connectivity. Meanwhile, SZ4 trim Celerio models come with the convenience of all-round electric windows, front fog lights and electrically adjustable wing mirrors.
If you’re buying a used Hyundai i10 the prices are really affordable – with 2015-2017 models costing £6K-£7K. Not to mention, the insurance group for is really low too – so you can save even more money.
Sharp exterior styling and a well-made spacious interior make the Hyundai i10 perfect for those looking for a chic yet affordable model. A car that ticks all the boxes, it’s no wonder the Hyundai i10 has made the list of our top 10 cheap second-hand cars.
The Hyundai i10 is available with the choice of two engines including a 65bhp one-litre three-cylinder unit or an 86bhp 1.2-litre four-cylinder petrol. The one-litre is the best bet for town driving, while the larger engine is ideal for motoring further ahead.
While entry-level models come with the basics, you only need to step up to the SE trim to gain more enhanced functions like cruise control, Bluetooth and DAB radio. Premium models come with privacy glass, climate control and smartphone docking. With models post 2016 coming with a seven-inch touchscreen with built-in satnav with smartphone mirroring. Meanwhile, Premium SE features bigger car luxuries including the likes of heated steering wheel, heated front seats, rear parking sensors and 15-inch alloy wheels.
Volkswagen UP is one of the cheapest cars on the list and costs only £4,995 for a used 2013 version or £6,495 for a more recent 2015 model. It’s a fun car that has received consistently good ratings and feedback. It’s easy to drive, and has cheap servicing and insurance costs.
The Volkswagen Up may have small dimensions, but it feels anything but small on the road. With upmarket finishes and a supple ride, it offers bigger car qualities.
The Up shares some of its elements with the Aygo but with a unique Volkswagen twist bringing a heightened sense of ambience. The four-seat layout ensures that rear passengers get a bit more space, but it does reduce its practicality.
The one-litre engine is available in various outputs giving you the scope to head wherever life takes you. Plus the light steering makes manoeuvres a breeze.
In later models the specification goes from Take Up, Move Up, High Up and Up Beats. The Take Up model comes sparsely equipped so unless you’re happy with the basics you may be better opting for a higher specification model. Doing so allows you to access air-conditioning, electric windows and remote central locking. Meanwhile, the Up Beats edition features a more powerful sound system making it the choice option for those who love their music.
Cheap second-hand car FAQs
Q: What car should I buy?
A: With so many models to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start when looking for a second-hand car. With that in mind, the best thing to do is start by thinking about how you will use the car and what features you want it to have.
For example, will you be driving around town or will you travel further on a regular basis? Other things you may wish to consider include whether you need to regularly carry passenger, if you need the convenience of an automatic gearbox or prefer the control of a manual.
Writing a list of your needs and wants is a great place to start and gives you something to focus on and refer back to when assessing the suitability of potential models. Then you can do some research and start narrowing down which models best meets your list of wants and needs.
To get the most from your money, you should try to remain flexible. By this, we mean to try not to set your heart on one specific model or specification. Instead think more about the type of car you need and find a few models which then meet your requirements.
However, when doing this, you should remember to be realistic. If you have a family and regularly need to transport everyone at once, there is no point in looking at sporty two-seaters however desirable they may seem. Likewise, a large 4×4 is unlikely to be the most sensible option if you only make short commutes in urban environments.
Q: How do you buy good used cars?
A: So once you have narrowed down your search to a few different models, it’s time to start the search for a quality used car. But how do you know you are buying a good used car?
Doing your research is the best place to start the search for a good used car. Looking at different models will give you an idea about the kind of condition and mileage you can get for your money (generally the more mileage, the lower the cost), which will give you greater confidence when you go to look at the models in the flesh.
When viewing a car, it is essential to assess the overall condition of the car looking out for signs of any damage or repairs. Don’t forget to make a good check of the paintwork, if you notice any scratches you may be able to haggle a little on the price.
It’s also a good idea to check under the car to see if you can see any signs of leaks on the floor. You should always try and test drive the vehicle too, which will give you a better idea of how it runs. Plus you should make a check of any electronic functions to make sure everything is in full working order.
Another point worth mentioning is that when you’re looking for a good used car, you may find that it is cheaper to buy a second hand privately than at a dealership. However, buying from a dealership does offer buyers more protection. The reason being cars sold by dealerships are usually thoroughly checked over before being offered for sale. What’s more, some even sell used cars with a warranty to give you greater peace of mind. Plus should anything go wrong with the vehicle it is usually easier to get things sorted when you buy from a car dealership.
Q: How many miles is too much for a used car?
A: As mentioned above, generally speaking, the higher the mileage, the lower the price point of a used car. So is this a good way to get a bargain or should you avoid a car with high mileage?
The consensus is that lower mileage cars will have less wear and tear so should have a longer lifespan and be less likely to go wrong. However, unfortunately, it is not as clear cut as that, and there is simply no magic number about how many miles are too much when buying a used car.
That being said, it is worth noting that the average annual mileage for UK drivers is between 10-12,000 miles. Which means a five-year-old car with less than 60,000 miles has low mileage, while a vehicle with over 60,000 miles has high mileage, which gives you a good base point when considering mileage of a second-hand model.
The issue with just basing your decision on the mileage is that the way the car has been driven and looked after may be more important than how many miles it has done. Meaning a company car which may have a lot of miles of the clock may be in better condition as the service history and maintenance schedule are likely to have been kept up to date.
Q: Which car is best for daily use?
A: When it comes to buying a second-hand car, it is important to consider what the car is like to live with day-to-day. Many of us spend a large proportion of our time commuting, so we need a model that we find comfortable.
Some manufacturers rank higher for comfort than others and models can vary within the marque, which is why it is essential to go and sit in the car for yourself. This also gives you the chance to assess the available adjustability and how easy it is for you to find your ideal position behind the wheel.
Another important consideration is the car’s efficiency as let’s face it many of us want cheaper running costs. Generally speaking, the smaller the car and its engine, the lower the running costs when it comes to fuel, insurance, road tax and maintenance.
In addition, the type of fuel you choose can be worth consideration. Diesel fuel has received bad press in recent years, yet it remains the best option for high mileage drivers, whereas petrol is better for those who have a shorter commute. However, a growing number of users are choosing to make the switch to hybrid or electric powertrains, and both can offer considerable fuel savings.
Finally, many people will want a car that they can be confident is safe for their commute. A good place to start is by checking what safety functions your desired model has. For a more comprehensive review, you can also check out the safety rating through the Euro NCAP website.
Q: What time of year is best to buy a car?
A: Getting the best deal can depend on the time of year you buy your car. For example, you can often get a good deal around September or March when the new registration plates come in. Many people want the latest models so will part-exchange their car around this time, which means not only will you have a better choice of models but you are likely to a better deal.
Another good time to buy is around Christmas when sales fall due to customers changing priorities as dealers are keener to make the sale.
Something else to bear in mind is that buying a car out of its ‘season’ may result in you getting a better deal. By this, we mean to buy a convertible in winter when sales will have fallen, whereas if you’re looking for a 4×4 summer is the best time to make the most of your money.
We hope our guide to the best second-hand cars under £10,000 has helped make your decision easier. But don’t forget if you need more help, you can give your local Stoneacre branch a call to speak to one of our advisers.
And here you have it – a list of cheap second hand cars. Did your car make it to the list? Share it in the comments!