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18 Feb 2020
Rob Griffin Rob Griffin

Best cars for £10,000 or less

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Looking for cars under £10,000? You've come to the right place. 

You long to experience the smell and feel of a brand new car – but don’t have an unlimited budget. 

So, what are your options? Well, the good news is you can find stylish, well-equipped new cars in the showrooms for £10,000.

While many are best described as city cars, we’ve also found some larger vehicles that are capable of transporting the family.

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Dacia Sandero hatchback

Dacia Sandero

From: £6,995

Yes, you have read that right. You can be behind the wheel of a Dacia Sandero for a smidge less than £7,000. That’s a pretty remarkable feat.

The entry level is the Access, followed by the Essential, and the top of the range Comfort. However, even this version will only set you back £8,995.

For this princely sum you’ll enjoy luxuries such as cruise control, rear parking sensors, front fog lights, and heated and electrically adjustable door mirrors.

The Sandero was named ‘Best value car under £10,000’ in the 2020 What Car awards for its low running costs, generous standard equipment, and outstanding value for money.

The judges said: “No alternative has been able to get close to the amount of car you’re getting for your money with the Sandero in the past 12 months.”

Read more: Top 10 cheapest cars to insure in 2020

Toyota Aygo hatchback

Toyota Aygo
From: £9,495

A striking city car with a bold, distinctive look. The three door x-grade version of the Aygo falls within our £10,000 budget. You’d need to pay more for the five door option.

Of course, this entry level grade doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles of the higher spec trim models such as x-clusiv, for which you’d need an extra £4,000.

However, standard equipment on the x-grade includes 14” steel wheels, LED daytime running lights, electric front windows and a tyre pressure warning system.

It also has a 1.0 litre petrol engine with a stated fuel economy of between 53 and 56mpg, which certainly makes it an attractive option for a daily driver.
Of course, there is a wide range of optional equipment available - including style packs and smart technology - should you suddenly find enough money to break the £10K ceiling.

MG3

MG3

From: £9,495

The MG name is synonymous with sports cars. Just think back to the stunning MGB, which still has a devoted following more than two decades after production ceased.

The MG3 hatchback aims to carry on this bold tradition of producing distinctive, popular cars and the Explore version of the MG3 is available for under £10,000.

Standard equipment includes 14” steel wheels, radio with USB, Bluetooth telephone connection, a stability control system, and direct tyre pressure monitoring.

Its 1.5 litre petrol engine can take you from 0-60mph in 10.4 seconds on the way to a maximum speed of 108 mph. It also sits in insurance group 7E, so the cost of cover won’t be excessive.

Overall, the MG3 is a great package that handles well, looks the part and is affordable. In fact, it’s one of the cheaper superminis and definitely worth considering.

Read more: The 5 most economical cars

Citroen C1

Citroen C1
From: £10,520

Another cute city car. The C1 in three door guise is available on the road for £10,520, so just about makes it onto our list. As with the Aygo, if you want five doors then you’ll need to pay more.

You’ll also have to go for the Touch trim level, which comes with basics such as an MP3 audio system, remote central locking and the Electronic Stability Programme.

The VTi 72 manual engine will carry you from 0-62mph in 14 seconds and reach a maximum speed of 99mph. Fuel consumption, meanwhile, should be around the 50mpg mark.

Citroen has focused on making the interior of the car as clutter-free as possible – and in this aim it’s clearly been successful.

It also comes with a 196 litre boot, although when you take the split-folding rear bench and rear parcel shelf out of the way, the volume increases to 780 litres.

Kia Picanto 

Kia Picanto
From: £10,195

A solid contender. The entry level version is the Picanto 1 and this 1.0 litre version comes with an acceptable amount as far as standard equipment is concerned.

You’ll get electric front windows, remote central door locking, and Hill-start Assist Control, as well as Electronic Stability Control & Vehicle Stability Management.

There are also useful elements such as 60:40 split folding second row seats, a coat hook, centre console cup holders and a light in the luggage area.

However, you’ll have to go further up the trim levels to get air conditioning, faux leather upholstery, or a 7” Touchscreen Satellite Navigation.

Optional extras include side skirts for £215, mudguard kits for £58, 16” alloy wheels at £170 each, and a flash body decal for £180.

Read more: Hybrid cars: The best models for 2020

Mitsubishi Mirage

Mitsubishi mirage

From: £10,550

Another contender to throw into the mix is the Mirage from Mitsubishi. It comes in three trim versions but it’s the entry level Verve which is in the £10,000 price bracket.

This small, five door family car is powered by a 1.2 litre petrol engine, which is coupled to a five speed manual transmission.

To reduce fuel consumption – and, of course, CO2 emissions – the Mirage automatically shuts off the engine when you’re stopped at a red light. It then restarts when you release the brake pedal. 

The subsequent low running costs of the Mirage are a benefit, along with a decent amount of space inside. It’s also reasonably well equipped.

However, it is up against some very strong – and affordable – competition in this space, particularly the MG3.

Dacia Logan MCV 

Dacia Logan MCV
From: £8,495 

Yes, two cars from Dacia have made it on to the list. This isn’t favouritism, it’s just recognition of this manufacturer’s focus on producing decent, low cost vehicles.

The Logan MCV is likely to appeal to families on limited budgets who are sick of struggling to fit in everything they need for a day out.

The Logan solves this problem with a huge boot and spacious interior, which includes useful storage areas such as bottle holders, telephone pockets and large door trays.

As with the previously mentioned Dacia Sandero, there are three versions of the Logan, with starting prices of £8,495 for Access, £9,495 for Essential and £10,495 for Comfort.

If you opt for the top of the range version, you’ll enjoy luxuries such as manual air conditioning, cruise control and rear parking sensors.

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