Best used estate cars for less than £10,000 (and the ones to avoid)
In need of a practical car to suit an active lifestyle? Well, now you can drive yourself and your sports paraphernalia to the nearest leisure facility in any of these bargain estates...
Mercedes-Benz made huge efforts to improve quality with this C-Class, and it does have an unimpeachable nature to it. It’s by no means flawless: the design of the interior is rather stoic, and Mercedes’ propensity to use lots of high-tech engineering solutions to make sure their cars are ‘engineered like no other’ means that things can get expensive when parts break or wear out. But the C-Class Estate still has one of the largest boots in its class, which, along with handsome looks and that branding behind it, makes it a highly desirable used estate. Our budget buys the previous generation C-Class, though, before its update in 2015.
We found: 2014 Mercedes-Benz C-Class Estate C220 CDI Sport Auto, 70,000, £9500
Desirability is something that Audi has managed to somehow engineer into its A4 Avant. This is an estate that doesn’t feel like some unrefined workhorse: its sloping rear roofline makes it just as stylish as the A4 saloon. While the A4 Avant's boot isn’t the largest in the class, it’s covered in quality carpet, adorned with chrome hooks to tie things down and has neat cubbyholes to make intelligent use of what space there is. Along with the solidity of its nicely finished dashboard, all that means there are few estates that are quite as classy.
We found: 2014 Audi A4 Avant 2.0 TDI Ultra SE, 71,000 miles, £10,000
You may have to settle for a 5 Series Touring with more mileage than some of the others in this list, and a greater age, but it will be worth it because of this car’s consummate all-round abilities. There is a large range of engines to choose from, but the most popular 520d diesel provides the best blend of performance and economy. Watch for timing chain problems on early, high-mileage 518d and 520d models (this seems to have been fixed on post-2013 facelift cars), but find a good one and you will have a great value used estate on your driveway.
We found: 2013 BMW 5 Series Touring 520d SE, 66,500 miles, £9995
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