Best used estate cars for less than £25,000 (and the ones to avoid)

Looking for an antidote to a large SUV? Then try any one of these premium used estate cars for less than £25,000...

Best used estate cars for less than £25,000 (and the ones to avoid)

Keep this to yourself, but there’s really no need to buy an SUV because the modern estate car is still a very capable all-rounder. Follow our advice and you could be driving around in something that seats just as many people, just as comfortably and, at the same time, uses a lot less fuel.  

Each car on this list has all the practicality you would ever need, provides fine handling characteristics and even the luxury fixtures and fittings you’d expect of a posh executive express. At this price level, they're all pretty new, too, so you should have no worries with reliability. 

Read on to find out which cars are our favourite used estate cars for £25,000.

10. BMW 3 Series Touring

Used BMW 3 Series Touring

It may be long in the tooth but this older version of the BMW 3 Series Touring is an excellent used estate, particularly if you want a classy car but in a more compact package. You won’t be able to transport jumbo Ikea furniture home in it, but the standard 40:20:40 split-folding rear bench is a more useful set-up to the regular (read: cheaper) 60:40 ratio most rivals use. And the glass opens separately to the boot lid itself and means you can put stuff in the rear even if you can’t access the boot in a tight parking spot. Plus, the 3 Series has all the refinements of the saloon car and its excellent iDrive infotainment system.

We found: 2018 320d SE auto, 42,000 miles, £20,000

Read the used BMW 3 Series Touring review here

9. Audi A6 Avant

Used Audi A6 Avant

Another example of a car that’s a bit old but still makes for a good posh estate is the Audi A6 Avant. Enthusiasts will only be interested in the V8-powered RS6, but we’re focusing on the plain and simple 2.0-litre diesel that’ll serve you well with good fuel economy and more than enough performance for effortless motorway cruising. S Line models look a bit more purposeful, but we’d suggest sticking with SE or SE Executive because they come with smaller wheels and more supple suspension to ensure you get a comfortable ride.

We found: 2017 2.0 TDI Ultra SE Executive auto, 35,000 miles, £20,000

Read the used Audi A6  review here

8. Volkswagen Golf estate

Used Volkswagen Golf estate

Dull, but ultimately very worthy: the Volkswagen Golf Estate is the booted version of the evergreen Golf hatchback that provides a big boot, a classy image and a nice interior. It’s a fine steer, too, and the ride soaks up the very worst that pothole-ridden city streets can offer without being wallowy at motorway speeds. You can have everything from a tiny 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol to the turbocharged 2.0-litre R model with over 300bhp, along with numerous diesel alternatives if you need to go further between fill-ups. An all-new Mk8 version was launched in 2020, so shop around for a good version of the old car. 

We found: 2018 2.0 TDI GTD DSG auto, 18,000 miles, £18,500

Read the used Volkswagen Golf estate review here

7. Skoda Octavia estate

Used Skoda Octavia estate

You may wonder why there’s a Skoda in a list made up of mostly premium brands, but the Skoda Octavia is actually much more than a cheaper Golf these days. Go for a higher-spec version and there’s very little difference between the two, except, of course, for the fact that the Octavia estate is bigger inside. Just like the Golf, there are loads of petrol and diesel options available for under £25,000, so there’ll certainly be an Octavia estate to suit all needs and budgets. The launch of an all-new version in 2020 means now's the time to strike a bargain on the older car. 

We found: 2019 2.0 TDI 150 Laurin & Klement, 9000 miles, £18,995

Read the used Skoda Octavia estate review here