The 10 best used MPVs for less than £10,000

If you've got £10,000 to spend and you want a practical car don't overlook an MPV. But which one should be on your shortlist? We've got 10 of the best here.....

It might have been comprehensively trounced in the sales charts by that rapscallion newcomer the SUV, but the good old MPV still has plenty of life in it.

Used MPVs compilation image

Choosing the best used one isn’t the matter of a moment, though. Consideration must be given, not just to the engine and specification that best suits your needs, but also whether you’re going to need five seats or seven – and indeed, how big you want your MPV to be.

Fortunately, a £10,000 budget gives you plenty of options. Smaller MPVs provide a great balance between family space and manoeuvrability, while larger options offer enough room for anything you might wish to throw at them.

And buying an MPV these days doesn’t have to mean giving up a little slice of your soul, either. Many modern people-carriers are enjoyable to drive and good to look at, while the extra practicality they offer will widen your smile still further. Without further ado, then, here’s our round-up of the very best MPVs £10,000 will buy you:

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10: Peugeot 5008

Peugeot 5008

The Peugeot 5008 is easily one of the company’s best offerings in recent years (the latest one is even better, although it's now an SUV not an MPV), and as with most Peugeots, heavy depreciation makes it a great used buy.

10: Peugeot 5008 - interior

Peugeot 5008 - interior

You get all the things we like about the 5008 – a roomy, versatile interior with seating for seven; a tactile, stylish dashboard; a comfortable ride with good handling and low noise levels – but at a bargain price.

Avoid the jerky automatic and go for a manual; also keep an eye out for electrical niggles, which aren’t unknown.

We found: 2016 5008 1.6 HDi Allure, 24,000 miles, £9995

9: Kia Carens

Kia Carens

The second-generation Kia Carens fits into our budget here, and it’s worth looking at simply because of its seven-year warranty.

A 2015 car will still have three of four years of this left, as long as the car hasn’t gone over 100,000 miles – and that’s a huge bonus.

9: Kia Carens - interior

Kia Carens - interior

You’ll hopefully never need it, mind you, as the reports suggest the Carens is a pretty reliable thing. It’s ordinary to drive, and the rear-most seats of the seven on offer are rather tricky to get into. But it is at least comfortable, well-appointed and, in 1.7-litre diesel form, just about powerful enough too.

We found: 2015 1.7 CRDi 2, 33,000 miles, £9995

8: BMW 2 Series Active Tourer

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer

The 2 Series Active Tourer was based on the Mini's front-wheel-drive platform, and was a bit of a break from tradition for a modern-day BMW.

It's the five-seat version only we can get for our money - the seven-seat Gran Tourer is just a fraction over the £10k limit we've set here. However, what you'll get is good family transport and a car that's better to drive than some of its contemporaries.

8: BMW 2 Series Active Tourer - interior

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer - interior

To that end, BMW has put a lot of effort into the usability of the available space. You may not like the look of the raised roofline, but it does help when putting children into their safety seats in the back, and the rear seats split 40:20:40, which helps if you need to carry both longer loads and passengers. Look for a 2015 car with the popular 1.5-litre diesel unit.

We found: 2015 1.5 216d SE Nav, 53,000 miles, £9995

7: Seat Alhambra

Seat Alhambra

Make no mistake, the Seat Alhambra is one of our favourite MPVs of recent years, the only reason for its slightly low placing in this Top 10 is because it's only possible to buy a 2013 example for our chosen £10k budget. In every other way it challenges the best here.

This second-generation version shares a lot of its underpinnings with the near-identical Volkswagen Sharan, but interestingly the VW car is better value at this level.

7: Seat Alhambra - interior

Seat Alhambra - interior

The Alhambra is great to drive, and comes with sliding rear doors – this is a boon in tight parking spaces and a way of making it easier to get into the third row, as well as leaving a wide aperture to help with strapping small children into the middle row.

It’s a large car, of course, but its dimensions are well balanced by a shape that is both clean and functional, and with plenty of the design flair you’d associate with Seat.

We found: 2013 2.0 TDI Ecomotive SE, 80,000 miles, £9995

6: Ford S-Max

Ford S-Max

It’s no secret that we’re big fans of the Ford S-Max, and it isn’t hard to see why.

It looks great, for a start, and underneath that sporty-looking styling sits a people carrier that’s enormously enjoyable to drive. It’s also comfortable and fuel-efficient, though, and endowed with seven spacious seats.

6: Ford S-Max - interior

Ford S-Max - interior

And while you can’t fit quite as much into it as its sister car, the Ford Galaxy, there’s still more than enough room for most people.

As with the Galaxy, ex-taxis to be avoided and cars with automatic gearboxes need evidence of frequent fluid changes. Alas for our money only a 2014 car, but shop hard and you might find a good 2015 one.

We found: 2014 2.0 TDCi Zetec, 59,000 miles, £9995

5: Volkswagen Sharan

Volkswagen Sharan

As with the great Seat Alhambra, the Sharan is a tremendous MPV, and the fact that for our budget you can find a 2015 model puts it above its Spanish cousin in our Top 10. It's good to drive, with a range of strong and efficient engines.

5: Volkswagen Sharan - interior

Volkswagen Sharan - interior

It's neatly styled, too, but it’s the huge interior and its quality that are the main selling points for the Sharan, and neat touches like the sliding rear doors (electrically operated on some trims) that makes getting in and out of the car in tight spaces so much easier.

The two rearmost seats can happily accommodate tall adults, and there’s a reasonably sized boot even with all the seats up, and a positively huge one with the two rear rows of seats down.

We found: 2015 2.0 TDI Bluemotion Tech S, 82,000 miles, £9495

4: Vauxhall Zafira Tourer

Vauxhall Zafira Tourer

It’s been the go-to choice for many families looking for a small, seven-seat MPV for years, but there’s a reason for that: the Vauxhall Zafira is a great people carrier, and in this latest Zafira Tourer form, even better than ever it was.

4: Vauxhall Zafira Tourer - interior

Vauxhall Zafira Tourer - interior

It’s good to drive, with decent ride comfort and an involving chassis, but its biggest trump card must surely be its interior, which is spacious, versatile and feels classy to the touch.

It’s reasonable to run and great value to buy, and there are loads of examples on the market meaning plenty of choice. Few common faults are reported, too. No wonder it's so popular.

We found: 2016 2.0 CDTi Exclusiv, 25,000 miles, £9,995

3: Citroën Grand C4 Picasso

Citroën Grand C4 Picasso

A flimsy interior with cheap plastics and fabrics that don’t wear well is a downside in any family car, and so it goes with the Citroën Grand C4 Picasso.

But look at the many, many positives: the Grand C4 Picasso is one of the most comfortable MPVs around, and blessed with versatile seating and loads of space. You also get a decent amount of equipment and the engine range is fuel-efficient.

3: Citroën Grand C4 Picasso - interior

Citroën Grand C4 Picasso - interior

With all that going for it, you might be able to overlook the Grand C4 Picasso’s slightly lightweight nature – especially when you bear in mind that low purchase prices make it look like great value. It's now known as the C4 Spacetourer and it's still as desirable.

We found: 2016 1.6 HDi Platinum, 48,000 miles,  £9995

2: Ford Galaxy

Ford Galaxy

The venerable Ford Galaxy has long been one of the prime candidates for buyers in need of as much space as possible, without resorting to a minibus. It is, quite simply, enormous, with seating for seven adults and even a bit of space for luggage.

2: Ford Galaxy - interior

Ford Galaxy - interior

The downside to that size is that there are smaller seven-seaters that might be better-suited if you only need that third row occasionally.

Nevertheless, if space is all, there’s little better for this sort of money. Powershift automatics can be troublesome and need frequent fluid changes, so check the history for evidence of this, and avoid ex-taxis, which will have huge mileages.

We found: 2016 2.0TDCi 140 Powershift, 75,000 miles, £9995

1: Volkswagen Touran

Volkswagen Touran

There isn’t much to dislike about the brilliantly versatile VW Touran - indeed it's a multiple award-winner here at What Car?.

It shares much of its hardware with the contemporary Golf, which means it has a dashboard that is both classy to behold and easy to use, and that it maintains an excellent five-star crash test rating from Euro NCAP. It's great to drive, too, with a range of efficient engines, and neat, car-like handling.

1: Volkswagen Touran - interior

Volkswagen Touran - interior

Perhaps most important of all, though, is how brilliantly clever the Touran’s interior is.

For a start, the second row is made up of three individual seats so that it is possible to carry three child seats side by side, and these chairs all slide and fold independently of one another; the outer two seats also tilt out of the way to make scrambling into the rearmost row fairly easy. There's plenty of space inside and a huge boot, too.

We found: 2015 1.6 TDi S, 54,000 miles, £9495