The 10 fastest-depreciating cars 2021
We've delved into our data to reveal the models on sale today that lose the highest percentage of their value over three years...
Depreciation is often overlooked when people are deciding what car to buy. But while other running costs, such as fuel consumption, servicing and road tax, are important, they rarely add up to as much as the amount a new car loses in value over the first few years of ownership.
Depreciation isn't all bad news; if you're buying used and choose carefully, it can allow you to get a lot of car for your money. Just bear in mind that a car that loses a lot of value initially is likely to continue depreciating faster than rivals.
Here, then, we've used our residual value data to reveal the 10 models that lose the highest percentage of their original price in the first three years. All figures are based on the trade-in value for an example that's covered 36,000 miles.
10. Vauxhall Astra
Model 1.5 Turbo D Ultimate Nav List price £27,855 36k/3yr resale value £7400 Price drop £20,455 Retained value 26.6%
The latest version of Vauxhall's Astra family hatchback is spacious and decent to drive, plus big discounts are available if you buy through our New Car Buying service. You'll need every penny you can save upfront, though, to offset what you'll lose in the first three years.
9. Fiat 500C
Model 1.0 Mild Hybrid Launch Edition List price £19,800 36k/3yr resale value £5225 Price drop £14,575 Retained value 26.4%
Lots of people love the 500's retro styling, so it's a huge seller. However, that's a double-edged sword, with the sheer number of secondhand examples that are available pushing down values.
8. Jaguar XF
Model 3.0d V6 Portfolio List price £50,550 36k/3yr resale value £12,950 Price drop £37,600 Retained value 25.6%
Thanks to its precise steering and agile handling, no mainstream luxury saloon is more entertaining to drive than the Jaguar XF. The best rivals, are quieter, though, plus they have classier interiors and hold their value better.
7. Citroën C1
Model 1.0 VTi 72 Feel 3dr List price £12,795 36k/3yr resale value £3275 Price drop £9520 Retained value 25.6%
As a city car, you'd expect the C1 to feel nimble in town, and it doesn't disappoint. What's more it's very cheap to run – right up until the point when you sell it and you see how much you've lost in depreciation.
6. Peugeot 108
Model 1.0 72 Allure 3dr - 26% List price £14,140 36k/3yr resale value £3475 Price drop £10,665 Retained value 24.6%
Aside from a few visual differences – and the badge it wears – the 108 is essentially the same car as the Citroën C1. As a result it has most of the same strengths and weaknesses, and a similarly steep depreciation curve. Interestingly, though, the Toyota Aygo, which is also closely related, holds its value much better.
5. Mercedes S-Class Cabriolet
Model S560 Grand Edition List price £125,010 36k/3yr resale value £30,300 Price drop £94,710 Retained value 24.2%
Despite featuring on this list, the S560 Cabriolet is a sensational car. From its monstrously powerful yet exceptionally smooth engine to its luxurious and spacious interior, it's unrivalled at delivering relaxing drop-top motoring. Massive discounts are available, too.
4. Audi A8
Model L 55 TFSI quattro Vorsprung- 30% List price £107,535 36k/3yr resale value £24,925 Price drop £82,610 Retained value 23.2%
The A8 is another car that's seriously worth considering, despite its heavy depreciation. Its ride is incredibly supple, it's even more refined than the brilliant Mercedes S-Class limo, and the interior feels like it's been constructed to the very highest standards.
3. Peugeot 308
Model 1.5 Blue HDi 100 Active List price £22,740 36k/3yr resale value £4875 Price drop £17,865 Retained value 21.4%
The 308 is Peugeot's answer to the big-selling Ford Focus, Vauxhall Astra and Volkswagen Golf, but while it impresses with frugal engines, a smart interior and generous luggage space, sloppy handling, cramped rear seats and poor resale values count against it.
2. Fiat tipo
Model 1.6 Multijet Lounge List price £21,815 36k/3yr resale value £4600 Price drop £17,215 Retained value 21.1%
Like the 308, the Tipo competes in the family hatchback class. And like that car it has its strengths: it's well equipped and very temptingly priced. Unfortunately, a disappointing drive and weak resale values make it an also-ran.
1. Maserati Quattroporte
Model V6d List price £75,735 36k/3yr resale value £15,775 Price drop £59,960 Retained value 20.8%
The Quattroporte is supposed to be a sporty take on the luxury saloon, but in reality it doesn't feel especially sharp. What's more, the diesel engine is pretty coarse, the ride can be brittle and the infotainment system feels dated. All of this makes it easy to understand why it loses a higher proportion of its value than any other car currently on sale.