What Car? Personal Shopper: most comfortable car for £25,000

Want a new car but don't know where to start? Just send us your criteria and we'll give our new and used car choices, and tell you how much we can save you.....

Suzuki Vitara 1.0 Boosterjet SZ4

Buying new

  • Our recommended choice: Suzuki Vitara 1.4 Boosterjet SZ5 Allgrip auto
  • List price: £25,654
  • Target Price: £24,533

Four-wheel drive? Check. Automatic gearbox? Check. Peppy petrol engine? You bet. Here's the Suzuki Vitara: the perfect car for Terry to choose. It gets him the raised driving position he's searching for, meaning excellent visibility, plus the added benefit of four-wheel drive if he decides to venture off-road. And there's a very reasonable boot for his luggage, too.

This SZ5 model is loaded down with extra goodies, too, including adaptive cruise control, 17in alloy wheels and all-round parking sensors. And on the safety front, there's automatic emergency braking, lane departure warning and even blindspot monitoring. 

The 1.4-litre turbo petrol engine adds an extra bit of oomph over the smaller 1.0-litre unit that's available, so you should have no trouble on longer trips. The Vitara's ride is also comfortable, so no matter what condition your local roads are in, your drinks should remain stirred rather than shaken. Suzuki also ranked very well in our latest Reliability Survey, so you shouldn't experience any major issues.

Find a great Suzuki Vitara deal or read our full review

  • Also consider: Skoda Octavia Estate 1.5 TSI SE DSG
  • List price: £23,390
  • Target Price: £21,473
Used Skoda Octavia estate

If space is Terry's top priority, the Skoda Octavia Estate should surely be on his shortlist, because it's one of the most spacious cars we've ever tested. This version gets him a smooth 1.5-litre turbo petrol engine, too, and a dual-clutch automatic gearbox. There's no four-wheel drive, but the Octavia Estate is surefooted enough to handle most situations.

Find a great Skoda Octavia deal or read our full review

  • Also consider:  Citroën Berlingo 1.5 BlueHDI 130 Feel M EAT8
  • List price: £22,700
  • Target Price: £20,201
Citroën Berlingo Puretech 110

Why move away from Citroën at all? The Berlingo is our reigning champion in the MPV market, because it's wonderfully practical and spacious inside, good to drive and excellent value for money. This 1.5-litre diesel version might not seem an obvious choice, but it gets you an eight-speed automatic gearbox that's pretty smooth.