Young family of three

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Young family of three

Whether youre a young family on a budget or have a home-made football team to taxi around, youll find the best buys here.

Have a look at the following families and see which one matches your automotive requirements the best

Young family of three
Small urban car required

Growing family
Space for clutter is vital

Activity central
Taxi for two teenagers

Big brood
Large six- or seven-seater

Three young children
...but no MPVs please

Young family of three
The Roswells
Damion (38)
Lavinia (35)
Joe (1)
Annual mileage 7000

We don't do many miles, but we need room from our toddler

Budget available: 8k

Fiat Panda 1.2 Dynamic Eco
**List price 8565 Target price 7758
Saftety Rating** Child 2 stars Adult 3 stars
Ideal for young families on a shoestring. Its dirt cheap to run and surprisingly practical, with five doors as standard. This Dynamic model has air-con and is just 30 a year to tax. To improve safety, wed recommend adding side and window airbags (260 and 210), and stability control (430).

Budget available: 8k-10k

Hyundai i20 1.2 Classic 5dr
**List price 9800 Target price 9460
Saftety Rating** Child 83% Adult 88%
It undercuts leading supermini rivals by more than 2000. This 1.2-litre version is all a low-mileage family needs, and entry-level Classic trim comes with decent kit, including air-con and stability control. A five-year warranty is standard. Not the most exciting supermini, but superb value.

Budget available: 10-12k

Skoda Octavia 1.2 TSI S
**List price 12,935 Target price 11,189
Saftety Rating** Child 4 stars Adult 4 stars
A VW Golf with a bigger boot for less money? Strip away the Skodas frumpy styling and thats essentially what youll find. Okay, it isnt as refined or desirable as the VW, but its 3500 less. The 1.2 turbo petrol engine is gutsier than youd think and will suit a small, low-mileage familys needs.

Budget available: 12-15k

Mazda 6 1.8 S 5dr
**List price 16,115 Target price 14,439
Saftety Rating** Child 81% Adult 77%
Our 2010 Family Car of the Year is cracking value this entry-level model is 1200 cheaper than an equivalent Ford Mondeo. The 1.8 petrol engine makes more sense than a diesel for low-mileage families, and S trim has air-con, alloy wheels, decent safety kit and an MP3 player connection.

Budget available: 15-18k

Volkswagen Golf 1.4 TSI 122 SE 5dr
**List price 17,965 Target price 16,842
Saftety Rating** Child 84% Adult 97%
The Golf has been getting dearer recently but its still by far the best small family car. Classy, refined, practical and brilliant to drive, its everything a small family needs. Huge demand for this version means you might have to wait a few months for delivery. Its worth it: the 1.4 TSI engine is a cracker.

Used bargains

From 4995
Vauxhall Corsa
1.2 Club 5dr, 08/57, 16,000 miles

The popular Corsa is one of the biggest superminis, so theres plenty of room in the back for a child seat, and the big boot is easy to load.

From 9481
Citron C3 Picasso
1.4 VTi VTR+, 10/10, 250 miles
This baby MPV is spacious and practical, so will be future-proof for a young family, while light controls make it easy to drive. Dealers are the best place to find nearly new models.