The used car market can sometimes be a scary place, especially if you’re not entirely sure what you’re looking for. The vast range and selection available can be mind-bogglingly confusing, leaving you with a headache similar to that of the morning after six large glasses of white wine and a kebab.
In the past, there was a certain stigma attached to buying a pre-owned vehicle. The worry if you’re going to make it home without the doors falling off, the pondering if the smell of the previous owner’s dog will ever leave, or the curiosity as to why the front bumper is a slightly different shade of red to the rest of the bodywork.
However, with the ability to now buy a used car in Lookers’ Ready To Go event that lasts as long as the eternity-feeling Queen’s Speech, those days are long gone, and if you look hard enough you can uncover some absolute belters.
Now, as you’ll come to learn, I love a top 10. It may be because my football team are never in one, but it gives you, as well as many other things, the opportunity to discover something new. So, I have compiled a list of 10 stand-out used cars available for £10,000 or under, a selection that make up an extremely small, but important, portion of our event. Enjoy.
Audi TT 2.0T FSI 2dr S Tronic
Year: 2008, Miles: 62,442, Ready To Go Price: £8,999
The ability to score a modern approved Audi for £10k is similar to the feeling you get when finding a forgotten fiver in your pocket. Add that it’s a 2.0-litre turbocharged convertible with a dual-clutch S Tronic gearbox, coated in Nappa leather, features a BOSE sound system and comes with Audi’s acoustic parking system and it’s more like discovering a 50.
2016 Vauxhall Astra 1.0T 12V ecoFLEX Tech Line 5dr
Year: 2016, Miles: 21,336, Ready To Go Price £9,999
Always a huge advantage of buying used over new is price, and nothing illustrates this better than this 2016 Vauxhall Astra. The three cylinder engine produces an impressive 105bhp – meaning the power is there, but you can also now avoid Karl, the spotty fuel attendant in your local garage, for longer with its fuel-sipping 65.7mpg. Brand new, the 2016-shape Astra Tech Line would set you back nearly £18,000, so why not grab this one during the Ready To Go event?
Ford Fiesta 1.6 EcoBoost ST 3dr
Year: 2013, Miles: 31,280, Ready To Go Price £9,700
Hot hatchbacks are a personal favourite of mine, and there aren’t many better than the Fiesta ST, especially when it costs less than £10,000. Its exceptionally nimble chassis coupled with on-demand fine-tuned engine under the bonnet makes the Ford a true class-leader. Style-wise the ST certainly looks the part. An Aston Martin-esque grill, bright-red callipers underlying chunky five-spoke alloys and a perfectly-formed body kit contribute to its all-round excellence.
Fiat 500 1.2 Lounge 3dr [Start Stop]
Year: 2012, Miles 31,000, Ready To Go Price: £5,199
Now, when it comes to the perfect city car, the Fiat 500 is something of a trend-setter and has become as popular as Justin Bieber amongst youngsters. (My colleague, Chris loves that guy). Its low insurance group, mileage and fuel consumption make it a must have, I mean, what more could you want for £57 a month?
Abarth 500 1.4 16V T-Jet 3dr
Year: 2014, Miles: 17,402, Ready To Go Price: £9,000
If Bieber isn’t your cup of tea however, then of course there is the Black Sabbath version of the 500, the Abarth. The 1.4 turbocharged engine makes the super-light Fiat feel like you’re being propelled through the air from a cannon, but the beefier version still retains what makes the original great. Its plush interior and considerably impressive mpg mean this hot-hatch is both fun and easy to live with.
Vauxhall Adam 1.4T S 3dr
Year: 2015, Miles: 12,000, Ready To Go Price: £9,599
However, the Abarth isn’t the only pocket-rocket you can get your hands on for less than 10 grand, with Vauxhall’s offering of the Adam S also providing endless opportunities to thrill seek on a Sunday afternoon. Its go kart-like feel means you can experience the thrill of Lewis Hamilton in Monaco whilst exploring the winding roads of Dumfries, and at £131 a month, you can do it as often as you’d like.
Land Rover Freelander 2.2 Td4 e XS [Nav] 5dr
Year: 2010, Miles: 56,744, Ready To Go Price £9,999
(Insert David Attenborough’s voice here). Away from the winding roads of Dumfries and into the surrounding hills of Dingwall, we find the hunting ground of the Land Rover, freely exploring its natural habitat. (Good that, wasn’t it?). In truth, features including Sat Nav, heated seats and terrain adaptation help make-up the feature-full cockpit, and all for under £10,000. Wow.
Nissan Juke 1.5 dCi Acenta Premium 5dr
Year: 2015, Miles 12,255, Ready To Go Price £10,000
Yes, I know, it’s yellow. However, is there a greater satisfaction than knowing you are sparking countless bored-child mass-brawls on the motorway? Well, yes. Being able to do this surrounded by Sat Nav, a reverse-parking camera, Bluetooth, DAB radio and sat at a steady pace in cruise control. Bliss.
Mini Hatchback 1.5 Cooper D 3dr
Year: 2014, Miles: 9,831, Ready To Go Price: £8,999
But if the brightly-coloured Nissan is a bit too much there is of course the city-ready Mini, with its inconspicuous striped bonnet and Union Jack patterned roof. There aren’t many more cars on the road that allow you to express your personality better than the Cooper, and you’ll be able to flaunt it considerably with its low mileage 1.5 litre diesel engine, offering 80.7 mpg.
Renault Zoe i-Dynamique Zen 5dr Auto
Year: 2013, Miles: 11,565, Ready To Go Price £4,999
Earlier I spoke about stigmas surrounding certain cars, and one that has become rife in recent years is that electric cars are expensive, so what’s the point in having one? Well, once again the walls have been broken down, as this battery-powered Renault Zoe proves. Not only do you escape the rising fuel costs, but you can enjoy those extra savings as relaxed as Bob Marley thanks to a fully-automatic transmission, meaning no more jammin’ that gearstick. (You’re welcome).
As I said, I love a top 10, it’s probably in my top 10 of things to do, and hopefully this one has helped guide you in finding your next dream car! Good luck out there.