There are many options in all vehicle classes under €5,000 that can still be safe, fun to drive, and affordable at the same time. CARFAX has put together a list of some of the best* used cars to guide you. When you find a used car you’re interested in, make sure to check the vehicle’s history report before buying it. Cars under €5,000 might be older with higher mileage or more risks to consider. A CARFAX report can help you make a smart decision. Check out the list of best cars under €5,000:
City / Supermini
City cars and superminis are often times less expensive when new. This means there should be several options in your area for relatively young used cars with a good price. Here are some examples:
The Lupo offers a solid mix of reliability, driveability and desirability in a tiny package. In addition, the GTi models can be especially fun to drive. While for many drivers the 1.0 engines may feel underpowered, the benefit is that this vehicle costs very little to run.
This car is both inexpensive and rather cheerful. Much like the Lupo, you'll be surprised at how peppy the little engine is, which makes it pretty fun to drive. With is low running costs and slick gearbox, this is a strong contender in this vehicle class and price point.
The Ford Ka has completely dominated the European city car market for more than a decade. The reason for this is a great blend of economy and driving pleasure. For many used car shoppers, the styling is also fun and fresh, even today.
If a city / supermini doesn't fit your needs, but you're still looking for a small car, the compact class is the way to go. For those looking for used cars under €5,000, this class has lots of really great options. Here are some examples:
One of the undisputed champions of the compact class, the VW Golf is always a good option for those looking to get a quality vehicle for a good price. The Golf comes in a variety of configurations (3-door, 5-door, GTi, TDI, etc.), which means depending on your specific needs, you're likely to find a good car for your money.
The Ford Focus is one of the VW Golf's strongest competitors. It has almost everything you'd need in a used car, and often times with a lower price than a Golf. Additionally, unlike the Golf, it also comes in a traditional 4-door body, along with the 3-door and 5-door variants. At this price point, you can even go for a younger model and still get a good deal.
The Honda Jazz is a surprisingly spacious little car. Despite its relatively diminutive stature, this car has some clever interior design to help fit most anything a family or person with an active lifestyle could want inside (No wonder the car is called the Honda Fit in the USA). This, coupled with a very fuel-efficient line of engines and internationally-recognized reliability, makes the Honda Jazz one of the most attractive used cars under €5,000.
Mid-sized / Family
Typically blending the functionality needed from a larger car with a relatively agreeable price, the mid-sized / family class is one of the most popular. While there are dozens of great options in this class, here are a couple of attractive cars:
There aren't many cars which have maintained their "Best in Class" title over their entire lifetime. The BMW 3-Series is one of them. Regardless of the generation, the BMW's sporty, aggressive styling, close-to-perfect performance and remarkable fuel economy makes it a no brainer when searching for a vehicle in this class.
Audi A6 Avant
As far as station wagons/estates go, the Audi A6 Avant is one of the classiest to have ever been produced. Its elegant design is coupled with extreme practicality. Additionally, the styling seems to stay fresh, even years later. The A6 also has the ability to be fun to drive while still reasonably economical at the gas pump.
MPV / Van
Do you have a lot of stuff to move around? Or maybe you need to transport a lot of people. Then an MPV / Van is the way to go. If you're looking for used cars under €5,000, there are a lot of options you could go with:
The Ford C-Max is basically a big Focus. What this means, is that it offers the same great driving experience, but with a lot more space for luggage and cargo. Additionally, the Grand C-Max offers seating for 7 people. With good fuel economy and lots of space in a relatively small package, the C-Max is a great choice for those searching for a van.
With this selection, you're more likely than not going to be closer to the upper end of the €5,000 budget. But the Touran is a well respected van, suitable for most family's needs. And with the benefit of Volkswagen's huge international distribution, if you ever have problems, finding a spare part will not be difficult at all, regardless of where you are.
If you drive off-road at all, or just like having a higher seating position while you drive, an SUV is a great option. In addition, they are often times larger, and offer more space for transporting people and cargo. Here are some examples in the SUV class:
While it can approach the upper end of the price point, the Mercedes ML is a solid choice for those looking for used cars under €5,000. With a high-quality build, solid road handling, and a long list of both standard and extra available options, the ML could be the right fit.
Cars out of Korea have increasingly improved their quality over the last decade, making them a popular choice for used car shoppers. The Kia Sportage is no exception. Offering a lot of the same type of equipment for less than its more expensive competition, the Kia allows shoppers to have a better equipped vehicle at a better price. This makes it something to really consider.
Looking to have a little more fun behind the wheel of your car? Just because you're looking for used cars under €5,000, doesn't mean you can't find a great sports car for that price. Here are a couple of options we found:
One of the most underestimated little sports cars on the road is the Mazda MX-5. It's possible to find a lot of these in good shape in the used car marketplace. This lightweight 2-seater also comes standard as a convertible, which makes it even more fun to take down your favourite summertime stretch of road.
Believe it or not, the Audi TT is almost 20 years old. Despite its age, the styling of the TT makes it as desirable today as it was when it came out. The TT is available in coupe and convertible variants, as well as a Quattro version for the best performance. For those looking for a timeless design which is quality-built and fun to drive, the Audi TT could be the right fit.
Some used car shoppers perfer to ride in the lap of luxury. Of course, at this price point, you're going to have to look back quite a few years before finding an option under €5,000. But that doesn't mean an older luxury car will be any less what you're looking for. These cars were the top dogs of their day, and the quality and technology inside is often before its time.
For many, the penultimate luxury car is the Mercedes S-Class. This vehicle is known for bringing the cutting edge in car technology to the marketplace. For those looking to own one, it's possible to find an older S-Class in pretty good shape, along with all the gadgets and creature comforts still in tact. The S-Class exudes an aura of class and sophistication, regardless of its age.
The 7-Series is BMW's answer the the Mercedes S-Class. It also has class and stylishness, while also offering a sportier touch. This makes the 7-Series much more of a "driver’s car" than its competition. It is a great alternative for those searching the luxury used car market.
Check the CARFAX Before You Buy
It is always recommended to do your research when shopping for a used car and learn as much as possible before you buy. Checking the CARFAX Vehicle History Report is a great way to take a deeper look into the history of a vehicle, and in some cases uncover a hidden negative history. The CARFAX Report contains a lot of useful information, including:
- Accident History
- Mileage Inconsistency
- Service/Maintenance Records
- Stolen Vehicle Check
- Import/Export History
- And much more…
The CARFAX Vehicle History Report is designed to help used car shoppers make better purchase decisions and avoid buying a car which will give you problems down the road.
*CARFAX Europe is not endorsing any of these vehicles over any others. The term "best" simply means we were able to find great value for the money with these cars. There may be alternative options in your local marketplace which are a better fit to your needs and budget.