Car buying

Top five cars for university students

In an era of rising university fees, the costs of running a car can dramatically eat into the budget of many students: however with an accompanying shortage of campus-based accommodation, a car is often a necessity. The ideal vehicle for most students is one which is practical and cheap to insure and run, while not completely sacrificing the aura of “cool”! The vehicles below all provide economical running costs and would suit anyone seeking a low cost runabout.

1. Suzuki Swift

The Swift is a cheap, no-nonsense car which not only ticks the economy box but also provides a seriously fun driving experience. With a powerful little engine, the Swift is nippy about town and doesn’t guzzle fuel too badly either. Boasting economy levels of around 45 mpg (miles per gallon), a decent boot capacity, and low cost insurance, this is a good choice for the student market – a decent second hand model can be picked up relatively cheaply too.

2. Citroen C1

A great example of how far the “starter car” has progressed in recent years, the Citroen C1 is an attractive model which has great economy (up to 60 mpg), offers a smooth ride, and is cheap to service and insure. The engine is lively and responsive, and there’s ample driving pleasure to be had. As with the Suzuki, £2,000 will get you a 7 or 8 year old model in pretty good condition: at that sort of price, it’s a competitive option.

3. Ford Fiesta

With provisional insurance and starter insurance costs so high, finding the right budget car with affordable costs is a must for younger drivers. The ever-popular Ford Fiesta is a great option: not only is it cheap to insure and service, thanks in part to the vast numbers of models on the roads, it is economical to run, packs a decent punch for its class, and is available in a wide range of trim levels. From basic starter car to models featuring good levels of kit, there’s a Fiesta for everyone. With fuel economy ranging from 40 mpg in the older models to a class-leading 80+ for the latest versions, it’s a very frugal option.

4. Volkswagen Polo

German efficiency on a budget: the VW Polo is among the most reliable small car on the roads and has been a competitive player in the starter car market for decades, thanks to its high standards of reliability and safety, combined with a spacious cabin and good equipment levels. Whilst it’s not the punchiest option available in its price range, it still provides a solid and classy driving experience, and has excellent fuel economy to boot. Prices for second hand models are also competitive, and there are few nasty surprises to be had!

5. Vauxhall Corsa

Another car which has improved in leaps and bounds since its launch, the Vauxhall Corsa this is a reliable run-around that’s packed with fuel efficiency and top speed. The likes of the VXR 07 has great turbo charged engine which delivers a storming performance.  This is one car that’s well known for its performance, which can facilitate the busy to hectic lifestyle of any university student.

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