Best cars for students under €5k

Here are five cars from for a student on a budget of €5,000.

College is an expensive enough time for student and parent alike without having to worry about transport. Many students don’t need their own wheels, but some do, and we understand why all want their own way of getting about, so here’s a selection of cars from the database that come in under €5,000 and are also cheap to tax, insure and run. We’ve also chosen, for the most part, the most modern models we can find within the budget to avail of the latest in safety technology.

1 – 2014 SEAT Mii
Mileage: 127,311km
Engine: 1.0-litre petrol
Price: €4,999
EuroNCAP rating: five stars (2011)

This is one of the newest and most modern cars we could find for our budget and though the mileage is quite high for such a small vehicle, this is a cracking option. The Mii is more or less identical to the Volkswagen up! and Skoda Citigo and they’re all good to drive, well made and come with low running costs. It’s a very safe car, too. Any of the three triplets is worth a look.

2 – 2013 Skoda Fabia
Mileage: 207,605km
Engine: 1.2-litre petrol
Price: €4,950
EuroNCAP rating: four stars (2007)

Students that need to drive further home at the weekend should consider something a little larger than the typical city car and the Skoda Fabia is a great option. It has plenty of space inside for extra passengers (and all that dirty washing), it’s more comfortable on the open road than smaller cars and yet it’s still economical by any measure. We found a very clean 2013 example within budget.

3 – 2012 Suzuki Alto
Mileage: 128,368km
Engine: 1.0-litre petrol
Price: €4,950
EuroNCAP rating: three stars (2009)

If outright reliability is your top priority, then you should seriously consider one of the Japanese marques. Suzuki’s cars last forever, even if they’re not the most desirable, and the Alto is a perfect example. Shame the safety rating isn’t a little better, but for something you could just park up for months at a time and then return to knowing it’s going to start, it can’t be beaten.

4 – 2013 Citroen C1
Mileage: 65,940km
Engine: 1.0-litre petrol
Price: €4,500
EuroNCAP rating: three stars (2012)

Space at student accommodation can be tight for parking, so if you need a tiny car then you could do worse than looking for a good example of the Citroen C1. It shares most of its mechanicals with the Peugeot 107 and Toyota Aygo, but appears to be more common on the used market within our €5,000 budget. This example come with the benefit of low mileage.

5 – 2011 Fiat Panda
Mileage: 96,561km
Engine: 1.2-litre petrol
Price: €4,950
EuroNCAP rating: three stars (2004)

This might be the least sensible of our suggestions, but the Fiat Panda has so much personality we think it’s one well worth considering. It’s more spacious inside than the city cars, a cinch to drive and park and, well, Italian. Sensibilities be damned.