A lot of drivers will not buy a new car, period. While the thought of being the first person to grace the seats of a motor is tempting, many simply can’t overlook the fact a zero-mile motor will be worth significantly less the moment it’s driven off a dealer’s forecourt.
If you’re one of these people, you’ve likely bought second-hand vehicles your entire motoring career.
But depreciation can hit older models just as hard as new ones. In fact, there are used cars that continue to lose big percentages of their original value long after the standard manufacturer’s warranty length of three years lapses.
On the flip side, there are some second-hand motors that – according to valuations experts – might increase in value…
Used cars that are holding their value well: This is Money and CAP HPI have teamed up to reveal which six-year-old models have depreciated very little over the last three years – and some of them appreciating in value
This is Money has exclusively teamed up with CAP HPI, which monitors car values, to reveal the top 20 second-hand motors that have been found to depreciate incredibly slowly.
The data is based on three-year-old used cars that were purchased with an average of 36,000 miles on the clock and what that vehicle is worth today as it hits its sixth birthday and has 72,000 miles showing on the odometer.
Cars are ranked by percentage value in terms of depreciation, so some of those that hold their value best could lose you more in pounds than cheaper vehicles that depreciate by a greater percentage.
We’ll also list the 20 cars that lose the biggest percentages of their second-hand value so you know which ones could hit your back pocket. Check the table at the bottom of this list for the worst performing used cars for value retention between years three and six.
TOP 20 SLOWEST DEPRECIATING USED CARS
20. Mercedes-Benz C-Class AMG Coupe (2011-2015)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £31,950
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £25,875
3-6 year % depreciation: 19.0%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £6,075
If you bought a three-year-old Mercedes-Benz C-Class Coupe AMG model in 2018, it would have lost – on average – less than 20 per cent of what you paid for it
Values of this Mercedes might be being inflated by the increasing demand for the AMG C63 Black Series, which is considered one of the most extreme road cars of the last decade.
On average, the AMG variants of the C-Class Coupe of this generation lose just 19 per cent of value between the third and sixth year.
19. Chevrolet Camaro Coupe (2012-2015)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £23,550
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £19,150
3-6 year % depreciation: 18.7%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £4,400
The Chevrolet Camaro is an iconic American muscle car – and isn’t the only one that’s going to feature on this list. A 6-year-old model has lost just 17.5% of its value from 3 years before
While the Camaro is a national hero back in the US, it didn’t quite have the same success here. That said, it has been available as an official UK model in the last decade – though still only sold with the steering wheel on the wrong side of the car.
A convertible version of the brash V8 muscle car was available, but it’s the coupe that’s been depreciating slower, losing just 18.7 per cent of its value between three and six years.
18. Smart ForTwo Electric Drive Coupe (2013-2014)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £5,875
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £4,850
3-6 year % depreciation: 17.5%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £1,025
The ForTwo ED is the first electric car to feature in this list – and won’t be the last. With more motorists considering an electric vehicle, demand on the used market is high, which is driving up the value of even older, outdated, EVs
This is the start of a strong theme in this list – the growing demand for used electric cars. The Smart ForTwo Electric Drive is one of the first all-electric models to be sold in the UK. It had a claimed full-charge range (from new) of 84 miles.
Considering the range claim is based on an outdated test cycle and the batteries of a used model would have somewhat depleted, it’s impressive that values have fallen by just 17.5 per cent for cars going from three to six-years-old. We doubt many (or any) have clocked 72,000 miles.
17. Toyota Land Cruiser V8 Diesel SW (2012-2015)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £46,850
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £39,600
3-6 year % depreciation: 15.5%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £7,250
There won’t be many V8 diesel cars in this list, but the durability of the Toyota Land Cruiser means it remains in high demand and values haven’t dropped off too much
There are some cars that hold their value exceptionally well based on their durability, and the Toyota Land Cruiser fits into this list.
Even with a big V8 diesel under the bonnet, values of six-year-old models have dropped by just 15.5 per cent in the last 36 months. That’s very impressive, especially given that it isn’t a Euro 6 compliant engine, meaning owners will have to pay charges including the London Ultra Low Emission Zone and Birmingham’s Clean Air Zone fee.
16. Porsche 911  Carrera 4 Coupe (2015-2019)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £56,700
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £48.050
3-6 year % depreciation: 15.3%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £8,650
Lots of speed, but no rapid depreciation: The 991 version of the iconic Porsche 911 has been holding its value well as a second-hand option. If you bought one in 2018, you could sell it today and lose just £8,650
This one isn’t much of a shock, given that 911s are pretty slow to lose their value in general. The previous generation Carrera 4 Coupe remains a highly desirable car, despite it being the first 911 to feature electric power steering instead of a direct hydraulic setup.
A six-year-old car has shed just 15 per cent of its value from three years earlier, which translates to £8,650. That’s £240 per month.
15. Ford Mustang Convertible (2015-2017)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £23,600
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £20,238
3-6 year % depreciation: 14.3%
3-6 year £ depreciation:£3,363
Ford’s Mustang Convertible – an official UK car in right-hand-drive – is one of the better performing used models for depreciation, based on the CAP HPI data
The second muscle car to feature in our list is the Mustang, though in Convertible guise rather than the Fastback coupe (keep an eye out for that one later).
Like the Camaro, it has become an official UK car, though unlike the Chevrolet does come in right-hand-drive. The 5.0-litre V8 is the one most likely to be keeping values high, with six-year-old cars shedding marginally over £3,500 in the last three years.
14. Ford Focus RS (2016-2018)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £18,350
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £15,900
3-6 year % depreciation: 13.4%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £2,450
The RS is no normal Ford Focus, which is why it appears in our list of the slowest depreciating models between 3 and 6 years
You might be shocked to see a Ford Focus make this list, but the RS isn’t any normal family hatchback. This is the hot hatch version, with four-wheel-drive, a 345bhp 2.3-litre petrol engine and even a ‘Drift mode’.
Priced new, it cost under £30,000. Six-year-old examples have lost just 13.4 per cent of their value in the last 36 months.
13. Mitsubishi Shogun Diesel (2014-2018)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £17,088
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £14,744
3-6 year % depreciation: 13.3%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £2,344
Durable off-roaders with a proven track record of lasting the test of time remain in demand. That’s why this diesel Mitsubishi Shogun is depreciating relatively slowly in its older age
Like the Toyota Land Cruiser already mentioned, Mitsubishi’s long-running Shogun is bucking the trend for out-of-demand diesels.
The heavy-duty 4X4 has since been replaced with a refreshed Shogun Sport in showrooms, but this version is holding value well as hardened off-roaders look for second-hand motors that are spacious and durable.
12. Volkswagen Beetle Cabriolet (2013-2016)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £12,075
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £10,557
3-6 year % depreciation: 12.6%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £1,518
With Beetle production ceasing in 2019, it’s no surprise to see the last examples of the cabriolet version of VW’s most iconic car holding their value with age
VW, not for the first time, ended production of the iconic Beetle in 2019. With no new versions hitting the market in the last two years, fans of the retro Volkswagen have had to turn to the used market.
This has pushed the value of Beetle models higher, with even the little-appreciated Cabriolet now showing signs of strong residuals. Six-year-old examples have lost just 12.6 per cent of their value from three years earlier, says CAP HPI.
11. Audi RS3 Sportback (2015-2016)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £26,850
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £23,500
3-6 year % depreciation: 12.5%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £3,350
The Audi RS3 Sportback might yet become a modern classic, which is why values are likely to remain relatively strong into the future
If you want your Audi A3 family hatchback to pack plenty of power, you’re likely in the market for an RS3 model. This 2015-2016 RS3 Sportback generates a massive 362bhp from a 2.5-litre five-cylinder powerplant.
Depreciation in the last three years has been particularly slow. With it potentially becoming a modern classic, don’t expect it to shed too much value in the future either.
10. Subaru WRX STI (2014-2018)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £16,000
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £14,050
3-6 year % depreciation: 12.2%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £1,950
A Subaru WRX STI bought used three years ago has lost less than £2,000 of its value then, according to CAP HPI
If you were a rally fan of the 1990s then the first car that will come to mind when you think of WRC is the Subaru Impreza. More recently, the Japanese firm released a run of WRX STI models with a potent four-cylinder turbocharged boxer engine.
With Subaru shelving its high-performance saloon car, enthusiasts have been forced to the second-hand market. This has meant values have remained strong in recent years.
9. Ford Mustang Fastback (2015-2017)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £22,019
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £19,800
3-6 year % depreciation: 10.1%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £2,219
Since the Mustang returned to Britain as a fully-fledged model, demand has been through the roof. And that’s also the case on the second-hand market
The convertible Ford Mustang has appeared in this list already, and now it’s time for the Fastback coupe. Since the Mustang returned to the UK market as a fully-fledged right-hand-drive model, it’s been a roaring success.
This popularity has transmitted to the used market too. With the Mustang priced new from around £30,000, buy a six-year-old car today and the average price is almost £20,000. That pretty impressive value retention.
8. Volkswagen Caravelle (2015-2018)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £22,875
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £20,575
3-6 year % depreciation: 10.1%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £2,300
The Caravelle bucks the trend for the disappearing MPV. The premium seven-seat van performs very well on the used market
If you’re in the market for a large seven-seat MPV, the Volkswagen Caravelle is a model towards the more aspirational end of the market.
Demand has always been high for the seated version of the German brand’s van, which is why used models have depreciated by a mere 10 per cent in the last three years. A new version is due for the market later this year –
7. Mitsubishi i-Miev (2011-2015)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £4,925
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £4,475
3-6 year % depreciation: 9.1%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £450
The Mitsubishi i-Miev is one of the early mass-production fully-electric superminis with a range of 99 miles. With few EVs on the market, depreciation is slow
We mentioned the Smart ForTwo Electric Drive earlier in this list. Now there’s another early EV that’s performing very well on the used market for value retention.
The Mitsubishi i-Miev was produced on a shared platform with Peugeot’s identical Ion and had the same 99-mile claimed range. A model bought used three years ago would have cost, on average, £4,925. With another 36,000 miles on the clock – which would require a minimum of one year (364 days) of daily recharges to cover – it is worth £4,475.
6. Porsche Boxster (2012-2016)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £33,986
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £31,429
3-6 year % depreciation: 7.7%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £2,557
This generation of the Porsche Boxster is the last to come with a six-cylinder engine. That should mean it continues to hold value very well into the future
Porsche’s most affordable convertible model has always performed well in terms of slow depreciation – and that very much remains the case for the Boxster. This generation is the last to feature a six-cylinder motor before Porsche was forced – by emissions regulations – to plonk a four-pot engine into the Boxster and Cayman.
Great to drive, brilliant for the ego and not likely to sting you with huge repair bills, there’s no surprise to see that a used example has lost just 7.7 per cent of its second-hand value from three years earlier. And if you thought getting into a Porsche 911 for £240 a month above looked cheap, bear in mind you could have driven a Boxster for just £71 a month.
5. Jeep Wrangler Hard Top (2011-2018)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £20,642
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £19,400
3-6 year % depreciation: 6.0%
3-6 year £ depreciation: £1,242
The Jeep Wrangler is proof that exclusivity can result in slow depreciation. There aren’t may in the UK, but those on the road are holding value well
While the Wrangler has been around for what feels like an eternity, they’re still a relatively rare sight on UK roads. But that’s not to say people don’t want them.
On the contrary, the second-hand market shows that the limited availability of these no-nonsense off-roaders has kept values relatively high, even with 72,000 miles on the clock.
4. Suzuki Jimny (1998-2018)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £8,292
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £8,375
3-6 year % appreciation: +1.5%
3-6 year £ appreciation: +£83
Suzuki’s Jimny is the first used model in our list that has appreciated in value in three years, even with its mileage doubling in that time
Suzuki recently launched a new Jimny… then quickly killed it off when it couldn’t meet EU-regulated emissions targets for new models. But it’s the previous-generation of the compact SUV that’s – incredibly – going up in value, despite ageing and having more miles put on it.
If you bought a three-year old example in 2018 with 36,000 miles on the odometer it would have cost – on average – £8,292. Fast-forward three years and another 36,000 on the clock and it is worth £83 more than you paid for it, says CAP HPI.
3. Renault Zoe (2013-2019)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £6,442
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £6,592
3-6 year % appreciation: +2.3%
3-6 year £ appreciation: +£150
With more drivers considering EV ownership in 2021, it’s no surprise to see the Zoe – one of the better older electric superminis – appreciating in value on the used market
The third electric supermini in our list is another that’s been around for some time – the Renault Zoe. Even by today’s standards it is one of the better examples of a small EV you can get, and older versions offer plenty of range for those living in the city.
A used example bought three years ago would have gone up in value by £150, according to CAP HPI’s data, as more people look to switch to electric cars.
2. Volkswagen Caddy Life (2015-2020)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £7,525
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £7,950
3-6 year % appreciation: +5.7%
3-6 year £ appreciation: +£425
Popular for mobility schemes and also a spacious yet compact minibus for big families, the VW Caddy Life is highly sought after by second-hand buyers
Like the Caravelle mentioned earlier in this list, the Caddy Life is VW’s seated version of its popular compact commercial vehicle.
Popular for mobility schemes (because they can easily be converted to take a wheelchair) but also a spacious yet compact minibus for big families, it’s highly sought after by second-hand buyers. Values of six-year old examples have increased by 5.7 per cent in the last three years, says CAP HPI.
1. Volkswagen California Diesel (2010-2015)
3 year, 36k mile avg value: £31,325
6 year, 72k mile avg value: £33,350
3-6 year % appreciation: +6.7%
3-6 year £ appreciation: +£2,025
With so many of us forced to staycation in 2020 and 2021, values of campervans are going through the roof. The VW California is the daddy of all campers, and not-so-old examples are appreciating at a rate that’s rarely ever seen from a ‘mainstream’ motor of that age
If there was ever proof that the pandemic has had a positive impact on campervan and motorhome values, this is it. Even six-year-old examples of the previous-generation California camper – which went out of production in 2015 and then some dealers struggled to shift for another three years or so – have gone up in value by more than £2,000 in the last three years.
Someone who paid £31,325 for one with 36k on the clock three years ago can expect to get £33,350 if they sell it with 72,000 miles on the odometer today and three years of camping trips under their belt. That’s a gain of £56 per month on their VW camper.
|Manufacturer||Model||3 year, 36k mile avg value||6 year, 72k mile avg value||Depreciation %||Depreciation £|
|MG MOTOR UK||MG6 GT DIESEL HATCHBACK (2012 – 2014)||£4,767||£1,808||-62.1%||£2,958|
|CHRYSLER||YPSILON DIESEL HATCHBACK (2011 – 2015)||£4,069||£1,550||-61.9%||£2,519|
|CHEVROLET||AVEO DIESEL HATCHBACK (2011 – 2015)||£3,600||£1,450||59.7%||£2,150|
|PEUGEOT||308 DIESEL COUPE CABRIOLET (2009 – 2014)||£7,175||£3,000||-58.2%||£4,175|
|CHEVROLET||ORLANDO DIESEL ESTATE (2011 – 2015)||£8,438||£3,638||-56.9%||£4,800|
|FIAT||PUNTO HATCHBACK (2012 – 2018)||£4,295||£1,866||-56.5%||£2,430|
|PEUGEOT||308 COUPE CABRIOLET (2009 – 2014)||£5,875||£2,600||-55.7%||£3,275|
|CHEVROLET||TRAX DIESEL HATCHBACK (2013 – 2015)||£8,225||£3,658||-55.52%||£4,567|
|FORD||GALAXY DIESEL ESTATE (2010 – 2014)||£13,362||£6,044||-54.9%||£7,318|
|VAUXHALL||ZAFIRA DIESEL ESTATE (2005 – 2014)||£6,269||£2,838||-54.7%||£3,431|
|KIA||RIO DIESEL HATCHBACK (2011 – 2014)||£5,704||£2,579||-54.6%||£3,125|
|VAUXHALL||CORSA DIESEL HATCHBACK (2011 – 2014)||£4,357||£1,972||-54.5%||£2,384|
|KIA||VENGA DIESEL HATCHBACK (2010 – 2014)||£6,055||£2,755||-54.5%||£3,300|
|HYUNDAI||GENESIS SALOON (2014 – 2018)||£16,800||£7,850||-53.3%||£8,950|
|PEUGEOT||207 COUPE CABRIOLET (2009 – 2014)||£4,788||£2,244||-53.1%||£2,544|
|RENAULT||SCENIC DIESEL ESTATE (2012 – 2016)||£7,683||£3,656||-52.4%||£4,027|
|KIA||VENGA DIESEL HATCHBACK (2015 – 2018)||£7,350||£3,525||-52.1%||£3,825|
|SEAT||TOLEDO HATCHBACK (2012 – 2018)||£6,250||£3,010||-51.8%||£3,240|
|FORD||KA HATCHBACK (2009 – 2016)||£4,365||£2,119||-51.5%||£2,246|
|MERCEDES-BENZ||S CLASS SALOON (2013 – 2017)||£39,456||£18,981||-51.3%||£20,475|
|Source: CAP HPI
Values based on average second hand prices for used models bought in May 2018 with 36k on the clock VS value in May 2021 with 72k on the clock
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