PCP finance puts a range of great motors within the typical budget
It’s normal to think of cars in terms of what they cost. And traditionally, we talk about the actual price you see on the screen.
But for most people, a car’s price – or, crucially, its affordability – is defined by how much it’ll cost them in monthly finance payments. And that’s where PCPs come in.
PCP finance gives you access to cars that would otherwise be out of reach. Like a normal finance plan, one of these contracts will include a deposit and monthly instalments – but it will also include a large final payment, as an alternative to which you can opt to hand the car back or use it as a deposit against a new one.
In simple terms, this means you’re financing only part of the car’s value. Thus the monthly cost is only a fraction of what it would need to be to cover all of it.
To put you in the picture of what this means in real terms, here are ten excellent examples of the cars you can buy with a budget of £300 a month. In each case, they’re based on the Target Prices quoted by the experts at our partner What Car? magazine and include discounts currently offered by the manufacturers – and in each case, they show you how affordable a great new car can really be.
1: Audi A1 1.4 TFSI Sport
Finance contribution: £750
Target Price: £15,666
Monthly payment: £202
A brilliant premium supermini for a pinch over two ton a month. This Sport model includes Bluetooth and upgraded seats, which makes the most of the A1’s nifty handling and excellent engines.
2: Mini 1.5 Cooper (Pepper Pack)
Finance contribution: £1300
Target Price: £15,396
Monthly cost: £209
Another premium option at very sensible money, Mini’s basic three-door hatch is cheap to own too – and never goes out of fashion. This combination of engine and spec level makes it better than ever.
3: Renault Clio 1.5 dCi 90 Dynamique S Nav
Finance contribution: £1900
Target Price £15,511
Monthly cost: £216
This diesel-engined Clio is very frugal, and the latest version of Renault’s iconic supermini is roomy enough to carry four adults and a load of luggage with a dash of Gallic chic. It’s a breeze to drive, too.
4: Ford Kuga 2.0 TDCi Zetec
Finance contribution: £1000
Target Price: £22,220
Monthly cost: £232
Spectacular money for an SUV that’s cool, practical and very pleasing to drive.
5: Skoda Superb 2.0 TDI CR SE
Finance contribution: £2000
Target Price: £20,170
Monthly cost: £249
Epic space and strong equipment are just the start. The Superb is sensationally good value for money – with with the magnificent 2.0 TDI engine, it’s both strong and low on emissions.
6: Skoda Octavia Estate 1.4 TSI 150 SE DSG
Finance contribution: £1000
Target Price: £19,829
Monthly cost: £251
Another Skoda, and this one’s brilliant too. In this spec, it’s a strong and lively performer – and as well as being cheap to run and loaded with kit, it’s a car whose practicality almost seems limitless.
7: Audi A3 Sportback 1.0 TFSI SE S Tronic
Finance contribution: £800
Target Price: £19,315
Monthly cost: £252
A premium family car with the same underpinnings as the VW Golf, the A3 is every inch an Audi in the quality of its finish. With the 1.0 TFSI petrol engine, it’s also a smooth runner with a modest appetite for fuel.
8: Seat Ateca 1.4 TSI Xcellence
Target Price: £23,309
Monthly cost: £278
If you’re after a small SUV, the Ateca is little short of unbeatable right now. We’d recommend the 1.4 TSI petrol engine over the diesel alternatives – and even at this budget-friendly money, you get a model with leather, sat-nav and a rear-view camera.
9: Renault Zoe Dynamique Nav Rapid Charge
Target Price: £14,993
Monthly cost: £285
Didn’t think there’d be an electric car in here, did you? The Zoe is a very decent supermini which also happens to be an EV – and this model has a premium stereo as well as sat nav and reversing sensors.
10: VW Touran 1.6 TDI 115 SE
Target Price: £20,893
Monthly cost: £301
What’s a quid between friends? The Touran proves that PCPs can put even a full-house MPV within reach – and not just that but one of the very best of its kind.