Vauxhall Meriva

Economy: 62.8mpg, CO2/road tax: 119g/km/£30

The Meriva is so much more than a pair of novel back doors! Vauxhall’s new compact MPV is sure to attract attention for its rear-hinged openings, but it’s now available with diesel power. The smallest 1.3-litre unit is tuned for efficiency rather than pace so it won’t set pulses racing, yet it does promise excellent economy.

However, the big drawback is price, as an S model with air-con costs £18,070. The answer is to buy direct on the firm’s website, and have the car delivered to your local dealer as part of this better-value package. The Vauxhall Internet Price (VIP) is £15,450, taking the edge off the cost and the sting out of the poor residuals.

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