Best buys over £30,000

There’s incredible value to be had here: everything from supercars to luxury SUVs

Range Rover (2007/36k miles)

Price: £30,000

Price when new: £63,495 | Model: TDV8 Vogue | Engine: 3.6-litre V8 

CO2/tax: 294g/km/£460 | Economy: 25.4mpg

Euro NCAP: ★★★★ | Driver Power rating: N/A

The Range Rover is 10 years old, so why not celebrate the landmark by investing in a used example of this legendary SUV? Its famed longevity means you can snap up a bargain example for as little as £7,495, and still be driving a car that’s available new. Of course, the Range Rover has evolved over the years. Early cars will be higher-mileage examples and, if they’re diesel, use the outdated TD6 engine. The sweet spot for a second-hand Range Rover is actually around the £30,000 mark. For this much, you’ll be able to afford a low-mileage version of the 3.6 TDV8 model, which pairs a hefty 640Nm of torque with claimed fuel economy of 25.4mpg. Even so, you can expect big diesel and maintenance bills – but that’s the price you pay to have one of the most desirable cars in the world on your driveway. An opulent cabin, supremely comfortable ride and unbeatable off-road performance make the Range Rover ideal for every occasion.

Nissan GT-R (2009/25k miles)

Price: £34,000

Price when new: £56,340 | Model: Black | Engine: 3.8-litre V6, 478bhp  

CO2/tax: 298g/km/£460 | Economy: 22.7mpg

Euro NCAP: N/A | Driver Power rating: N/A

Could the Nissan GT-R be the ultimate performance bargain of the decade? With a near-200mph top speed, an advanced four-wheel-drive chassis and more power than a Porsche 911 Turbo, it has the performance and poise to humble most European supercars. Even when new, it significantly undercut rivals, but now you can buy a low-mileage, three-year-old car for a little over £30k. Running costs aren’t cheap by any stretch, but you’ll still be paying a lot less for servicing and maintenance than Porsche and Ferrari owners.

Top tip: Insuring any of the high-powered cars in this budget will be costly – but over 70 per cent of respondents to Driver Power 2011 cut their premiums just by shopping around.

Range Rover Evoque (2011/1k)

Price: £31,750

Price when new: £32,995 | Model: Coupe Pure SD4 | Engine: 2.2 4cyl, 187bhp

CO2/tax: 149g/km/£130 | Economy: 49.6mpg

Euro NCAP: ★★★★★ | Driver Power rating: N/A

If you want the must-have car of the moment, look no further than the Range Rover Evoque. Stunning looks, a stylish cabin and a classy image make it the top pick for fashion-conscious motorists. As a result, demand is high and there’s a long waiting list for factory- fresh cars, with buyers willing to a pay a premium for nearly new models. But if you shop around, bargains are out there. Okay, it’s not a half-price hero, but we found a number of 2.2 SD4 Pure Coupés with delivery miles, as well as some desirable options, for £32,995.

Aston V8 Vantage (2006/32k)

Price: £33,985

Price when new: £83,130 | Model: V8 Vantage | Engine: 4.3-litre V8, 380bhp  

CO2/tax: 358g/km/£460 | Economy: 16.4mpg

Euro NCAP: N/A | Driver Power rating: N/A

A spine-tingling soundtrack and head-turning looks make the Aston Martin V8 Vantage one of the most desirable cars on the planet. Plus, limited production means it’s an exclusive choice. But it’s the price that’s most likely to catch your attention. Early 2006 cars are now available for around £30,000 – a whopping £50,000 saving on new. If you can live with the huge running costs and odd reliability glitch, then this Aston Martin will deliver genuine supercar thrills for the price of a new entry-level executive saloon car.

Here’s what we drive…

Ford Focus MkI Ross Pinnock, road test editor

"I used to sell Fords, so when I needed a secondhand car, I knew exactly what to go for. I bought this one over the phone from a garage that I previously worked for, and it has been brilliant ever since. Our 1.6 Zetec has done 65k miles and coped with the arrival of two kids. My wife even learned to drive in it. It bears a few scuffs, but still drives superbly – I want to keep it forever."

Lexus RX 450h (2010/22k)

Price: £33,100

Price when new: £48,230 | Model: SE-I | Engine: 3.5-litre V6, 295bhp

CO2/tax: 145g/km/£130 | Economy: 44.8mpg

Euro NCAP: N/A | Driver Power rating: N/A

The Lexus RX 450h goes against the large SUV grain. Unlike rivals, it shuns traditional diesel power in favour of a hi-tech 295bhp petrol-electric hybrid. With its mix of hot-hatch pace and low CO2 emissions of 145g/km, the RX is a tempting proposition. It’s beautifully built and comes loaded with standard kit, including leather upholstery and integrated satellite navigation. What’s more, around £30,000 will secure you an 18-month-old example with 20,000 miles and a useful chunk

of the manufacturer’s warranty left.

Jaguar XJ (2010/11k miles)

Price: £33,500

Price when new: £56,420 | Model: 3.0d Luxury | Engine: 3.0-litre V6, 271bhp

CO2/tax: 184g/km/£210 | Economy: 44.8mpg

Euro NCAP:  N/A | Driver Power rating: N/A

Style and value don’t usually mix, but the first examples of the latest Jaguar XJ saloon are now worth roughly half what they would have cost when new. That means you can pick up a 3.0d V6 model in Luxury trim for around £33,000. For that you get leather, twin sunroofs and some of the most striking looks in the business. The current Jaguar flagship is tuned for driving enjoyment rather than all-out comfort, but that’s great news for owners who plan to drive themselves rather than sit in the back reading the newspaper.

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