Best cars & vans

Best cheap company cars 2024

These are the best company cars for a limited budget

Having the option of a company car can be a great perk, but if you’re spending a small fortune for the privilege then it can quickly become a bit of a burden. Fortunately, the best cheap company cars aren’t only kind to your bank account, but they’re also rather desirable. 

Below we’ve gathered the best cheap company cars on the current market. Not only do these cars need to offer a low benefit-in-kind tax rate and affordable running costs in order to make the grade, they have also been highly approved by our expert road testers, so you can be sure that you’re getting the very best wheels for your money.

The best cheap company cars

Read on to find the best company cars for a smaller budget, listed in reverse order below.

8. Renault Zoe

As you’ll quickly realise by looking at this list, electric cars are rapidly becoming a dominant force in the company car market. Boasting zero emissions, these machines offer low running costs and are exempt from the Vehicle Excise Duty (VED) tax rate. There's more good news, too, as they also attract some hefty benefit-in-kind (BiK) savings. 

The Renault Zoe was one of the first electric cars to enter the mainstream, and it's still a decent choice for those who do a lot of urban driving. The Zoe is very agile on the move, and we were able to zip around busy city streets with ease during testing. Longer journeys aren’t out of the question, either, as the Zoe’s 52kWh battery claims up to 239 miles of range on the WLTP combined cycle. 

There is an elephant in the room, however, and that is a zero-star Euro NCAP safety rating. This score was due to increased stringency in testing and a lack of certain safety features, but the Zoe did previously score a full five stars under the older criteria in 2013.

7. MG ZS EV

The recent influx of Chinese EVs has quickly disproved the theory that only the very smallest electric cars can carry a low price. The MG ZS EV is a fully-fledged mid-size SUV — rivalling the likes of the Nissan Qashqai — but it starts from under £31,000. This price makes it one of the cheapest electric SUVs out there.

There’s room for five passengers to sit comfortably, and the 470-litre boot should take all their luggage with ease, so the ZS EV performs well as a family car. Standard kit is pretty generous, too, and even the smaller 51kWh battery pack claims up to 198 miles of range. You also get a seven-year/80,000-mile warranty as standard for peace of mind. Some of the fit and finish did remind us of this car’s budget status, and MG’s 32nd place finish in our Driver Power manufacturer rankings leaves a lot to be desired, but few cars can match this sheer level of value. 

6. Citroen e-C4

While a French hatchback might not be the first model that comes to mind when you hear the phrase “company car”, the Citroen e-C4 is definitely worth considering. If you’re not entirely convinced just yet,  C4 owners rated it as the Best Car to Own in our 2023 Driver Power customer satisfaction survey.

The C4 scored highly for its ride quality, handling and smoothness as well as the level of quality and reliability. The e-C4 adds in the benefits of a near-silent powertrain and lower running costs, too. When we spent six months with the e-C4 as part of our long-term test fleet, we found it easy to live with as it felt far more conventional than many of its rivals. It also felt compact enough to navigate through smaller streets, but the tradeoff is the slightly cramped back seats.

5. Dacia Jogger Hybrid

With seven seats and up to 2,085 litres of cargo space, there aren’t many cars that are as practical as the Dacia Jogger, and even fewer can match its sub-£19,000 starting price. Opt for the 1.6-litre hybrid and you’ll reap a claimed fuel economy figure of over 57mpg, along with lower BiK bills than any other version of Dacia's MPV.

Inside the budget-friendly Jogger is an interior that is typically Dacia; it’s very functional without much in the way of excitement. That said, the materials feel durable and some luxuries such as keyless entry, automatic air-conditioning and all-round sensors are fitted as standard on the Hybrid models. 

4. Fiat 500

If you’re something of a fashionista, the Fiat 500’s funky retro styling is very likely to appeal. This Italian city car is more than just a looker, though, as it offers a generous helping of on-board tech, impressive refinement and up to 199 miles of range. The good news is that we found it possible to reach this claimed range in the real world when we tested the 500 over a period of six months, although a particularly careful approach to driving is required.

While the little 500 is most at home on city streets, it doesn't feel out of its depth on the motorway. Performance is reasonable with either 92bhp or 116bhp on tap depending on your chosen variant. If you have a serious need for speed, though, there is also the option of the hotter Abarth 500e.

3. BYD Dolphin

While BYD — Build Your Dreams — is a behemoth of a brand back home in China, it is a complete newcomer to the UK’s streets. The Atto 3 was the first BYD to reach our shores and it certainly set things off on the right foot. The Dolphin followed closely behind, and it continues to uphold the brand's promising reputation while boasting a temptingly low price.

The Dolphin has been designed with comfort in mind rather than sportiness, and we certainly felt the benefits of this approach when driving it on UK roads. While the interior features less gimmicks than the Atto 3, the level of quality is very high for the price and there’s plenty of technology at your fingertips — although some functions are buried deep within sub-menus. Overall, though, the Dolphin should prove to be an affordable, and certainly unusual, company car.

2. MG4

While BYD is one of China’s latest entries into the UK car market, the resurrected MG brand was one of its first. The MG4 is by far the best EV yet to wear the iconic octagonal badge, and it offers huge value for money. We think it’s such a bargain that we named it our 2023 Affordable Electric Car of the Year, and it’s because of this all-round value that the MG4 is becoming an increasingly common sight in office car parks across the country.

For a starting price of under £28,000 you get a fully-electric hatchback with between 218-323 miles of claimed battery range — depending on your chosen specification — similar on-board tech to much more expensive rivals, plenty of space for a family of five and their luggage, and even a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating. The MG4 falls short of first place, though, as we found the build quality to be a bit questionable in a number of areas on our long-term test car.

1. Hyundai Kona Electric

To prove that low cost doesn’t mean low quality, our favourite cheap company car is also our 2023 Car of the Year. The second-generation Hyundai Kona Electric has been built with customer feedback in mind, as well as that of our expert road testers. The original Kona suffered from fundamental flaws, such as a noticeable lack of interior space, but Hyundai has taken careful care to eradicate these from the new model. The brand has also borrowed some styling influences from its Ioniq range, with the result being a practical yet tastefully quirky small SUV.

While there is the choice of petrol or hybrid power, the fully-electric Kona offers the best value for money and the most tempting Benefit-in-Kind savings. Hyundai claims up to 230 miles of range for the Kona Electric — increasing to a whopping 319 miles for the Long Range variant — so long commutes should prove stress free. The interior is a comfortable and pleasant place to sit, too, and physical switchgear helps to do away with frustrating sub-menus.

Best cheap company cars

  1. Hyundai Kona Electric
  2. MG4
  3. BYD Dolphin
  4. Fiat 500
  5. Dacia Jogger Hybrid
  6. Citroen e-C4
  7. MG ZS EV
  8. Renault Zoe

New to the world of company cars? Read our complete company car tax guide...

Shane is responsible for looking after the day-to-day running of the Auto Express website and social media channels. Prior to joining Auto Express in 2021, he worked as a radio producer and presenter for outlets such as the BBC.

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