Most reliable used cars to buy now

We reveal the most reliable used cars in the UK, using data from our latest Driver Power survey

Everybody's heard horror stories of dodgy second-hand cars – the threat of malfunctions, breakdowns and annoying recalls are so often the reason that people steer clear of the used car market entirely and buy new. That's why, for those braving the classifieds and used car forecourts, reliability is the most important factor, especially if the used car in question has run out of warranty.

The last thing any of us want is to be left stranded at the side of the road, but equally we don’t want to deal with huge repair bills to keep our cars roadworthy. So to try and help you decide which second-hand cars are the most dependable and trustworthy, we've rounded up the most reliable used cars here in the UK, according to data from our 2021 Driver Power owner satisfaction survey.

Driver Power allows us to get a look into a car's long-term reliability in a way that simply isn’t possible during our own extensive road tests. Each year, thousands of owners take the Driver Power survey, and it's thanks to them that we can identify the most reliable cars in each class and help other buyers find the car that’s best for them.

There’s a good mix of cars in our list below, from affordable superminis to saloons to SUVs, it proves reliability does have to be the preserve of the more expensive car owner. 

Scroll down to check out the most reliable used cars to buy now...

10

Skoda Superb Mk3

93.44%

9

Porsche Macan

93.65%

8

BMW 5 Series Mk7

94.11%

7

BMW 3 Series Mk7

94.25%

6

Toyota Prius Mk4

94.28%

5

Toyota Yaris Mk2

94.51%

4

Lexus CT

94.70%

3

Lexus RX Mk3

96.10%

2

Lexus RX Mk4

96.69%

1

Lexus GS

97.55%

Most reliable used cars

10. Skoda Superb -  93.44%

  • Years of manufacture: 2015-present
  • Price now: £9,100

The Skoda Superb is one of our favourite family cars, whether it be a saloon or estate, thanks to its spacious interior, build quality and tech. A new model is due in 2024, but it looks like there’ll be plenty of third-generation models sticking around beyond then because Skoda’s VW Passat rival is brilliantly reliable. The fact that the Superb finished second overall in the list of best used cars to own highlights what a great all-rounder it is. 

Buy a used Skoda Superb from our sister site Buyacar here...

9. Porsche Macan - 93.65%

  • Years of manufacture: 2014-present
  • Price now: £26,700

Porsche proved it could make a good large SUV with the Cayenne, but the Macan (which came more than a decade after the first Cayenne) showed they could make one for the medium-sized SUV market, too. Key to its popularity, especially on the used market, is the promise of fantastic Porsche reliability and build quality. Although if things do go wrong, buyers will then have to contend with typical Porsche parts prices. 

Buy a used Porsche Macan from our sister site Buyacar here...

8. BMW 5 Series - 94.11%

  • Years of manufacture: 2016-present
  • Price now: £17,800

The first of two BMWs to feature in this year’s countdown of the top 10 most reliable used cars, the 5 Series is showing it’s not just a well-equipped, fun-to-drive, classy executive car. Owners pointed towards impressive build quality, inside and out. 

Buy a used BMW 5 Series from our sister site Buyacar here...

7. BMW 3 Series - 94.25%

  • Years of manufacture: 2018-present
  • Price now: £24,700

The BMW 3 Series has been one of the best compact executive cars to drive since its inception, but it hasn’t always been the most reliable. That has changed this year, with owners praising the 3 Series’ reliability, placing it high on the list of the most reliable used cars to buy today. It also came third in the overall best-used-car list, so its talents still stretch way beyond reliability. 

Buy a used BMW 3 Series from our sister site Buyacar here...

6. Toyota Prius - 94.28%

  • Years of manufacture: 2015-present
  • Price now: £12,000

It’s no surprise to see the Toyota Prius in this list; the hybrid family car that’s so popular with taxi drivers shares plenty of tech with other Toyotas, such as the RAV4, Avensis and Auris. And all of those placed in the top 10 last time around. Some owners have complained about interior quality, although reliability is strong and if things do go wrong, the low repair costs should cheer you up. 

Buy a used Toyota Prius from our sister site Buyacar here...

5. Toyota Yaris Mk2 - 94.51%

  • Years of manufacture: 2005-2013
  • Price now: £1,295

The Mk2 Toyota Yaris is the oldest model on this list by a few years but owners are still happy enough with this supermini to award it an impressive fifth position. It actually placed 18 spots higher than the third-generation model overall, so clearly it’s an appealing budget choice here. 

Buy a used Toyota Yaris from our sister site Buyacar here...

4. Lexus CT - 94.70%

  • Years of manufacture: 2011-2020
  • Price now: £8,600

Powertrain and practicality aside, the CT hatchback is a hit with owners. On sale for almost a decade, Lexus’ BMW 1 Series rival never stormed the sales charts but remains a great option for family hatchback buyers looking to prioritise build quality and reliability.

Buy a used Lexus CT from our sister site Buyacar here...

3. Lexus RX Mk3 - 96.10%

  • Years of manufacture: 2008-2015
  • Price now: £8,800

It may have been off sale for six years now, but owners say the third-generation RX SUV is one of the most reliable cars to buy. It’s also one of the best with it taking fourth spot overall in our best used cars list, just beating the newer fourth-generation model in the process. 

Buy a used Lexus RX from our sister site Buyacar here...

2. Lexus RX Mk4 - 96.69%

  • Years of manufacture: 2015-present
  • Price now: £24,500

Lexus has the top four spots to itself in this list, and it’s thanks to a long history of making solid cars that seem to get better with age. The current-generation RX is one of these and owners say it feels robust, with particularly impressive paint finishes. 

Buy a used Lexus RX from our sister site Buyacar here...

1. Lexus GS - 97.55%

  • Years of manufacture: 2012-2018
  • Price now: £9,800

The Lexus GS was replaced by the ES in late 2018, but the reason for doing so certainly didn’t concern the car’s reliability, which is superb. Indeed, according to our 2021 Driver Power survey, it’s the most reliable used car you can buy.

Buy a used Lexus GS from our sister site Buyacar here...

Click below to find out the most reliable cars by sector... 

Click here to take our Driver Power customer satisfaction survey right now...

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