5. VW Polo
The three and five-door Volkswagen Polo offers all the appeal of the class-leading Golf family car in a supermini-sized package. It scores with its classy looks and spacious, top-quality interior, although not all models come especially well equipped. Avoid the entry-level Polo S, for example, as it misses out on essentials like air-con, and bear in mind that options are costly across the range.
Also think carefully about which fuel best suits you. While the 1.2 TDI BlueMotion diesel grabs the headlines with its 80.7mpg fuel consumption and road tax-free 91g/km emissions, it’s quite a bit more expensive than other models. Cheaper petrol versions may make just as much sense if you don’t do a lot of motorway miles.
All Polo models provide a competitive boot size of 280 litres with the seats up, and this can be increased to 952 litres by folding them. And every version has variable service intervals, so the on-board computer will judge when a check is needed and let you know; specify one of Volkswagen’s top-value pre-paid packages to keep servicing prices to a minimum.