The thought of dealing with everyday festivities in a saloon is quite boring. So what can you do?
Why not buy a fun to drive with four seats and a big boot? Something that you can use to drop off the children and then liven yourself up during the drive home.
Here are 6 used alternatives which prove that family life doesn’t always need to be boring.
From £1,000 – From an underrated company. The 9-3 HOT Aero.
To look out for? Reliability is brilliant. Despite the rather ridiculed roasting (i.e quite a lot of people), higher mileage cars aren’t a big deal, because, like Volvos, they are tanks. But the tyres on a powerful one (like this example), will be waving white flags at around 5000 miles. If you’re sceptical, change them anyway.
Tempted? This 3-door manual with one owner on a 51 reg might just be the one you’re looking for. It’s done an indicated 172,000 miles, and can be on yours to drive for just £1,650.
From £3,000 – Pretty much a forgotten saloon. The Mazda6 MPS.
A Mazda, of course. Where many protests about the MX-5 for having so many problems, you can settle from a sports car a more useable every day saloon like the Mazda6. Not the most handsome looking brute, but it’s not that bad, is it?
The Ford Mondeo ST220 maybe more composed than the 6, but the 6 is more exclusive. Unlike the Ford, it’s got 4-wheel drive. Which means, it’s less likely to go wrong during driving.
Buying a 6 or an MPS is similar. Check for any damp or moulding, because the air-con does seem to act like a 500L. Added evidence, not blowing cold air.
Tempted? This red £4,795 example with 88,000 miles on the clock might just be the one.
From £6,000 – Subaru, anyone? The Impreza WRX STi.
Yes, I know, you could get the Mitsubishi Evo, but credit where it’s due, you’ve got to hand it over towards the Subaru Impreza.
Of course, being a Subaru, you can get plenty of different versions. With enough skill, you can practically assault most lap time records. While holding a family. (though we recommend, not at the same time)
Subarus may be reliable, but take a fine-tooth comb in every little detail. Most WRXs would have probably been driven hard, so look at the clutches, the body for any hint of accident damage.
Tempted? Well, you can buy this mildly modified example for £6,995. This one’s done 121,000 miles, and also includes an amplifier. Dunno why.
From £10,000 – Still an unsung hero (saloon or not). The RS6.
If you want a plush, German, and completely unsung sports saloon, then from £10,000, you can get this turbocharged RS6.
It is a brilliant car, despite it being almost as heavy as a estate Jaguar XF (1,840kg). But there is one problem the RS6 shares with the Subaru SVX.
The gearbox. I mean, someone at Audi, and I’m assuming the same people who built the SVX’s gearbox, must have declared that the gearbox was strong enough to deal with. Change the gearbox fluids frequently, though. Before the bill for the gearbox ends in a wallet ruining £3,000.
Still want it? Well, this one is up for sale with a BOSE sound system and satellite navigation. You can’t trust one of those two though. Or the gearbox.
From £15,000: A very, very fast saloon. But yet with a rep badge. The Vauxhall VXR8.
Yes…. it’s one of many Vauxhall saloons, but just hear me out. If you really are willing to dosh out £15,000 of your own money on what is simply, a Holden, It’ll probably be this. What you get at the cost of the repmobile badge is a 6.2 V8 with 430 bhp. And rear drive. All with space for a family. So why not?
I mean, yes, you can nitpick in a several places, like the badge and the rather dull interior, (typical GM) but honestly, if you can drive a car that screams from the land down under and has an American engine, but yet has the wheel on the right side, it does start to make sense. (unless you are a Ford fan, in this case, I can’t help you)
To look out for? Thankfully, some GM car quality today is a step in the right direction. But, the main thing to look out for is the possibility of it having a hard life. So treat every offer for the VXR8 as if it’s been driven hard, and haggle on the price a little bit.
Still want it? This rather pretty in red VXR8 might just be the suitable option. It’s done less than 100,000 miles, and it’s up for a rather tidy sum of £15,989.
From £20,000 – A rather sad choice, but it’s one of many good saloons. The Evo 10.
To be fair, you can get the 320 which is less thirsty than the FQ360 we’ve decided to choose which is cheaper, but if you want that extra 40 brake, I’d say Wai not.
Okay, you’ll probably go through fuel faster than Ford GTs when thrashed, but it really will make your life so much easier and faster than if you would have just bought a normal Mondeo today.
To look out for on an Evo – well, like the Vauxhall, treat it as if it’s been driven hard. Also, ask the owner which type of oil they use, and check if they skipped on maintenance to get an idea of how the car has been treated.
Still tempted? This one of 12 in white FQ360s might just be the one on your drive. Look at the mileage.
Bonus – From £5,000: Frenchie saloon exclusivity. The Citroen C6.
Credit where it’s due, this is a future classic. I mean, just look at those lines. It just looks so dramatic, so French. Of course, the lines do come with a car.
The Citroen C6 was the French’s answer towards the executive saloon market, but, like last years laptop, practically looses value faster than it accelerates.
To look out for, well, Citroen’s legendary hydrogas suspension is costly to fix, so do check it. While you’re there, insist on a full service history, just to make sure the owner hasn’t skipped on maintenance. Air-con smells funny? Get the air-con re-gassed.
Still want it? Well, annoyingly, you can’t find many petrol versions, so you have to settle for a diesel. A 2.7 example, to be exact. Oh boy. But, look at how little miles.
Are there any other ideas on what saloons or hatchback(s) that aren’t tedious to live with? (okay, with petrol drinkers)