Best-Selling Cars in the UK
We all have our favourites, but which car does the UK love the most? With a vast range of vehicles to choose from, it's useful to know which models have done the best job of convincing the country they're a great buy. Check out our rundown of ten of the all-time best-selling cars in the UK and see what sets them apart.
1. Ford Fiesta
Unsurprisingly in at number one, the Ford Fiesta is still Britain’s best-selling car, having been an ever-present on our roads for the past four decades. This supermini has appealed to everyone from first-time buyers to older drivers, wooing them with its winning combination of style, drivability and value. It might not be the cheapest car in its class, and there are rivals that are more practical and better equipped, but the Fiesta is a great all-rounder that has a good go at ticking every box.
2. Vauxhall Corsa
The Vauxhall Corsa might not be many people’s dream ride – but then most of us aren’t living in a dreamland. For drivers looking to navigate the excitement of the real world, the Corsa is a firm favourite. It’s practical, spacious, and delivers solid performance on the road. The interior is well put-together, and its safety stats are reassuring. There’s also a wide range of trims available for bringing some personality. This all adds up to a solid choice for everyday life. The UK’s car buyers agree, making it consistently Vauxhall’s best-selling model in the country.
3. Volkswagen Golf
Of course, many drivers don’t just want a purely practical car to get them from A to B. For those who love their driving (and like to show off a bit), the Golf is a reliable family car with added style and fun. The seventh generation in 2013 brought a major overhaul, with a selection of feisty engines and luxurious trim options. While it’s not the cheapest car of its kind, you get a lot for your money, and its distinctive look has made it an icon for almost half a century. No wonder it’s consistently one of the best-selling cars in the UK year after year.
4. Ford Focus
If it’s a practical, good-quality and affordable family car you’re after, the Ford Focus has got to be worth a look. Boasting an impressive range of engines, a spacious and comfortable interior, and ample boot space, it also offers an enjoyable drive. Plus, it’s been awarded the maximum five stars for safety by Euro NCAP. The nine generations since its launch in 1998 have included a range of petrol, diesel and hybrid models, as well as estate, hatchback and saloon versions. All this has helped make it easily one of the top ten selling cars in the UK, particularly in the second-hand market.
5. Mercedes-Benz A-Class
There’s a certain cachet that comes with owning a Merc. As the smallest of the German maker’s models, the A-Class brings that desirability within reach of many of the UK’s drivers. The three-pronged badge might be the main reason it sells in such numbers, but it has plenty more to recommend it too. Powerful engines, a comfortable ride and agile handling are complemented by a comfy and classy interior. The latest versions also boast state-of-the-art digital instruments and infotainment systems.
6. Nissan Qashqai
As a trailblazer for the family SUV class, the Qashqai unleashed something of a revolution when it launched in the UK back in 2006. The original continues to be a big seller, with buyers still seduced by its combination of commanding driving position, burly looks and affordable running costs. The Qashqai is now competing in a much more crowded market segment, but doggedly holds its own, with its sure handling and comfortable interior setting it apart from the chasing pack.
This unmistakably British icon (now German-owned, of course) is one of the most recognisable cars ever to hit the tarmac in the UK – or anywhere. Modern versions aren’t quite so mini anymore, which is a bonus for those looking for a family car. The range even includes estate and SUV versions these days: the Clubman and the Countryman respectively. Mini’s cute looks have been retained throughout its many iterations though, and this classic styling has undoubtedly made it such a constant big seller over six decades.
8. Volkswagen Polo
If you’re tempted by the Volkswagen Golf but aren’t sure you want to shell out for the posing power, the Polo delivers many of the same benefits for a cheaper price and lower running costs. It makes for a compact and economical car that’s great in the city, while also not being too shy for a long trip on the open road. Its diesel options in particular are very economical, while the ride is composed, offering the driver great visibility and comfort.
9. Ford Puma
Yet another entry for Ford on our list, it’s not surprising that the Puma, a compact SUV based on the Fiesta, has proved so popular over time. Small SUVs have come to dominate the city car scene in recent years, but the Ford Puma stands out from the crowd thanks to its distinctive looks. Behind its rugged front end, though, this is a no-frills, affordable car that can also be extremely fun to drive.
10. BMW 1 Series
The BMW 1 Series was an instant hit when it first launched in 2004, and it’s maintained that popularity through its second and third generations too. The rear-wheel drive was a unique selling point for the first two iterations, but the 2019 makeover took the plunge in ditching that, while upgrading the mechanicals and the interior. There’s a wide range of engines and trims available for the 1 Series, which have helped to cement its status as one of Britain’s best-loved, premium family cars.
Britain’s top ten selling cars offer a range of practical benefits, with value for money driving many of these models to the top of the charts. Never let it be said that the Brits lack a sense of style though – there are options here too for those who really enjoy the thrill of the open road. Visit our best-selling cars hub to find out more and help you decide which is the one for you.