One for the Road: A small but spacious hatchback for £7,000


Bill Mortimer is selling three cars (Mercedes, Vauxhall, Ford), wants a small but spacious hatchback, and has £7,000.

A car for the head

My first thought is that as Bill is getting rid of a Mercedes E-Class saloon he might like to have another smaller model in the range. Indeed, although the A- and B-Class vehicles may be smaller, they are fantastically clever at making the best of the interior space, especially the A-Series. It is no bigger than a small hatchback but locating the engine under the floor means that inside it is like a van, especially if the seats are folded or removed. A 2009 Classic SE 1.5 costs £7,000 from a dealer.

A car for the heart

I very much like the Toyota Corolla Verso (above), which is reliable and spacious. The Easy Flat 7 seating system means the middle-row and two rear seats can be folded flat. Meanwhile, the middle seats can also slide to increase the load space. Average fuel economy on the 1.6 and 1.8 petrol models is 37mpg, not bad for a people carrier, but obviously the diesel is the better option, especially when it can manage 44mpg overall. A 2006 2.0 D-4D T Spirit model starts at £5,500 from a dealer with a warranty.

Looking to buy?

Email James Ruppert at onefortheroad@independent., giving your age, address and phone number, details of the type of vehicle in which you are interested, and your budget