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2007 Kia Magentis 2.0 CRDi LS 4dr £2,995

Look beyond the obvious and it’s amazing how much car you can buy for relatively little money. Take this Kia, offered by our friends at Motorpoint Cars, Darlington.

It’s a whacking big saloon (about the size of a late-model Ford Mondeo). When new, Kia sold very few of these here. Although a perfectly fine car, family four-doors like this have long been out of favour – we spend our cash instead on off-roaders and MPVs. Besides, go back seven years to when this motor was new, and Kia was still a bit of a ‘naff’ brand – nothing like as popular as it is now. But, such is the wonder of used cars, something that was overlooked when new can come good once the price drops with age and mileage. And so it is here.

To start with, look at its equipment list. Electric-adjust front seats, leather trim, air conditioning, cruise control; plus a 2.0-litre diesel motor that produces 140bhp yet is good for up to 47mpg overall. It’s big inside and there’s enough room in the back for three grown-ups to sit in comfort. Driving one is never going to give enough excitement to set your pants afire. But frankly if you need excitement from your motoring, you’d never look at one. What it will do is ferry you to journey’s end in big-car style.

Kia MagentisMeanwhile, that modest mileage and service records bode well for few added repair bills beyond servicing, new brakes and tyres. And, if a couple of years on, if it ups and dies then at the asking price you will still have had your money’s worth.

What’s more, it’s a smart enough car but also an anonymous one; the sort you can leave anywhere without worrying too much about whether it will be there when you return. In short, it’s a big car boasting luxury touches for a small amount of cash. The keener-eyed among you will have already spotted that the screen price shown in our pic (above) is £1000 dearer than what's currently asked. Clearly, the vendors haven't had any interest at the higher figure so have reduced it because they want to shift this car. For its current price, it's a sound buy:  we reckon should run for years yet but, if it doesn’t, you'd offload it for scrap and start again. You just can’t lose.

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