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The best cars for £400 per month

  • Selection of SUVs and sports cars available
  • Surprisingly affordable upmarket models
  • We’ve found the best PCP and lease deals

Written by Graham King Published: 23 April 2024 Updated: 30 April 2024

A monthly payment of £400 gets you an awful lot of car. Indeed, that amount will get you a new car deal on just about any type of car you could want, whether you’re looking for a family-friendly SUV, a posh saloon, or a sporty little number. You’ll find all of those, and more, on this list of the best cars for £400 per month.

We’re looking at both leasing and personal contract purchase (PCP) deals. To secure a PCP deal, you pay a deposit then a series of monthly payments. When those payments end, you can make the optional final payment to take full ownership of the car, or give it back.

Leasing – technically called personal contract hire, or PCH – is effectively a long-term rental. You make an initial payment followed by monthly payments. At the end, you just hand the car back.

If your budget doesn’t quite stretch to £400 a month, check out our pick of the best cars available for £300 a month.

Best new cars for £400 a month 2024

Desirable, well-built electric SUV

The Enyaq is so good that Parkers named it our Car of The Year in 2022 and it remains one of the best electric cars. In many ways, it’s the perfect family car. It’s hugely spacious, has a vast boot, comes well-equipped, it’s great value and provides decent range. There are no ‘look at me’ EV gimmicks either, so it’s an easy first step into electrification.

Our budget stretches to the Enyaq 85 Edition model which has 348 miles of range, triple-zone climate, adaptive cruise control, clever variable LED lights, front and rear parking sensors, and a rear-view camera. Most importantly, you get the biggest battery and a potential real-world range of around 300 miles.

To find out more, read our full Skoda Enyaq review


  • Comfortable and roomy interior
  • Good electric range
  • All-wheel-drive available


  • Options jack up the price
  • Looks a bit plain

Baby hot hatch is feisty and fun

Supermini-size hot hatchbacks are rare, these days. Now the Ford Fiesta ST is no more, your best options aside from the i20 N are the slower Volkswagen Polo GTI and more expensive MINI JCW. Out of these, the Hyundai is the best of the bunch, combining very quick acceleration with pin-point handling.

It’s not quite as joyous as the Fiesta, but it’s more practical and better equipped. The great news is that although it might not be around for too much longer, the i20 N is comfortably within budget, and probably the most fun available for the money.

To find out more, read our full Hyundai i20 N review


  • Serious speed, fabulous handling
  • Very well-equipped
  • Surprisingly practical


  • Stiff ride
  • Iffy interior materials

Smart premium hatchback makes a great performance car

The 1 Series is one of those ‘do everything’ cars. It’s spacious enough for a young family yet a convenient size for single people and couples. It’s adept on a country road and comfy on motorways. It’s practical and easy to park, and well equipped.

All in all, it’s one of the very best hatchbacks on the market. Add in a potent 306hp motor, four-wheel drive grip and the best steering in the business, and you're left with one of the best all-rounders for your money. We've lived with one for six months and prefer rate it very highly indeed.

To find out more, read our full BMW M135i review


  • Excellent performance
  • Great to drive
  • Smooth, quiet ride


  • A bit cramped in the back
  • Fiddly infotainment

Stylish and engaging family-size SUV

The CX-60 is an unusual choice perhaps, but in a market that's rapidly losing diesel options, this recent addition to the model range is a great option for people looking for a large SUV for towing. There’s lots to like about it – for one, it looks great, the interior feels special and it’s not bad to drive.

Thrown in strong practicality, reliability and a network of excellent, often family-owned dealers, and the CX-60 diesel builds a strong case for itself. The 254hp power unit feels muscular and is also surprisingly efficient.

To find out more, read our full Mazda CX-60 review


  • Premium interior quality
  • Good to drive
  • Generous standard features


  • Not the roomiest option
  • Ride quality isn't great

Deeply handsome saloon that’s great to drive

It’s a such a good-looking car, the Giulia. Its rival mid-size saloons tend to look like smaller versions of their manufacturers’ bigger models, but the Giulia has a look and character all its own. It handles with a life and agility that it’s rivals can’t quite match, either.

It’s also practical enough for family life and the latest version has brilliantly user-friendly infotainment system. The mid-range Veloce model has Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, satnav, adaptive cruise control, electric leather seats and a heated steering wheel. With a 280hp petrol engine, it’s rapid and does 30mpg-ish.

To find out more, read our full Alfa Romeo Giulia review


  • Best-looking mid-size saloon
  • Usefully spacious
  • Just delightful to drive


  • Interior quality lags behind rivals
  • Efficiency isn’t great

Seven-seater family SUV is increasingly good value

Globally, the Tiguan is Volkswagen’s bestselling car, and a new version has gone on sale. But the seven-seater Allspace version is going to be around a little longer, and well worth looking at. There’s vast passenger and boot space packed into its compact-ish body, it’s very well made, hugely comfortable and comes well-equipped.

It’s not exactly interesting to drive but it's easy and trustworthy. In Life guise, the Tiguan has satnav, Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, three-zone climate control and adaptive cruise control. The 130hp petrol engine twins adequate performance with decent efficiency.

To find out more, read our full Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace review


  • Hugely spacious and practical
  • Deeply comfortable
  • Efficient engines


  • A few irksome controls
  • Rather dull to drive

Pragmatic family car choice

After a five-seater estate car that offers great value, acres of room and masses of comfort? The outgoing Skoda Superb Estate should be firmly on your radar while it remains on the list of leases available. It looks up-to-date, features efficient engines and although the interior is conservative, it’s hugely functional and roomy.

The boot is one of the largest for its class and the rear seats offer limousine levels of lounging room. Fold them down and it does essentially turn the Superb Estate into a small and rather stylish van.

To find out more, read our full Skoda Superb Estate (2015-2024) review


  • Comfortable
  • Spacious interior
  • Easy to drive


  • Replaced by a new model
  • Not that sharp to drive

The best sports car for the money

The MX-5 may seem like a niche product, but it actually has an enormously broad appeal. It could be your weekend toy, you could be dipping your toe into sports car ownership, or you could be a serial MX-5 owner. No matter where you fall on this line, the MX-5 will reward you with entertainment. It's without doubt the best way to get convertible fun at this end of the market and can compete against much more expensive machinery in terms of driver engagement.

It also has an outstanding reputation for reliability. If you search around, both the 1.5-litre and 2.0-litre engines are available comfortably within budget. Despite being cheaper, we can't recommend the 1.5-litre. It's noticeably slower and not all that much less expensive per month compared with the larger unit.

To find out more, read our full Mazda MX-5 review


  • Enormously good to drive
  • Well-executed yet inexpensive
  • Remarkably cheap to run


  • Very compact interior
  • Tiny boot

Easy-to-use and surprisingly posh family SUV

The X-Trail may look a bit like a standard-fit SUV, but the truth is that it's much more adaptable than it looks. You can have it with a mild hybrid or our chosen full hybrid E-Power engine, front or four-wheel drive and with five or seven seats. Oh, and five trim levels too. Loads of options there, and they're all solid.

Around £400 per month will unlock a great number of these variations. We recommend going for the hybrid in five-seat configuration, in well-equipped Tekna form.

Read our full Nissan X-Trail review


  • Hybrid is refined
  • Spacious as a five-seater
  • Posh interior


  • Rivals are sharper to drive
  • Cramped third row of seats

**These deals are indicative examples of some packages available as of 23 April 2024 but are subject to change without prior notice. Everyone’s financial circumstances are different, and the availability of credit is subject to status. Terms, conditions and exclusions apply. Parkers cannot recommend a deal for you specifically.