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Seven common used cars that have gone up in value in the past two years – with the Toyota Aygo top

There are seven mainstream cars – thousands of which are on driveways across Britain – that have risen in value in the past two years, despite their huge popularity, have higher mileage and are now older, according to a new report. 

AA Cars – the motoring group’s used-car sales platform – compared the average price of some common motors in the UK and found some five-year-old models have likely made owners money.

So the big question is, do you drive one of them?

Do you own a common car that's appreciated in value? A 2018 Toyota Aygo in 2021 cost an average of £8,331, but the same motor this year is selling for £9,635 - almost 16% more Do you own a common car that's appreciated in value? A 2018 Toyota Aygo in 2021 cost an average of £8,331, but the same motor this year is selling for £9,635 - almost 16% more

Do you own a common car that’s appreciated in value? A 2018 Toyota Aygo in 2021 cost an average of £8,331, but the same motor this year is selling for £9,635 – almost 16% more

The study looked at the average price of models first registered in 2018 that turned three-years-old in 2021. Values were analysed over the three-month period from July to September that year. 

It then checked the price of a 2018 model (now five years old with more mileage on the clock) in the equivalent months in 2023 to see which – if any – had gone up in value. 

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AA Cars found seven had appreciated in price over the past two years as the cost of used vehicles across the country grew dramatically over the period.

In fact, according to AutoTrader’s Retail Price Index, which tracks the average advertised price of 900,000 vehicles on the used car platform, the average price of a second-hand motor in September 2021 was £16,067. 

By September 2023, that average grew to £17,736 – a rise of 10.4 per cent. 

The Toyota Aygo saw the biggest rise, says AA cars. A 2018 example today is worth 15.7 per cent more than it was in 2021. 

The Japanese city car jumped from an average price of £8,331 to £9,636 over that period.

A 2018 Vauxhall Corsa would have cost £8,754 in 2021. However, it is now up to £9,791 - a rise of £1,037 or 11.9% A 2018 Vauxhall Corsa would have cost £8,754 in 2021. However, it is now up to £9,791 - a rise of £1,037 or 11.9%

A 2018 Vauxhall Corsa would have cost £8,754 in 2021. However, it is now up to £9,791 – a rise of £1,037 or 11.9%

A 2018 VW Polo similar to the one pictured would have cost £12,579 on the used market at three years old in 2021. But today, a 2018 Polo is worth even more, changing hands for £13,592 on average, says AA Cars A 2018 VW Polo similar to the one pictured would have cost £12,579 on the used market at three years old in 2021. But today, a 2018 Polo is worth even more, changing hands for £13,592 on average, says AA Cars

A 2018 VW Polo similar to the one pictured would have cost £12,579 on the used market at three years old in 2021. But today, a 2018 Polo is worth even more, changing hands for £13,592 on average, says AA Cars

Another small, affordable motor that's jumped in value in the last couple of years is Fiat's 500 Another small, affordable motor that's jumped in value in the last couple of years is Fiat's 500

Another small, affordable motor that’s jumped in value in the last couple of years is Fiat’s 500

Also among the biggest risers in Vauxhall’s Corsa, which has towards the top of the sales charts for the last few years, taking the number one spot from Ford’s Fiesta in 2021.

READ MORE: ‘Mondeo Man’ is quids in: Value of 20-year-old Ford family car soars along with Vauxhall Corsas and Renault Meganes

AA Cars says the average sale price of a three-year-old example in 2021 was £8,754, but a five-year-old Corsa today is going for £9,791 – that’s 11.9 per cent more.

And it appears the motors that are making their owners most money are all small vehicles that are fuel efficient, have low insurance premiums, are cheap to tax and generally offer affordable running costs – and are likely targets as first time cars for young drivers. 

Among the others that appear to be making their owners money are the VW Polo (rising 8.1 per cent), Fiat 500 (7.3 per cent), Toyota Yaris (4.8 per cent) and Britain’s most-bought – and most-owned – car, the Ford Fiesta (4 per cent).

Rounding out the seven cars said to have gone up in value in the last two years is Ford’s Focus, which gradually rose by just under 1 per cent.

AA Cars’ analysis of the cost of the most searched-for cars on its site found that prices remain 3.4 per cent higher than last year. 

However, the average prices of the UK’s most popular used cars fell by 1.4 per cent between the second quarter of the year and the third.

THE COMMON USED CARS THAT HAVE GONE UP IN VALUE IN THE LAST 2 YEARS 
Model Price of three-year-old car in Q3 2021 Price of five-year-old car in Q3 2023 Price increase: (£)  Price increase (%)
Toyota Aygo £8,331 £9,635 £1,304  15.7%
Vauxhall Corsa £8,754 £9,791 £1,037  11.9%
VW Polo £12,579 £13,592 £1,013  8.1%
Fiat 500 £8,972 £9,626 £654  7.3%
Toyota Yaris £12,273 £12,865 £592  4.8%
Ford Fiesta £11,455 £11,910 £455  4.0%
Ford Focus £14,152 £14,255 £103  0.7%
Source: AA Cars

A 2018 Toyota Yaris has risen in value by 4.8% in the last two years, the study claims A 2018 Toyota Yaris has risen in value by 4.8% in the last two years, the study claims

A 2018 Toyota Yaris has risen in value by 4.8% in the last two years, the study claims

Ford's Fiesta is the most-owned car in Britain. Despite there being over 1.5million on the road, a 2018 example has reportedly jumped in value by 4% in the last two years Ford's Fiesta is the most-owned car in Britain. Despite there being over 1.5million on the road, a 2018 example has reportedly jumped in value by 4% in the last two years

Ford’s Fiesta is the most-owned car in Britain. Despite there being over 1.5million on the road, a 2018 example has reportedly jumped in value by 4% in the last two years

Ford's Focus is the last mainstream car to make the list suggesting owners could have made money on the vehicle in the last two years Ford's Focus is the last mainstream car to make the list suggesting owners could have made money on the vehicle in the last two years

Ford’s Focus is the last mainstream car to make the list suggesting owners could have made money on the vehicle in the last two years

Mark Oakley, Director of AA Cars, said: ‘With the exception of some classic vehicles, we rarely see cars increase in value as they age. 

‘Yet persistent supply shortages mean some of the most in-demand models are still appreciating even as they sit on the driveway.

‘This includes the Ford Fiesta, which consistently tops the list of the UK’s most popular cars, and the trendy city car the Fiat 500.

‘Used cars less than three years old have often been bought on finance, and many have had just one owner — meaning they are often in good condition, and could be a great choice for drivers seeking value for money.

‘Price appreciation isn’t happening across the board, and great deals are available on a wide range of cars to suit all budgets.

‘We advise anyone who is in the market for a used car to shop around and work out what price that model typically sells for at different mileages and ages.

‘It is also worth booking an independent vehicle inspection before you buy, to make sure there is not a problem with the car that could cost you more money to repair.’

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