Best selling cars

Last updated: Jun 4, 2015

Looking down this list, it's easy to understand why these cars are the UK's best sellers. They each offer a range of abilities, meaning they can handle almost anything that's asked of them. They're also cheap to run and if you shop around, it shouldn't be hard to get a great deal on the one you're after.

According to figures released by the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT), more new cars were registered for UK roads in 2015 than in any year for a decade. That has much to do with the number of attractive finance deals available at the moment - 75% of buyers purchase their car on finance.

The SMMT found that superminis such as the Ford Fiesta and Vauxhall Corsa continue to grow in popularity. But the organisation is also seeing more buyers choosing models from upmarket brands such as Audi.

More buyers than ever are opting for alternatively fuelled, low-emission cars, thanks to low fuel and road tax bills and the promise of a £5,000 grant for electric cars. Around 5,000 of this kind of vehicle were registered this April – an increase of more than 45% over May 2014.

Here, we run down the best-selling cars so far this year – keep reading for the Carbuyer guide to the UK's top-selling cars.

Ford Fiesta hatchback

More cars bearing the Ford Fiesta name have been sold in the UK than any other model. The current version went on sale in 2008 with a facelift surfacing in late 2013, and it has dominated the best-seller chart more than any other car. It's not hard to see why. The Fiesta is handsome inside and out, well built and comfortable. But it's how the car drives that really sets it apart - it offers a fun driving experience that's close to some so-called sports cars. It's safe, too, with a full five-star crash-test rating, while the most economical models can top 85mpg and emit such a small amount of CO2 that road tax is free. At the other end of the scale is the Fiesta ST, which is our favourite hot hatchback. With a range like that, there's something for everyone. Read more.

Key points

4.4 / 5
Price 
£10,145 - £18,395

Ford Focus hatchback

A set of revisions to the Ford Focus last year have helped this family car maintain a high place on the list of Britain's best-selling cars and ensure a Ford one-two in both April and May 2015 best sellers. The current model features more eye-catching styling that makes it look more upmarket. It still boasts a wide choice of engines, ranging from the excellent 1.0-litre EcoBoost to the powerful 2.0-litre petrol in the Focus ST performance car. No changes were needed underneath, because the Focus is as good to drive as it ever was. Buyers will spot some differences inside, though, as it's now fitted with kit like Ford's SYNC 2 infotainment system with voice recognition and the ability to read out your text messages. Plus, there are fewer buttons on the dashboard, making all this new equipment easier to operate the the old model. Read more.

Key points

4.4 / 5
Price 
£13,995 - £25,885

Vauxhall Corsa hatchback

There's plenty of choice for Vauxhall Corsa buyers. You can choose from three or five-door bodystyles, eight engine variants and nine trim levels. But the reason buyers are still flocking to Vauxhall's supermini is because it's so easy to drive, so cheap to run and such good value. The latest model offers a more upmarket interior than before, plus a cracking 1.0-litre turbocharged engine. But if it's fuel economy you crave, check out the 1.3-litre diesel - what it lacks in refinement, it more than makes up for in MPG - it can return more than 88mpg if you drive it gently. Read more.

Key points

4 / 5
Price 
£9,175 - £16,415

Volkswagen Golf hatchback

The upmarket Volkswagen Golf is another stalwart of Britain's top-selling cars. Few models have such a classy image, meaning they fit right in whether you're parked at the local football club or a posh country club. Estate and convertible models are available, but most choose a three or five-door hatchback. There are versions that'll return almost 90mpg and performance models like the Golf GTI and Golf R are capable of delivering sports-car thrills. Whichever Golf you choose, you'll find it well built, comfortable, safe and fun to drive. The Golf range is well equipped, too: air-con, Bluetooth, DAB digital radio and a dashboard-mounted touchscreen are all standard. Read more.

Key points

4.6 / 5
Price 
£17,595 - £27,185

Vauxhall Astra hatchback

The Vauxhall Astra might not be able to provide the same number of 'smiles per mile' as a Ford Focus, but there's no doubting its ability to sooth away the miles. There's very little noise to bother the driver or passengers on a long run and the suspension on most models is just as cosseting. There are hatchback and estate versions of the Astra available, as well as a three-door hatchback that looks like a sleek coupe. There's also a wide range of engines on offer, the best of which is a 1.6-litre diesel, and there are plenty of different trims to choose from, too. All versions feature air-conditioning and remote central locking, while the Astra also has a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating. Read more.

Key points

3 / 5
Price 
£15,295 - £23,520

MINI hatchback

Jumping from tenth place in April 2015's statistics to 6th in May, the MINI has proved its worth thanks to its chic styling and efficient engine range. There's plenty of choice for buyers too - anything from an entry level One right up to the full-fat John Cooper Works edition. There's even diesel models on offer, which are capable of up to 83mpg. Inside, the dashboard is more conventional than previous generations due to the removal of the massive central speedometer, but it still features wacky switchgear and a set of LEDs running around the new infotainment screen. The MINI is also brilliant to drive; despite it being much larger than the original, it still has the same driving character and feel on the road. Read more.

Key points

4.1 / 5
Price 
£13,935 - £21,260

Volkswagen Polo hatchback

One of the more recent entries to the best sellers list, the Volkswagen Polo has done much of late to impress buyers. The Polo's recent facelift has kept it fresh among its competitive rivals, and features such as a touchscreen infotainment system and automatic braking now come as standard across the model range. Its rivals may be sharper to drive, but we like it for its spacious and high-grade interior and excellent range of engines, which include a 1.4-litre BlueMotion diesel that will provide more than 90mpg. Add that to Volkswagen's reputation for making cars that are built to last and the Polo is more than a little bit tempting. Read more.

Key points

4.6 / 5
Price 
£11,300 - £19,915

Audi A3 Sportback hatchback

The Audi A3 range is wide and varied, but most buyers plump for the A3 Sportback, which is a slightly larger, five-door version of the standard three-door A3. It shares most of the bits you can't see with the Volkswagen Golf and SEAT Leon, but most of the bits you can see and touch are all Audi. That means a classy design and the kind of interior quality that has become the benchmark for small family cars. The A3 is good to drive – although not as sharp as a Ford Focus – and as long as you're careful with your A3's specification, it's comfortable, too. If, like many buyers, you choose the sporty and very handsome S line trim, speak to your dealer about having the stiff sports suspension replaced with the standard setup. It won't cost anything, but will provide a much comfier ride. Read more.

Key points

4.2 / 5
Price 
£19,235 - £35,340

Nissan Qashqai SUV

You can thank the continued success of the British-built Nissan Qashqai for the proliferation of 'crossover' models on UK roads. It was the first to make a real success of the part-hatchback, part-SUV format, but its real genius is its brilliance as a family car. It's one of the safest cars on the road and offers plenty of space for passengers front and back, as well as a good-sized boot. It has a classy, well designed interior and the more upmarket models are crammed with useful technology. Plus, some versions feature four-wheel drive, so they can back up those SUV looks with a bit of go-anywhere ability. Read more.

Key points

4.7 / 5
Price 
£18,545 - £28,910

Nissan Juke SUV

Holding on to the coattails of the more practical Qashqai, the bug-eyed Juke just can't help but be popular among British buyers. Its looks certainly divide opinion, which may be one of the main reasons for the car's big sales statistics. That and the price point - buyers who have previously had hatchbacks won't have to pay much more for a high-riding Juke. The crossover also shares its engines with the Qashqai, so although there may not be a tax-free model, most provide very good fuel economy. Read more.

Key points

3.6 / 5
Price 
£13,930 - £21,910