Cheap and cheerful isn’t good enough anymore. We really don’t care about the colour, or whether a car has got an electric lumbar support – the one thing that a used car must be is economical.

Ideally it should be cheap to tax, insure and fuel. So with a nominal budget of not very much at all, which frugal beauties should we be considering? Here’s a mixed selection of cheapies that our worthy of consideration.

Vauxhall Astra 1.7 DTi

It’s all very well to pick a happy shopper with three doors and tiny boot, but what most families really want is a spacious and comfy vehicle that is going to be truly practical. The Vauxhall Astra is that vehicle and in 1.7 DTi form will officially deliver a rather excellent 58.9mpg overall (claimed). The estate is superbly flexible. Well-used models can have issues related to suspension and electrics, but very rattly engines could mean a new timing chain, which could cost more than you paid.