No used car buyer has ever made a mistake by going for a Volkswagen Golf, with terribly few exceptions (such as the Mk3 GTI), and the Mk6 is now looking like superb value as well.

This was very much the Mk5 thoroughly worked over, with a revised interior, new bumpers and lights and a new range of engines.

This was all worth it, because the market has ended up with a quality-finished, refined and efficient family hatchback that’s always easy to resell, however many owners it has had.

There’s a wide choice of models, so used buyers can plump for the super-efficient Bluemotion or the fun GTI and R, and then there’s also the highly practical Estate.

With the 60/40-split seats down, the already huge boot grows to 1550 litres. There are cargo holds under the load bay and in the sides, plus with standard roof rails it’s ready for work.

Probably the best Golf to take to work is one with the 1.4 TSI petrol engine, because it will get 45mpg in a world that’s turning against diesels.

You don’t necessarily need a Bluemotion to be a proper ecowarrior, as most diesels deliver a solid 60mpg-plus. The 1.9 TDI is all most owners need for lugging, or indeed the 2.0 TDI. Then again, the 1.6 TDI Bluemotion is road tax-free and might just get 74mpg.

Ideally, you will aim to get an SE so that there’s at least climate control and electric rear windows. Otherwise, Match is always the go-to spec that ticks the important comfort boxes.

Check that the air conditioning still works. Door seal failure, diesel turbo oil seal failure are worries, too. It’s more like a computer on wheels that needs reboots and updates, especially on early recalls. Coil packs can malfunction on petrols, and the suspension bushes dry out and fail.

Ones we found

02 Volkswagen golf front quarter for sale