A woman is charging an electric car.

The 5 cheapest cars on subscription

We take a look at the cheapest subscription cars you can get on a budget!
X min
  • There are many cars on subscriptions which won't break the bank.
  • The cheapest car we could find starts from £275 per month.
  • Car subscriptions are a growing trend so why not try the service with a cheap car?

Everyone likes a good value – especially when it comes to cars. We take a look at the cheapest cars you can get on subscription in the UK. Also, you may want to check this guide which explains what affects the cost of car subscription.

Historically, you will have had to worry about the monthly running costs but with a subscription, all of that is taken care of. You have to budget for one simple, all-inclusive monthly bill.

Fiat 500

Outdoor photo of a Fiat 500.
  • Engine: Petrol (mild hybrid)
  • Fuel economy: 60.1-61.4mpg (combined)
  • 0-62mph: 13.8 secs

The Fiat 500 proves that small, cheap cars don’t have to skimp on style or desirability. In its latest incarnation, the baby Fiat uses a 1-litre petrol engine with mild hybrid assistance. As with most mild hybrids, it drives like a normal petrol-engined car with no electric-only mode and no need to plug in. 

This is a car built for chic city streets. Performance is reasonably peppy around town, with quick steering and nimble handling. It feels less at home on the motorway, where the small engine needs to be worked quite hard to maintain progress, but it’s fine for occasional long distance trips. If you're an EV enthusiasts, you can go for the electric version of the Fiat 500.

The interior is vibrant and colourful, with plenty of room for front seat passengers. It’s a different story in the back, however, with limited head and leg room, plus a boot that’s barely big enough for a week’s shopping. But the Fiat 500 has never been about practicality. It’s fun to drive, cute to look at and extremely cheap to run. That’s particularly true of this subscription deal from Evogo, which is one of the cheapest on the market.

Renault Zoe R135

Outdoor photo of Renault Zoe.
  • Battery: 52kWh
  • Range: 290 miles
  • 0-62mph: 9.5 secs

Well worth considering. The electric Zoe first arrived back in 2012 and has won wide acclaim for its good looks, interior design and comfort. It was comprehensively updated in 2020, and now comes with greater range, improved performance and more equipment.

Among its most striking features is its surprising interior space. The Zoe is one of the smallest electric cars on the market, and it can’t quite match the practicality of its larger competitors, but there’s more room inside than you might expect from its compact dimensions.

Of course, the Zoe was never intended to be a performance car, but because it’s electric you get instant response and strong initial acceleration. It’s a great little car that will fit everywhere in the big city and yet still be able to conquer the motorway without any issues. We really think this one is a create budget car subscription option!

This particular deal from Voltric was among the cheapest that we could find for any electric car. It has a 12-month minimum term, and unlike some electric car subscriptions you don’t get free charging thrown in, but everything else is included, making this one of the cheapest ways to join the electric revolution.

Fiat 500e

Outdoor photo of Fiat 500e.
  • Battery: 42 kWh
  • Range: 199 miles (official WLTP figure)
  • 0-62mph: 9.0 secs

Hang on, haven’t we just had a Fiat 500? Well, yes, but this is the New 500, sometimes known as the 500e. As that little ‘e’ implies, this is the standard 500’s all-electric sister car. It shares the same cute styling and funky yet affordable ethos, but under the skin this is a completely new design.

The all-electric New 500 feels nippier than the standard petrol model. That extra performance, along with big car features like cruise control also help it to feel a little more capable on the motorway, although it’s still best suited to use around town. 

Being a brand new electric car, you will pay more on your monthly subscription than the cheapest petrol or diesel models. However, lower running costs should help to offset that, plus electric cars are exempt from the London Congestion Charge and can even be eligible for free parking in some areas.

Nissan Juke

Outdoor photo of Nissan Juke.
  • Engine: Petrol
  • Fuel economy: 48.7mpg (combined)
  • 0-62mph: 10.7 secs

We’ve had small petrol cars and we’ve had small electric cars. But what if you want a bit more space without paying a fortune? The Nissan Juke sits towards the smaller end of the SUV spectrum, but it still offers a significant step up in practicality from a traditional supermini. It’s also one of the most eye-catching cars in its class and it’s surprisingly good to drive.

The appealing design continues inside, with interesting shapes and textures that help the Juke’s cabin to stand out from its more utilitarian rivals. Even in base-spec Visia trim it looks good, and there’s plenty of standard kit too, including DAB radio, cruise control and Intelligent Emergency Braking.

We’d be tempted to look out for one of the better-equipped Acenta or Tekna models, but this £300/month deal from Evogo provides a compact family car for city car pricing. Running costs should be reasonable with the frugal 1-litre DIG-T engine too. 

Volvo XC40 Core

Outdoor photo of Volvo XC40.
  • Engine: Petrol
  • Fuel economy: 42.2mpg (combined)
  • 0-62mph: 8.6 secs

Here’s one that frankly took us aback a little. For around the same price as the Fiat 500e above you could get a stylish and sophisticated Volvo XC40 from the Swedish manufacturer’s own subscription service, Care by Volvo.

There is a catch in that Volvo currently has a lengthy waiting list (six to nine months at the time of writing). This is also the base model in the XC40 range, but that’s very much a relative term. It still comes with automatic transmission, a 9-inch touchscreen infotainment system, built-in Google integration, parking assistance and even a powered tailgate. And that’s on top of the XC40’s strong levels of comfort and performance, plus Volvo’s legendary attention to safety – witnessed on this car by a five-star Euro NCAP rating. 

The cabin is full of clever little details like a removable waste bin between the front seats, and it’s big enough to seat five adults in comfort, with a decent-sized boot behind. Interior quality is impressive too, so although this lacks some of the luxuries of the more expensive models it still feels a cut above most of its competitors at this price.

How to choose the cheapest car

Cheap cars are a relative term. You will generally pay more upfront for electric cars and those that offer more space or greater luxury. But the deals are out there if you shop around.

The key thing is to start off with your requirements. For instance, if you mostly do short trips around town, where space is at a premium, then a compact electric car like the Fiat 500e might be a good option – especially if you live in an area like London where there are financial incentives to go electric.

That said, if your mileage is very low and you’re on a tight budget, you may find that the lower upfront costs of taking out a subscription on a petrol car like the regular Fiat 500 works out cheaper overall. There’s also the convenience of being able to refuel at a traditional filling station to take into account.

Inevitably, you will pay more for larger cars. However, the Nissan Juke and the Volvo XC40 arguably offer the best value for money in this list, especially for small families that want to venture further afield. 

To find out more about car subscriptions, you can check out our guide 5 Good Reasons to Run a Car on Subscription.  You can also see all car subscription cars under £500 per month - we update the list every time a new car is added to our inventory.

Browse all cars available on subscription

There are hundreds of cars available via UK subscription companies.

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