A used Citroen DS3 is a super stylish supermini, and one of our favourite used French cars. The car is notable for the amount of customisation options on offer, including two-tone roof colour options and alloy wheels. In fact, there's 2 body colours, 10 roof colours, and 14 roof decals to choose from - plus our wide range of used stock means that there'll always be a DS3 to suit your taste.
DS3 models are well equipped, with a classy interior and alloy wheels as standard. Models such as the Dstyle Plus come with cruise control, climate control and automatic headlights. It comes as a three-door only, but offers comfortable space for up to five adults and has an impressive boot space of 285 litres.
There are also numerous engine options available. Best for economy are two diesel choices in the e-1.6HDi, which offers up to 78.5mpg on the combined cycle. Even more impressive is the BlueHDi 120 which achieves a similar 78.5mpg and emissions of just 94g/km of CO2 - yet has an output of 120PS for both strong performance and economy.
For pure performance, the best choice is the THP 155 - a turbocharged 1.6 litre engine with 155PS - which manages 0-60mph in just 7.5 seconds
The 207 is an extremely popular car, and it's no wonder that it makes in to our top 10 used French cars. The main benefits are the spacious interior, which offers a deceptive amount of room for a small hatchback, and the clear intuitive dashboard designed to keep eyes on the road.
The 207 is a fun car to drive, with good steering feedback and positive transmission which makes it a good motorway cruiser. Engines such as the 1.6HDi diesel are ideal for this, and continue Peugeot's tradition for strong diesel engines with plenty of power and a good economy. The 1.6HDi manages 61.3mpg and just 119g/km of CO2 emissions.
Equipment on the S model includes air conditioning, a trip computer and heated door mirrors, whilst higher spec sports trim comes with alloy wheels, front sports seats, front fog lights, and a leather steering wheel. The 207 is also extremely safe, and comes with a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating. As standard, the 207 comes with dual front and side airbags.
A used Peugeot 207 makes a good buy thanks to a timelessly stylish design, whilst it's good to drive and a range of engines keep the 207 economical.
The Renault Megane comes in a variety of different body styles, but remains a hugely desirable car. Most favourable is the hatchback, which offers the best of both worlds in terms of sporty looks and practicality.
The standard Megane is a supremely comfortable car with a good ride quality (in part thanks to the new model being 8kg lighter) and confident handling. Both the coupe and the hatchback are practical, with the 372-litre boot on the hatchback providing enough room for a set of suitcases or golf clubs.
All Megane models come with typical Renault build quality and reliability, making them an assured used purchase. The interior features a range of tactile and comfortable materials, whilst standard equipment levels are high. All Megane models come with air conditioning, electric windows and heated mirrors as standard.
Don't worry though if the Megane sounds too sensible for your tastes - the engine options have your sporty side covered. A 1.9 litre dCi is the choice diesel, offering a healthy 128bhp from a six-speed gearbox that is perfectly suited to long distance journeys and motorway cruising.
Used Renault Megane models are also available with a 2.0 litre TCe petrol engine, which is no longer available new and offers 177bhp, with an impressive 37mpg economy.
One of the best looking cars on our list, the sporty French coupe is going toe-to-toe with cars such as the Volkswagen Scirocco and SEAT Ibiza to take the hot hatchback title. The RCZ is one of our top used French cars because of the great drive it offers and the concept-car looks.
The RCZ hugs the ground and looks every bit intentional. The best part is that there's a range of engines on offer and means you can tailor your driving experience from true performance coupe to an everyday driver with strong acceleration.
Standard equipment is generous, including climate control, front fog lights, cruise control and sports seats as standard. This means all RCZ models feel just as special on the inside as they look on the outside. Despite the sweeping roofline there are four seats available, and the interior is surprisingly spacious which also means it could be used as a family car.
The Citroen C1, since its release in 2005, has become synonymous with quality, affordable city cars. The C1 had sister cars in the Peugeot 107 and the Toyota Aygo, but the Citroen stands out as the most recognisable of the three.
It was most notable for its 1.0 litre, rev-happy yet frugal 68bhp petrol engine. The three cylinder engine brings out the best of the C1's fun-driving characteristics with a hearty thrum, yet offers up impressive economy at just 65.7mpg and emissions below 100g/km that ensure that there's free road tax.
The gearbox is nice and smooth, whilst the steering is built for city driving with a light feel. There's room for four in both the 3-door and 5-door models, and a 139 litre boot handles the weekly shop well. In terms of standard equipment, the C1 comes with a CD player and MP3 connections, but look further up the range to find features such as air conditioning or leather seats.
There's a large variety when it comes to used Citroen C1 vehicles, especially as the revised C1 was released in 2014. You can see a review of the new Citroen C1 here.
Citroen C4 Picasso
The C4 Picasso is arguably the class leader in the MPV segment. It's a combination of desirable styling and robust practicality which makes it score so highly, whilst the ride is geared fully towards comfort and offers significant cushioning even over uneven roads and potholes.
The engines include a pair of diesels in the 1.6HDi, which manages an impressive 48.8mpg on the combined cycle, and the 2.0HDi which has plenty of pulling power and is suited to frequent motorway driving. Two petrol engines are also available, in the 1.6 VTi and the turbocharged 1.6 THP 155. They offer 120bhp and 155bhp respectively, with straight-line pace perfect for city driving though the economy can't match that of the frugal diesel engines.
All used Citroen C4 Picasso models come with a plethora of safety options, and include hill start assist, seven airbags, four isofix anchors, and an electronic stability programme as standard. This lead to it being awarded a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating so there's no worries there.
Other standard equipment across the range includes cruise control, electric windows, and air conditioning is included on all models apart from the basic-specification LX. Options can include rear parking sensors, alloy wheels and front fog lights.
The Renault Twingo is the quintessential French city car. The small dimensions of the car and the easy-going steering mean it's perfect for negotiating the city streets. Modern styling cues mean that the Twingo also looks incredibly sharp, with typical Renault styling that echoes the rest of the range.
All models use a variation of the same 1.2-litre engine which is tried and tested, giving good economy and reliability. The base model receives a 60bhp variant, whilst a 75bhp version of the same engine is also available.
Whilst not lightning quick, emissions are good and the economy stands at a more than competent 55mpg. A turbocharged, 100bhp variant, is also available on higher specification models, which provides the pace for dual carriageway driving and motorway cruising.
Standard equipment includes a CD stereo, electric front windows, and remote central locking. Keep an eye out for used Renault Twingo models with Dynamique, GT, Gordini and I-Music trim as these can have air conditioning and added features such as cruise control.
The Renault Clio feels like a much bigger car than it actually is, thanks to an abundance of interior space from the extended wheelbase. This, coupled with the superior in-class ride comfort and refinement of the Clio could have you mistaking this moderate hatchback for a much bigger car.
The suspension in the Clio glides over pothole-ridden B-roads and uneven surfaces, whilst it's also extremely safe, with a full 5-Star Euro NCAP safety rating. Standard safety features include anti-lock brakes, and passenger, side and driver airbags.
A used Renault Clio was originally available with available six engines -helpfully split in to three petrol engines and three diesel. In 2007, the 1.4 and 1.6 litre petrol models were replaced with a 1.2 litre turbocharged unit which offers 100bhp of performance.
The diesel engines keep up the Renault tradition of ultimate refinement and smooth performance. Before 2008, a 106bhp unit was available which offers impressive torque and low-down punch that's equally suited to both city and motorway driving.
After this time, the choice unit is the 1.5 litre dCi with 86bhp, which offers the impressive economy of a diesel with the off-line pace of a petrol engine.
The Peugeot 308 is billed as a luxury option in the B-Segment, and thus comes with a luxury, high quality interior as standard. Equipment available with all models includes a CD player with mp3 capability, and entry level models such as the Access even include air conditioning.
The choice engines for the 308 are in diesel form, and the 1.6HDi engine which has impressive economy of 58mpg. A car of this size needs a good amount of pulling power to give assurance and confidence in overtaking, and it manages this with ease in either the 90bhp or 110bhp variant. From 2010 onwards, a 2.0 litre HDi diesel powertrain is available with a powerful 140bhp output and a respectable economy of 47mpg.
The luxury feel of the 308 is accentuated by generous proportions, which mean there's more than plenty of room for 5 adults and headroom aplenty. The ride is refined, with generally little wind or road noise getting in to the cabin - whilst engine noise even on diesel models is whisper quiet.
A used Peugeot 308 is also safe, with a five-star Euro NCAP safety rating for adult occupants. Standard safety equipment includes ABS and a full set of airbags. Most models of the 308 also come with ESP as standard which can help drivers retain control even in a skid.
The only French crossover on our list - but it's definitely a good one. The Captur is a good looking, yet practical crossover SUV which drives like a small hatchback. After all, it's based on the well-riding Clio, so it soaks up bumpy roads with similar aplomb and also means it's easy to park and drive around town centres.
Engines come in the form of two petrol engines and one diesel. There's a perky 1.2 litre petrol engine with 118bhp which provides more than enough power, as well as an 89bhp 1.5 litre diesel. Both combine well with the taut, hatchback-style handling of the Captur to create a very easy-driving car.
The elevated passenger space also means there's plenty of room for five adults. Boot space is also impressive, standing at 455 litres with the rear seats pushed forwards, which is enough for three of four large suitcases. Plus, as it's based on the Clio it comes with a range of tried and tested engines and solid underpinnings which means although it's a relatively new model, the reliability of the Captur should be proven.
A used Renault Captur also comes with a high level of standard kit, including mp3 connectivity, a cruise control and speed limiter function, and alloy wheels. If it's a Sat-Nav you're after then the Dynamique MediaNav trim has satellite navigation integrated in to the centre console.