LeaseCar UK Logo
Rated 4.9 out of 5 on Trustpilot

4.9 out of 5 on Trustpilot

What Car Should I Lease?

Choosing a new car is exciting but it can also feel quite daunting at times. If you choose to lease your next vehicle, your budget will go further. 

There are thousands of different makes and models to consider. That's great news, but it can be time-consuming to research multiple vehicles. It's important to be sure that you select a car that's going to meet your needs, both now and in the coming years.

One of the most attractive benefits of leasing is that you can choose a brand new vehicle. That means you get to enjoy all the latest technologies, driver assist features and aesthetic design developments, without the cost of paying for a new car. If you've found yourself asking ‘what car should I get?', you might just need our help.

Years ago, deciding on a car probably felt a lot easier. There were fewer manufacturers, less models and trims available and a smaller range of features to choose from. However, there are so many more options today, that it can all start to feel a bit overwhelming. 

Although there's certainly more things to think about now, the basics remain the same: Decide on your priorities first. That enables you to narrow down the list of potentials right from the start - trust us, it makes life a lot easier (and takes a lot less time than starting your search without any idea of what you're looking for from your next lease car). It might also be helpful to take a look around a big car park or spend some time online browsing the latest models. Even if it doesn't help you choose the exact vehicle you want to lease, it should give you an idea of the style and shapes that appeal to you.

Although your list of priorities is important, driving a car that makes you feel good is also something to think about. Our homes, holidays and cars are where many of us invest the most money, and we spend more time in our homes and cars than anywhere else. In our opinion, life is too short to drive a car that doesn't put a smile on your face. And with so much choice out there, there's no reason why you won't be able to find a vehicle that ticks all the right boxes and still makes every mile a pleasure.

This handy guide is written to help you decide on your next vehicle. Whether you're looking for a speedy machine with plenty of kerb presence or an estate car with space for your family, dog and camping equipment, we'll help you make the right choice. 

And if you find you need a little more help, just give us a call and we'll help you choose the perfect car.

Let's get started with your list of priorities

This should be the very first thing you do: make a list of what you need from your car. What do you use your car for every day? Do you take longer road trips? Do you have a long commute? Is most of your driving in town or do you live out in the sticks?

How many people normally travel in your car? Do you often carry passengers in the rear and are they children? What about child car seats - some cars are certainly more suited to getting in and out of the back with such bulky items, and they have features that make the child seats and booster seats safer and more comfortable for their little occupants.

Is speed, acceleration and performance your priority? What about reliability, safety and your budget? There's a lot to think about but trust us, making this list as comprehensive as possible can save you a lot of time down the line when you're narrowing down your options.

Making this list is helpful to identify what you need, what you'd like to have and also what you don't need. For example, if you're a city driver who rarely ventures away from home, or uses another mode of transport for longer trips away, it's unlikely that a car with four-wheel-drive is absolutely essential. Of course, there's nothing wrong with having it, but there might be more important things on your list.

It might even be worthwhile talking to friends, relatives or work colleagues about their own cars - have they had any problems, what's good or bad about them? You'll find that some people will always drive a car made by the same manufacturer. There's nothing wrong with being a creature of habit, of course. But, the fact that there are so many options to choose from these days makes it a shame to stick to what you know just for the sake of it (in our opinion, anyway!)

Spend some serious time on your list. It's very important. However, if you get stuck or you're not sure about what your priorities are when it comes to leasing your next car, give our leasing team a call.

We deal with thousands of drivers and thousands of cars, which all have different pros and cons. We're happy to help you decide what you should consider.

What manufacturer should I choose?

Once you're got your list of priorities sorted (or at least a firm idea of it in your own mind), it's time to think about the brand of car you'd like to lease. Choosing the right car manufacturer, or at least narrowing down your options in order to meet your needs, can feel like a difficult decision to make. But, it's an important decision nonetheless. 

At this point, there's no need to settle on just one manufacturer, as you'll undoubtedly find that there are several that meet your needs. However, narrowing down your list can be helpful.

If you need more information about different car manufacturers (and there are more and more every year), the internet is your friend. Why not take a look at some credible car review sites, such as What Car?The people who write these reviews live and breathe new cars and spend their working days comparing manufacturers and models, so they provide really useful information. Take a look, but remember that you're also reading about the writer's personal preference. You'll find that reviews written by different people can contradict each other. 

However, it should give you a broad idea of what manufacturers are around and what their latest offerings are. There are also annual car awards, such asParkers New Car Awards, which you might find interesting when you're thinking about choosing a manufacturer.

You should also consider having a browse through the LeaseCar website, as there's a vast range of vehicles to choose from.

Like everything else in life, by spending some time weighing up different information and opinions, you can make a more informed decision. Here are just a few things to consider when deciding which car manufacturer might suit your needs:


Reliability is an important factor to consider when choosing a car manufacturer. You want to choose a brand that has a reputation for producing reliable cars. 

Of course, we all want to drive a car that's reliable. And, the good news is that just about every new car these days is incredibly reliable. 

The car industry is very competitive. No manufacturer on Earth wants to tarnish their reputation by releasing a car that becomes best known for its ability to cause problems in this respect. That being said, some manufacturers are particularly known for their ability to release cars that score consistently highly in the reliability stakes, with manufacturers like Toyota and Lexus being among the top 10 most reliable according to What Car?

Choosing a reliable car means that you're not going to worry about it breaking down or going wrong in some way - this helps you avoid downtime and the inconvenience that car problems cause to our busy lives. You can alsoadd a maintenance option to your leaseto cover you for maintenance and repairs - however, it's still better not to have to deal with any unforeseen problems in the first place.

It's a fact of life that the more gadgets and gizmos a car has, the more likely it is to have a problem of some sort. It's a case of simply having more moving parts. This was particularly evident with the earlier all-electric models and hybrid cars but, as this technology has improved, these types of cars are becoming just as reliable as those with conventional engines.

To get a good indication of the reliability of a manufacturer's vehicles, you can look atconsumer reports and reliability rankingsfrom trusted sources. You'll find that the decent online car review sites will usually have a section dedicated to reliability. Don't forget, our car experts are also happy to advise you on reliability, so give us a call if you're unsure.

Safety features

Safety is of utmost importance to most drivers. Thankfully, today's vehicles have plenty of safety tech to keep you and your passengers safe on the roads. In fact, developing new and better safety features is something that many car manufacturers prioritise. Dedicated teams research and test different technologies, adding improved features to their cars with each new model generation. 

That's a key benefit of leasing a brand new vehicle - you get the added protection of all the latest safety tech. Read about the safest cars to lease here.

If safety is near the top of your list of priorities, you'll want to choose a manufacturer that prioritises safety features in their vehicles, including the addition of airbags, active seat belts and advanced driver assistance systems (ADAS). ADAS features include technology like adaptive cruise control, lane departure warning and forward collision warning. These attributes don't just make driving stress-free and easier - they're also proven to help prevent accidents and keep you and your occupants safe on the road.

We'll look at safety features in more detail later in this guide. You can also find useful information online by reading the latest car reviews.

Fuel efficiency

Fuel efficiency is an important consideration when choosing a car. You want to choose a manufacturer that produces fuel-efficient vehicles to save you money on your fuel costs. In an ideal world, we'd all have enough money in the bank to give fuel efficiency low priority - sadly this is not the case for the majority of drivers, especially considering the rising costs of fuel.

If fuel economy is important to you, look for cars that have a good average fuel consumption and low carbon emissions. This will not only save you money at the fuel pumps, but it will also help reduce your carbon footprint.

It's worth noting here that if fuel efficiency concerns you, you might want to consider the various options: diesel, petrol, hybrid and all-electric models. Each type of fuel is suited to different driving styles and different driving needs. If you need advice about this, we're happy to talk through which type of fuel is going to give you the best efficiency, save you the most money and help you minimise your impact on the planet.

If you'd like to find out more about the different fuel options available, check out the handy section found later in this guide.

Innovative technology features - what makes driving fun!

Technology features are becoming increasingly more advanced and impressive in modern vehicles. In fact, the rate that new features are released and their growing capabilities is incredible. 

If technology is your thing, think about choosing a manufacturer that offers the most advanced technology features to enhance your driving experience. Some of the newer manufacturers and some of the less well-known brands are really making huge steps in this area. One example of a manufacturer aiming to innovate is Tesla.

Pay particular attention to features like infotainment systems, smartphone integration and advanced navigation systems. These things can make your driving experience more enjoyable and add that little bit of extra wow-factor to every journey. We'll take a look at this in more detail a bit later on in this guide.

Design and style - driving isn't all about just getting from A to B

Ok, we know that looks aren't everything. However, with manufacturers vying to produce better and better looking models every year, why not choose a car that makes you feel good when you see it sitting on your drive?

Today's drivers demand style, and rightly so. In many ways, the car you drive can reflect your own unique style and image. There are so many different styles to choose from, so take a good look at each manufacturer's range. Most brands have a distinct look that spans across their models, so think about what appeals to you and what doesn't.

Looks don't just apply to the outside of new cars either. The interior is just as important, so you should check out both the interior and exterior to find a vehicle that matches your taste.

Some manufacturers pay more attention to design and style than others and place high importance on things like the materials used for the interior, the placement of controls and the overall feel of the vehicle.

Innovation - it's why we have better and better cars every year!

Some manufacturers are known for their commitment to innovation. This is particularly the case when it comes to alternative power sources, such as fully-electric vehicles, hybrids and new driver assist features. 

Manufacturers who are known for consistent innovation invest heavily in research and development to stay ahead of the competition and to meet the evolving needs of customers. These types of manufacturers are also usually very keenly aware of changing driver expectations and try to meet these needs. This can also involve predicting new trends to stay ahead of the game. 

Design never stands still when it comes to the car industry. Manufacturers such as Tesla, who place a high priority on innovation, are always looking to improve their offerings as often as possible, usually providing more features as standard.

If it's important that the car you lease has all the latest features and technologies on board, look for car manufacturers that have a good reputation in this arena.

Environmental friendliness

Green credentials are increasingly important to car manufacturers around the world, and they should be important to drivers too. Many brands are investing in the design and production of vehicles that are fuel-efficient, emit fewer pollutants and are made from sustainable materials. 

If you're interested in cutting your carbon footprint, you may want to consider taking out a lease on an electric or hybrid vehicle.

If being kind to the environment is on your list of priorities, look for car manufacturers that are known for their sustainability standards, such as Kia.

You can check out our range of electric and hybrid leasing deals here.


In an ideal world, we wouldn't have to think about budget, only choosing cars that we can actually afford. Sadly, that's true for only a few of us. The good news is that leasing a car means you're able to afford far more for your money than you would if you were financing your new vehicle with another method.

Choosing a manufacturer who offers a range of cars within your budget is essential. We recommend you take a look at the lease options on our website for each manufacturer who meets your needs, as this will give you a better idea of what you can comfortably afford. We also have a range of low initial rental deals for those on a budget.

Choosing the right vehicle manufacturer, or several that are suited to your ideal price, requires considering the qualities that they are known for, including:

  • Innovation
  • Reliability
  • Safety
  • Design
  • Green credentials. 

By taking these qualities into account, you can make a more informed decision and create a shortlist of the manufacturers that are most appealing.

What model should I choose?

Once you've decided on a manufacturer (or at least a few that you're willing to consider), the next step is to choose the right model. 

This is where the real fun starts, because there are so many to choose between! Just like choosing the best manufacturer, choosing the right model requires careful consideration of your needs, preference and budget. You'll likely find that each manufacturer on your shortlist offers a vast range of different models. 

So, how do you decide which one is right for you?

Here are some factors to consider when you're looking at different car models to make a decision about which one could be your perfect lease car:

Go back to your purpose… what are you going to do with your car?

Consider what you will be using the car for. If you need a car for commuting, a compact hatchback car might be a good option. If you need a family car, a midsize SUV might be more suited to your needs. 

Smaller cars are easier to park and manoeuvre around busy city streets - they're also usually more fuel efficient. If you don't carry passengers on a regular basis, you need to ask yourself whether you really need to pay for the fuel to power a heavier car around.

Larger cars, estates and SUVs, give you extra space inside and offer more options for leisure use. For example, taking road trips or enjoying weekends away means carrying luggage. If you're travelling with your family, passenger space is going to be a big consideration. Larger cars can also provide a smoother ride and are generally more comfortable for longer journeys.

Model-specific features

Each manufacturer tries to include a model in their range that is suitable for each driver. This means that, once you've narrowed your search down to the manufacturer that suits your needs, you need to look closely at the features that each variation in the range offers. Go back to your list of priorities and see which models tick the right boxes!

You should consider things like:

  • Reliability
  • Safety
  • Design style
  • Entertainment/infotainment systems
  • Interior comfort
  • Sustainability

Today's automotive marketplace is highly competitive, so manufacturers know they're competing in a huge playing field. See what model is going to offer you the most useful features for your budget - you might be surprised at just how much you can afford.

Conversely, if you're looking for features that match your needs, beware of paying for features that you're never going to use or those that aren't important to you.

And if you find you need more help making a decision, don't forget to give us a call!

Fuel efficiency

Today's cars are more fuel-efficient than ever, and there are plenty of options to choose from. You'll find that some models place a high priority on fuel efficiency so, if this is important to you, take a close look at those cars. This is particularly important if you plan to use your car for commuting or long trips. 

Many of today's models mean that there is little compromise in performance for truly great fuel efficiency so even if you're looking for something with plenty of power, you should check out the efficiency statistics too.

Trim levels and price

As well as choosing the model of the car you lease, you'll also be given plenty of options for the trim level. This can be confusing as there are sometimes very little differences between levels and sometimes substantial differences! 

The trim level refers to the amount of features and options the car has. Generally, the higher the trim level, the more features and technology a car will have - and the more expensive it will be to lease.

Trim levels can be denoted by different names depending on the manufacturer, but they generally follow a similar hierarchy. Here are some common trim levels:

  1. Base, budget model or standard - This is the most basic trim level and offers the minimum of features and options.
  2. Mid-range or premium - This is the next step up from the base model and usually offers more features, including advanced safety features, infotainment systems, exterior colour choices and more luxurious interior options.
  3. Top-range or luxury - This is the highest trim level and offers the most features and options, including premium materials, high-end technology and advanced safety features.

The specific traits that are included in each trim level will vary depending on the make and model of the car. Some features that may be included in higher trim levels include things like:

  • Leather seats
  • A panoramic sunroof
  • Better sound systems
  • Larger touchscreen displays
  • More powerful engines

However, these are just a few examples and may not be applicable to every vehicle.

Choose your trim level to match your budget and specific needs. While a higher trim level may add more features, it also comes with a higher monthly lease payment. Some features may not be necessary or relevant. Once the novelty wears off a gizmo or gadget you never use, you'll still be paying for it!

It's also important to remember that every manufacturer wants you to lease a car with its badge on the front, and not one from a competitor. For this reason, you'll find that some base trim levels come with much more equipment and technology than you'd ever imagine. In most cases, the basic trim will offer all you need to make your driving experience pleasurable, as well as providing you with the features you need to be safe and comfortable.

Ultimately, the best way to choose a trim level is to either test drive the car or, if that's not possible, take some time to research the different trim levels of your chosen model. This enables you to compare the features and options to determine which one offers the best value for your own circumstances.

What car should I get? How to choose the colour of your new car

Some people don't put much emphasis on the colour of their new lease car. But we think it's an important decision to make. Remember, your lease car will be new so you can choose whichever colour you like from the provided range for that model - it's a fun decision to make!

We believe that the colour of your car is a statement, as it's a true reflection of your personality. It can certainly have an impact on how you feel about your car and how much you enjoy driving. Whether you want to turn heads wherever you go by choosing a bright yellow, or you're looking to create gravitas with an anthracite grey, here are some tips on how to choose the colour of your new lease car:

Choose a colour that reflects your personality and role

Your car is an extension of your personality, so the colour you choose can reflect that. If you're outgoing, perhaps choose a bright colour like yellow or red. If you prefer a more subdued or classic look, black, white or silver might be more appealing.

It's also worth thinking about whether you'll be using your lease car for business purposes. If your job demands that you present a certain image, consider the colour of the car you choose in this respect. For example, a bright pink car might seem perfect for your weekend social activities, but it might not present the right image at work!

Consider the weather - Britain's weather is changing!

The climate in your area might be worth considering when you're choosing the colour of your new car. Of course, this issue isn't as important in the UK as it is in other areas of the world that have extreme climates. However, we're now getting some extremely hot summers, while some northerly areas of the country are far cooler all year round.

If you're not a fan of feeling hot and sticky in the summer, you might want to consider a lighter colour that reflects sunlight - this will also keep your car cool inside.

Consider maintenance

Not all of us can be found on our drives every Sunday afternoon washing our cars. So, if you're not someone who's fond of hand-washing your car, or if you rarely have time, you should consider this factor when choosing the colour. 

The colour of your car can impact the maintenance required substantially. Lighter colours tend to show dirt and scratches more easily. On the other hand, darker colours will show streaks from washing but hide dirt and scratches better. Matte or metallic finishes may require more specialised cleaning products and processes, which can be expensive in the long run.

What about fashion and resale?

Fashions for car colours change, just as they do for everything else. If you purchase a car in a colour that's popular at the particular time, it can lose value and depreciate when you come to sell it if the preference for the colour has changed. 

Luckily, when you lease a car, you don't have to worry about this, as depreciation is something that is factored into your monthly rentals. You'll be driving a new car every couple of years and resale value is something that won't affect you. When you finish your lease contract, you just hand back the car and the keys, choose another car in whatever colour you fancy and drive away!

Find out more about the process of leasing a car with LeaseCar here.

Metallic Colours

Metallic car colours can look fantastic, but they typically cost more than standard solid paint colours. So, why is that? It's because of the additional processes and materials used to create the shimmering metallic effect.

Standard colours are created using one layer of paint, whereas metallic colours require a base coat and a clear coat, with a middle layer of metallic additive set between them. The metallic particles in the additive are usually made from aluminium or mica. This means that they reflect light, giving the colour a shiny and three-dimensional appearance.

The process of applying metallic paint is also more complex. This is because it's essential to ensure that the metallic particles are evenly distributed. This process creates a smooth and uniform final finish. The undertaking often involves multiple layers of paint, with each layer having to completely dry before the next is added.

In addition to the extra materials and labour required to create the finish, the higher cost of a car with metallic paint can also be attributed to the fact that these colours are usually considered to be more desirable. Metallic finish cars are often in higher demand than those made in standard colours. This is thought to be because metallic colours create an image of luxury and sophistication. They're frequently chosen by buyers who are willing to pay more for a car that stands out from the crowd.

Let's face it, they do look great! Many people who lease cars say that the extra cost is worth it for the added visual appeal and the unique finish metallic colours provide. Metallic paint is often a feature of most advanced trim levels, so check out the details when you're choosing your model and trim.

You can check out the most popular car colours in 2023 here.

What safety features to look out for

We mentioned safety features at the beginning of this guide. As safety is so important - as well it should be - we thought it might be useful to include a rundown of some of the specific features you can find on new cars.

  • Airbags - These activate on impact and protect occupants from serious injuries in the event of a collision. Most new cars come with front airbags, side airbags and sometimes even knee airbags for the driver and front passenger.
  • Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) - This system stops the wheels from locking when you brake suddenly, also preventing skidding.
  • Electronic Stability Control (ESC) - ESC helps to maintain vehicle stability during sudden manoeuvres, such as tight cornering. It works by applying brakes to individual wheels to keep the car on its intended path.
  • Blind Spot Monitoring (BSM) - This feature uses sensors to detect vehicles in the blind spots of the mirrors. 
  • Lane Departure Warning (LDW) - This addition uses sensors to detect when the vehicle is drifting out of its lane without the driver signalling.
  • Forward Collision Warning (FCW) - This system uses sensors to detect when the vehicle is approaching an obstacle too quickly, alerting them in the process. 
  • Automatic Emergency Braking (AEB) - AEB uses cameras or sensors to detect when a collision with another vehicle or obstacle is imminent. The system automatically applies the brakes to prevent the collision.
  • Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) - ACC detects the distance between your vehicle and the car in front. It enables you to maintain a safe distance by automatically adjusting your speed.
  • Rearview cameras - These cameras provide you with a clear view of what is behind the car - they're also absolutely fantastic for parking safely!
  • Intelligent Speed Assistance (ISA) - This system uses GPS to tell you what the current speed limit is - it can even limit your vehicle's speed by itself.
  • Driver drowsiness and attention warning systems - These features detect if the driver is becoming drowsy or distracted and sounds an alert.
  • Emergency Stop Signals - These signals activate the hazard warning lights when your vehicle brakes suddenly, alerting the drivers behind you.
  • Accurate tire pressure monitoring systems - These systems monitor your tyre pressure and provide a warning if the pressure is too low.

Euro NCAP (European New Car Assessment Programme)

Euro NCAP is an organisation that conducts safety tests on all new cars sold within Europe. It evaluates the safety performance of vehicles in different crash scenarios, and publishes safety ratings based on the results. 

Many car brands consistently perform well in Euro NCAP testing, with some examples of top-rated cars including:

However, some of the lesser known brands perform extremely well too. You can check the NCAP safety rating of any car that has been tested here.

Choosing entertainment technology for your new car

Entertainment technology has become increasingly impressive in new cars. An infotainment system typically includes a touchscreen display that provides access to a range of features, including navigation, music streaming and smartphone integration. Some infotainment systems also include voice recognition technology, allowing drivers to control the system without taking their hands off the wheel.

Many new cars come with advanced sound systems that offer high-quality audio. If this is important to you, you should make sure you check out the options on each trim level.

In addition to infotainment and audio systems, many new cars also offer a range of connectivity features to enable internet access. Some models even provide wireless charging pads to eliminate the need for power leads trailing around the interior.

What car should I get? Interior features to look out for 

We all like to travel in comfort, so the interior of your car is very important. Features like heated seats, adjustable seats, ventilated seats and ambient lighting can help to create a comfortable and enjoyable driving experience. Here's a rundown of some features to look out for:

  • Heated seats - These can be a game-changer on cold days and are especially beneficial for those of us who have back pain or sore muscles.
  • Seat adjustment characteristics - Features like adjustable lumbar support, height adjustment and tilt adjustment can help you find a comfortable driving position, whatever your size or shape.
  • Ventilated seats- These seats help to keep occupants cool on hot days. Air is circulated through perforations in the seats.
  • Ambient lighting - This type of lighting can be used to create a relaxed atmosphere inside your vehicle. It's also thought to help reduce eye strain and fatigue when driving at night.

What fuel type should I go for?

When choosing a new car, one of the main decisions you need to make is what fuel type you'd like your vehicle to have. Petrol and diesel cars running on an ICE (internal combustion engine) are the most common vehicles on the roads at the time of writing. However, electric and hybrid models have also become increasingly popular in recent years.

In this section, we'll go through all the options available to you, allowing you to make the best choice for your circumstances.

Diesel and petrol models

Up until fairly recently, the vast majority of cars on the road were either diesel or petrol models.

However, electric and hybrid vehicles sales have risen vastly in recent years, due to the current climate change crisis. As a nation, we're racing to the goal of net zero, and one major way to do this is to stop using fossil fuels (such as petrol and diesel).

New sales of petrol and diesel cars are slowly being phased out, with a complete ban set to arrive in the UK by 2030. You'll still be able to buy older cars that run on fossil fuels, but those wanting new cars will have to settle for an electric vehicle - or at the very least, a hybrid car.

However, this doesn't mean that there isn't still a market for cars with internal combustion engines. In fact, you may find that diesel and petrol models become cheaper over the next few years, as more people ditch ICE cars in favour of more sustainable vehicles. 

Of course, if you are a petrol/diesel lover, you might want to consider leasing a new car with a conventional internal combustion engine next, as it could be your last chance to do so.

How do diesel and petrol cars compare?

Diesel cars usually cost more to run, as diesel is often more expensive than petrol. Road tax (Vehicle Excise Duty/VED) also tends to be more expensive for diesel vehicles. VED is a tax paid by motorists each year based on the emissions that your car produces. Cars that are more environmentally-friendly pay less tax, and electric cars don't pay any road tax at all (although this is set to change in 2025)

Because diesel engines release more emissions, the amount of VED you pay each year tends to be higher than with a petrol car. If you're on a budget and you're worried about the amount of tax you might have to pay, choosing a petrol car could be more beneficial. 

You might also want to consider leasing a low-emission car - particularly if you're concerned about your carbon footprint damaging the planet.

However, diesels do have their advantages. Diesel engines are often more powerful than their petrol equivalents, and they also produce more torque, making them better for motorists carrying heavy loads. Diesel vehicles also have a better fuel economy, which may balance the higher fuel costs out somewhat.

Hybrid and electric vehicles

If you're interested in reducing your carbon footprint and you'd like to drive a more environmentally friendly car, you should consider taking out a lease on a hybrid or electric vehicle. A lot of people are now choosing to travel less or use other methods to get around, such as public transport or cycling. However, a hybrid/electric car is a good alternative if you're unable to do this.

Hybrid vehicles run on traditional fossil fuels, but they also have the capability to use electricity for a short period of time, making them slightly more sustainable than petrol/diesel cars. Electric vehicles, on the other hand, run entirely on electricity, usually having an electric motor and a battery that is charged before driving.

The British government has recently announced that the sale of new diesel and petrol models will be banned from 2030 onwards, so those looking for new cars in the future will likely have to go for a more sustainable car anyway. Whilst hybrid vehicles aren't being banned in 2030, they will eventually be phased out in favour of fully-electric automobiles by 2035. Because of this, you might want to consider leasing an electric vehicle over a hybrid.

How do hybrid and electric vehicles compare?

Hybrid vehicles are more sustainable than their petrol and diesel equivalents, although they still flag in this arena when compared to electric cars. As well as having a traditional ICE, a hybrid vehicle also has an electric motor, providing a small amount of electric power alongside the fuel used in your car.

This is the main factor that differentiates hybrid vehicles from other vehicle types. If you're not quite ready to take the plunge into the world of electric cars, a plug-in hybrid could be a good alternative. Using a hybrid will allow you to get to grips with the concept of an electric vehicle, whilst also allowing you to fill up your car with traditional fuel.

However, hybrids are usually rather weak in the electrical department, as they often have quite a short range. Because of this, it's important to ensure you have enough fuel left to carry you to your destination, as you can't rely on the electric motor/battery to take you on long trips.

If you take a lot of long journeys, an all-electric car might be preferable over a hybrid. Whilst the first electric cars had relatively short ranges, the technology has rapidly increased in recent years. Most modern electric vehicles can travel long distances, meaning you'll need less stops to charge your vehicle on your trip. 

Electric vehicles are also naturally a lot better for the planet than other types of cars. As they don't use fossil fuels, they're certainly much more sustainable than driving a car that uses petrol or diesel. And whilst hybrid cars do have some electric driving capabilities, they're still largely limited in the long run, forcing the driver to eventually rely on traditional fuel types instead. If you're an avid eco-warrior, an electric car really is the only way to go at the moment.

Another benefit of driving an electric car is that they're currently tax free. Most drivers have to pay VED (Vehicle Excise Duty) each year, more commonly known to the layman as 'road tax'. Road tax is an emissions-based tax, as vehicles that release less carbon into the atmosphere pay a smaller amount than those emitting more CO2. You'll also have cheaper running costs as you won't need to buy fuel for your vehicle (although your electric bill may go up).

Traditionally, fully-electric cars were exempt from road tax, as they don't release the toxic emissions that petrol and diesel cars do. However, this is set to change by 2025. Plug-in hybrids also tend to have a lower rate of VED, so if you still want a car that runs primarily on petrol/diesel, a plug-in hybrid might be a good middle ground for you.

Another reason you should consider an electric vehicle is the British government's ban on the sale of new petrol and diesel vehicles from 2030. Whilst you'll still be able to buy older cars with internal combustion engines after 2030, you won't be able to lease a new one after that time. Because of this, it might be worth getting ahead of the game with your next lease, so that you can get yourself used to the electric driving experience before the ban kicks in for good.

As such, you will need to eventually get used to the idea of driving an electric car, so it might be a good idea to take the plunge early on. 

Which transmission should I go for?

Another big thing to think about when leasing a new car is the transmission type. There are three main transmission options available to you at present:

  • Manual gearboxes
  • Automatic gearboxes
  • Semi-automatic gearboxes

The type of gearbox you choose will often be based upon your own personal preferences, although in some cases, you may only be able to drive one type of car. For example - if you learned to drive in an automatic car, you will likely have an automatic only licence. This means that you can only drive automatic cars - you can drive semi-automatic vehicles too, so long as the car doesn't have a physical clutch pedal.

If you learned to drive in a manual car and have a manual licence, you can drive any of the three car transmission types listed here. Most people living in the UK tend to go for manual gearboxes. However, that trend is starting to change considerably, especially since new technological developments are making many of the functions within a manual car more automatic anyway.

Most electric cars tend to be automatics, so the choice will be made a lot simpler if you're set on a sustainable vehicle.

The benefits of driving a manual vehicle

Manual vehicles are the most popular type of car in the UK at the moment, although automatics are slowly closing the gap. As such, the vast majority of people living in the UK tend to learn to drive in a manual car and have a manual driving licence, allowing them to drive automatic and semi-automatic cars as well. 

Despite having a licence that covers all car types, manual drivers still tend to go for manual cars over their automatic cousins. One reason for this is that if you've learned to drive in a manual car, switching to an automatic can feel quite uncomfortable. You may find yourself automatically attempting to reach a non-existent clutch pedal, and the driving experience can be quite uncomfortable until you get used to it.

If you can get over this then more power to you, but some drivers are unable to adjust to driving automatic cars - particularly if they've driven manual vehicles for longer periods of time. If you've been driving for a long time, or you've tried an automatic and couldn't get used to it, then a manual is probably the car for you. You also get more control over your car when using a manual, which some may prefer. 

Cars with manual transmissions have other advantages too. They're usually cheaper to buy - as such, manual leases tend to be cheaper than when hiring their automatic variations.Manual vehicles often have cheaper annual maintenance costs too. This is because they tend to be less complex than automatics - unless you need to replace the clutch.

Automatics used to have a reputation for being a slower choice than a manual vehicle. Whilst this has changed somewhat, manual cars are still a little faster - although this will depend largely on the model and type of car you go for.

The benefits of driving an automatic car

Whilst manual cars are more common, automatics also have their advantages. Automatic vehicles sometimes get a bad rep, as they're often considered to be 'too easy'. However, there's absolutely nothing wrong with that. If using an automatic car makes your driving experience easier, then it will also allow you to pay more attention to the road when driving.

Traditionally the UK has been a country of manual drivers. However, in places like the USA, automatic drivers are the norm. We're slowly catching up with our American cousins, as automatic car sales have increased massively recently, and for good reason!

Whilst some people love driving, others find it stressful, seeing it as a necessary means to an end. If you've recently passed your driving test or you find driving hard, an automatic may be the car for you. Because you don't need to change gears whilst driving, the process is made a lot easier, resulting in a much smoother driving experience. This allows you to focus more on the road ahead, taking away an unnecessary distraction.

Sometimes your left leg can start to ache when using the clutch in a manual vehicle, and particularly if you drive in busy traffic regularly. As you don't need to manually change gears in an automatic, this is less likely to happen. Automatic vehicles can also be safer, as you don't need to take your hand off the steering wheel to change gears. 

Automatics used to have a reputation for being gas guzzlers, but this has changed in recent years. Their fuel consumption has vastly improved across the board, meaning your fuel costs should be about the same as they would be if you were driving a manual car. You may find that your fuel is actually cheaper, depending on the type of vehicle you go for!

How do semi-automatic vehicles compare?

A mix between the other two transmission types also exists, known as a semi-automatic vehicle. Whilst models may differ slightly, a car with a semi-automatic gearbox gives you the option of changing gears, as well as using it automatically.

Unlike conventional manual cars,semi-automatics usually lack a physical clutch pedal. Instead, they have an electric button that you press when you want to change gears manually. According to the DVLA, you can drive a semi-automatic car with an automatic only licence, provided the vehicle doesn't have a physical clutch pedal.

Semi-automatics are a sort of happy medium between manual and automatic cars, allowing you to change your driving style depending on the predicted road ahead. This can be a massive benefit, but semi-automatic vehicles are still quite rare, so you may not be able to find your preferred car with a semi-automatic gearbox.

What body types are available?

It's never been a better time to be a driver, as there is a vast range of car types available to lease, enabling you to find the perfect vehicle for your needs. There are hundreds of different body styles to choose from, so we've listed the most popular variations here to help you make an informed decision.

The most common body types available are:

  • Hatchback - The humble hatchback gets its name from the swinging door that opens the boot at the back. They tend to have a lot of boot space for a smaller car, and are a favourite of the nation.Hatchback's date from the 1930s, although the term wasn't actually coined until the 1970s.
  • Minivan (or MPV) - The minivan is specifically designed as a vehicle for transporting things, whether that be luggage or people. As such, it tends to be rather roomy inside,usually having seven (or more) seats, instead of the standard five.
  • SUV (Sports Utility Vehicle) - The SUV is one of the largest body types available on the market, having a four-wheel drive system, alongside towing capabilities. SUVs are usually much taller than other cars - as well as creating extra space inside the vehicle, the SUV's size also means it's much safer for those inside the car in the rare event that an accident occurs.
  • CUV (Crossover) - The CUV is a car that has some similarities to the SUV body style, although it differs slightly. Instead, it has a unibody design, taking inspiration from other, smaller car types. CUVS are fairly sturdy vehicles, although they often lack four-wheel drive, which may put some people off.
  • Estate - An estate car is similar to hatchback vehicles in many ways. However, they have an extended rear end, creating more boot space to transport luggage around. This makes estates a perfect happy medium for people who prefer hatchbacks, without skimping on space.
  • Coupe - Coupe models are quite similar to sedans, as they have a comparable roof and body design, although they tend to be a little smaller. They're also quite sporty in terms of looks, making for a perfect vehicle for those who find a sports car is a little out of reach. 
  • Supercar - The supercar needs no introduction. It's the definitive sports car, designed with both style and substance included. They have fantastic performance features and can usually reach higher top speeds than other models. Supercars usually come without rear seats, so they're not recommended if you have a larger family to drive around. However, some four seater versions exist.
  • Kammback - The kammback is a car with a definitive look. The roof typically slopes down towards the rear of the vehicle, which allows the car to drive smoothly and maintain higher speeds. Kammback's aren't as popular as they once were, but you can still find some models on the market.
  • Cabriolet (Convertible) - The cabriolet is also more commonly known as a convertible car. As you might expect, the roof can be pulled into the car, allowing you to enjoy the sunshine whilst driving. They usually have two doors and the space in the back may be a bit cramped due to the convertible nature of this vehicle, but cabriolets are still extremely stylish.
  • Saloon (also known as a Sedan) - The saloon is one of the most popular car types in the world right now. It's a well-established model, loved by all. Saloon cars have more space than hatchbacks and they also look extremely sleek. They're perfect all-rounders, suitable for all your driving needs.
  • Campervan - Campervans are vehicles that also double as accommodation, allowing you to sleep and travel, all at the same time! They usually have an extended roof section, which is where the sleeping compartment is kept. Volkswagen are particularly famous for their campervans, although other brands are also available.
  • Micro - As the name suggests, micros are one of the smallest car types on the market at the moment. They tend to have smaller engines and may have three wheels instead of four, so they're not for everyone. However, the smaller size can make them perfect for city driving, particularly if you don't have much space for parking.
  • Roadster - The roadster is another sporty variation. They're not as common as the other types of vehicle listed here, but they're beautiful to behold. They usually have two seats, although larger variations do exist. Traditionally, the roadster came without a roof, but modern convertible roadsters are still available.

Some variations on these models exist, as there are a number of cars that have a mixture of body type traits. For example, the Peugeot 207 CC (standing for Coupe-Cabriolet) is a car that combines the convertible nature of a cabriolet with the body style of a coupe, giving you the best of both worlds.

Different body styles often have their own unique features and functions, so which one you go for will depend on your own personal preferences. If you need lots of space, an SUV may be more your style. However, if you want a smaller car for nipping around the city, a hatchback could be the better option. And who can forget the sporty Coupe, designed to make you both look and feel good when you're in the driver's seat.

If you'd like to speak to a member of our team to find out which body style is best for you,get in touch and we'll be happy to help!

Which body type is best for space?

If you have a big family or you plan on transporting a lot of luggage, you'll naturally want to lease a larger car. If that's the case, you should probably avoid hiring a micro or a convertible, as these models tend to be rather small.

Depending on how much space you need, a hatchback or a saloon might do the job. Whilst they're not ridiculously big, these cars do have enough room inside to comfortably fit a five person family. They also tend to have a decent amount of boot space, so you can fit all your luggage in the back when going on a family holiday.

However, if you need something even larger, you should consider getting an SUV, minivan or a CUV. Minivans are specifically designed for transporting things, so they're perfect if you have a lot of equipment to move. You can usually fit more than five people in them, so if you have a larger than average family, a minivan could be ideal.

SUVs and CUVs are also larger than most other car types, although they're a little different to minivans. They're both extremely comfortable to sit in, whether you're a passenger or a driver. SUVs tend to be taller than CUVs and they have four-wheel drive (which is something CUVs don't always have), making them perfect if you live in a rural area. 

At LeaseCar,we also have a range of seven seater cars available, which may be of use if you need more space.

Which body type is best to impress?

If you want your car to look as good as it drives, then there are a few vehicle types you may be interested in.

One thing to note here is that sports cars tend to be smaller than other models (for example, hatchbacks and saloons), so you may find yourself strapped for space if you go for a flashier vehicle. However, if you have a small family or you already have a family car, you may want to get a sportier vehicle for fun.

If that sounds like you, you should consider taking out a lease deal on one of the following vehicles:

  • Coupe -Coupes are lovely cars to look at, but they have more of a classic style than the sportier variations listed here. However, they still have an aesthetically sporty look, with a rear roofline that slopes backwards. The coupe is the perfect car if you want something with style but don't want to splash out on a more expensive vehicle.
  • Cabriolet -Cabriolets are essentially convertible cars, featuring a roof that folds into the car whenever you want to enjoy the sunshine whilst driving. This is the main feature that distinguishes the cabriolet from the other body types listed here, giving you greater choice over your driving life. However, the foldable roof aspect also means that space inside the back seats (if it has them) can feel cramped, which is something you need to take into account.
  • Supercar - Supercars are created with both performance and looks in mind. They drive like a dream, reaching top speeds that leave other models in the dust. These cars are also extremely eye-catching, wowing any onlookers that you see on the roads. However, they're usually rather expensive, so you may want to consider one of the other car types listed here if you're on a budget.

You could also consider getting a roadster, but they're quite uncommon nowadays, and often come at an expensive price point. Nevertheless, the rest of the car styles listed in this section have the perfect mix of style and substance, making for a highly pleasurable driving experience overall.

Which body type is best for business use?

If you run a business, you may need to lease a fleet of cars.Business contract hire can be very lucrative, and it's usually a better option than buying your fleet of cars separately.

Our business contract hire options work in much the same way asour personal contract hire system, but there are some added benefits:

  • Lower costs - Leasing a car is usually cheaper than buying a brand new vehicle - especially when you factor in the cheap monthly rentals you'll pay. You'll also get road tax (Vehicle Excise Duty) and a warranty thrown in, taking another headache off your hands.
  • Less Risk - When you take on a business lease, you don't need to worry about selling your cars after they've been used. Depreciation is automatically factored into your monthly rentals - all you need to do is return the keys and car to us at the end of your lease period, and we'll do the rest. You can then take out another lease if you wish.
  • VAT relief - Another major benefit of taking out a business lease is that you can claim back your VAT. If you only use your vehicle for commercial use you can claim back 100% of the VAT - if you use your vehicle for personal driving as well, you can claim back 50%.
  • Less admin - There's a lot of paperwork that needs to be completed when you buy a car, which can be particularly stressful if you need several cars for your fleet. When you lease a car from LeaseCar, we'll handle all of the documentation so you don't have to.

As you can see, there are many benefits to taking out a business contract lease with LeaseCar. In terms of model types, the one you go for will likely depend on the type of business you own and what you need your car for.

If you run a taxi firm, for example, you may want a selection of vehicles so that you can provide alternative sizes for different passenger groups. If you work in an industry that has to transport a lot of equipment, you might want to consider a larger vehicle.

It's something that really depends on the type of business you own - to find out more about which type of car might be best for your situation, contact us and we'll make the necessary arrangements.

Engine Sizes: Explained

Another major factor to consider before leasing a new car is the engine size you'd like. There's quite a range available and the size of the engine can have a major impact on your driving performance, so it's important to choose one that's right for you. 

Engine size is measured in cubic centimetres (cc), which refers to the volume of air and fuel that is pushed through the cylinders of the car. Engine sizes are usually referred to in litres, typically ranging from 1.0 litres all the way up to 3.0 litres. However, other variations are available - for example, smaller body types (for example, the Micro) may have an engine size below 1.0 litres.

In layman's terms - the higher the litre, the more powerful the car is. Whilst hybrid vehicles have similar engines to petrol and diesel models, electric vehicles don't, so you can't choose an electric car based on the engine size.Diesel engines are often larger than their petrol variations, making them more expensive.

As previously stated, smaller cars generally have smaller engines. However, models with a range between 1.0 and 2.0 litres tend to be either hatchbacks or smaller SUVs, although this isn't always a given. On the other hand, vehicles with a range between 2.0 litres and 3.0 litres are usually larger cars, such as saloons, estates and SUVs.

Engines with more than 3.0 litres are available too, but they're rarer than other engine sizes. They're usually found in larger SUVs and high performance vehicles, such as sports cars. 

Why is engine size so important?

Engine size can sometimes be overlooked by motorists, but it's quite an important factor when you're thinking about getting a new car. 

If you want a fast car with high performance, you'll likely want to go for a car with a larger engine. If you do a lot of motorway driving, or drive long distances on a regular basis, a car with a bigger engine may be more beneficial. However, if you use your vehicle sparingly, or you plan on completing shorter journeys within an urban area, a smaller engine could be preferable.

Cars with larger engines tend to need more fuel, increasing the running costs of the vehicle. Diesel engines are usually larger and heavier than petrol engines, so if you're on a budget, you may want to consider getting a petrol vehicle instead. Insurance costs are also usually cheaper for cars with smaller engines.Whilst insurance usually isn't covered in a lease, you can usually opt to include it as an additional extra, such as with our Total Care package.

It's also likely that a car with a larger engine will release more carbon into the atmosphere - as well as being less eco-friendly, this also means that you'll pay more road tax.

The higher your emissions, the more tax you'll pay. When you choose to lease a car through LeaseCar,you'll get your road tax included in the cost of your monthly rentals, making leasing cheaper than buying a brand new car. However,having a larger engine will not exclude you from driving through clean air zones like London's ULEZ system.

To find out more about which engine size might be best for you,contact our experienced team and we'll run you through your options.

Choose the perfect car with LeaseCar

If you've found yourself wondering "what car should I get?", you've come to the right place! At LeaseCar,we're the UK's leading car leasing site, considered to be experts within the field. 

We've been supplying vehicles to our loyal customers since 1998 - as such, it's safe to say that we know what we're doing! We have a huge range of vehicles available, spanning every single category listed in this comprehensive guide. 

There are hundreds of options to choose from, so you can really customise your lease to your own preferences. If you already know what you want, all the information to kickstart your lease can be found on our website. 

And if you'd like to weigh up the options with us first,get in touch today and we'll go through them with you.

Find out what our customers love about us
As featured in ...