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What engine size is right for me?

While most no longer need to answer the question ‘what engine size is my car’ anymore due to going electric, a key area for many used car buyers remains the engine size of their vehicle. Whether petrol, diesel or hybrid, the engine size will affect performance, economy, and value of the vehicle and allow buyers to assess whether it suits their needs. 

While the fad for engine downsizing by manufacturers has been and gone, stringent CO2 regulations from the EU and a move toward the banning of petrol and diesel vehicles within the decade has seen the range of engine choice fall drastically in recent times.

What does engine size mean?

A car’s engine size lets buyers know the volume of fuel that can pass through the engine cylinders, with the engine size rounded up to the nearest tenth in litres.

1.0-litre engines are no longer just found in superminis and city cars. Thanks to the era of downsizing and with the advent of turbocharging, most engine ranges in a variety of cars including hatchbacks and crossovers can now be spec’d with a 1.0 engine.

1.0 to 2.0-litre engines are the most common to be found on the road, providing power, durability and economy. Often found in everything from crossovers and SUVs to saloons and MPVs, the most common engines in this range are 1.4 litre petrol and 1.5 litre diesel.

2.0 to 3.0-litre engines are becoming an increasingly rare choice due to the emissions regulations. These big engines will usually be reserved for the performance car sector or for the sporty hot hatch equivalent of the Volkswagen Golf or Honda Civic.

What engine size is my car?

We might be able to offer a lot of advice and guides on Hippo Motor Finance but only you can answer this one! The size of your engine can be found in your owner’s manual or on your V5 vehicle log book along with various other useful bits of information.

What size engine can a new driver drive?

In theory a new driver can drive any car with any size engine (if they have the £££). However, 1.0-1.2-litre cars such as the Toyota Yaris and Ford Fiesta tend to be the easiest and cheapest engine size cars to insure if you’ve just passed your test.

What engine size is right for me?

Only you can answer this question as it depends on what you need your car for. If you’re looking to save money, don’t do a lot of motorway miles, and simply need to get from A to B then a small car like the 1.0-litre Kia Picanto might suffice.

If you see yourself on the motorway a lot, want comfort and convenience and economy, then a 2.0-litre TDI Volkswagen Passat is a good choice. Want the ability to tow stuff too? You might opt for a 2.0 TDI Volkswagen Touareg instead. There’s plenty of options unique to you.

Did you find this information useful? Read more helpful advice here…

Representative Example of Credit

We expect more than 51% of our customers to achieve this rate.

Loan Amount Total Cost of Credit Representative APR 60 Monthly Payments Deposit Amount Loan Term Total Amount Payable
£7,500 £3831 19.1% APR £188.85 £0 60 Months £11,331

All offers are subject to change at any time, you must be 18 or over and finance is subject to status, vehicle availability and terms and conditions apply. We can introduce you to a limited number of finance companies, a commission may be received. Failure to maintain payments may result in termination of your agreement and the vehicle being returned, this could affect your credit rating and make it more difficult to obtain credit in the future. All prices correct at time of publication.

We purchase a wide variety of vehicles from all over the country to ensure the best quality and value for our customers, all of our cars go through a thorough inspection process and if they do not meet our standards we do not sell them. We endeavour to inform our customers (where possible) the provenance of the vehicle they are buying and as such we will always inform you if the vehicle has previously been either an ex fleet or hire car. Should your vehicle be an ex hire/fleet car please do not be concerned as we would never value this vehicle differently when you come to part exchange it and there is no difference to the CAP valuation either.

You should try and estimate the distance you will travel as accurately as possible to try and avoid excess mileage charges at the end of your contract.

All pictures and/or photos and car descriptions on this site are for illustration and reference purposes only and are not necessarily the vehicle on offer. All offers are subject to change at any time and are subject to finance approval and vehicle availability. All prices correct at time of publication. E & OE.

Hippo Vehicle Solutions t/a Hippo Motor Finance is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. FRN 658076. We are a Credit Broker not a Lender and can introduce you to a limited number of lenders. Subject to status and to UK residents only (excl. the Channel Islands). Individuals must be 18 or over. Guarantees and indemnities may be required. We typically receive a fixed commission calculated by reference to the vehicle model, product or amount you borrow, for introducing you to a lender but this does not affect the interest charged on the agreement, all of which are set by the lender. Images for illustrative purposes only. Hippo Vehicle Solutions t/a Hippo Motor Finance is an Appointed Representative of AutoProtect (MBI) Limited for insurance distribution purposes. AutoProtect (MBI) Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. Its firm reference number is 312143. You can check this at

We endeavour to ensure that all information including the specifications and finance availability are accurate. Whilst we make every effort to display correct information we are aware that errors may occur occasionally. We are not able, therefore, to guarantee the accuracy of all information especially when given to us by third parties. If you do require clarification of some information you have seen on our website, please email us at . This does not affect your statutory rights.

We are a broker not a lender and our registered office is Unit 26 Trident Park, Trident Way, Blackburn, BB13NU.