Our catalytic converter was stolen, ruining the car. Can you recommend a replacement?

Earlier this week, my husband parked his 2008 Honda Jazz in a small car park and went birdwatching about an hour's drive away. When he returned, to cut a sad story short, someone had stolen the catalytic converter. This left the car damaged beyond repair, the power steering/automatic gear/instrument panel were all caput. We know very little about cars really, can you help with advice please for a replacement? He does travel around the county (Devon) birdwatching so does reasonable mileage. We need a hatchback with a fairly roomy/squareish boot as he grows plants to take and sell at market/car boot sales, too. We think we'd like a hybrid if possible, for the fuel economy and environmental reasons. This would be a secondhand car with a budget of up to about £12,000.

The Honda Jazz has been a great little workhorse but we were persuaded by the salesman that its automatic gearbox was better than the newer cars. But the 2008 model is one to be avoided! It certainly doesn't like hill starts. He would like something maybe a little bigger, but nothing huge as there are a lot of narrow roads in Devon. I do hope you can help us. Best wishes.

Asked on 26 April 2021 by Mrs Rosemary Ormerod

Answered by Andrew Brady
If you can find one in budget, a Toyota Corolla sounds like a good option. We receive many reports of thefts of catalytic converters from Toyota models (as well as Hondas) but not the Corolla. The brand says it's reduced the amount of precious metal content in its latest hybrid models. The Corolla is an excellent, practical hybrid vehicle that represents decent value for money. Alternatively, we'd recommend a Hyundai Ioniq. Again, it's a hybrid model, and – as it's been on sale longer than the Corolla – there'll be more to choose from.
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