Top 10: City Cars
07:08 06 March 2015
City cars are perfect for those living in large towns and urban areas. However, buying a small hatchback doesn’t mean making sacrifices when it comes to comfort or quality. The current crop of small cars are not only ideal for driving in the city but also perform well out of town.
Most are powered by small petrol engines and thanks to their light weight this means low running costs thanks to good fuel economy and cheap car tax.
Here are our most popular city cars as decided by you.
1 - Hyundai i10
The first i10 proved very popular and the latest generation looks set to continue that trend. You can choose from a 1.0-litre engine or a peppier 1.2-litre unit, while if you opt for the Blue Drive model Hyundai claims 65.7mpg and just 98g/km of CO2. You can pair the 1.2-litre engine with an automatic gearbox although emissions suffer.
2 - Toyota Aygo
Toyota wants its new Aygo to be seen as unashamedly Japanese in design. So it has ditched the soft and cute look for a sharper style dominated by that X on the front end. There are several colours available for various exterior trims and a expect a host of special editions too. All Aygo models are powered by the same 1.0-litre engine carried over from its predecessor.
3 - Volkswagen Up
Volkswagen’s city car has found plenty of buyers thanks to a combination of stylish looks and strong build quality. Engines are characterful three-cylinder 1.0-litre units with either 60PS or 70PS, both offering ample performance and fine economy.An automated manual gearbox is offered but it isn’t very smooth, so we’d stick with the slick-shifting manual.
4 - Fiat 500
The chic retro looks are the major attraction of the cute 500 and it’s a car brimming with character. There is a huge range of personalisation options so you’ll have no trouble choosing the perfect specification. The two-cylinder TwinAir unit sounds good and claims impressive efficiency although real-world economy can suffer if you make use of the performance.
5 - Peugeot 108
The 108 builds on the strong foundations of its 107 predecessor but with key improvements to quality and refinement. It’s also designed to be more stylish with the option of a retractable fabric roof and a host of personalisation options for both the inside and out. A 1.0-litre engine is the mainstay of the range and offers low running costs thanks to claimed economy of 74.3mpg when fitted with start/stop.
6 - Skoda Citigo
Skoda’s version of the Volkswagen Up offers the same blend of fun and refinement and is offered with a range of fuel efficient engines. Prices undercut the Volkswagen too. There are plenty of extras to choose from if you want more creature comforts, while you can also opt for GreenTech models that claim 68.9mpg and 95g/km CO2.
7 - Kia Picanto
The Picanto shares much with the impressive Hyundai i10 and offers the same blend of value and good driving manners. The 1.0-litre engine achieves 99g/km with a manual gearbox while prices start at just £7795 for a Picanto 1 that comes with electric windows, central locking, and an MP3-compatible stereo. Ride and handling are good for a small car and of course you benefit from peace of mind thanks to the seven-year warranty.
8 - Citroen C1
The Citroen C1 may be small in size but it’s big on talent with a good quality interior and impressive refinement for such a small car. As before, the C1 is the cousin to the Peugeot 108 and Toyota Aygo, and like those two there are plenty of customisation options available allowing owners to give their car a personal touch. There’s also an open-top version called Airscape which has a folding fabric roof.
9 - Fiat Panda
This time around Fiat went for a softer, less angular look for its Panda but it remains spacious, practical and comfortable while the ‘squircle’ design theme adds character to the cabin. Both the TwinAir and diesel engines get a start/stop system to maximise economy and there are plenty of options to choose from including the Blue&Me media system and navigation.
10 - Ford Ka
While the Ka hasn’t not proved quite as popular as the first generation model, there is still plenty to like here helped by a wide choice of trim levels. The entry-level Studio model starts at £8795 but for plenty of kit you’ll want the Titanium trim which comes with everything you need. The 1.2-litre Duratec engine is amply refined and cheap to service too.