Best small cars to buy in 2018

Small cars come in all kinds of shapes, if not sizes. Here we highlight ten of the best new small cars on sale

Despite what the headlines say about SUVs selling in their millions, executive cars continuing to raise the bar for technology, and sports cars getting faster all the time, the small car market still makes up the majority of new car sales. That’s why building the best small car on sale remains the ultimate challenge for mainstream car makers.

The new car sales figures released each month show how motorists in the UK love a downsized model, The clever car buyer knows only too well that opting for less in terms of proportions does not necessarily mean you get less for your money. Traditionally, when you think of a small car, a regular supermini springs to mind, however, there is a diverse range of cars on the market for buyers looking for something different that’s still easy to park and navigate through our crowded streets. The question is, which is the best small car on sale in the UK?

Our top 10 is an eclectic mix, but they offer plenty of appeal to new car buyers.

Best small cars 2018

  • 1. Ford Fiesta
  • 2. Volkswagen up!
  • 3. MINI 5-door
  • 4. SEAT Ibiza
  • 5. Skoda Citigo
  • 6. Citroen C3 Aircross
  • 7. Volkswagen Polo
  • 8. Kia Picanto
  • 9. SEAT Arona
  • 10. Mazda 2

Best small cars: the market explained

Popular supermini models such as the Ford Fiesta, Vauxhall Corsa, and Volkswagen Polo are great options, and will be good cars for many. But the increased number of manufacturers making small crossovers means that alternatives such as the Nissan Juke, Renault Captur, Peugeot 2008 and even the quirky Suzuki Ignis, can be a great choice for someone looking for a small car.

• The best cars to own in 2018

With crossovers and small SUVs joining the small car party, the once popular supermini MPVs are on the decline. Previous favourites, such as the Ford B-MAX or Hyundai ix20, provide drivers with loads of space and versatility, but dwindling sales mean their days on forecourts could well be numbered. In contrast to the fading, if highly practical, small MPVs, there are compact sports cars such as the Mazda MX-5 and Fiat 124 Spider, which present a lot of fun for drivers but a lot less practicality.

Also, if boot space isn’t a priority, then the likes of the Skoda Citigo and VW up! are almost as spacious for passengers as superminis, as well as being fun to drive. If you don’t need more than two seats but don’t want a sports car either, then the Smart ForTwo is an intriguing upmarket city car, while the electric version might suit your ‘green’ needs.

• Most reliable cars 2018

The one class that really set the template for personalisation is the premium supermini sector. Cars like the MINI, DS 3 and Audi A1 let you tailor your car the way you want it, while the MINI in particular adds a big shot of driving fun into the mix.

The MINI is one sporty supermini and another is the Ford Fiesta ST, one of several small hot hatches guaranteed to put a smile on your face.

Of course, if you’re downsizing to a small car, you may be doing it for financial reasons. Cars like the Peugeot 208 and Skoda Fabia can be had in super frugal guises to save fuel and reduce running costs, while plumping for an electric Renault ZOE or VW e-up! means you can forget about road tax and fuel station visits completely.

Next: 1. Ford Fiesta

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