A compact city car can be the ideal transport solution for many drivers, but which one to choose?
The growing popularity of the crossover has seen many manufacturers move away from city cars and instead focus on high-performance models. However, the city car still makes a lot of sense for all kinds of drivers, especially those who want something small, nimble and easy to park.
Fortunately, there are still a number of options on the market today for people who want to get behind the wheel of a city car. Let’s take a look at what’s around.
Citroën recently bid farewell to the C1 – a city car that performed remarkably well for the French firm. Instead, it focused on the bigger C3 and that – the little Ami. Fully electric and designed for the city, it’s a car that wasn’t originally intended for the UK until overwhelming public interest caused Citroën to rethink its decision.
It might only have a range of 46 miles and a top speed of 28mph, but for many city dwellers the Ami will make a lot of sense.
Volkswagen is in place! proved to be one of the most versatile compact cars, with its spacious interior somewhat at odds with its compact exterior. However, for city dwellers, it’s the electric version – badged e-Up! – which will prove particularly attractive.
Volkswagen claims you’ll get up to 159 miles of range per charge, which is more than enough to get around town. It’s still brilliantly practical inside too.
The Smart car is a vehicle synonymous with city driving, and with the growing demand for electric cars, it only made sense for the brand to become EV-only. But this switch seems like the perfect fit for the Smart Fortwo, with its tiny dimensions often a key reason people have chosen it in the past.
Its 84-mile range is somewhat limited, but a small battery also means it won’t take long to recharge. Plus, it’s still as shabby as ever, which means parking should be an absolute breeze.
The 500 has been a hugely popular car for Fiat and, although a new electric version has been revealed, the petrol variant could also be a great choice for those who like to go further.
It’s still very efficient, remember, thanks to a 1.0-litre engine with mild-hybrid technology. It’s full of charm too.
Audi, as usual, is taking a somewhat premium-focused approach to the A1 – the smallest car it offers. It also has many advanced technologies, but does not lose sight of what is important in this segment: ease of use and practicality.
It’s therefore both simple to drive around town but also refined and comfortable at high speeds, while a large boot and folding rear seats make it much more spacious than you might think.
Hyundai’s i10 has only recently been updated, bringing some choice upgrades to this popular city car. It’s still compact and efficient, while a performance-themed N Line version can be specified, bringing an extra touch of sportiness.
It’s great to drive too, while claimed fuel mileage of over 51 mpg means fuel stops will be few and far between.
The Kia Picanto has long been a go-to option in this segment, with its practicality and frugality striking genuine chord with buyers. A 1.0-litre turbocharged engine is also the pick of the bunch, bringing great fuel economy, as well as a much-needed punch.
While it may not offer the best refinement on the highway, around town the Picanto is truly impressive.