City cars are not what they used to be, now they are significantly more sophisticated and comfortable. Gone are the days of ‘’city’’ cars being vastly subpar when compared to bigger cars, and nowadays, they offer pretty much every feature you might want.
That being said, city cars are usually on the compact side, they offer great visibility, superior efficiency, and maneuverability. While being nippy and easy to park, city cars should also offer a decent amount of technology and luxury amenities to keep you entertained in a traffic jam.
The best city cars currently on the market are the Honda Fit, Fiat 500, Volkswagen Golf, and the Toyota Aygo. If you want a more luxurious feeling city car, you should opt for the Audi A3 or the Mercedes Benz A-Class.
If you value dynamic driving, consider buying the BMW 2-Series. Even though hatchbacks might be the best option to go for when choosing the perfect city car, you can also opt for a compact SUV such as the Toyota RAV4 Hybrid or the BMW X1 if you want something a bit more special.
The Honda Fit represents one of the best value per $ options out of all the city cars on the market right now. With a starting price of less than $17k, the Fit offers a lot. Even if you do opt for almost every option available, you are still looking at less than $20k MSRP.
Even though the Fit looks small and not all that roomy, the interior space is class-leading. If you combine that with an equally superior reliability rating you are looking at a perfect city car on a budget. Buying a cheap city car is always a good idea because city cars tend to be involved in more accidents throughout their lifespans.
If you’ve ever been to Italy, France, or anywhere else on the Mediterranian, chances are you’ve spotted a huge number of Fiat 500’s. Europe loves the 500 because of its iconic styling, decent reliability, great technology, and reasonable price.
The new 500 is only going to be offered as an EV, and that is actually a great idea if you plan on just using it in the cities. The 500 takes advantage of fast charging up to 85khW which can give you 80% of battery juice after just 30 minutes of charge.
The Volkswagen Golf is also one of the most popular city cars in Europe for decades now. The Golf never really made its mark in the US, which is a shame because the Golf has always been one of the best top-of-the-line affordable to entry-level executive hatchbacks on the market.
There are loads of engine and powertrain options to choose from. The range starts from smaller diesel and petrol engines and hybrid variants with less than 100hp and FWD and goes all the way up to 400hp, AWD, and a dual-clutch gearbox.
The Toyota Aygo is a truly fun hatchback thanks to a manga-inspired design, great road manners, and decent efficiency and comfort. The Aygo has been heavily redesigned, and this newer version is way better in almost every aspect imaginable.
One of the biggest benefits the new Aygo carries is the above-average reliability. Almost all never Toyota models are constantly being regarded as the most reliable cars on the market, and the Aygo is no different. With lots of tech available, great reliability, and looks, the Aygo is one of the best subcompact city cars out there right now.
As mentioned previously, city cars should be small, nippy, easy to see out of, and efficient. Even though a BMW does not strike as a brand usually associated with city cars, the BMW 2-series can be considered as a great city car for many different reasons.
First of all, the 2-series is compact, so much so that it easily fits in tight parking spaces and roundabouts. Furthermore, the 2-series is easy to see out of, responsive, and fairly fuel-efficient. The best thing about the 2-series however is the ability to enjoy it whenever you do leave the city.
Toyota RAV4 Hybrid
The Toyota RAV4 Hybrid is efficient, reliable, sophisticated, spacious, and cheap to maintain. Besides these, the RAV4 also costs fairly cheap. As such, the RAV4 Hybrid represents one of the best value-oriented cars in general, and that’s something you should appreciate in a city car.
The great thing about the RAV4 is when you do eventually get out of the city, the RAV4 is capable of taking you off-road to a certain degree while still retaining pose on highway speeds. The RAV4 is well equipped and it offers everything you’d want from a city car.
Are sedans good city cars?
It depends on the size of the sedan and the traffic infrastructure of a certain city. If you are mostly interested in compact sedans in cities wide and opened roads, yes, they are good city cars.
If you live in European tight city streets, buying any type of sedan is questionable, especially a full-size luxury sedan. You should take the car out for a test drive, do a city loop or two and figure out is it worth it to drive a 2-ton barge in city centers.
Are SUVs good city cars?
One thing SUVs do incredibly well is safety and visibility, and both of these are important when it comes to city driving. On the other hand, SUVs tend to be bigger and harder to manoeuvre sometimes, all of which makes them not so good for city environments.
There is quite a bit of difference between a compact SUV/Crossover like the Audi Q3 or the Audi Q7. So if you are not planning to use the extra space and off-road capabilities, there really is no need to go for a large SUV.
What are the common issues associated with city driving?
There are many issues commonly associated with city driving such as lots of pedestrians, bicyclists, buses, one-way streets, trams, limited spaces, nervous drivers, rush hour madhouse and such. All of these issues can be easily negated with calmness and patience.
Just follow the rules, look where you are going, and pay attention to cyclists and pedestrians as they always tend to appear from absolutely nowhere.