Car Guides

10 affordable small cars worth considering

Many affordable new cars have all the modern features you're looking for.

These small cars are big on features and great for any budget. Toyota

The coronavirus public health crisis has forced all of us to change our behaviors and habits. Health is the most pressing aspect of this ongoing crisis, but the reality is many will come out of this in a tighter financial spot as well. If you were in the market for a new car, that might now mean looking at smaller and more economical cars. Luckily the latest crop of small cars are nicer and better-equipped than ever before, and here are 10 that will fit many budgets.

2020 Honda Fit | MSRP: $16,190

The Honda Fit is one of the best small cars on the market. It makes incredible use of its small platform, providing an impressive 52.7 cubic feet of cargo space, and employing Honda’s versatile “Magic Seat” systems. Despite its small size, taller drivers will fit comfortably in both the front and rear rows. Its small four-cylinder engine makes adequate power and returns up to 40 miles per gallon on the highway.


The Honda Fit is spacious, sporty, and sensible.

2020 Kia Rio | MSRP: $16,720

The Rio has a plucky, three-box design, and delivers fantastic fuel economy of 33 miles per gallon city, 41 highway. The Rio also has athletic handling and a surprisingly upscale interior, outfitted with a standard seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system with standard Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

2020 Nissan Versa | MSRP: $14,730

The Versa is one of the least expensive new cars on the market today, but that doesn’t mean you need to make serious sacrifices to save money. The Versa has been completely redesigned for 2020, with a modern, well-equipped interior, and backed by strong safety scores.

Toyota Corolla | MSRP: $19,600

The 2020 Toyota Corolla provides solid fuel economy (30/38 miles per gallon city/highway) and strong reliability ratings. The Corolla also comes with an incredible list of standard features, including forward collision avoidance, lane departure warning, adaptive cruise control, and automatic high beams. Inside, the Corolla comes standard with a seven-inch touchscreen with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.


The Toyota Corolla comes with impressive standard infotainment and driver assistance features.

2020 Hyundai Accent | MSRP: $15,295

If you are a taller driver, check out the Hyundai Accent. Its front seats are a bit larger and provide a bit more headroom than other subcompact cars. The Accent is a pretty straightforward small car, and that means intuitive controls, and user-friendly infotainment features. For 2020, the Accent gets a new CVT for smoother power delivery.

2020 Toyota Yaris | MSRP: $15,650

When is a Mazda not a Mazda? When it’s a Toyota Yaris, which is called the Mazda2 in all other markets. The Yaris benefits from Mazda’s good fuel economy, refined driving dynamics, and upscale, well-quipped interior. The Mazda-sourced infotainment system can be frustrating for some, as it locks out the touch screen when the car is in motion. At that point, you can only use the rotary dial controller in the center console.

Subaru Impreza | MSRP: $18,685

The Subaru Impreza is incredibly practical and capable, and is the only vehicle on this list to come standard with (or even offer) all-wheel drive. This gives the Impreza a leg-up when the weather gets nasty. And models with the CVT transmission get Subaru’s EyeSight suite of driver assistance features as standard equipment. That includes forward collision avoidance, lane departure warning, and adaptive cruise control. The Impreza also comes standard with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.


The Impreza is the only small car on this list with standard AWD.

2020 Honda Civic | MSRP: $19,850

Simply put, the Civic plays in a field above the rest. It is a spacious and comfortable compact car, and provides shoppers with the choice of sedan, coupe, or hatchback. It has a modern, upscale interior, with a high-tech instrument panel, and is available with a seven-inch touchscreen infotainment system. In addition to all this, the Civic has responsive handling that will make it enjoyable to drive.

2020 Kia Forte | MSRP: $17,890

The Forte is a sporty compact sedan that packs a lot of value for your money. It has a spacious, comfortable interior, and puts up fuel economy numbers as high as 41 miles per gallon on the highway. The Forte also provides a long list of standard features, including automatic emergency braking and lane keeping assist. It also comes standard with a touchscreen infotainment system with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto.

VW Golf | MSRP: $23,195

The Golf is the most expensive vehicle on this list, but if you were in the market for a small SUV, consider the Golf. It provides an impressive 53.7 cubic feet of cargo space, and returns up to 35 miles per gallon with the eight-speed automatic transmission. The Golf also has a luxury-level interior, and will provide a much more responsive driving experience than that small SUV you were considering.

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