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Top 10: Small hatchbacks

Downsizing used to mean sacrificing the space, comfort, and convenience features that we took for granted in bigger, more expensive cars. But no longer thanks to high quality and comfortable small cars. Here we list your most popular 10.

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Skoda Fabia

It may not have the most 'youthful' of images but the Fabia is nontheless a very good hatchback. Plus with sporty looking versions like the Monte Carlo - pictured above, you can at least inject a bit of style into the mix.

It's a big step forward from its predecessor with a far better interior and improved material quality. Equipment levels are decent with entry-level S models getting DAB and Bluetooth connectivity, with the SE adding better audio and air-conditioning. Quiet, comfortable and safe it’s a solid all-rounder.

Read the full Skoda Fabia review


flying_porker    on 26 July 2016

We have a 57 plate Jazz. It has good performance, and is very economical. It has the CVT gearbox and is ideal for my wife who is partially disabled.

If driven gently, it will return over 50 mpg which is very impressive for an automatic. It is a good car to drive.

I have only one gripe. The handbrake is not very good.

   on 27 December 2016

I have a 2006 Fiesta 1.4 which has done 32000 miles only as I live overseas apart from two holidays in the UK each year. It is parked outside and always starts first time after up to six months "sleep" and still has its original battery. Has been serviced every 3000 miles and the only problem is the air conditioning which fails as the engine needs to be run regularly to keep the AC system charged up. What a great little car.

Libre 303 Canada.

Motor Mike    on 12 October 2018

I have a 2005 Toyota Yaris with a surprisingly smooth ride for such a small car, one of the selling points for me as I have terrible trouble with my back. It smooths out most lumps and bumps in the roads at the minor cost of cornering like a double bed. I previously 'enjoyed' the crashy clunky ride of a 2001 Ford Fiesta, all be it with superior cornering abilities.

The CD player seems a little out of date since it doesn't play MP3 CDs and has no line out to plug in a phone or MP3 player, it's also a complete pig to find a way to install a replacement as so much of the centre console needs to be removed to do it. I'd imagine this has been addressed in more up to date models.

On long motorway runs the 1.4 D4D (diesel) engine returned up to 60 mpg, which is impressive by anyone's standards, just don't expect the same around town where it drops off to 45-50 mpg depending on how you drive it.

I've had the pleasure of driving my sister's 2006 automatic Honda Jazz as well, with enough electrical bells and whistles to make me jealous as my sunroof is manual and a can't fold away my wing mirrors at the touch of a button. However, it's 1.4 CVT petrol engine is unlikely to be as economical as my car's engine over a motorway run. Maybe the discrepancy is the £1000 more that her car cost as we changed car's at a similar time.

I'd certainly buy the manual version if ever bought one as the automatic transmission seems slow to change up a gear although not as bad as the slow change up in my mother's automatic fiesta, complete with terrible ride quality despite being a 2009 model, something ford should really work on.

   on 20 February 2019

I so badly wanted to buy a Yaris due to its reliability, but just could not live with its styling both in and out, its dull engine note and complete lack of personality. It's the automotive equivalent of Spinach , good for you but you hate every bite. I settled for a Swift 1.0 Turbo and its a marvellously entertaining car with a fabulous driving position afforded by its unique upright windscreen. It may or may not prove to be a bit less reliable than a Yaris , but I would rather spend a little extra time in a workshop than 5 years driving a Yaris.

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