With gas prices the way they are these days, subcompact cars are becoming more and more enticing to customers hoping to save money on fuel. Not only do subcompact cars offer excellent fuel economy, they typically come with lower sticker prices. This is true whether you plan to buy a new or used vehicle.
Consumer Reports is currently tracking six subcompact cars. The issue is split evenly between three who give a thumbs up and three who criticize more harshly. Which cars fall into which category?
Consumer Reports is a fan of these three subcompact cars
Consumer Reports’ subcompact rankings reveal it recommends the Nissan Versa, Hyundai Accent and Hyundai Venue. What sets these cars apart from the competition? Let’s take a look.
The Nissan Versa is a remarkably affordable car, taking the top spot on Consumer Reports’ list. With an MSRP of $15,380, it’s also the cheapest of the subcompacts that Consumer Reports recommends. This subcompact car can accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in 9.7 seconds and has a combined fuel economy of 32 mpg.
The Hyundai Accent is slightly more expensive, with an MSRP of $16,645. Its acceleration ability is similar to that of the Nissan Versa, as it can hit 60 mph in 9.9 seconds. The Accent’s fuel economy isn’t too different from the Versa’s either, coming in at 33 mpg.
Finally, there’s the Hyundai Venue, which is the most expensive of the bunch at $19,000. Spending on this car will shave a second off your acceleration time compared to the Accent, but get you similar fuel economy at 32 mpg.
These subcompact vehicles do not qualify
At the other end of the scale are three subcompacts that Consumer Reports declines to recommend. First on this list is the Kia Rio, which has an MSRP of $16,450. Although its core features are similar to those of the more recommended models, it gets low marks for expected owner satisfaction, ride and noise.
The Chevrolet Spark, starting at $13,600, also gets low marks for expected owner satisfaction and acceleration. It takes over 12 seconds to reach 60 mph. This car also gets low ratings for ride and noise.
At the bottom of the list is the Mitsubishi Mirage, which starts at $14,645. The Mirage is even slower than the Spark, taking 12.1 seconds to reach 60 mph. It scores particularly poorly in the noise and interior categories.
The Hyundai Venue stands out in the crowd
Of all the vehicles on Consumer Reports’ list, only one stands out from the rest. This is Hyundai’s place. Unlike other cars, the Venue has an SUV style. This gives it several advantages over the competition, the most important of which is the extra cargo space.
Of course, as with most things in life, to get the benefits of a place, you’ll have to pay for them. Its starting price is about $2,500 more than the next most expensive car on the list. This price difference is significant given the relatively low cost of subcompact cars in general.
Buying a subcompact car can be a logical response to rising gas prices. Just make sure you do your research before putting your money into a model that may not end up giving you what you want.
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