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#4735349 - 04/22/18 02:41 PM Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global
NewEnglander Offline


Registered: 01/14/15
Posts: 80
Loc: Boston, MA
Been having some good debates on the future of the wife's Hyundai Accent and the state of the subcompact market (b-segment) here in the United States. By our estimation, it has been on a slow but continuous decline that has coincided with the market recovery from 2008 or thereabouts (by my estimation) as gas has been lower and folks opt for the bigger rides or the cute crossovers that are neither cars, trucks, nor SUVs. Perhaps not the case elsewhere in the world, but seems to be the state of affairs here. Curious to see what the future holds with gas on the rise again and many companies slashing car models left and right.

Yet as mostly urban dwellers we always appreciate the parking efficiency, mileage, and "fun to drive" factor some of the subcompacts showcase. Have been fans of the Peter Schreyer designed Rio that we have as our primary car, and have always been partial to the Accent...though were a bit disappointed the new Accent line does NOT have a hatchback here in the United States (+1 Canada)...so what to do?

The Accent may or may not be headed for retirement so we are pondering the next car. We don't typically opt for new as this will be a secondary car...but stranger things have happened. So, what are folks favorite subcompacts? I guess I'm thinking from 2007 to present but all time is cool, as are models from around the world. City cars, hatchbacks, you name it...and if you think there' something we should think about give a shout. Cheers. cheers
_________________________
13 Kia Rio 5 EX 1.6 GDi - Formula Shell 5w20 + Mobis - Nokian WRG3
03 Hyundai Accent GL 1.6 - Pennzoil 10w30 + Mobis - Hankook Optimo H724

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#4735356 - 04/22/18 03:00 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
simple_gifts Offline


Registered: 07/26/04
Posts: 12012
Loc: Middlesex County CT
Are you shooting for barebones?

For obvious reasons I will mention the yaris; I just picked up a 2007 w/ 64K a few months ago.

1nz-fe bulletproof engine with sfi (coming close to 20 years in production); My particular year, toyota hired extra engineers to ensure the sound of frugality is pronounced. Nice stiff chassis, simple maintenance and not much to break (crank windows, no abs, 5 sp, manual locks)

Hatch is handy when you buy, say, 24 rolls of toilet paper and you don't know where to store it.
_________________________
2004 Prius; 97K ML Syn 5W-30
2007 Yaris 71K 0w-40 Castrol
2006 B2300;130K;ALM


Was driving an ox cart; Now on the USS Enterprise

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#4735359 - 04/22/18 03:07 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
PimTac Offline


Registered: 03/04/17
Posts: 4950
Loc: Soviet State of Washington
Crossovers are selling big worldwide. Itís not just a US trend. As for subcompact cars, especially hatchbacks, Hyundai/Kia and Mazda both have some interesting designs with very good fuel economy.
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#4735389 - 04/22/18 03:40 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
wemay Offline


Registered: 04/04/12
Posts: 9155
Loc: Miami Florida
Honda Fit
Ford EcoSport
Mazda CX-3
New Accent
Kia Rio
_________________________
'18 KIA Sportage LX AWD
Magnatec 5W30

'13 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.0T
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#4735393 - 04/22/18 03:49 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
Tdbo Offline


Registered: 08/18/09
Posts: 3253
Loc: Ohio
I never would have thought of or would have agreed with this until I read the article.
If used, one of these makes quite a value proposition, as outlined at the end of the article:

http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2018/02/2016-chevrolet-spark-rental-review-real-mvp/#more-1610774
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2012 Honda Accord LX-P 93K
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#4735397 - 04/22/18 03:55 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
Vuflanovsky Offline


Registered: 12/15/14
Posts: 1230
Loc: California
What about a low mileage or leftover '17 Accent hatch to replace the '03?? A 2013 Accent hatch is my commuter car and I'd be tempted to buy another one in a year or two if they still sold the hatchback in the U.S. I have to park often enough in urban environments that I can't imagine anyone buying a truck because "gas is cheap".

I think the trend is toward subcompact CUVs...or is that SCUVs...versus small subcompact cars. More expensive and more margin for the manufacturer than the standard subcompact of the past.

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#4735399 - 04/22/18 03:59 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: simple_gifts]
NewEnglander Offline


Registered: 01/14/15
Posts: 80
Loc: Boston, MA
Originally Posted By: simple_gifts
Are you shooting for barebones?

For obvious reasons I will mention the yaris; I just picked up a 2007 w/ 64K a few months ago.

1nz-fe bulletproof engine with sfi (coming close to 20 years in production); My particular year, toyota hired extra engineers to ensure the sound of frugality is pronounced. Nice stiff chassis, simple maintenance and not much to break (crank windows, no abs, 5 sp, manual locks)

Hatch is handy when you buy, say, 24 rolls of toilet paper and you don't know where to store it.


I think so. I guess value is the name of the game, but also reliable. Also aiming for timing chain versus belt when possible. One of the great advancements Kia and Hyundai made with the 2012+ subcompacts was getting away from the timing belts IMO.

The Yaris is at the top of the list, and thanks for the tip on the year. There are 07s and 08s kicking around my neighborhood I might take a look at.


Edited by NewEnglander (04/22/18 03:59 PM)
_________________________
13 Kia Rio 5 EX 1.6 GDi - Formula Shell 5w20 + Mobis - Nokian WRG3
03 Hyundai Accent GL 1.6 - Pennzoil 10w30 + Mobis - Hankook Optimo H724

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#4735404 - 04/22/18 04:02 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: Vuflanovsky]
NewEnglander Offline


Registered: 01/14/15
Posts: 80
Loc: Boston, MA
Originally Posted By: Vuflanovsky
What about a low mileage or leftover '17 Accent hatch to replace the '03?? A 2013 Accent hatch is my commuter car and I'd be tempted to buy another one in a year or two if they still sold the hatchback in the U.S. I have to park often enough in urban environments that I can't imagine anyone buying a truck because "gas is cheap".

I think the trend is toward subcompact CUVs...or is that SCUVs...versus small subcompact cars. More expensive and more margin for the manufacturer than the standard subcompact of the past.


Good call and not a bad idea at all. I think any Accent 2012-2017 could be fair game with even better value closer to 12. I am optimistic they'll bring the new hatch to US in a year or two maybe foolishly so, and one reason I am thinking an older city car to holdover until then, while we'll shift our Rio to the secondary car...but we'll see...thanks for the idea!
_________________________
13 Kia Rio 5 EX 1.6 GDi - Formula Shell 5w20 + Mobis - Nokian WRG3
03 Hyundai Accent GL 1.6 - Pennzoil 10w30 + Mobis - Hankook Optimo H724

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#4735408 - 04/22/18 04:03 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: Tdbo]
NewEnglander Offline


Registered: 01/14/15
Posts: 80
Loc: Boston, MA
Originally Posted By: Tdbo
I never would have thought of or would have agreed with this until I read the article.
If used, one of these makes quite a value proposition, as outlined at the end of the article:

http://www.thetruthaboutcars.com/2018/02/2016-chevrolet-spark-rental-review-real-mvp/#more-1610774



Thanks for this article, great points. Big fan of the Spark. My neighbor has one and I was always impressed with what you get in the size and price. Will be on the list.
_________________________
13 Kia Rio 5 EX 1.6 GDi - Formula Shell 5w20 + Mobis - Nokian WRG3
03 Hyundai Accent GL 1.6 - Pennzoil 10w30 + Mobis - Hankook Optimo H724

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#4735418 - 04/22/18 04:07 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
eyeofthetiger Offline


Registered: 11/18/17
Posts: 683
Loc: South Carolina
I can't believe Ford isn't brining the new Fiesta to tge US. Instead, they're dropping it. Bad move. Not everyone wants an Ecosport.
_________________________
2017 Ford Fiesta 1.0T - Valvoline SynPower 5W-20, Motorcraft FL910S
1988 GMC K1500 4.3/700R4 - Supertech 15W-40, Fram TG3980
1986 Ford Ranger 2.0 - uhh

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#4735423 - 04/22/18 04:11 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: eyeofthetiger]
NewEnglander Offline


Registered: 01/14/15
Posts: 80
Loc: Boston, MA
Originally Posted By: eyeofthetiger
I can't believe Ford isn't brining the new Fiesta to tge US. Instead, they're dropping it. Bad move. Not everyone wants an Ecosport.


I was so disappointed when I had read this! Great little car.
_________________________
13 Kia Rio 5 EX 1.6 GDi - Formula Shell 5w20 + Mobis - Nokian WRG3
03 Hyundai Accent GL 1.6 - Pennzoil 10w30 + Mobis - Hankook Optimo H724

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#4735465 - 04/22/18 04:47 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: eyeofthetiger]
madRiver Offline


Registered: 07/11/15
Posts: 3682
Loc: New England
Originally Posted By: eyeofthetiger
I can't believe Ford isn't brining the new Fiesta to tge US. Instead, they're dropping it. Bad move. Not everyone wants an Ecosport.


I think they should import them just like the upcoming Ford Focus made in China. Donít waste their factories and trained auto workers on low volume and low profit small cars.

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#4735474 - 04/22/18 04:55 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
bigjl Offline


Registered: 09/06/12
Posts: 2221
Loc: London, England
We had the Chevy(Daewoo) Spark in the UK till a few years ago.

They hardly sold any.

Very cheap interior, which does make them robust.

They are becoming a more and more common sight in Accra, Ghana as Taxis.

All the reviews would indicate that dynamically they just didn't cut it in Europe. Though I wonder if the same journalists would say that if it had one of the many VAG badges on its grille.

I always thought it was a roomy, robust small car, if a little unusually styled. Lots of room though which is why they are being imported into Ghana for Taxi usage.

Previous cars that have proved popular and reliable have been Daewoo Tico and the later Matiz.

Kia Picanto/Morning

Nissan Micra/March (saw one at the airport that was fitted with a Peugeot XUD engine!)

The Hyundai Atoz and i10 have also been used.

Along with slightly larger cars like Nissan Almera and some small Toyotas about the size of a Civic but I don't know their name, it might have been Matrix?
_________________________
16 S350d LWB 25k Mobil Super 3000 XE 5w30
17 Smart ForFour Auto 6.5k Mobil 1 0w40 FS

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#4735507 - 04/22/18 05:44 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
Jett Rink Offline


Registered: 11/01/05
Posts: 369
Loc: Bristol, Tennessee
If I was driving in a big city with narrow streets and parking was a challenge, I would probably be driving either a Honda Fit or VW Golf (or whatever VW is calling it now). I rode in a coworker's Fit a few months ago, and was impressed. Would be a fun car to drive, particularly with a manual transmission.
_________________________
1987 Mercedes 300E 87,000 miles 15w-40
2012 Honda Odyssey 120,000 miles 0w-20
2000 Mercedes CLK320 170,000 miles 0w-40

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#4735511 - 04/22/18 05:47 PM Re: Best Subcompact Cars in the US & Global [Re: NewEnglander]
Wolf359 Online   content


Registered: 04/27/12
Posts: 5039
Loc: MA
In terms of parking, lots of cars now have parking sensors or cameras as options. So you can squeeze midsized cars into spots that only compacts or subcompacts would fit in. I think the parking skills of urban dwellers are starting to decline, I have no problem squeezing my car into a tight spot, sometimes you just have to back and forth a few times. Now I see people give up on spots where they have at least 3-4 feet of space to squeeze in.

Also don't forget the country is getting richer and there's a constant war with size, the bigger car is safer in an accident. I believe the stats are something like you're more than 3x likely to be killed in a small car vs a large car or SUV. Hence the arms race to buy bigger vehicles. Just boils down to whether you think your life is worth the extra cost in gas and vehicle to be 3x safer.

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