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The six best cars for driving in a city

Small cars don’t have to be boring, in fact for many people they’re the perfect choice for whizzing around town

City living can be quite hectic, especially if you don’t own a car which suits your urban lifestyle, so we’ve picked some of our favourite city cars to point you in the right direction.

Whether you’re considering switching to a more practical car, or are looking to purchase an additional smaller, yet family-friendly model, our guide is here to help you make a decision on which city car will suit you the best.

If you're a driver under the age of 25 and wondering how much your insurance would be, check out our top 10 cheapest cars for young drivers to insure.

Toyota Aygo

Price range £9,080 – £15,350

Not only is the Aygo one of the more spacious and stylish models, but it also comes with an improved engine and should return around 68 miles per gallon. It produces very low emissions meaning it’s good for both the environment and your pocket as lower emissions mean little or even no VED road tax.

The steering of this car should feel light and easy making it ideal for navigating around town and, as with all city cars, parking shouldn’t be too much of a concern. This would be the perfect car for smaller families but won’t be ideal for those with more than one child in a car seat, as back seat space is limited.

PROS: Good value for money, low expenditure, high-quality interior, lots of personalisation options

CONS: Doesn’t come with a standard spare wheel, rides can be a bit bouncy

Volkswagen Up!

Price range £8,940 – £25,225


A sporty, good-looking car available in either 60bhp or 75bhp, the Up! is the most expensive of Volkswagen Group’s top three city cars. Although it’s a little pricier than the rest of Volkswagen’s offering, paying that bit extra gives you a big-car feel without having to opt for a less practical model.

It comes with an attractive interior and has the comfort and capability to perform just as well on a long motorway ride as on a bumper-to-bumper journey through all the city. The five-door design is a great addition to an already practical and sturdy car.

PROS: High-quality, cheap to run with low CO2, voted ‘World Car of 2012’

CONS: Higher price, users have reported a difficulty to get a new Up! into reverse gear without double de-clutching

Seat Mii

Price range £9,600 – £11,635


This car falls into the middle of the VW’s city car trio and presents a classier design, a 1.0-litre engine and the option of either 59bhp or 74bhp. The Mii is great for the daily commute, longer weekend trips and motorway driving. It has a spacious interior and plenty of great visibility from the rear due to a large rear window. Mechanically identical to the Skoda Citigo and Volkswagen Up!, your design preference is really the only thing that separates here.

PROS: Good value for money, spacious for front seat passengers

CONS: Noisy gearbox, if you choose the 1.0 litre engines it's recommended you replace the timing belt at either three years or 30,000 miles

Skoda Citigo

Price range £8,440 – £11,335

The thing which differentiates the Citigo from other city cars is its funky design options, it comes in neon green and metallic yellow. You also have the opportunity to choose from four trim levels depending on what you’re looking for in your city ride - from heated seats, sat-nav and Bluetooth, to tinted glass and glossy outside trim, the choice is yours.

While the engine of the Citigo is the same as the Up! and the Mii, you also have the choice of a GreenTech model with lower C02 emissions. Overall, it offers an excellent balance between price, space, quality of materials and practicality.

PROS: Economical, cheap to run, spacious

CONS: The auto gearbox which increases the price and makes the ride a bit less comfortable, limitation on rough roads

Hyundai i10

Price range £8,940 – £13,355

Hyundai’s take on the city car has an impressively spacious cabin and a sharp look, completed by the five-door design, a major advantage for a smaller car. The space provided by the i10 can be compared to a supermini, and it definitely gives you a feel of driving a larger car. The engine options vary between a 1.0- and 1.2-litre and whichever you decide on, the i10 is still going to be a good choice for both long trips and everyday city rides.

PROS: Easy to drive, good sized interior

CONS: It isn’t EU type approved for a towbar

Citroen C1

Price range £8,660 – £12,940

The C1 has a clean and classic look with a sleek finish. It’s a compact car with plenty of room for front seat passengers but a lot less in the back. Choose between a 1.0 or 1.2-litre engine, the more powerful one makes the car suitable for longer motorway driving. The model, with a plush interior and more of a sophisticated feel is designed to be cheap to run and, best of all, it qualifies for zero annual tax due to its low emissions.

PROS: Tax-free, cheap to run

CONS: Limited space at the rear

Whichever car you choose remember to get it insured.If you and your family members have more than one car at home Admiral Multi Car Insurance can help to get you all insured. If you need to know more about it just check out our guide to MultiCar Insurance or, if you’re already up to date, get a quote now.