Best city cars 2020: the cars to make city life bearable

Published: 12 November 2020

► CAR guides you through the best city cars on the market
► Electric and convertibles make the cut
► Cheap and viable alternatives to public transport

It's been well documented that city cars are becoming less and less popular among car manufacturers. It could even be said that they're a dying breed.

The good news is that now only the best are still around. Long gone are the days of cramped, ugly, and excruciatingly uncool little cars you'd be embarrassed to be seen in.

The best city cars now have similar equipment and comfort levels to superminis, but are wrapped up in a smaller and neater package - perfect for avoiding public transport in the cities, as well as for getting out of them.

Below you'll find our top five city cars on sale now.

Best city cars


Hyundai i10

2020 Hyundai 10

Hyundai's new-for-2020 i10 is proof that a cull in the city car market has resulted in a stronger offering.

You'll find more room in the back seats than many superminis, plus there's a new infotainment system complete with grown-up features like wireless phone charging, connected sat nav with real-time updates, and a companion phone app that can remotely lock the car.

The standard 1.0-litre with 67bhp is a bit weedy, but the 1.0-litre found in the N Line is a little ripper, making 100bhp and offering a 0-62mph sprint in 10.5seconds - around four seconds quicker than the slowest i10. There's also an automatic on offer, although you should really avoid it.

View Hyundai i10 lease deals

Volkswagen Up

Volkswagen Up

Three-door or five-door. Humble 65bhp engine, or fiendishly fun 115bhp unit in the form of the GTI. There's an Up for everyone in the market for a city car.

It's famed for build quality that would shame a car twice its price, while it's almost as comfortable as something twice the price too.

Interior isn't as techy as an i10, but the touch points are softer.

View Volkswagen Up lease deals

Seat Mii Electric

2020 Seat Mii

Like the VW Up, but just wish it was electric? Seat has your back. Cheap electric cars don't come much better than this.

If you rarely venture beyond the urban sprawl – given the speed of the wi-fi outside of the city, we wouldn't blame you – the Mii Electric is perfect.

It'll cover a claimed 162 miles on a single charge, while an 80 percent fill-up is possible in just 40 minutes using a 40kw public charger. It's fun to drive, loaded with kit and practical for a typical city car driver.

View Seat lease deals

Fiat 500C

Fiat 500C

Not many convertible city cars around. Nevertheless, with the chic fabric roof folded back, it can turn the streets of Milton Keynes into Milan, Romsey into Rome and Nantwich into Naples.

Of course, being a convertible means there isn't much space for rear seat passengers. But how often do you really have people in the back?

There's a new 1.0-litre mild hybrid too. While it can't run in an electric only mode, it can cut the engine off at up to 18mph in order to maximise fuel economy. Officially, it'll do 53.3mpg.

View Fiat 500C lease deals

Citroen C1

Citroen C1

One of the simplest cars out there, making it a cinch to drive.

Great choice too. Eight body colours, five trim levels, but only one engine. It's a 1.0-litre with 72bhp. It won't light your trousers on fire, but it will do more than 50mpg.

Top spec-cars get the all-important Apple CarPlay/Android Auto, and in case you didn't know by now, the C1 is mechanically identical to the Peugeot 108 and Toyota Aygo. So if you don't like the look of this little Citroen, there are two very similar cars to choose from.

View Citroen C1 lease deals

By Murray Scullion

Bauer Automotive’s finance editor; keeps an eye on finance trends and manufacturer deals. Loves old fast cars

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