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Less is more?
We Canadians are big on small cars, but that doesn’t mean we’re willing to sacrifice comfort, safety or value. Fortunately, we don’t have to. There are dozens of fun and frugal sub-compacts to choose from at dealer lots.
“This is where the market is going and they are definitely worth the money,” says Dave Redinger, host of The Neighbourhood Mechanic on AM740 radio in Toronto. But not all of these cars offer the best deal on wheels, especially when there’s a big brother on the lot for only a few more dollars.
We put together a list of the best new sub-compacts and then compared them to their slightly larger siblings to see whether you should go small, or pay extra for a little more room and zoom.
Ford Fiesta vs. Ford Focus
The Fiesta is a cousin of the Mazda2, but offers a different driving experience, according to automotive journalist Jil McIntosh. “The Fiesta has a slightly softer suspension that will appeal to those who don’t like a firmer, rougher ride,” she says.
Available in an array of Skittle-like colours, the Fiesta costs $1,000 less than the bigger Ford Focus and comes with most of the same safety features.
Verdict: The Focus is roomier but the styling is bland (a new model is arriving this May). Until then, at least, the Fiesta rules the road.