The last ten years have been tough on most modern families. The economic recession hit America and Europe hard and dug deep into the pockets of everyday homes. One place that it hit families hard was in the automotive sector. More and more were forced to cut back on their motoring budget and sales of family cars wobbled. In their place rose a new generation of budget cars and manufacturers. Some were names that reinvented themselves, like Skoda and Seat. Others were entirely new to the market.
What followed was a revolution of brilliant new, affordable small cars. Their price was not necessarily a detraction of quality either. We’ve sat behind the wheel of these cars and they’re fantastic. They are small, city cars with no frills. Just solid, reliable engineering and simple features. Most importantly it allowed drivers to get back on the road. The following cars are perfect for first time drivers and young road users. Let’s take a deeper look.
Skoda have emerged from years of scorn and disapproval. The Czech based motor company was once synonymous with instability and poor engineering. Over the last fifteen years, they have entirely turned this reputation around. Now part of the Volkswagen group, Skoda produce some of the finest budget cars on the market. The Octavia is widely regarded as one of the best hatchbacks out there, for example. It sits proudly alongside the likes of the Ford Fiesta and the VW Golf. The Citigo, on the other hand, is probably the best small city car on the planet.
The South Korean automobile giant has been making cars for over 70 years. Yet it is only recently that they have made a big impact over in the east. Now part owned by Hyundai, its South Korean colleagues, their sales are soaring. The budget cars are now some of the most popular on the road. The likes of the Kia Picanto and the newer C’eed are fantastic family cars loved by consumers and critics.
Part of the motoring giant, Renault, Dacia are are a Romanian based company slowly making their mark. Their range includes the modest Sandero which is a brilliant little hatchback. It’s actually the cheapest new car you can buy in the UK at less than £6,000. That’s a whole grand less than a Fiesta. Take a look on Auto World for others in the range like the Dacia Duster too.
Getting behind the wheel of a Seat is not quite as affordable as the previous three. But, when you compare it to its rivals at Ford and Volkswagen, a Seat is still a great, budget option. The Seat Leon was actually voted Car Buyer’s best hatchback on the planet last year. And with good reason. It is built to the same spec as the (much more expensive) VW Golf. It has all the same power and handling, but with a Seat badge. We can’t recommend it highly enough.
The rise of the budget car has prompted other car companies to follow suit. Volkswagen, Nissan and General Motors have all started to develop their own budget range. With the Kias, Dacias and Seats leading the way, new budget cars are coming!