The question of which car to buy is not the easiest. Too many brands, too many models, and too many options. And while the bottom line, of course, is that the decision is highly personal, we’ve put together a little rundown of why we think small cars don’t always get the attention they deserve. Here are five reasons to opt for a small compact over a five-door or saloon.
#1 Lower costs
The first point on our list goes without saying: the purchase price is lower. Regardless of whether you are looking at a new car at the nearest Tesla dealership or are interested in used Toyotas – smaller cars cost less to manufacture, resulting in a smaller price tag. They are also usually more fuel-efficient, meaning you save on the cost of fuel too.
#2 Impact on the environment
This brings us seamlessly to our second point: smaller cars also have a smaller carbon footprint on our planet, simply because fewer materials are used in their production and they burn fewer fossil fuels in operation. However, the age and the type of construction should still be considered, as older models in particular can still hit harder and have a more severe impact than many new SUVs.
#3 Britain’s Narrow Roads – A Love Story
We all know our country’s traffic and how quickly we can find ourselves from the motorway onto a spindly serpentine road. Smaller cars mean increased manoeuvrability and easier handling on narrow roads – something a good two-thirds of British drivers are trying to avoid, according to a press release from the RAC Media Centre last year.
But narrow roads are not only found in rural areas, drivers also benefit from more adaptable vehicles in the city; after all, that’s one of the aspects they were designed for. And with global urbanization, more vehicles on the road, and more compact (and harder-to-find) parking spaces, those who are more flexible will benefit in the long run.
#4 Faster charging, less fuel
Also quite logically, smaller vehicles consume fewer fossil fuels and require a shorter charging time when it comes to electric vehicles. The reason for this is quite simple: their lower mass means that at the same time less energy must be expended for their acceleration, as well as for their deceleration. Some extra savings here as well!
#5 Safety & comfort
It could be argued that smaller cars are not as safe in the event of an accident as larger vehicles. However, this is not necessarily the case – or rather, the answer to this question is not quite that simple. Though in head-on collisions, larger cars and their ability to better intercept and protect passengers through their extended “crumple zone” (the distance between bumper and driver) “win”.
Due to their increased mass, however, they are also catapulted with more kinetic force than smaller cars, resulting in heavier impacts altogether. When it comes to road grip and rollovers, for example, you’re also better off in a small car.
Anyone who thinks that small cars offer less comfort is also not necessarily correct. Even if the bottom line is the exact construction, some compact cars can still offer enough leg and headroom for any giant.