Guest post by Greg Perry
Motorists across the UK have been struggling to balance the books for some time, with an ever-rising cost of fuel alongside the ever-painful bite of insurance premiums. But the last two years have knocked difficulty into fifth gear, with the value of second-hand vehicles skyrocketing alongside fuel prices. It is now harder than ever for new motorists to make driving a worthwhile cost – making the hunt for cars with lower running costs an absolute must. Whether energy-efficient or reliable and cheaper to insure, the following hatchbacks are not only inexpensive to purchase but also cheaper to run.
The Ford Fiesta has certainly not been a stranger to UK roads during its 45-year reign as an affordable hatchback. From new families to budding boy racers, the Fiesta has been a supremely popular entry into the compact market, and its popularity endures thanks to its relatively cheap running costs. Ford Fiesta tyres are easy to get a hold of, and the car itself is incredibly reliable; it certainly wouldn’t be a shock to see an R-reg Fiesta knocking about even today.
Hyundai has cornered the market for budget options, especially when it comes to slightly larger four- or five-door options within the supermini class. The i20 has been a workhorse of a hatchback since its launch in 2008, but modern iterations of the model include a hybrid engine – meaning consumers can save significantly on petrol costs. This makes the new i20 an incredible option for cheaper running going forward.
Peugeot’s hatchback series’ have dominated sales for decades, but their relatively new 208 hatchback is by far and away best-in-class against its forebears. As well as being a light and nimble vehicle, it boasts an mpg of around 56 – or up to the mid-70s if you opt for the diesel engine. There’s also an all-electric model, which, despite the higher upfront cost, can decimate the most expensive of running costs in fuel.
The Toyota Yaris is another old hand in the hatchback market, with its distinctive tall form and flat back making it a king amongst superminis. The Yaris is one of the most reliable hatchbacks on the market today, as well as one of the cheapest to repair in the unlikely event of a breakdown: according to the Reliability Index, it is the 19th most reliable car on the market, with the average cost of repair as low as £186. For city drivers, it is an excellent option as a daily runner, and a great way to keep costs down.
However, the Reliability Index also reveals another high performer in the hatchback arena, in the form of the Kia Picanto. Thirteenth on the list, and with an average repair cost of £155, the Picanto is a true performer on UK roads. Newer models are also relentlessly modern, with tech mod cons that belong in much less cost-efficient vehicles!