The best small automatic cars in 2017

  • Five compact automatic cars
  • Take the stress out of city driving and commuting
  • Find cars for sale that'll suit your budget and use
  • Five compact automatic cars
  • Take the stress out of city driving and commuting
  • Find cars for sale that'll suit your budget and use

If you’re looking for a small, economical car to drive around the tight roads of a city, then you might want to consider an automatic car. The automatic gearbox removes all those gear changes while sitting in traffic and manoeuvring around junctions and parking spaces. 

But finding a good small automatic car used to be difficult, as often manufacturers left the automatic gearboxes to their larger cars. A manual gearbox is a cheaper option, so was often the only option on small city cars. 

Finding a small automatic city car

However, these days most manufacturers will offer an automatic gearbox on almost all of their cars, meaning it’s much easier to find a small automatic car to suit your budget. 

We’ve listed our favourite small automatic cars for 2017:

Skoda Fabia

Skoda Fabia automatic small car

The reliable and practical Fabia gets a bit of a boost with a turbocharged 1.0-litre engine, which is coupled to a modern rapid-shifting dual-clutch DSG gearbox. This allows it to accelerate to 62mph in a swift 9.8 seconds, outpacing many competitors. It's easy to drive, roomy and refined. Despite the pace it offers good economy.

New price range: £11,295 - £18,600
Used price range: £5,750 - £12,910
Fuel economy: 57 - 78mpg
Insurance group: 2 - 13

View the latest Skoda Fabia cars for sale

Ford Fiesta

Ford Fiesta automatic small car

There aren't many people who wouldn't recognise the Fiesta name. It's good looking, well equipped and performs well. It even manages some of that 'big car' feel and is happy on the motorway. The current generation betters the previous model in several respects, including being cheaper to run and to buy.

A new version of the Fiesta is due on sale later in 2017. 

New price range: £9,795 - £23,015
Used price range: £1,880 - £16,800
Fuel economy: 43 - 88mpg
Insurance group: 3 - 31

View the latest Ford Fiesta cars for sale

Honda Jazz

Honda Jazz automatic small car

One of Honda’s most important cars, the Jazz has won more than 70 awards in Europe alone. The current model has more space than ever, a 7.0-inch touchscreen, and loads of safety features including an intelligent speed limiter that recognises the speed limit by 'reading' signs.

The optional CVT automatic has been retuned for better fuel economy and driveability – in short, making it feel more like a manual box. It is the more efficient choice, offering 106g/km of CO2 and 61.4mpg.

New price range: £13,955 - £18,165
Used price range: £8,830 - £14,660
Fuel economy: 55 - 61mpg
Insurance group: 13

View the latest Honda Jazz cars for sale

Toyota IQ (2009-2014)

Toyota IQ automatic small car

With its compact dimensions and surprisingly roomy cabin, the IQ is ideal for city driving, and you can pick up a second-hand model for less than £2k. It does have a tiny boot, though, and the automatic comes in more expensive. It’s quirky in looks, and more flexible than the two-seat Smart Fortwo. The automatic gearbox raises emissions to 110g/km.

Used price range: £1,985 - £8,405
Fuel economy: 54 - 64mpg
Insurance group: 3 - 6

View the latest Toyota IQ cars for sale

Mazda 2

Mazda 2 automatic small car

The Mazda 2 is a stylish and sporty alternative to the likes of Ford's Fiesta or the Vauxhall Corsa. It's well equipped and easy to drive yet responsive and fun, meaning it won't bore you to tears when you're driving across country. The automatic gearbox adds 2.6 seconds to its 0-62mph time, compared to the manual versions, but it remains relatively economical.

New price range: £12,695 - £17,395
Used price range: £5,750 - £13,570  
Fuel economy: 56 - 83mpg
Insurance group: 13 - 19

View the latest Mazda 2 cars for sale

Prices correct at the time of writing

What to read next: 

When’s the best time to buy a car?
The best cheap electric cars
The best small, economical 4x4s
Looking for a fast car that's also economical? 
Cheap convertible cars

Sidebar Right

Choose a different car: