If you’re looking for style, fuel economy and technology at an easy-to-swallow price tag, then the compact car segment is the place to be. Compact cars are no longer the ugly, too-cheap-to-be-seen-in vehicles that they used to be and offer a ton of value for buyers.
What’s New in Compact Cars for 2016?
The biggest news in the compact segment this year is the completely redesigned 2016 Honda Civic. Featuring new style inside and out, the Civic looks poised to once again be a front runner amongst compacts. Beside improved quality and premium materials, the Civic has received a pair of new engines. Base Civics receive a 2.0-liter four-cylinder unit while higher-end models get a 1.5-liter turbocharged engine.
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Scion has a new compact this year and unlike the xB before it, it’s a more conventional compact hatchback. Called the iM, the new car looks to pick up where the Toyota Matrix left off a few years ago. Based on the Corolla architecture, the iM is powered by a familiar 1.8-liter engine making 137 hp. With style and a lot of standard equipment, the iM is aimed at budget-minded buyers.
Earlier this year, Hyundai introduced the 2016 Elantra GT. Refreshed inside and out, the GT signifies this is the five-door hatchback version in the Elantra family. Power comes from a 2.0-liter four-cylinder engine making a healthy 173 hp. The GT can come equipped with a lot of high-end features that are usually not found in a compact car like a panoramic sunroof and a heated steering wheel.
Hyundai also unveiled its new Elantra sedan, which also has a refreshed look and is loaded with premium features and more safety technology. Actually a 2017 model year, car, it arrives at dealerships in January 2016. The Koran automaker also expects the sedan to get a top safety rating.
The Mitsubishi Lancer may be old, but for 2016 it does receive a mild refresh. Most notable at the front end, the revised sheet metal hopes to breathe some new life to the ancient Lancer. Inside, option packages have been shuffled around to offer more value to potential customers.
What’s next in Compact Cars?
The 2017 model year should be a busy one in the world of compact cars as the Chevrolet Cruze, and Nissan Sentra are expected to be overhauled this year. What exactly they will bring to the table is unknown at this time, but expect efficiency and refinement levels to be pushed higher than in the current models.