The most popular vehicle segment in Canada is the SUV, and the average transaction price of a new vehicle is approximately $35,000. While that is great for many people, some drivers want to spend a lot less cash on a lot smaller vehicle. Enter the fun-sized category, better known as the subcompact class. Two of the most popular vehicles in this segment are the Chevrolet Spark and the Nissan Micra, both of which are fun, feisty, and pocket-sized.
2020 Chevrolet Spark
The Chevrolet Spark is the cheapest vehicle available in Canada and has only four figures in its price tag–it starts at $9,998. It comes in five model variations: LS Manual, LS CVT, 1LT Manual, 1LT CVT, and 2LT CVT. The 2020 Spark LS features a surprising number of technology features for a low-price, subcompact car. It includes a rear vision camera, Chevrolet Infotainment 3 System, 7-inch touchscreen, Android Auto and Apple CarPlay connectivity, Bluetooth, Siri Eyes Free, and built-in 4G LTE Wi-Fi Hotspot. However, traditional comfort features such as air conditioning, power locks and windows, and more are left out of the $9,998 price tag.
Under the hood, the 2020 Chevrolet Spark has a 1.4-litre ECOTEC 4-cylinder engine that produces 98 horsepower and 94 lb-ft of torque. It comes standard with a 5-speed manual transmission and front-wheel drive, but higher-priced models do offer an automatic continuously variable transmission (CVT). The Spark offers fuel economy of 8.0 L/100km in the city and 6.2 L/100km on the highway. Higher priced versions even offer driver-assist technologies.
2020 Nissan Micra
The Nissan Micra was voted as a 2019 Best Buy in the City Car by The Car Guide. It is a small, frills-free subcompact vehicle that comes in three model versions: S, SV, and SR. The S, which is the base model, has a starting price point of just $10,488. This price will get drivers a car but nothing in the way of comfort. The Micra S features a five-speed manual transmission, AM/FM audio system, and a RearView monitor for parking ease. However, many comfort and convenience features are not included in this low price–air conditioning, power doors and windows, and cruise control are just a few of the items not found on the S model.
All models of the 2020 Nissan Micra are built with a 1.6-litre DOHC 16-valve 4-cylinder engine. The car is front-wheel drive (FWD) and produces 109 horsepower. It really shines in efficiency thanks to its size, offering a fuel economy of 8.7 L/100km in the city and 6.8 L/100km on the highway.
Comparing the Chevrolet Spark and Nissan Micra
In the battle of the bite-sized cars, the Chevrolet Spark comes out on top. For the lower price tag, the Spark provides a more modern technological environment, a quieter cabin, better fuel economy, and more comfortable seats. It is a great daily driver in cities and a great choice for young drivers.