We have been looking long and hard at the figures, the spec, the mpg the mph and all the other bits and bobs to bring you our top 10, please let us know if you feel we have missed something, we will start with the small cars and work our way up. Click on the picture of the car for a more in-depth review.
The Fiat 500 in special edition ‘Colour Therapy’ is the cheapest car on the scheme at £45.75 meaning you keep £9.50 per week of your Mobility award. The 500 still raises a smile and draws a crowd, the 1.2 litre petrol engine can return 58.9 miles per gallon and the boot has enough room for a light shopping trip and you even can squeeze your more bendy friends in the back for a short trip in comfort as the 500 has the luxury of air conditioning.
Autumn Best Buy – Fiat 500 1.2 ‘Colour Therapy’ 3dr Manual Gearbox - £45.75 Per Week (you receive £9.50 per week as a DLA Payment)
The best value 5 door hatchback on the Scheme is the surprisingly roomy VW UP! at £46.70 per week. In ‘Take UP!’ trim you are not treated to any toys, no air conditioning or electric windows, the UP!’s sister car the Skoda Citigo in SE trim adds these at £48.51 per week. Both cars share a 60bhp 1.0 litre petrol engine that returns a claimed 62.8 miles per gallon. Competition comes in the form of the Hyundai i10 the Chevrolet Spark the Fiat Panda and the Citroen C1, (best value automatic option).
Autumn Best Buy – Volkswagen Up! 5 speed manual 1.0 petrol ‘Take UP!’ 5 door - £46.70 Per Week (you receive £8.55 per week as a DLA Payment)
The widely acclaimed Audi A1 edged out the stylish Citroen DS3, and Alfa Romeo MiTo due to the £350 price drop this quarter. The baby Audi is quoted as being ‘As sleek as a Mini and as well built as a Bentley’ award winning too, crowned 2011 car of the year at Whatcar magazine. The 105bhp 1.6 diesel is fast and frugal, 10.5 seconds to reach 62mph and claimed economy of 64.2 miles per gallon makes it just a great package if you want to stand out from the crowd without breaking the bank.
Autumn Best Buy – Audi A1 1.6 Diesel SE 3dr (105bhp) manual - £99 Advance Payment
The Nissan Juke takes the five door funky car award over the Renault Captur, Mini Countryman, Citroen DS4, Peugeot 2008 and Vauxhall Mokka. The Juke is a wonderful looking creation, if a tad aggressive for some tastes, which really breaks the mold of small car design, as fun to look at as to drive. The 1.5 litre diesel packs a punch and can return 57.6 miles per gallon. In Acenta trim the Juke has as standard 17″ alloy wheels, climate control, cruise control, bluetooth phone integration, electric windows, leather steering wheel with audio controls, six airbags, height adjustable drivers seat and 4 speaker CD radio with mp3 and usb connections. The CVT automatic on the 1.6 petrol at £299 offers a competitive automatic choice.
Autumn Best Buy – Nissan Juke 5 door 1.5 diesel Acenta (manual) £99 Advance Payment
The Volkswagen Polo is a three and five door small car that was World Car of the Year in 2010. Similar in size to the Ford Fiesta, Vauxhall Corsa, Honda Jazz, Kia Rio and the Renault Clio the new Polo is the biggest and best yet, styling wise it is simply a smaller Golf, which is surely only a good thing. In Match trim you have alloy wheels, air conditioning and tinted rear windows, the 1.2 litre diesel will return 72.4 miles per gallon and if you need an automatic the 1.4 litre petrol with the excellent DSG transmission is available without an advance payment.
Autumn Best Buy – Volkswagen Polo 3 or 5 door 1.2 TDI ‘Match diesel (manual gearbox) Nil Advance Payment
The Ford Focus is the perfect all rounder, good to drive, practical and cheap to run. It does not do one thing fantastically, it just does everything well. The 1.6 litre Diesel engine with 115 bhp is able to return 67 mpg while still propel the focus to 62 miles per hour in 10.8 seconds. In Zetec trim you get 16-inch alloys, heated front windscreen, sports front seats, heated door mirrors, leather-covered steering wheel and a bluetooth connection. Despite reductions in the price of the Volkswagen Golf the Focus just has the edge on value for a manual, if you need an automatic the 1.6 petrol focus with the excellent powershift automatic gearbox is available without an advance payment. Also consider the Honda Civic, the Seat Leon the Hyundai i30 or if you have the budget then the BMW 1 series.
Autumn Best Buy – Ford Focus hatchback Zetec 1.6 petrol powershift (Automatic) Nil Advance Payment or £95 Advance Payment as an estate
The Vauxhall Meriva is the best small MPV this quarter, edging out the Citroen C3 Picasso , the Kia Venga, the Nissan Note (best automatic choice), the Ford C-Max and the stylish Kia Soul. The Meriva has the eye-catching flexdoor system, the rear doors are hinged at the back, so its easier to get children or disabled adults into the rear seats, The Meriva is a good looking car with room in abundance, from the two trim levels, Exclusiv and SE, the SE trim that adds a lovely full length glass roof and rear privacy glass. The 1.7 Diesel engine is available as an automatic (110bhp) but Vauxhall have increased the price by £400 to £749 advance payment in Exclusiv trim.
Autumn Best Buy – Vauxhall Meriva Exclusiv 1.7 Diesel (130PS) manual - Nil Advance Payment
The ix35 is the surprise winner beating the Nissan Qashqai, the Skoda Yeti, the Peugeot 3008 and the delightful but slightly overpriced Kia Sportage in the Urban sports utility vehicle sector. The Hyundai ix35 is the biggest here and well equipped in SE trim, heated front seats and rear seats being the Pièce de résistance. The 1.6 litre petrol engine offers 135bhp and economy of 41.5 mpg and enough grunt to get the ix35 to 62 miles per hour in 11.1 seconds and to a top speed of 111 mph the 1.7 diesel engine is a little slower and only offers economy at 48.7 miles per gallon but is still the wise choice. The Peugeot 3008 with a 1.6 litre diesel that returns 58 miles per gallon and is available as a semi-automatic for £499.
Autumn Best Buy – Hyundai ix35 1.7 Diesel SE, Manual - £699 Advance Payment
The new 3 series is an improvement over the outgoing model, lighter, sharper styled, larger inside with a bigger boot and a better level of standard equipment. In SE trim as standard you receive BMW iDrive that controls the Bluetooth telephone, USB audio interface connected to the free-standing 6.5″ control display, cruise control, two zone automatic air conditioning, rear parking sensors, 17″ alloy wheels, a start stop button and all round electric windows. The two litre diesel is commonly perceived as the best around, badged as 316d with 116bhp, 318d with 143bhp and 320d with 184bhp, the 318d will return 62.8 miles per gallon and reach 62 miles per hour in 9 seconds and on to a top speed of 130 miles per hour and if you need an automatic, the new BMW 8 speed automatic has received rave reviews for its smoothness and fuel economy.
Autumn Best Buy – BMW 3 Series 318d SE Manual - £1999 Advance Payment (£2999 as an Automatic)
Whilst it may not have the most catchy name, nor head turning looks this van based car is just amazing, more room than you could ever imagine, amazing access through the rear sliding doors and a massive boot as well as enough cubby holes to keep you guessing where you put things. A design classic. The Diesel engine is economical (55.3 miles per gallon) and surprisingly fun to drive, 0-62 in 12 seconds. The Tepee’s sister car, the Citroen Berlingo, is available with seven seats.
Autumn Best Buy – Peugeot Partner Tepee Outdoor 1.6 diesel (115 bhp) - Nil Advance Payment
The Nissan Leaf is the green choice as it produces zero emissions as all the power comes from the electric motor powered by batteries hidden under the rear seats, The Leaf is comfortable carrying a family and there is lots of power from the 107bhp motor, obviously the fact that the car needs recharging every time you need to do a trip is the major issue but if you can fit the Leaf into your life then you will be rewarded with economy equating to 333 miles per gallon. The Toyota Yaris Hybrid has both a petrol and electric motor working side by side that can return 80 miles per gallon without range or charging issues as the batteries are charged as you drive the car.
Autumn Best Buy – Nissan Leaf Full Electric Car (Automatic) Acenta – £1299 Advance Payment