The 5 Best City Cars Available For Under £250 Per Month

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City cars are becoming increasingly popular among a nation of drivers that are looking for a move away from the usual fuel-guzzling models. Especially those who do a large proportion of their driving in urban areas.

Practicality is key across the smaller city car range. Many of the models offer little in the way of storage, but that’s the point. These are cars specifically designed for the commute, or the nip to the shops – and they serve that purpose expertly.

If you’re only driving a few miles from your house to work every day then why slog it in a huge SUV or even a more commanding hatchback when a Seat Mii exists.

 

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1. Skoda Citigoe iV – from £162pcm*

 

*The monthly lease price is based on a 24-month contract, 9 months initial rental and 5,000 annual miles. Prices accurate at the time of publication

 
 

The Citigoe iV has actually been discontinued by Skoda after demand far outweighed supply. The news did come with the promise of delivering at least 10 new electric or hybrid models in the coming years for its customers, one of which is the exciting, bespoke Skoda Enyaq EV (electric vehicle).

While the Citigo is no more, our UK’s top leasing providers still have stock of the latest electrified version (badged ‘Citigoe iV’) of the adorable urban runaround.

 

Want to be sure you’re getting the best deal? Moneyshake finds you the best lease deals on the brand-new Skoda Citigo range.

 

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5 reasons to choose the Skoda Citigoe iV

 
  • 36.8kWh battery gives you 161 miles of range
  • Fully charge the car using a 7.2kW home charger in around five hours and 30 minutes, with an average cost of £5.63*
  • Rapid charging lets you charge the car from 20%-80% in 40 minutes using a public charger, with an average cost of £4.97**
  • Zero emissions driving means you won’t be charged for driving through UK ULEZ (Ultra Low Emission Zones)
  • Silent drive from the electric motors
 

*Assumes tariff of 17p/kWh, though the cost of home charging will depend on your electricity rate.

**Assumes tariff of 25p/kWh, though the price may differ depending on charge point.

 

2. Volkswagen Up! – from £156pcm*

 

*The monthly lease price is based on a 48-month contract, 9 months initial rental and 5,000 annual miles. Prices accurate at the time of publication

 
The Volkswagen Up is a premium city car that takes VW's robust, reliable build and applies it to a diddy model
 

One of the best city cars available when it comes to getting bang for your buck. The Volkswagen Up! may be the brand’s smallest vehicle, but that doesn’t mean it’s any less well-equipped than the rest of the VWs.

What Car? Car of the Year in 2012 and then AutoExpress City Car of the Year in 2020, accolades for this class-leader keep going, ahem, up and up.

Most of the praise for the VW Up! stems from its ability to be something to pretty much everyone. Just after a fuel-efficient runaround? Then the standard 65bhp, 1.0-litre petrol model will be plenty for most. Its 54mpg fuel economy in particular make it very adept at being a daily driver that won’t cost you an arm and a leg to run.

Need a bit of punch in your urban motor? Exclusive to the VW Up! is the ‘hot hatch’ GTI spec, which comes with a range-topping 113bhp engine. It’s thrilling to drive, sending the car from 0-62mph in 8.8 seconds (6.8 seconds quicker than the standard model).

If neither versions of this petrol engine work, Volkswagen has created an electrified version – the e-Up! The car’s simple press-and-go setup, official range of 161 miles and green engine make it a logical choice if you’re after a cheap electric car.

 

Hate negotiating? Moneyshake finds you the best lease deals for the latest Volkswagen Up! range.

 

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5 reasons to choose the Volkswagen Up!

 
  • Very flexible choice of reliable engines – fuel-efficient, sporty or electric
  • One of the most well-built city cars in its class
  • Volkswagen Connect lets you connect your smartphone to your car (track the vehicle, fuel costs and driving behaviour)
  • Easy-to-park body
  • Surprisingly comfortable, stable and enjoyable driving experience
 

3. Fiat 500 Electric – from £209pcm*

 

*The monthly lease price is based on a 48-month contract, 9 months initial rental and 5,000 annual miles. Prices accurate at the time of publication

 
The Fiat 500 Electric is an award-winning EV with fond, iconic styling
 

The Fiat 500 Electric takes one of Fiat’s most iconic models and catapults it right into the modern era. DrivingElectric named it their Car of the Year in 2020 for its affordable price, 199-mile official range and retro styling cues.

If you’re interested in the EV version of the 500, you’ll be glad to know there are a couple of choices when it comes to engine power and battery size. These are:

 
  • A 24kWh battery with a 94bhp electric motor – it has an official range of 115 miles of range
  • A larger 42kWh battery with a 117bhp electric motor – the range-topping unit has the furthest 199-mile official range
 

This simple engine range makes it very easy to decide on an electric city car that’s right for you. Just need a cheap runarond and drive less than 200 miles per week? Then the entry-level unit will be enough for your needs.

However, if you’re looking at near-300 miles per week, then you’ll want to spend a bit more on the range-topping engine to get more range out of your car.

Charging time is a key stat to consider when you’re looking at purchasing an electric car. With a standard 7kW home charger you can top the Fiat 500’s batteries up in around six hours, meaning you can leave it plugged in overnight and return to a full charge in the morning. Conveniently, Fiat has included rapid charging abilities onboard that 500 Electric that allows it to be charged from 20%-80% in 40 minutes.

 

Thinking of purchasing an electric car? Moneyshake finds you the best lease deals on the Fiat 500 Electric, so you have no residual value worries.

 

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5 reasons to choose a Fiat 500 Electric

 
  • Retro, funky-looking design is a nod to the original ’50s 500
  • Comfortable, well-built interior allows this urban car to go beyond the city
  • Affordable lease price undercuts more expensive rivals like the Honda E and Peugeot e-208
  • The Fiat 500 Electric has grown slightly, allowing it to function as a small family car
  • Convertible model available (badged ‘Fiat 500C’)
 

4. Kia Picanto – from £125pcm*

 

*The monthly lease price is based on a 48-month contract, 9 months initial rental and 5,000 annual miles. Prices accurate at the time of publication

 
The Kia Picanto makes our best city cars list because of its incredible value for money offering
 

Kia has always been a specialist in offering value for money, with a range of cars that only seem to get better with age – take the Sportage, for example. It has grown up from being an awkwardly styled SUV with a dreary interior to being one of the best family cars on the market – so much so that we pitted it against the nation’s favourite Quashqai in our recent blog.

One car that has to make our list of best city cars for exactly the same reasons above, is the Kia Picanto. Now in its third generation, the Picanto has had a number of facelifts to bring it bang up to date with being a sporty-looking motor. Tweaks to the exterior, new tech (including a plush 8.0in infotainment system) and better-performing, fuel-efficient engines make it an attractive option.

Kia’s smallest model benefits from being something that is polar opposite to its main rivals – that is, it hasn’t abandoned its fuel-efficient petrol engine for electric. Similar to the Volkswagen Up! it even gets a turbocharged 99bhp 1.0-litre engine that gives it a boost of performance over the standard unit. You’ll notice the difference in ‘oomph’ too over the standard non-turbocharged 66bhp 1.0-litre engine.

Don’t get us wrong, there’s nothing wrong with the entry-level engine if you’re pottering around town. But if you want to inject a bit of flexibility into your city car and take it on the A-roads for long-distance travel, especially because it makes the 0-60mph sprint time 9.9 seconds. That’s a (not insignificant) 4.1 seconds than the less powerful unit.

 

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5 reasons to choose a Kia Picanto

 
  • Great around town, with a punchier engine available for more flexibility
  • Kia’s new style upgrades make it a bold-looking city car
  • Great tech on higher trims (3, X-Line S and GT-Line/GT-Line S)
  • Textured plastics inside avoid the typical ‘cheap car’ feel inside
  • All models have five doors and a surprising amount of room for a couple of adults in the back
 

5. Seat Mii – from £208pcm*

 

The monthly lease price is based on a 48-month contract, 9 months initial rental and 8,000 annual miles. Prices accurate at the time of publication

 
The Seat Mii electric is one of the best city cars because of its handy size, affordable running costs and eco-friendly drive
 

An example of a city car that has done away with petrol power, in favour of the battery and electric combination which continues to grow in popularity. The Seat Mii is perfect for it too, with small cars like these using compact, lightweight chassis’ that are built for an electric drivetrain.

While the e-Up! didn’t blow us away because of its rather underwhelming range figures, the Mii appears to have tackled these issues directly. Namely, its 36.8kWh lithium-ion battery provides the Mii with a considerable 161-mile range on a single charge, which is very good by a city car’s standards.

Charging the Seat Mii is by no means a pain either. Charging from home takes 10 hours – a little slower than the usual eight-hour charge – but it’s still possible to get a full charge for the next morning if you were to plug it in once you get home from work.

 

Thinking of purchasing an electric car? Moneyshake finds you the best lease deals on the Seat Mii, so you don’t have to pay high EV buying prices.

 

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5 reasons to choose a Seat Mii

 
  • One of the best electric city car ranges
  • More affordable than rivals such as the Volkswagen e-Up!
  • Tall roofline and box-shaped body makes it surprisingly practical
  • Average cost to charge fully from home is £5.63*/£4.97** for 20%-80% public charge
 

*Assumes tariff of 17p/kWh, though the cost of home charging will depend on your electricity rate.

**Assumes tariff of 25p/kWh, though the price may differ depending on charge point.

 

Want to find the best car lease deals better and faster? Moneyshake lets you streamline your options by bringing the market to you – the best lease deals together in one place.

 

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