Car Choice: Scrap that Metro, Gloria, and get your hands on a Hyundai

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Indy Lifestyle Online

Gloria Johnson wants a replacement for her much-loved Rover Metro. She wants something small but powerful, nippy, easy to park and surprisingly roomy. Gloria would be even happier if it had power steering and air-con. She has £10,000 cash and will be taking advantage of the £2,000 scrappage scheme.

A car for the head

Gloria is confused by all the information out there, but one thing we can guarantee is that there are far better cars than the very flawed Rover Metro. Scrappage is the hot car-buying topic at the moment and a lot of people are taking advantage of the scheme. One of the most popular buys has been the Hyundai i20.

Here is a Korean-built super-mini which is far safer than a Metro, spacious and cheap to buy and run. Gloria can go for a 1.4 engine which provides a decent amount of urgency, yet should return a good 50mpg overall. She should certainly like the driving position which is high up and the large amount of glass means that parking and manoeuvring around a doddle. In the rear there is loads of room.

The 1.4 comes with electric rear windows, steering wheel controls, alloy wheels and an MP3 connection. Gloria will have everything she needs plus a five-year warranty. With an automatic gearbox, a five door 1.4 Comfort is £11,095, less the £2,000 for the MG.

A car for the heart

Although I think that the Hyundai is the perfect choice, I was going to suggest that the Ford Fiesta would be a good idea. But when I went on Ford’s website and specified a 1.4 model with an automatic gearbox and five doors it came out as a Fiesta Zetec at £13,595. So even with scrappage it is going to cost too much.

The slightly friendlier Skoda website produced a 1.6 Fabia 2 which still ran out at £12,160 with an automatic gearbox. Over at Citroën I found that a C3 1.6 Exclusive automatic five-door with £2,000 deducted could be just £9,745. Sadly the rear space and the boot may be a little underwhelming against the best of the current rivals, but compared to a Metro it is absolutely huge. The driving position is fashionably upright and commanding which is important for the mix of driving conditions that Gloria will encounter.

Looking to buy?

Please write to Car Choice, Features, Independent on Sunday, 2 Derry Street, London W8 5HF or email James Ruppert at carchoice@independent.co.uk, giving your age, address and phone number, details of the type of vehicle in which you are interested and your budget.

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