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Best small cars 2017 (and the one to avoid)

Which small cars are worth your cash, and which one should you avoid? Find out here

Words ByClaire Evans

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Best and worst small cars

The small car market is one of the most fiercely contested - great news if you're after this sort of vehicle. It means not only that there are stacks of models to choose from, but also that standards are incredibly high.

To have a chance of topping the class, a small car must be as comfortable on the motorway as it is in the city. It must offer a decent amount of equipment, enough boot space for weekly shopping trips and an interior that's practical enough to cope with the demands of families. And it must, of course, be competitively priced.

To help you find the right small car, we've picked out our top 10 – and we've also named the one you should avoid.

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The best small cars of 2017

10. Honda Jazz

The Honda Jazz has long bridged the gap between small cars and mini-MPVs, and the latest version continues that tradition. It offers class-leading space and practicality and should outlast you with its outstanding reliability. It's just a shame the ride is rather unsettled.

Our pick: 1.3 i-VTEC SE

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9. Renault Clio

The Renault Clio is an established name in the small car world, and it's still a popular choice in the UK. There's plenty of scope to personalise this stylish hatchback, and while it's a little bit behind rivals such as the Ford Fiesta and Volkswagen Polo when it comes to engine quietness, the diesel engine recommended here is a real delight. The interior is reasonably spacious, too, even if some of the fixtures and fittings feel a little cheap.

Our pick: 1.5 dCi 90 Dynamique Media Nav

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8. Audi A1

The Audi A1 is the classiest of all the small cars, with a high-quality interior that's pure Audi on a small scale. It has a strong range of engines in its line-up and offers an enjoyable drive. Go for the five-door Sportback version and there's room for two adults to sit reasonably comfortably in the back, too, although there are still more practical choices.

Our pick: 1.4 TFSI 125 Sport

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