THE city car was seen as a great white hope to keep the public on the move in confined urban spaces and with little outlay on fuelplus a double dash of planet-friendly dressing.
But all may not be so happy in the Little Brother House according to recent statistics.
Car data experts HPI and Cap reveals some startling variations in cost of ownership and a window onto some surprisingly high depreciation and maintenance bills, so pushing up the cost of owning a little car.
Surprising this, because for those motorists who simply want to nip around town without the need to carry multiple passengers, city cars are often seen as a cost-effective alternative to their bigger, fuel-hungry counterparts.
However, Cap reveals that the city car sector was one of the main used car sectors under pressure through 2015.
This resulted in a higher overall depreciation than some other vehicle sectors and the market average, meaning car buyers need to consider the total cost of ownership of their dream compact car, including maintenance, fuel, and insurance.
The latest Cap data reveals that the total cost of ownership varies significantly between city runabouts. The Suzuki Celerio offers the best value, with monthly costs of just £192, as well as an initial price tag of £6,944.
According to the Cap data, the three city cars with the highest service and maintenance costs are the Peugeot 108, starting from £797, the Citroen C1 at £771 and the Vauxhall Viva at £725.
However, despite the high service and maintenance costs, all three appear among the best overall buys, when looking at total cost of ownership.
In contrast, the smart forfour Night Sky hatchback has the highest monthly maintenance costs at £1,251, contrasting with the Toyota Aygo, which costs just £441 in servicing, offering great value in the top three.
The good news is that there are attractive new car offers, with low rate PCP headline figures. For instance, the Suzuki Celerio is just £79 per month over 42-months and the Hyundai i10 offers a 24-month PCP at payments as low as £89 per month.