If you have less than perfect credit, you may think that a new car purchase is out of reach. After all, it might be unwise to spend too much on your next vehicle if you're working to improve your credit score. However, some small cars may be suitable for budget-conscious buyers with poor credit, even if purchased new.
Luckily, there are plenty of highly-rated small cars on the market right now. In fact, a few small models have recently been honoured with 2017 Canadian Car of the Year awards by AJAC.
AJAC's "Best New" Award-Winning Small Cars
Every year, the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada (AJAC) announces vehicles in several categories that have earned "Best New" status. Category winners are voted on by top automotive journalists after attending "TestFest." This is an annual event where new cars, trucks, vans and SUVs are evaluated.
The automotive journalists who do the voting also participate in TestFest. Before voting, over 60 of them drive the cars to ensure that their selections are based on experience. To keep things fair, they have to drive the vehicles in their categories on the same day, in the same driving conditions.
This year, the TestFest process generated 1,384 test drives and over 100,000 data points. The vehicles that earned the most data points in their categories were awarded with "Best New" status.
Here are the finalists in the Best New Small Car category:
- 1st Place – Hyundai Elantra (682 Points)
- 2nd Place – Chevrolet Cruze (680 Points)
- 3rd Place – Subaru Impreza (679 Points)
It's clear to see that these small cars are only separated by a few points, so it was a close contest. Any of these three would be a good option for a buyer who doesn't need a lot of space.
A Closer Look at AJAC's Award Winning Small Cars
Just because these small cars are considered "compact" doesn't mean that they're uncomfortably small. However, they're probably not the best vehicles for large families. For single drivers or couples, these options are actually considered to be quite roomy.
The 2017 Hyundai Elantra: The Elantra has been completely redesigned for 2017, and a new Eco model is available. The Eco boasts exceptionally high fuel economy for its class. All Elantra trim levels offer comfortable and supportive seats and many of the latest user-friendly tech features. The higher trim levels can be equipped with some of the most advanced safety technology on the market.
The 2017 Chevrolet Cruze: According to the EnerGuide label, the Cruze provides excellent fuel economy for its class. Critics have also praised its "intuitive" infotainment system and comfortable ride. Considered to be a good vehicle for daily driving, the Cruze comes with a high-tech cabin that is pleasantly designed. Options like leather seats and automatic climate control are available on higher trim levels.
The 2017 Subaru Impreza: One of the best things about the Impreza is that it comes with standard all-wheel drive. This is great news for drivers who want a small car that can still handle icy and snowy road conditions. The Impreza also comes with spacious seating for a compact vehicle. Up front, there is said to be plenty of headroom and legroom even for taller commuters.
While these new cars are priced well, a used vehicle may still be a better option for some buyers with poor credit. It really just depends on your budget and situation.
Auto Loan Assistance for Car Buyers with Credit Issues
If you have poor credit or no credit, Canada Auto Loan can help you get financing for the car you need. Our process is simple but effective. Basically, we have the ability to match you with a dealership in your area that can work with your situation.
Dealers in our network are connected to the kinds of lenders that can offer you a better chance at auto loan approval. And the best part is that we charge nothing for the service we provide. You'll also be under no obligation to buy anything when you apply. So go ahead and fill out our simple and secure online application to get started today.