• Apr 25th 2007 at 4:56PM
  • 16
What a difference a day makes, or a few years at least. While many automakers were rushing to add premium models to their lineups just a few years ago, today the buzzword is affordability. Perhaps a ripple effect of high gas prices, or the green movement, or even the emerging third-world automotive markets, everybody seems to be thinking cheap. In response, BusinessWeek has compiled a list of super affordable vehicles that will be available over the next couple of years. The common factor here is that all will have an MSRP of less than $10,000. Some as low as $3,000!

Don't expect supercars or luxury rides at these bargain basement prices, but you might actually get more than you realize for your money. These are reasonable alternatives to eight-year-old Civics and Corollas, rather than the equivalent of modern-day Yugos. And the list isn't filled with just microcars, either. Sure, there are small cars aplenty, but the list includes sedans, SUVs and even a minivan.

credits Renault with launching this new wave of cheap cars with its Logan sedan back in 2004. That initial sedan has proven popular and spawned a range of six different models. The cheap-car list includes names like GM, Hyundai, Chery, Dacia, Suzuki, Geely, Fiat and Tata. But new entries from Nissan, Fiat, VW, and Toyota are in the works, showing the increasing importance of this segment. Renault-Nissan has even announced it is planning to build a car for under $3,000, perhaps as low as $2,500 according to Chief Executive, Carlos Ghosn. He made the announcement at a plant-opening ceremony on April 4.

A brief description of each car follows the jump, but click the Read link to see a slideshow of the world's cheapest cars at BusinessWeek.

[Source: BusinessWeek]

Business Week list of world's cheapest cars:
  • GM Daewoo Matiz Mini/Chevrolet Spark: A five-seat, five-door hatchback that underpins the Chevy Trax concept.
  • Chevrolet Aveo/Kalos: Slightly over 10 grand, but 400,000 owners can't all be wrong.
  • Hyundai Atos: 1.3 million sold, mostly in India as the Santro. $6,350 for the base model or $9,920, fully loaded.
  • Hyundai Getz: At 4.9 ft. tall, lower than the Atos, but the Getz is longer at 12.5 ft. overall. $9,400 to start.
  • Suzuki Maruti M-800: Four-door, 10.9-ft. long, 1,444-lb. 800cc Suzuki starting at $4,400.
  • Suzuki Maruti Alto: Probably going to replace the M-800, it offers 47-bhp for a starting price of $6,000.
  • Suzuki Maruti Swift: This Versa-like model is Maruti's first global car, with a base price of $8,800.
  • Tata Indica: This all-Indian model offers lots of room for its low price and its success has spawned a $2,200 sibling.
  • Chery QQ3: For $3,900 to $5,200 it competes directly with the Chevrolet Spark.
  • Chery Flagcloud: Well-equipped mid-size sedan with sticker prices ranging from $7,300 to $12,500.
  • Geely HQ S-RV: Mini SUV based on the Daihatsu Charade platform. $4,400 to $6,200.
  • Geely Merrie Star: Four-door sedan and hatch for $4,200 to $6,500.
  • Fiat Palio: One of the older cars in the group, it's based on the old Fiat Uno and sells for around $5,000.
  • Fiat Uno: A new replacement for the hugely popular Uno of the '80s and '90s.
  • Dacia Logan Sedan: Spacious, no-frills 75-hp sedan starting at $6,600.
  • Dacia Logan MPV: Low-cost, seven-seat minivan for $10,900 to $15,500.

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      WOW, after the import costs and safety costs they will be 7-8k, not much less than the aveo which already has a trusted name i suppose. What happened to kia's those were dirt cheap, now, not so much.
      • 8 Years Ago
      None will pass USA safety regulations!
      These are for markets like India and China, where humans are seemingly disposable.
      • 8 Years Ago
      A 2007 Dacia Logan is safer (in Euro NCAP stars) than a 2000 VW Golf. So you'd take the new Logan, right?

      I already drove some miles with the Logan Diesel. As long as you do not go faster than 120kmph it's a great car.

      BTW: The Logan MPV starts at 8.400€ including 19% sales tax. Exluding the tax it would be 9.500$...
      • 8 Years Ago
      So BW thinks we will get $3k cars in the US in the next few years!?!? Because if this list is strictly to show the car prices and options the REST of the world gets versus the bloated HEMI type expensive and ugly cars we get in the states, how insulting.
      • 8 Years Ago
      • 8 Years Ago
      "a good fuel economy in the UK is AT LEAST over 40, but I suppose that reflects..."

      UK uses larger imperial gallons that make MPG figures higher. Diesels are also more popular and have to be accounted for.

      However, when multiple engines are offered for a car that's on both sides of the pond, the smaller ones are usually offered in the UK, Europe, etc. but not the US. Auto-boxes are also more popular in the States as well.

      Speaking of safety for small cars, take the Versa and Fit/Jazz. They're as safe as many larger cars, stop sooner than larger ones as well and aren't porkers on the kerb weight either.

      The Swift is awesome btw.
      • 8 Years Ago
      30mpgs good? US and Europe are a world apart when it comes to fuel, a good fuel economy in the UK is AT LEAST over 40, but I suppose that reflects taxes and want not (just an observation).

      The Swift on that list is actually not a bad car - doesn't look bad, and the interior (the Euro spec one anyway) is pretty tidy.

      Out of interest (and slightly off topic) how much is insurance a limiting factor on what car you drive in the US? In the UK as a young driver that pretty much THR deciding factor unfortunatly...your lucky if you can get under £1000 for a 1.2..
      • 8 Years Ago
      plus - I dont know where you got info that Logan is safer than 2000 Golf.

      It is not - it got 3 stars in 2005, while 1998 Golf got 4 stars. 19 points vs 25 points.

      It is one of the least safe vehicles you can purchase as new today.

      Only worse vehicles are new Chevy-Daewoos, such as Aveo, that got 1 star rating (due to possibility of death) in 2006. Chevy Matiz got 2 stars and Kaleos got 3 stars. Hyundai Atos also has 3 stars.

      So in this case, cheap means death-trap for sure, since what they cheap out on is safety, both active and passive.
      • 8 Years Ago
      #9 Autobild tested both and brakes were pretty horrible, and so is crash test performance.

      They concluded it is better to buy 5 year old Golf IV for the same money than Logan :-)
      • 8 Years Ago
      sencer, I see your point, but I meant 40 mpg for a car of similar size to yours. Comparing the neon with any of the ones in the list is, well, just not fair :).
      • 8 Years Ago
      ...and all of them spontaneously explode upon impact with a raccoon...
      • 8 Years Ago
      Seriously, you guys are a lot of bitches about safety. I don't understand why you come to an auto enthusiast site.

      Get the latest updates on the Toyota Sienna perhaps? Who knows what we would do if you couldn't be protected by 17 airbags and 57 different computer sensors to manage your driving?
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