Toyota has a rock-solid reputation for reliability and low running costs in this segment, but with a bottom-line price of $17,160, our Yaris SE is by no means in the same category as a base ($11,750) Nissan Versa.
The Versa remains the lowest-priced U.S.
vehicle, though hatchback versions cost a bit more.
The Versa's hard plastics and lack of refinement make it a step behind much of the rest of this class, though, so what you get is what you pay for.
Competing against the Hyundai Accent, Chevrolet Sonic, Ford Fiesta, and Honda Fit—all of which are either more engaging to drive or simply offer more features and performance for less money—it's hard to get very excited about the Yaris from a value standpoint.
The Accent has a much stronger, direct-injection engine that's perhaps more fuel-efficient.
The Ford Fiesta is also a little coarse and noisy, but it's a lot of fun to drive.
And among this group, the Mazda2 is the most enjoyable from behind the wheel, with a nimble, tossable feel.
Those who want the most refined car in this class should go for the Sonic; with the 1.4T engine it's strong, sure, and relatively quiet and, maneuverability and parking ease aside, it feels positively like a larger car.
Get FREE Dealer Quotes
|2012 Toyota YarisBrowse Used Listings||2012 Chevrolet SonicBrowse Used Listings||2012 Ford FiestaBrowse Used Listings||2012 Hyundai AccentBrowse Used Listings||2012 Mazda MAZDA2Browse Used Listings||2012 Nissan VersaBrowse Used Listings|
|30 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy||25 MPG City / 35 MPG Hwy||28 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy||28 MPG City / 37 MPG Hwy||28 MPG City / 35 MPG Hwy||24 MPG City / 38 MPG Hwy|
|Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas I4||Gas I4|
|Subcompact||Subcompact Car||Subcompact||Compact Cars||- TBD -||Compact|
|3-Door Liftback Manual L (SE)||4-Door Sedan LS 1LS||4-Door Sedan S||4-Door Sedan Manual GLS||4-Door HB Manual Sport||4-Door Sedan Manual 1.6 S|
|Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front-wheel drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive||Front Wheel Drive|
|3 Door Hatchback||4 Door Sedan||Sedan||4 Door Sedan||4 Door HB||4 Door Sedan|