So, you’re ready to buy your first car? Don’t sign on that dotted line just yet.
For first-time car buyers, choosing the ideal car in the Philippines is a daunting task. The industry has been picking itself up from the perils of the pandemic, which resulted in a heavily competitive market.
This is actually a good problem for consumers but then again, if you need help in getting your first brand-new car, we’ve curated a list of the 11 cars that we think are ideal for you. The list is based on several factors such as reliability, affordability, fuel efficiency, safety features, and popularity in the local market.
1. Toyota Vios
Known for its reliability and affordability, the Toyota Vios has been the undisputed best-selling car in the Philippines since time immemorial – and there are good reasons for that. It also boasts impressive fuel efficiency and a comfortable ride. And of course, the abundance of parts, services, and accessories that first-time car buyers truly appreciate.
2. Honda City
The Honda City offers a stylish design (especially in its RS trim), great fuel economy, and a spacious cabin with ample storage space. It also comes with a full set of safety features like six airbags and a rearview camera, worthy of its price tag. But more importantly, the City is huge enough for a small family that’s looking for a first car but not too massive for a challenging drive within the city.
3. Mitsubishi Mirage G4
The Mitsubishi Mirage G4 is a budget-friendly option that offers excellent fuel efficiency and a compact size, making it easy to maneuver through city traffic. It also has notable fuel efficiency and no-frills driving controls, which should be a delight for new car owners. And just like the Vios, several parts, services, and accessories are available for the Mirage G4.
4. Toyota Raize
The Toyota Raize is a great car – not only for seasoned car owners but also for new ones. It’s easy to drive and maintain, thanks to the familiar parts used inside its bonnet and the several shops that service a Toyota. More importantly, the Raize’s raised ground clearance (pun intended) makes it an attractive choice for newbie drivers that are wary of unwanted underbody scratches.
5. Suzuki Swift
The Suzuki Swift is a sporty hatchback that offers a fun driving experience and good fuel economy in a no-nonsense package. It also comes with features like keyless entry and a touchscreen infotainment system, along with a relatively roomy cabin that’s enough to fit a small family. For families looking to buy their first car, the Swift should be part of their shortlist.
6. Hyundai Creta
With a starting price just north of P1 million, the Creta offers a stylish crossover package that’s riddled with advanced safety features and peppy performance. And as we’ve tested, it’s also fuel efficient, making it one of our ideal cars for first-time car buyers despite being new to the market.
7. Nissan Almera
The Nissan Almera offers a roomy interior, good fuel economy, and advanced safety features like hill start assist and stability control. The Almera is also a good starting point if you want a small sedan that can perform, thanks to its turbocharged engine.
8. Kia Stonic
A crossover for under a million pesos? That’s the Kia Stonic for you. Despite its diminutive size, the cabin room of the Stonic is just enough for a small family of three, with ample room for luggage when the need arises. Its high ground clearance also benefits beginner drivers.
9. Chery Tiggo 2 Pro
Just like the Kia Stonic, the Tiggo 2 Pro is another crossover for under a million pesos – just that, it’s even more affordable and comes with essential features and more. What sets the Tiggo 2 Pro apart (and the rest of the Chery lineup) is the company’s industry-leading warranty that spans up to 10 years for the engine.
10. MG GT
Elegant and sporty at the same time – the MG GT is a compact sedan that’s priced as a subcompact. If you’re a first-time car buyer who wants to turn heads, the MG GT fits the bill. You’ll be greeted with premium materials inside this car, which should make you realize your money’s worth.
11. Geely Coolray
The Coolray is a breakthrough model for Geely, and there are many good reasons for that. It looks good, drives well, and offers a premium package at a not-so-premium price point. For a first-time car buyer, these things tick the right boxes.