Used buyer's guide: Toyota Aygo

2 Oct, 2012 11:00am Richard Dredge

Budget city car blends low running costs with genuine driving fun

Verdict

While ultra-low running costs are the focus of the Aygo’s talents, this is no one-trick pony. Despite its affordability, the baby Toyota is capable on long journeys and, while it’s hardly luxuriously appointed, it’s comfortable enough. The car is also proving to be generally reliable, too, although some of the earlier Aygos now sport cabins which are looking tatty. But you’ll enjoy driving the Aygo so much that you won’t care; that 1.0-litre engine serves up a lot more fun than you’d imagine.

If you need to slash your motoring costs, the Toyota Aygo could be just what you’re looking for. Available second-hand from only £3,000, the Aygo is nimble, easy to park and amazingly spacious for such a tiny car.

It’s also available as a Citroen C1 and Peugeot 107, thanks to a partnership between the companies. All three models are mechanically identical – the sole differences are specification and trim. So everything that applies to the Aygo applies to its cousins: here’s how to bag a good one.

History

The Aygo arrived in July 2005 in standard, Aygo+ and Sport+ forms, with a 67bhp 1.0-litre three-cylinder petrol engine and three or five-door bodystyles.

There was also a short-lived 1.4 diesel, and there have been several specials, such as the Fire, Ice and Platinum. High-spec Blue and Black trims were added in Jan 2009 as part of a range update.

This saw CO2 emissions cut to 106g/km, then to 99g/km when the Aygo was facelifted in March 2012. This time, tweaks included an improved interior, more kit and a redesigned front end.

Alternatives

The Fiat Panda was a worthy Auto Express Car of the Year winner in 2004, thanks to its low running costs, refinement and brilliantly spacious interior. It’s great fun to drive, too, although entry-level cars are pretty basic. You can buy one from £2,500.

The original Kia Picanto is also worth a closer look because, like the Aygo, it’s astonishingly cheap to run and it’s well built, too. You also get five-door practicality as standard, even if there’s not that much room inside.

The second-generation Vauxhall Agila and Hyundai i10 should also be on your shortlist.

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