Little cars are not as basic as they used to be, but it still makes sense to choose a mid-spec machine over a bare-bones base model. You’ll enjoy the car more with a few niceties, and it will make a more appealing second-hand proposition when it comes time to sell.
The Mazda 2, like its podium mates, sticks closely to the lower limit of the category at $17,690, and one of the things the extra $2700 buys is a slightly more powerful version of the 1.5-litre four-cylinder engine that actually makes the 2 slightly more economical.
A 52 percent Glass’s three-year retained value figure supports our theory that a specced-up hatch will be easier to move for a good price than a boggo special, at a percentage point better than the Mazda 2 Neo in the sub-$17K Light category.
So the Mazda 2 Maxx matches its less-costly sibling on many counts, uses less fuel, and counters its higher price with marginally superior resale – and you’ll enjoy it more along the way. Sounds like a winner to us.
Suzi’s sat-nav-equipped baby is certified Gold Star buying. The need for a bi-annual trip to the mechanic is more of a hassle than cause for extra expense, and of the podium players its 55 percent resale is as good as it gets.
This is not the first time and – spoiler-alert – neither is it the last that Kia’s seven-year warranty helps it to the silverware. Full marks to the Rio S Premium for being cost-effective to insure, at a paltry $576.01.
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