If you are one of those Sri Lankans who is rocking on a motorbike to your job every day or unfortunately, using the countries challenging public transport system, then surely one of the questions that always sweeps across your mind while sitting through that traffic might be, “what’s my ideal car?

Currently, there are hundreds of models from dozens of vendors that you might never even have heard of being sold in Sri Lanka. Therefore, if you are having trouble deciding the car that is best for you, we are not surprised. Assuming for a moment that you have figured out the, how do I finance my dream? Question, we at Carmudi Sri Lanka would like to give you a glimpse at the best and cheapest five subcompact car models currently available in the country, as of 2015.

5. Suzuki Wagon R

Suzuki Wagon R in Sri Lanka

The Suzuki Wagon R might not have the sweetest price. However, there is a very good reason why this nifty looking car is the bestselling kei car (small car) in its native Japan. First introduced back in 1993, the Wagon R is now running in its successful fifth generation, and offers a number of features that helps it to gain the top spot in our best subcompact car list. In a sense, the Wagon R is one of the very few vehicles at this price range to offer safety features such as the anti-lock braking system (ABS), an energy absorbing body structure with side-impact beams, driver side SRS airbags, central locking with security alarm, window de-fogger as well as an Intelligent computerized Anti- theft system (i-CATS), for its passengers.

Nevertheless, Suzuki Wagon R also packs a reasonably powerful 1.0 L 3-cylinder, 12 Valves engine that makes use of a 5 speed MT (all now cable type gear shift) transmission to power its drivetrain. This gives the Wagon R a maximum power output of roughly 68 ps @ 6200 rpm and a maximum torque of around 90 Nm @ 3500 rpm, while still being able to achieve a fuel economy of 21 km/l on long distance driving.

Suzuki Wagon R Price: Rs. 2,500,000


2. Hyundai Eon

Hyundai Eon in Sri Lanka

It is a bit surprising why the Hyundai Eon has not seen popularity in Sri Lanka. Designed as an attempt from Hyundai to conquer the Indian market, the car comes with a range of features that are not seen in its lower price competitors. These include safety features such as the child safety rear door lock and an engine immobilizer for emergency scenarios, as well as auxiliary facilities such as a power outlet and a USB port.

The Hyundai Eon also packs a reasonable punch under its hood. The car uses an 814 cc, 3-cylinder, 9 Valves SOHC engine that utilizes a 5-Speed Manual transmission to power its drive train. This gives the Eon a maximum power output of around 55 bhp @ 5500 rpm and a maximum torque of around 75 Nm @ 4000 rpm.

Hyundai Eon Price:  Rs. 1,850,000.00 (2015)


3. Suzuki Alto

Suzuki Alto in Sri Lanka

For the highest majority of first time car buyers in Sri Lanka, the Suzuki Alto is the car that truly manage to hit the sweet spot. What makes this car standout from its cheaper competitors is that while offering a highly appealing low price margin, the Alto does not compromise on safety or comfort that is very important for the countries new middle class.

The Alto comes with a reasonable 998 cc BSIV + OBD II engine and utilizes a 5 speed manual transmission to power its drive train. This gives the Suzuki Alto a maximum power output of around 68 ps @ 6000 rpm and a maximum torque of 90 Nm @ 3500 rpm, while still achieving a fuel economy of around 20 km/l on Sri Lanka’s highways.

Suzuki Alto Price: Rs. 1,530,000.00


4. Micro Panda

Micro Panda in Sri Lanka

Assembled in Sri Lanka by the local car company Micro Cars Limited, as a rebadged version of the Geely LC from the Chinese Geely Automobile, the Micro Panda is one of the cheapest cars offered in Sri Lanka. The Panda is a direct competitor for the Tata Nano, and is a good option for those who would like to have a car with reasonable features yet to a very competitive price range.

Available in eight colors, the Micro Panda is powered by a more capable 1.3 L, 4-cylinder inline, 4 stroke, DOHC 16 Valve engine with 5 speed manual transmission to energize its drivetrain. This has resulted in a maximum power output of around 63 kW and a maximum torque of roughly 110 Nm. As a result, the car will provide a top speed of 160 km/h, which is reasonable in Sri Lanka’s city roads.

Mirco Panda Price: Rs. 1,499,000.00


5. Tata Nano

Tata Nano in Sri Lanka

If going for the cheapest is your game, and if you do not mind compromising on features or comfort, then there is no better option in Sri Lanka than the Tata Nano. Introduced to the world in 2008, the car was manufactured by Tata when it took the challenge to build the cheapest car in the world. Designed by the engineers Girish Wagh, Justin Norek and Pierre Castinel the price of this low cost model was brought down by reducing or removing none essential features and using less steal in the process.

Armed with a 624 cc, 2 cylinders Gasoline, MPFI engine, the Nano is capable of producing a maximum power of 38 PS @ 5500 rpm and a maximum torque of around 51 Nm @ 4000 rpm, giving it a top speed of just above 100 km/h.

Tata Nano Price: Rs. 1,335,000


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