Small cars sometimes get a bad reputation in the American market; I mean let’s face it, no one wants to hear, “Hey that is really small.” Right? Well, maybe that would be a compliment if you had the right combination of situations. No, we aren’t talking about extensions of the human body, what we are talking about are small cars and the Top Ten places a small car comes in handy in any urban environment.

  1. Underground Parking Garages
  2. Highway Traffic Jams
  3. Alleyways
  4. Round-a-bouts
  5. Parallel Street Parking
  6. On the race track
  7. Ferries
  8. Gas pump
  9. Mall chase scenes
  10. Convention/Airport venue transport

2010 Toyota Yaris

2010 Toyota Yaris

Third-Generation Toyota Prius

Third-Generation Toyota Prius

Okay, so we are kind of kidding with number eight (a homage to Top Gear), but seriously if you start to think about it, a small car can be a really handy thing. How many of you park in a park garage at work? If you live in New York, Chicago, S.F., Dallas, Denver or any other big city you probably live this nightmare every day. Talk about door ding central—that is unless you have a Honda Fit or equivalent. Then of course you have the highway scenario where it is more likely to squeeze into a gap in a Toyota Yaris than a Ford F250. Some of these are pretty self-explanatory, but I think number six and ten require some additional prose.

Number six on our list really speaks to all of the small sports cars and sedans that have been apart of the racing circuit for years. In fact, if you watch a road race you will see that small and less powerful cars dominate in the twisties by slipping into gaps that a Cadillac CTS-V racecar just can’t go into. The major drawback being on the straights where you have to fend off the cars with more horsepower. Number ten really speaks to something I saw in Chicago that just made me laugh. At a tradeshow in McCormick hall I saw a Toyota Prius ferrying people back and forth to a booth deep in the heart of the show floor during the setup day. Why not right? They use gasoline powered forklifts, so why not a hybrid that can get going with out a lot of tailpipe emissions.

Bottom line—no matter where you live or how many family members you have, a small car can be really handy. Some people have one large car and a small one that is used for all the errands. As I said, small cars can just come in handy.