The Yaris starts off in L trim. Like all Yaris models, it gets a 1.6-liter four-cylinder with 106 horsepower. The standard transmission is a five-speed manual, though most cars have the optional four-speed automatic. Available with three or five doors, it comes with 15-inch wheels, air conditioning, central locking, tilt steering wheel, folding rear seat and a four-speaker audio system with an AUX input. The better-equipped LE comes standard with automatic transmission, power windows, power door locks with remote keyless entry and a six-speaker audio system with Bluetooth. The sporty SE comes only as a five-door, but is available with a manual transmission. It has 16-inch alloy wheels, a lowered suspension, special body-colored trim and cruise control.
See our picks for best hatchbacks in the CarsDirect 2012 Hatchback Buying Guide.
The Honda Fit is better to drive and much more versatile than the Yaris, but costs more and is less efficient. The Ford Fiesta offers up to 40 MPG highway and is much more fun to drive, but is smaller and more expensive. The Nissan Versa sedan has a larger back seat and lower base price, but the interior is very cheap. The Hyundai Accent has a more powerful engine and better interior, but isn't that exciting to drive.