Best-Rated Small Cars

See Our Ratings Methodology.


Most Satisfied Customers | Toyota

Aussies have rated Toyota as the top brand in Canstar Blue’s latest small car ratings, with the brand rated five stars for reliability, driving experience, appearance, upgrades & extras, features and overall satisfaction.

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How we rate small cars

Our review compares small cars on customer satisfaction, so you can find out what other Aussies think about the compared brands before you go ahead with a purchase. Think of it as like asking hundreds of your closest mates which small car they think is best!

Canstar Blue surveyed 341 Australians for their feedback on the small car(s) they’ve purchased in the last five years.

  • The outcomes reported in these ratings are measured via accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics.

Respondents rate their satisfaction with their small car brand(s) from zero to ten, where zero is extremely dissatisfied and ten is extremely satisfied. Brand satisfaction was rated by respondents on the following criteria:
  • Overall satisfaction: measures consumer satisfaction with a small car brand as an individual score NOT a combined total of all criteria.
  • Reliability: the small car operates consistently and as expected.
  • Driving experience: the small car responds well to actions, including acceleration and handling, and is comfortable to be behind the wheel of.
  • Value for money: the cost is reasonable for the quality and performance of the small car.
  • Customer service: the small car brand’s staff were readily available to contact, and help with questions or solve issues that arose.
  • Appearance: the small car brand looks appealing externally and internally.
  • Upgrades & extras: the small car brand has a range of additional upgrades and extras available to purchase.
  • Features: the small car brand includes a range of useful elements covering performance and comfort.

The winning brand is the one that receives the highest Overall satisfaction rating once all the scores from the Overall satisfaction criteria are combined and averaged.

  • Overall satisfaction is asked as a specific question and represents an individual measure, not a combined total of all criteria.
  • When we cannot determine a clear winner from the criteria for the Overall satisfaction rating, we will then look at the other criteria measured in the rating.
    • The brand with the highest number of five-star ratings within the supporting criteria will become the five-star recipient in overall satisfaction, and thus win the award. If a clear leader still cannot be determined from the supporting criteria, joint winners will be declared.

Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included, so not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The brands rated in this survey are listed below in order of best overall satisfaction.

  • Toyota
  • Mazda
  • Hyundai
  • Kia

Find more detailed information on our Most Satisfied Customer methodology.

Top Small Car Brand – Toyota

Toyota Yaris

Toyota has several ‘fun-sized’ hatchbacks available, such as the classic Yaris and Corolla Hatch, with the Yaris available in the Ascent Sport, SX and ZR petrol model, with a hybrid also available. The Ascent Sport comes with a 1.5L direct injection petrol engine, 15inch steel wheels, six-speaker audio system, Bluetooth connectivity, Toyota Safety Sense – which includes Road Sign Assist, Active Cruise Control and Lane Trace Assist – as well as a reversing camera.

The Corolla Hatch is similarly available as an Ascent Sport, SX or ZR model, with all available as either a petrol or hybrid engine model. The SX includes 16inch alloy wheels, smart entry, Sat Nav, Auto High Beam, Road Sign Assist, Pre-Collision Safety System, Pedestrian and Cyclist Detection, dual-zone climate control, Blind Spot Monitor and wireless phone charging.

  • Toyota was rated five stars for reliability, driving experience, appearance, upgrades & extras, features and overall satisfaction, with four stars for value for money and customer service.

Shopping for tyres? Check out JAX Tyres & Auto

Compare more products featured in our Most Satisfied Customers Awards

About our consumer experts

Dean Heckscher: Site Editor

This report was written by Canstar Blue’s Site Editor, Dean Heckscher. He’s our resident expert on all things automotive, health & fitness, streaming and more. Dean is also one of Canstar Blue’s customer research report producers, helping to turn complicated subjects into easily-digestible information for our readers. He’s passionate about helping consumers make better-informed purchase decisions on all manner of consumer goods and services.


Meet the Editorial Team


Samantha Howse: Consumer Research Specialist

Sam Howse Research Specialist

Samantha Howse is Canstar Blue’s Consumer Research Specialist, coordinating the consumer research program behind our customer satisfaction awards across Canstar and Canstar Blue in Australia and New Zealand. Sam has earned a Bachelor of Business (Marketing) from Griffith University and, with seven years in market research and 2 years in marketing, she is experienced in survey design, implementation and analysis, coupled with an understanding of marketing principles and best practice.


Meet the Research Team

Past Winners

Here are the past winners from Canstar Blue’s small car ratings:

  • 2022: Kia
  • 2021: Mazda
  • 2020: Suzuki
  • 2019: Mazda
  • 2018: Suzuki
  • 2017: Mazda
  • 2016: Suzuki

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