We were recently given an opportunity to drive the U.S.-spec Ford (NYSE:F) Fiesta EcoBoost hatchback, which proved itself on the outskirts of Boston to be a contender worthy of any budget-minded city dweller’s consideration. However, the Fiesta EcoBoost is finding itself in good company, with a couple of the biggest names in the business also occupying the agile, urban-oriented compact car space. That would be the Volkswagen (VLKAY.PK) Golf TDI, and Toyota’s (NYSE:TM) Prius c.
Each of these three have their own merits. The Golf is uncharacteristically sporty for what many assume would be a rather mundane economy car. The Prius c offers stellar fuel economy for a surprisingly modest price for a hybrid, capping the other end of the performance-consumption spectrum. The Fiesta, meanwhile, fits in somewhere in the middle, as it returns a respectable 37 combined miles per gallon, though it also offers some frisky, turbocharged fun if you put your foot down.
Personal opinions vary widely as far as what some people will prefer, but on paper, let’s see how these cars stack up. Each vehicle is observed in its base spec (though the 1.0 liter EcoBoost is a $995 option added to the Fiesta SE trim) for the sake of as fair a fight as possible (we also looked at the four-door Golf, though a two-door model is also available). These three vehicles, at least in the U.S. market, represent their respective brands’ conquest vehicles: cars made to lure in first-time buyers, who are more budget- and fuel economy-conscious, as well as quench their thirst for sporty performance.