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The 2023 Mini Cooper is a beloved subcompact car, known for its quirky style, sporty performance, and overall fun driving experience. However, for those seeking a more affordable option, U.S. News’ recent list of “Best Subcompact Cars for 2023” offers a few Mini Cooper alternatives that are worth considering.

Tied for first place with the 2022 Hyundai Accent and the 2023 Kia Rio, the 2023 Mini Cooper may have some competition in the subcompact car market.

Red 2022 Hyundai Accent Parked and Posed
2022 Hyundai Accent | Hyundai

The 2023 Mini Cooper has impressive performance

This vehicle is offered in hatchback and convertible body types, and it has a range of nimble turbocharged engines that can produce 134 horsepower from a three-cylinder to 189 horsepower and 228 horsepower from a pair of whipping four-cylinders.

According to U.S. News, despite its small size, the Mini Cooper delivers impressive performance ratings of 7.7 out of 10, with agile handling and a smooth ride. And while the car’s fuel economy ratings of 22–29 mpg in the city and 31–38 mpg on the highway may not be the best in its class, they are still respectable for a car of this size.

Inside, the 2023 Mini Cooper offers an upscale interior that is both stylish and functional. The car’s seats can accommodate four to five passengers, depending on the model, and there is plenty of head and legroom for even taller passengers. Additionally, the Mini Cooper offers a range of features, including a large infotainment display, a premium sound system, and a panoramic sunroof.

All these features come at a cost, with the 2023 Mini Cooper starting at $23,400 and ranging up to $40,650 for the highest trim level.

The 2022 Hyundai Accent is affordable and efficient but lacks excitement

The 2022 Hyundai Accent is a subcompact car that offers excellent gas mileage of 33 city/41 highway and a relatively low starting price of $15,500 for the base model. For drivers who want a little more luxury and features, the highest-end Limited model of the Accent starts at $19,500. However, its performance rating of 7.2 out of 10 is lower than some of its competitors, and it can feel sluggish on the highway.

One area where the Accent falls short is in its driving experience. While it offers a comfortable ride and decent handling in the city, it can feel underpowered on the highway, with its 120-horsepower engine struggling to keep up with faster traffic. Additionally, some drivers may find the seats to be uncomfortable on longer drives.

Another downside to the Accent is its undersized trunk, which may be unable to accommodate larger items or luggage for longer trips. However, for drivers who don’t need a lot of cargo space, the Accent offers a range of features, including a large infotainment screen, a rearview camera, and Bluetooth connectivity.

The 2023 Kia Rio is a budget-friendly subcompact car with some shortcomings

The 2023 Kia Rio is another great Mini Cooper alternative. The car’s easy-to-use infotainment system and good fuel economy ratings of 32 city/41 highway are just some of the features that make it a strong contender in its class.

Under the hood, the Rio is powered by a 120-horsepower engine that delivers a performance rating of 6.9 out of 10. While this may not be the most exciting performance rating in its class, it is still more than adequate for daily driving. However, at higher speeds, the engine can get loud and intrusive.

The Rio’s standard safety features are lacking in comparison to other vehicles in its class, which is one area where it falls short. However, the car’s starting MSRP of $16,550 and top S trim starting at $17,190 make it an affordable option for those on a budget.

The 2023 Kia Rio is also available in sedan and hatchback body styles. However, both styles have a somewhat undersized trunk, which may not be ideal for those who need to carry larger items. While it may not offer the most exciting driving experience, it’s a strong contender for those in the market for a reliable and budget-friendly car.


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