Premium Compact Car Under $50K: Gold Star Value Awards 2014

­Style and substance meet in the premium hatch showdown

1. Citroen DS3 D Sport
WHETHER it’s D Style or D Sport, Citroen’s forward-looking DS3 leads the premium compact class for value. Unlike many in the segment (see Mini Cooper), it defies retro to deliver a new take on Euro-cool hatch. But the true beauty of the DS3, as our Gold Star Value analysis reveals, is that it’s both the adventurous and the sensible choice.

The $30K D Sport is pricier than the Style, but more economical at 6.7L/100km (on
95 RON fuel). Resale is reasonable for the class, at 59 percent, while annual insurance
is at the cheaper end of the scale at $1053. Its 12-month service interval is as good as it gets, and the six-year warranty sets it apart in this class.

2. Mini Cooper
THIRD-GEN Cooper is no longer quite so mini, but still big on value. Miserly 4.7L/100km fuel figure counts for plenty, while consistent showings elsewhere help it to the silver medal.

3. Volvo V40 D2 Kinetic
TURBO-DIESEL economy and solid resale help V40’s bid, while its 4.2L/100km turbo-diesel economy and 12-month service interval drive the Volvo’s value equation home in convincing fashion.

Premium Compact <$50k Purchase Price Comb. Fuel (L/100km) Fuel RON (min. rec.) 3-year fuel cost Redbook resale (%) 3-year deprec. AAMI insurance prem. Service interval (months) Warranty (years)
Citroen DS3 D Sport $29,990 6.7 95 $4072 59 $12,295 $1053.19 12 6
Mini Cooper $26,650 4.7 98 $3018 61 $10,393 $1147.34 12 3
Volvo V40 D2 Kinetic $36,990 4.2 D $2538 66 $12,576 $1159.27 12 3

Notable classmates: Lexus CT200h, Mercedes-Benz A180 / Number of cars crunched: 9

Sign up here to receive the latest round-up of Wheels news, reviews and video highlights straight to your inbox each week.

Want free access to 5 years of Wheels archive content? Sign up now!