Best Cars for Students in the Philippines

Cherryl Anne Cruz

Students need cars that are reliable, safe, easy to maintain, user-friendly, and affordable. But it shouldn’t stop there. If you’re a student, you need to make sure that the vehicle you’re buying also has good cargo space to fit in all your projects, gadgets, camping gear, and luggage for out-of-town trips with friends. What’s more, it should look attractive enough to impress that person sitting next to you in Biology class.

Truth is, there’s really no perfect student car that matches the ideal one we have in mind. However, there are some vehicles that come quite close to what we’re looking for. So if you’re thinking of buying a new car (or even a used one), make sure to include these models on your list:

Kia Rio (Sedan / Hatchback)

Charcoal gray Kia Rio

If you’re strapped for cash and in need of a decent car to take you around the city, then the Kia Rio may be the best car for you. This car is on our list of most affordable new sedans, and has every right to be there. It offers great features, European style, and even a large touchscreen display that you can only find in more expensive and high-end vehicles. The cabin offers a quiet ride, with good handling that’s quite surprising for such an affordable, small car. Despite falling behind in safety features and adequate backseat space, its interior gadgets are very impressive, with steering-wheel audio controls, tilt steering, USB port, satellite radio, rear spoilers, and split-folding rear seat backs.

Kia Rio Hatchback 1.4 EX AT ₱ 895,000
Kia Rio Sedan 1.2 LX MT ₱ 635,000
Kia Rio Sedan 1.4 EX MT ₱ 735,000
Kia Rio Sedan 1.4 EX AT ₱ 775,000

Toyota Corolla (Sedan)

Navy blue Toyota Corolla

The Corolla has been through 11 generations already, and is undeniably one of the most successful car models ever produced in history. So really, it pretty much knows what it’s doing. And while the exterior may look a bit safe and not as thrilling to drive, it more than makes up for its reliability, great handling, spacious cabin, and a good comfortable ride. The Corolla offers good performance that only a true veteran car can do well. Its most recent model has been updated with better safety features, such as automated emergency braking, adaptive cruise control, automatic high beams, and lane-keeping assist.

Toyota Corolla Altis 1.6 V AT White Pearl ₱ 1,089,000
Toyota Corolla Altis 1.6 V AT ₱ 1,074,000
Toyota Corolla Altis 1.6 G AT ₱ 990,000
Toyota Corolla Altis 1.6 G MT ₱ 934,000
Toyota Corolla Altis 1.6 E MT ₱ 894,000
Toyota Corolla Altis 2.0 V AT White Pearl ₱ 1,333,000
Toyota Corolla Altis 2.0 V AT ₱ 1,318,000

Honda Civic (Sedan / Hatchback)

Lime green Honda Civic

Another extremely popular veteran on the list, the Honda Civic is our most highly-recommended car to students — including its no-frills, base engine.  Both the sedan and hatchback versions are really a sight to behold, so it’s a good car for students who like to make a good impression without compromising overall performance, good fuel economy, impressive safety features, great ride quality, and spacious interiors (especially the hatchback version). The Honda Civic is also ideal for those on the petite side, since its low windshield allows for a better view of the road ahead.

Honda Civic 1.8 E CVT ₱ 1,093,000
Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo ₱ 1,403,000
Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo Modulo ₱ 1,450,000
Honda Civic 1.5 RS Turbo Modulo Sport ₱ 1,515,000
Honda Civic 1.8 E CVT Modulo ₱ 1,148,000

Kia Soul (Compact SUV / Hatchback)

Mustard yellow Kia Soul

Do you want to stand out from the rest? Then you should get a Kia Soul. This unusual hatchback has an endearingly odd shape that makes it stand out among the rest. Aside from its eclectic form, the Kia Soul also sits between a compact crossover and a hatchback (with low ground-clearance), so that’s another distinctive feature that makes it unique from all the vehicles you see on the road. But more than the exterior, it also boasts of a great audio system, smoother ride, and spacious interiors that can fit in a lot of your friends. It’s a car that offers a lot of things without sacrificing its individuality, which is perfect for people who carry their own personal style everywhere.

Kia Soul 1.6L CRDi LX AT ₱ 1,070,000
Kia Soul 1.6L CRDi EX AT ₱ 1,140,000
Kia Soul 1.6L CRDi LX MT ₱ 825,000

Hyundai Accent (Sedan / Hatchback)

Dark blue Hyundai Accent

Hyundai Accent is one of those all-around cars that we recommend to students. However, we don’t recommend this if you’re on the tall side, since the headroom is a bit tight. The Accent only gives decent safety features despite updating them recently, so don’t expect a lot when you buy this car. Truth is, we’ve run out of words to say about the Accent, since we’ve said it all in our past articles. Really, with so much free publicity coming from us, Hyundai should be jumping for joy already. If you want to learn more about this vehicle, you can take your pick from our list of best affordable cars, best diesel cars, best and most fuel efficient diesel sedans, and most affordable sedans.

Accent 1.4 GL 6MT ₱ 668,000
Accent 1.4 GL AT-CVT ₱ 718,000
Accent 1.6 GL 6MT (Dsl) ₱ 748,000
Accent Hatch 1.6 CRDi GL 6MT (Dsl) ₱ 798,000
Accent 1.6 CRDi GL 7AT-DCT (Dsl) ₱ 848,000
Accent Hatch 1.6 CRDi GL 7AT-DCT (Dsl) ₱ 898,000

Honda Fit / Jazz (Hatchback)

Gray Honda Fit

Honda Fit is a great and fun car to drive, especially if you’re a newbie driver. This car is easy to use, and its light steering and firm ride makes things less intimidating for young or inexperienced drivers. Included on our most reliable cars list, it offers great safety features, good fuel economy, and excellent cargo space to place all your things inside. And while it’s not as flashy-looking as some other cars, the Honda Fit has its own charm that grows with age. If you’re into advanced features, you can choose optional upgrades like Bluetooth and USB connectivity, a seven-inch touch screen device, Bluetooth and USB connectivity, panoramic sunroof, and push start button.

Honda Jazz 1.5 V MT ₱ 793,000
Honda Jazz 1.5 V CVT ₱ 833,000
Honda Jazz 1.5 VX CVT ₱ 933,000
Honda Jazz 1.5 VX+ CVT ₱ 973,000
Honda Jazz 1.5 V CVT Mugen ₱ 963,000
Honda Jazz 1.5 VX+ CVT Modulo Black Edition ₱ 998,000

Toyota Yaris (Hatchback)

Orange Toyota Yaris

Toyota is known for its reliability, so we’re including its more affordable Toyota Yaris in the mix. Like the Accent, this vehicle doesn’t stand out in any category. And it also doesn’t stand out from the other hatchbacks we know. But this car shines for those who need excellent visibility on the road, since its height-adjustable driver’s seat will surely be appreciated by petite people. The Toyota Yaris also offers well-sized, supportive front seats and good infotainment system that’s enough to keep you entertained for a long time. What’s more, it’s fuel-efficient, so you save a lot on gas expenses. This car, however, has a mediocre power train that only churns out 106-hp. That’s quite low compared to its other competitors. Nevertheless, it’s still good for students who only need a vehicle that they can use for their daily transport.

Toyota Yaris 1.3 E MT ₱ 743,000
Toyota Yaris 1.3 E AT / CVT ₱ 793,000
Toyota Yaris 1.5 G AT / CVT ₱ 883,000

Hyundai Elantra (Hatchback)

Blue Hyundai Elantra

Are you a cheapskate? And is performance and fun driving extremely important to you? Then you’ll love Hyundai Elantra. Extremely fuel-efficient, this hatchback makes driving an enjoyable experience, boasting of well-balanced handling, comfortable ride, smoother power train, and impressive cargo space. Out-of-town trips with friends will surely be a blast when you drive this car. Listed on our best and most fuel efficient diesel sedans, the power steering gives you a choice of three driving modes: Normal, Comfort, and Sport. And if you like a car with a bit of European flair, then look no further. The Elantra pretty much looks like the ones that are sold in Europe.

Elantra 1.6 GL 6MT ₱ 898,000
Elantra 1.6 GL 6AT ₱ 998,000
Elantra 2.0 GL 6AT (Limited) ₱ 1,038,000
Elantra 2.0 GLS 6AT ₱ 1,158,000

Ford Fiesta (Sedan / Hatchback)

Blue Ford Fiesta

Second to Hyundai Accent,  the Ford Fiesta is another vehicle that has also gotten a lot of free publicity from us. Why? Because it’s just a great “overall” car to drive around. It’s one of the best affordable cars and best and most fuel-efficient diesel sedans today, so you’re in good hands here. What’s more, newbie drivers will find them easy and fun to drive, thanks to its excellent steering, capable handling, and good fuel efficiency. This car, however, is not ideal for students who are into spacious rear seats and plenty of features. If the latter is important to you, we’d suggest you upgrade to a higher trim, instead.

Fiesta 1.0L Titanium A/T Sedan Ecoboost ₱ 898,000
Fiesta 1.5L Titanium A/T Sedan ₱ 868,000
Fiesta 1.5L Trend A/T Sedan ₱ 798,000
Fiesta 1.5L Trend M/T Sedan ₱ 748,000
Fiesta 1.5L Ambiente M/T Sedan ₱ 698,000
Fiesta 1.0L Sports w/EcoBoost ₱ 898,000
Fiesta 1.5L Sport A/T Hatchback ₱ 868,000
Fiesta 1.5L Trend A/T Hatchback ₱ 798,000
Fiesta 1.5L Trend M/T Hatchback ₱ 748,000
Fiesta 1.5L Ambiente M/T Hatchback ₱ 698,000

Kia Forte (Hatchback)

Dark gray Kia Forte

Kia Forte is not as affordable as the other compact cars listed here. However, if space and performance are very important to you (and you have the money), then Kia Forte is the one for you. Included on our reliable cars list, this hatchback offers upscale features, driver-assistance and good safety features that can be helpful for novice drivers who are still feeling their way around. The dash is organized and easy to use, and there are a lot of spaces to store your things inside.

Kia Forte Sedan 1.6 EX AT ₱ 965,000
Kia Forte Hatchback 2.0 SX AT ₱ 1,190,000

Chevrolet Spark (Mini Car)

Green Chevrolet Spark

If you’re the type of student who only needs a basic car to drive you anywhere around the Metro, then the Chevy Spark is the one for you. Smaller than a Mini Cooper, it does well when your daily habit is parking your car in tight spaces. It’s not for those who are serious when it comes to performance, since its lack of power may prompt you to drive hard to keep up with faster vehicles on the road. This vehicle is also small, so you won’t have a lot of space to store all your things. Chosen as one of the most affordable cars you can buy in 2017, the Chevrolet Spark has three good features that stand out very well: it’s very fuel efficient, it has a good infotainment system, and of course, the best one: it offers good safety features compared to others in its class.

Spark 1.0L ECOTEC Gasoline, 5-Speed FWD, LS Manual Transmission ₱ 548,888
Spark 1.0L ECOTEC Gasoline, 4-Speed FWD, LS Automatic Transmission ₱ 598,888
Spark 1.2L ECOTEC Gasoline, 5-Speed FWD, LT Manual Transmission ₱ 598,888

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