Year after year, one car manages to outsell all others in the Philippine market: the Toyota Vios. It's almost impossible not to see one on your daily commute: seeing them as taxi cabs, family cars, or even private business shuttles. The Toyota Vios is a workhorse, combining practicality, reliability, and value for money all in one nifty little vehicle, cementing the car's status as a Filipino classic.
However, it's understandable if the Vios is not for you. Maybe you're not a fan of the brand, or maybe you already have a Vios and want to try other cars, or maybe you just want something that'll stand out against the sea of Vioses in the highway. In any case, here are other cars that can easily go head to head with the acclaimed Japanese sedan. As a frame of reference, we'll be comparing these cars to the base model Toyota Vios, which starts at PHP671,000.
Hyundai Reina (PHP 683,000)
Hyundai's subcompact sedan may be a newcomer, but it's already proving itself to be a worthy contender in the competitive budget family car segment. The base model Reina starts at PHP683,000, and it comes fitted with a 1.4 liter petrol engine that makes 93 hp and 132 Nm of torque, paired to a 5 speed manual transmission.
Outside, the Reina embodies the Hyundai's new brand design philosophy with its sleek, contoured lines and a modern aesthetic. The Reina measures 4300mm long, 1705mm wide, and 1460mm tall and comes with halogen headlamps.
Despite its budget price tag, the Reina is fitted with great interior and safety tech features such as an interior cabin lamp, central door locks, a conventional gauge cluster with a 2.8 inch LCD screen, as well as a 1-DIN AM/FM radio with USB connectivity. It also comes with dual SRS airbags.
Chevrolet Spark (PHP694,888)
Although not a sedan, the Chevy Spark holds its own in the city car segment. Priced at just PHP694,888, this tiny car packs a punch. It comes with a 1.4 liter ECOTEC engine and a 5 speed manual transmission that makes 98 hp and 128 Nm of torque.
Aesthetic-wise, the Spark isn't the best looking one out of the bunch. Although it has just undergone a facelift, the design still looks a little bit outdated compared to the other cars on this list. But while the Spark lacks in styling, it makes up for it in features. It comes with halogen headlamps and daytime running lights, 15 inch alloy wheels, and a massive boot space of over 190 liters.
Inside, the Spark is surprisingly spacious, easily fitting five adults in its cabin. The Spark comes with automatic windows, a 12V power outlet for plugging in your devices, as well as a rear window defogger. Even just the base model Spark comes with a 7 inch MyLink touchscreen system that even has Apple CarPlay and AndroidAuto capabilities, and is connected to six speakers throughout the cabin. As for safety features, this city car is also equipped with great safety features such as dual SRS airbags, anti-lock braking system, side door impact beams, an anti theft system and an immobilizer.
Volkswagen Santana (PHP686,000)
When you think of Volkswagen, you might think that it's a luxury brand filled with million peso cars, but think again. Their entry level sedan, the Santana, costs just PHP686,000.
The Santana looks amazing, with its distinct German styling that makes sure you stand out on the road. Under the hood is a 1.4 liter gasoline engine that puts out 88 hp and 132 Nm of torque, paired off with a 5 speed manual transmission and a front wheel drive configuration.
Inside the cabin, the Santana boasts a spacious and practical interior, offering amenities like a 12V outlet, power steering, a height adjustable drivers seat, keyless entry, and an integrated 2DIN audio with USB and AUX input. It also comes with safety features such as crash sensors, front impact beams, anti-lock braking system, and SRS airbags.
Suzuki Dzire (PHP549,900)
The cheapest one out of the lot, Suzuki's Dzire sedan offers more than you think. Starting at just a shade over half a million pesos, the Dzire comes with a K12M engine that doles out 82 hp and 1133 Nm of torque, mated with a 5 speed manual transmission.
Styling-wise, the Dzire is a little bit more conservative than the Santana, or even the Vios for that matter. Incorporating a semi-retro looking front fascia, Suzuki made sure that despite being a simple car, the Dzire is set to deliver on both looks, performance, and overall usability.
Inside the Dzire is a clean, practical cabin that can easily sit up to five adults, and the driver cockpit is actually surprisingly sophisticated for a car in its price point with its silver accents and solid contoured lines. The Dzire comes with a 1DIN audio system, a manual air conditioning and heating system, a pollen filter, and front mounted speakers. As for the safety features, the Dzire comes with dual SRS airbags, side impact door beams, anti-lock braking system with EBD function, a high mount stop lamp, and an immobilizer.
Nissan Almera (PHP657,000)
Out of all the cars on this list, the Almera is probably the Vios' closest competitor. Priced at just PHP657,000, the base model Almera comes with a 1.2 liter DOHC petrol engine and a 5 speed manual transmission. The engine is able to push out 77 horses of power and 106 Nm of torque.
Looks wise, the Almera is not too crazy and not too plain. Somehow Nissan managed to find the perfect balance between bold styling and a clean, simple look, all while making sure that the vehicle still stands out on the road. The Almera is equipped with halogen headlamps, a black front grille and 14 inch steel wheels.
Getting inside the Almera, you'll find that it is surprisingly packed with features that you normally wouldn't see for a car in this price point. The interior features a "greige" color palette, which helps in keeping the cabin look spacious and clean. There is a touchscreen infotainment system connected to two speakers in the front, as well as a remote keyless entry system. The vehicle also comes with dual SRS airbags, anti-lock braking system with EBD function and brake assist, speed sensing door locks, and a panic button.
Kia Soluto (PHP665,000)
Starting at just PHP665,000, the Kia Soluto offers unique looks, a clean, crisp interior, and a fun ride. It comes with a 1.4 liter petrol engine that puts out 94 hp and 132 Nm of torque, along with a 5 speed manual transmission.
From the outside, the Soluto looks like the perfect cross between a cutesy anime-style city car and a proper sedan. It comes with a chrome grille, adjustable headlights, front fog lights, side mirror integrated turn signals, and power adjustable mirrors.
Inside, the Soluto comes with power steering, a 12V power outlet, power windows, and a keyless entry system. The base model Soluto comes with an integrated 2DIN AM/FM audio system with a CD player and USB and AUX input. Aside from these, the Soluto also comes with anti-lock braking system, crash sensors, dual SRS airbags, and side impact beams.
MG 5 (PHP658,888)
Judging by its looks, you'll probably think that the MG 5 is an expensive luxury car. But hiding in that bold styling and those sharp, contoured lines is a price tag low enough to go head to head with the base model Vios. Starting at just PHP658,888, the MG 5 features a 1.5 liter gasoline engine that pushes out 112 hp and 150 Nm of torque, and is connected to a 5 speed manual transmission.
If you want a car that stands out without paying big money, the MG 5 is the car to get. The modern styling of the vehicle, coupled with a brand insignia that isn't too commonly found on local roads just yet, this car is sure to turn heads wherever it goes. It comes with projector headlamps, outside rearview mirror turn signals, 16 inch alloy wheels, adjustable headlights, and front fog lights.
Inside, the feature list of the MG 5 just goes on with its power steering, 12V power outlet, automatic climate controls, a keyless entry system, a leather steering wheel, an 8 inch color display touchscreen and 4 speakers placed throughout the cabin. It comes with great safety features such as anti-lock braking system, dual SRS airbags, brake assist, and remote central locking.
All of these cars and more can be found in our website.