Small cars, big incentives
Recent auto shows indicate auto makers still competing aggressively in compact/subcompact segment
While SUVs and crossovers have dominated new-vehicle sales volumes in recent history, auto makers have not abandoned the small-car segment despite compact- and subcompact-vehicle sales having declined by more than 6 per cent and 13 per cent, respectively, in 2016.
The advent of the compact utility vehicle will likely continue to pull sales from compact cars with recent entrants such as the Toyota C-HR, Honda HR-V, Nissan Qashqai and Mazda CX-3. However, unveilings at recent auto shows have shown that auto makers still intend to compete aggressively for small-car buyers with new products.
Hyundai unveiled its 2018 Accent and Elantra GT models at the Toronto auto show and Kia unveiled a 2018 Rio at the Montreal auto show earlier this year.
To illustrate the importance of new product, the Hyundai Elantra sedan actually saw sales increase in 2016 by more than 2 per cent amid declining overall segment volumes. This impressive rebound was at least partially driven by the launch of the all-new 2017 Elantra sedan that began selling last year.
Here are our favourite small cars with notable incentives this week.
2017 Hyundai Elantra
The Hyundai Elantra was the second bestselling small car in 2016 and has sold more than 500,000 units in Canada since first being introduced in 1991. The all-new 2017 Elantra was the winner of the Automobile Journalists Association of Canada award for "Best New Small Car." The 2017 Elantra's class-leading features include standard heated front seats, available autonomous emergency braking with pedestrian detection, available blind-spot detection with rear cross-traffic alert and available Android Auto.
Cash purchase customers can take advantage of a $2,000 incentive on the 2017 Elantra, which was recently enhanced from $1,500 last month. As well, both finance and lease rates for the 2017 Elantra were also recently improved.
2017 Hyundai Elantra Sedan GL Automatic
- MSRP: $20,349
- Manufacturer incentive: $2,000
- Estimated dealer discount: $150
- Freight, PDI, government fees: $1,835
- Cash purchase price before tax: $20,034
- Finance for 84 months at zero per cent (compared with 0.99 per cent in January) for $286 a month including tax (includes a $750 incentive and assumes zero down payment)
- Lease for 48 months at 0.99-per-cent interest (compared with 1.99 per cent in January) for $293 a month including tax (includes a $500 incentive, assumes a 20,000 annual-kilometre allowance and zero down payment)
2017 Nissan Sentra
Nissan introduced the highly anticipated Nismo version of its Sentra compact sedan at the Montreal Auto Show earlier this year. It provides driving enthusiasts an alternative that delivers a sports car-esque driving experience without sacrificing the versatility of a compact sedan. The 2017 Nissan Sentra Nismo is equipped with a 1.6-litre engine capable of outputting 188 horsepower (compared with the 130 hp of the base-model Sentra) and can be coupled to either a six-speed manual transmission or continuously variable transmission.
During Nissan's "My Choice" sales event, customers can choose between a bonus $1,250 cash incentive (included in figures below) that can be applied directly toward the purchase or lease of a new 2017 Sentra, a $1,625 credit toward genuine Nissan parts and accessories, or a 60-month/100,000-kilometre Added Security Plan and a Prepaid Maintenance Plan for up to 48 months or 64,000 kilometres.
2017 Nissan Sentra NISMO CVT
- MSRP: $26,998
- Manufacturer incentive: $1,750
- Estimated dealer discount: $700
- Freight, PDI, government fees: $1,740
- Cash purchase price before tax: $26,288
- Finance for 60 months at 2.49-per-cent interest for $537 a month including tax (includes a $1,250 incentive as compared with zero in February and assumes zero down payment)
- Lease for 48 months at 1.99-per-cent interest for $399 a month including tax (includes a $1,250 incentive as compared with zero in February, assumes a 20,000 annual-kilometre allowance and zero down payment)
- Prices shown include $1,250 My Choice cash incentive applied
The 2017 Mazda3 sports a refreshed grille and headlight design while maintaining the same body as the prior model year. Standard features of the Mazda3 include Mazda G-Vectoring control, which improves vehicle handling and driving dynamics, keyless entry with push-button start and Mazda's unlimited-mileage warranty. New technology available on the 2017 model includes radar cruise control, which automatically adjusts speed to maintain distance from vehicles ahead, lane-keep assist system that can adjust steering to keep the vehicle in the centre of the lane and traffic-sign-recognition system that can identify road signs to provide driver alerts.
During Mazda's "Shift Into Spring" sales event, customers can choose between a no-charge in-dash navigation system or a genuine Mazda accessory credit upon purchase or lease of a new Mazda vehicle.
2017 Mazda3 GS Automatic
- MSRP: $21,600
- Manufacturer incentive: $1,000
- Estimated dealer discount: $500
- Freight, PDI, government fees: $1,835
- Cash purchase price before tax: $21,935
- Finance for 60 months at 1.49-per-cent interest for $438 a month including tax (includes a $550 incentive and assumes zero down payment)
- Lease for 48 months at 0.49-per-cent interest for $328 a month including tax (includes a $650 incentive, assumes a 20,000 annual-kilometre allowance and zero down payment)
2017 Ford Focus
While the previous significant design update to the Ford Focus occurred in the 2015 model year, features and technology have been continuously enhanced in recent years. Ford's Sync 3 infotainment system is available on the 2017 Focus and enables drivers to connect their smartphones via Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Active park assist is also an available feature unique to Ford in the compact segment that uses ultrasonic sensors to automatically control steering during parking. Other standard features of the 2017 Focus include a rear-view camera, 4.2-inch in-dash colour display (eight-inch display also available) and Ford's Easy Fuel capless fuel filler.
Eligible Costco members can also qualify for an additional $500 rebate that is in addition to the savings noted below.
2017 Ford Focus S Sedan
- MSRP: $17,398
- Manufacturer incentive: $500
- Estimated dealer discount: $150
- Freight, PDI, government fees: $1,790
- Cash purchase price before tax: $18,538
- Finance for 60 months at zero interest for $349 a month including tax (includes a $500 incentive and assumes zero down payment)
- Lease for 48 months at zero interest for $270 a month including tax (includes a $500 incentive, assumes 20,000 annual-kilometre allowance and zero down payment)
Andrew Tai is chief executive of Unhaggle.
Manufacturer incentives and pricing calculations are based on Ontario customers and subject to availability of inventory. Dealer discounts shown are estimates for illustrative purposes only, may vary by region and are given at the discretion of individual dealers. Please note that while every effort is made to ensure the information above is accurate at the time of publication, pricing, incentives and discounts are subject to change or discontinuation at any time. Consult your local dealership for details.