The supermini segment is one packed with options for new car buyers, but it is no longer sufficient for a car in this class to simply be small, frugal and well-priced.
To make our top ten list, a supermini needs to be so much more than a car that can seat a couple of adults and a couple of kids, carrying a decent amount of luggage. It must be desirable, well-equipped, decently spacious, pleasant to use and to spend time in, and have a dynamic makeup that mixes drivability and ease-of-use with agility, comfort, verve and refinement just so.
Increasingly, superminis are offering quality, equipment, performance and usability that bears comparison with bigger five-door hatchbacks; and the best ones combine all that with the agility that only a small, light car can offer.
So what tops our list?
Storming to the top of our supermini top ten is the fifth-generation Seat Ibiza. The Spanish company went to great lengths to replace the decent fourth-generation Ibiza with this handsome hatchback backed up by real substance. It was the first of the VW Group's latest breed of MQB-based small hatchbacks - and, to date, remains the best.
Mimicking the bigger Leon in many ways, the Seat is roomy, well-equipped and much better-finished than before. Combine that with its first-class on-road handling and refinement manners, its value-for-money position, its impressive equipment features and its youthful styling, and it all adds up to a class-leading proposition for us.