AOL's cars of 2013 part 1

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Cars of the year

It's been a busy old year here at AOL Cars - we've been religiously covering new car launches, making sure we're at all of the important motor shows and taking care of and reporting on a small fleet of long term vehicles so you get an insight into owning the latest models.
> Here Harry Boucher and Ben Cheveralls have raided the archives and collated our very favourite cars of 2013, breaking them down into categories and revealing exactly why we fell in love with them.

So, if you're in the market for a new motor, this could be a good place to start or, alternatively, see if your daily run-around made the list.

As always, we look forward to your feedback so let us know if you think we've missed anything.

Hatchbacks

VW Golf


1-Volkswagen Golf (From £16,775)
In terms of value for money all-rounders there are few better cars in the world than the Volkswagen Golf. We fell in love with the well-balanced chassis, superb build quality and sure-footed drive earlier this year. It may be one of the oldest boot badges around but it is still one of the best.

2-Ford Focus (From 13,995)
Ford's latest iteration of the Focus looks modern, drives brilliantly and offers superb value for money.

3- Volvo V40 (From 18,995)
The elegant Volvo offers a great upmarket alternative to the standard family hatchback. You'll pay a premium but be rewarded with impeccable safety standards, luxurious surroundings and cutting-edge gadgets.

MPVs

Ford S-Max


1-Ford S-Max (From £23,105)
There were a lot of great MPVs released in 2013, however the Ford S-Max came out on top of our list. Designed with families in mind, the S-Max offers luxury and space as well as convenient sliding rear doors. We think it's a looker and it drives like a car half its size.

2-Seat Alhambra (From £25,340)
Surprisingly easy to drive and very practical for such a spacious car. We were very impressed with the levels of luxury inside, too.

3-Citroen Picasso (From £17,500)
Its competitive price tag and stylish French design makes the Picasso a desirable MPV in our eyes.

Superminis

Ford Fiesta ST

1-Ford Fiesta ST (From £16,995)
The Fiesta ST is by far our favourite spicy supermini currently on the market, mainly thanks to its outstanding 1.6-litre turbocharged engine and slick gearbox. This little Ford did battle with the automotive heavyweights in our 'Road Test of the Year' and came out the winner, cementing its place ahead of its hot hatch rivals.

2-Skoda Citigo Sport (From £8,090)
A taut chassis, accurate steering and a great gearbox meant that the Citigo was enjoyed by all who drove it during its time as our long termer.

3-Fiat 500 (From £10,010)
The Fiat 500 is a little car that has bags of charisma, style and charm. It's an entertaining drive, too.

Estates

Ford Mondeo Estate


1-Ford Mondeo Estate (£17,245)
Having the capable Mondeo on our long-term fleet has meant we've had plenty of time to appreciate this excellent estate. Boasting an engine that can return over 50mpg, a spacious cabin and a boot with a 537-litre capacity, it rightly sits at the top of our list.

2-Audi RS6 (From £76,985)
We found the RS6 hard to fault. Capable of 189mph and getting from 0-60 in 3.9 seconds, it is quite simply the super estate car.

3-BMW 520d SE Touring (From £34,290)
Yet another classy BMW contribution that offers customers a spirited drive and luxury surroundings without sacrificing practicality and load-lugging abilities.

Coupes

Porsche Cayman S


1-Porsche Cayman S (From £48,783)
Another car that blew us away on our Road Test of the Year, we found the Cayman S to be a truly superb machine. Possessing all the endearing characteristics associated with a fiery Porsche, this car still manages to offer the sort of practicality that enables it to be used every day.

2-Toyota GT 86 (From (24,995)
We had as much track-based fun in this car as we have had in any supercar, and you can pick one up for less than £25k, crazy.

3-BMW M6 (From £68,995)
Certain members of the AOL Cars team fell in love with this giant from BMW. The potent, 552bhp V8 coupled with its sleek yet aggressive styling makes it a winner.

READ PART 2 HERE