Cars from makers including Suzuki, Peugeot and Nissan have topped a search to find Britain's cheapest motors for cash-strapped drivers.
Top of the list is the one litre engine Suzuki Celerio (above) which will cost owners a mere £7,100 to own and run over a three year period, based on an average of 12,000 miles a year.
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It beat the Dacia Sandero into second and the Peugeot 108 into third in a table compiled by motoring magazine Auto Express using calculations by trade valuation experts CAP to work out overall costs.
The cars in the list are cheap to buy, but the total cost of ownership is not just about the purchase price but also the insurance, tax, fuel costs, servicing, repairs and depreciation.
Small cars have more efficient running costs, they are cheaper to tax and insure and because they often come with very little luxury fittings and extras, there is not a lot to go wrong for mechanics.
Dacia Sandero Ambiance
They may depreciate quickly but as they do not cost a lot in the first place then owners are not going to lose as much as they would on a big saloon where the price falls the moment it leaves the dealer.
Auto Express said: "If you're on a tight budget, but still want the peace of mind and hassle-free experience of owning a new car, then you'll want to analyse a car's running costs with a microscope.
"As well as the initial purchase price, factors such as depreciation, servicing, insurance, road tax and of course fuel economy will have an impact on how much it costs to run a new car.
Vauxhall Viva SE
"We've crunched the numbers and taken in all of the factors that make up the running costs of a new car to reveal the cars that will cost you pennies to run.
"We've gone further than simply looking at the economy and emissions of a car, because there might be a sting in the tail of some efficient vehicles, especially if they have a high insurance rating, or pricey servicing costs."
Top Ten cheapest cars to run over three years/36,000 miles
Total cost of ownership is based on three years of fuel, tax, insurance, servicing, repairs, and depreciation on purchase price when new.
1. Suzuki Celerio 1.0 SZ2 - TCO £7,100
2. Dacia Sandero 1.5 dCi Ambiance - TCO £7,212
3. Peugeot 108 Hatchback 1.0 Access 3dr - TCO £7,626
4. Vauxhall Viva 1.0 SE - TCO £7,874
5. Dacia Logan MCV 1.5 dCi Ambiance - TCO £8,038
6. Toyota Aygo 1.0 VVT-i X 3dr - TCO £8,124
7. Citroen C1 1.0 VTi Touch 3dr - TCO £8,223
8. Nissan Micra 1.2 Visia - TCO £8,237
9. Kia Picanto 1.0 65 1 3dr - TCO £8,457
10. Hyundai i10 1.0 S - TCO £8,648
Dacia Logan MCV
And if you don't want to stick to a supermini or compact model then these are the cheapest in other categories:
Cheapest Family Car - MG6 1.9d S - TCO £12,559
Cheapest MPV - Kia Venga 1.4 ISG - TCO £10,831
Cheapest SUV - Dacia Duster 1.6 - TCO £9,996
Cheapest executive car - Jaguar XF 2.0d - TCO £18,085
Cheapest sports car - Audi TT 1.8 TFSI Sport - TCO £15,351
Cheapest luxury car - Bentley Flying Spur - TCO £86,264