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The Top 5 Cars Suited for Kenyan Cities & Towns Roads


There are so many questions and considerations that come to mind when choosing the best car to buy in Kenya.  You must consider factors like price, fuel economy, and models that suit your needs.  

Besides that, you have a wide selection of cars to choose from, making it even more confusing. And although there are many brands available on our roads, you will find that some models are suited for the big cities and towns like Mombasa, Nairobi, Eldoret, Nakuru, Nyeri, and other urban areas.  

Let’s look at the top 5 most affordable and suitable cars on the Kenyan roads today.  

  1. Honda Fit

This five-seater hatchback has been around since 2001 and has received numerous upgrades up to the current model.  However, Honda scaled down their operations for a while before coming back with a bang.  

Their comeback has been successful, with their brands gaining massive popularity like never before. Honda Fit is one of their new cars that is highly preferred due to its reliability and quality.

This car has a powerful 1.2L or 1.5L, 4-cylinder engine linked to either 5-speed automatic or 6-speed manual transmission.  It has a favorable fuel consumption of 14.5km/L on average, making it the ultimate economic car to own in Kenya.  

It boasts of a spacious interior that can be easily mistaken for a much bigger car.  This model affords the tall drivers ample legroom with an adjustable seat and tilt steering, allowing the driver to configure their desired position. 

Fit has a remarkable boot space that can take up a good amount of luggage with additional storage under the boot’s floor.  If you still want more space, you can fold the rear seats to create more space.  

2. Toyota Vitz  

Toyota Vitz, also known as Toyota Yaris, is one of the most popular cars in Kenya, and for a good reason.  It has been in production since 1999 and replaced the famous Toyota Starlet.  

This five-door hatchback is a true definition of the modern economy thanks to its affordability, fuel economy, reliability, and utility all in one package.  It’s a time-tested car, with most first-time buyers finding comfort and efficiency in the Vitz.  

Currently, in its third generation, it offers three engine options – 1.0L, 1.3L, and 1.5L linked to either a 4-speed automatic or 5-speed manual transmission.  It is available in both 2WD and 4WD options.  

This car is suitable for a small family, and its sporty exterior is more admirable.  Its 4-cylinder engine has a fuel consumption of 20.6km/L on average.  

It has a comparatively spacious cabin with sufficient legroom for average height people.  It has a big boot size that can carry sizable luggage, and if extra space is required, you can fold the rear seats flat.   This car is similar to the Mazda Demio in size.   

3. Nissan Tiida

Nissan Tiida is one of the best cars to buy in Kenya due to its excellent fuel economy. It is a mid-sized compact and super light car found in either the Hatchback model or the Latio model.  

It was launched in 2004 as a replacement for the popular Nissan Sunny.  The Tiida has a spacious and roomy cabin suitable for a mid-size family.  

It can comfortably accommodate five adults, with both the front and back seats highly comfortable for everyone. The driver’s seat is firm and comfortable for both short and tall drivers.    

It has a good engine performance that provides a smooth, quiet ride.  According to most drivers’ reviews, Tiida has low-cost maintenance and excellent fuel efficiency of about 15.0km/L on average. It has two engine options – a 1.5L or 1.8L and remains stable at high speeds. 

4. Mazda Demio

Mazda was a big household name in Kenya in the late 80s. But it suffered in the ’90s, with most imported second-hand cars being Toyotas.  

Mazda Demio feels all new in the Kenyan market today and has gained popularity in a reasonably short amount of time due to its affordability and reliability.  It’s ideal for the Kenyan market due to its ability to withstand abuse and is as reliable as a rock.     

It has been in production since 1996, and it’s currently in its fourth generation.  One feature that sets this car apart is its weight – weighing less than 1000kgs it’s commonly used in the cab business in Kenya.   

Its small engine and lightweight make it an excellent low fuel consumer and a highly economical car in the Kenyan market.  It has two engine options, 1.3L and 1.5L, linked to either a CVT 4-speed automatic or 5-speed manual transmission with favorable fuel consumption of 14km/L.  It is offered in both 2WD and 4WD.  

This car has a quality interior, a little spacious with limited legroom, especially for tall people.  The first row has adjustable seats, so the legroom is much better.  The second row can take up two adults comfortably as the middle seat tends to be a bit tight. 

5. Suzuki Swift

Next time you request a cab – Uber, Bolt, or Little Cab, you might just get this model available for you.  Suzuki Swift is commonly used in the current cab business in Kenya.  

It has been in production since 2004 but was not given much attention in the Kenyan market for a while.  It comes with two engine options – 1.2L and 1.6L engine linked to either a 5-speed manual or a 6-speed manual, or a 4-speed automatic transmission.  It is available in both 2WD and 4WD.  

This sub-compact car has a fairly spacious cabin with a high roof and adequate legroom. The front row can accommodate tall people, but the back row is tight. It has a small boot space suitable for one suitcase, but the rear seats can be folded to give more space if needed. 

It has an excellent fuel consumption of 23km/L, making it ideal in the cab business due to its good economy. The service parts for this car are highly affordable and widely available in Kenya, with most spare parts shops located in Kirinyaga Road and the Industrial Area.  

The body parts are also reasonably priced with a mixed availability depending on what part you are looking for.

Parting Shot

Is your preferred car type included in this list?  Yes, or No, the information above has boosted up your level of knowledge about some cars.  Whichever car you choose to buy, remember some critical areas to explore properly: engine capacity, fuel economy, and ratings from other users on Kenyan roads.  Always keep your eyes open when buying your car to avoid making the wrong decision!

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