The 10 Best Cars for Busy Ladies on the Go

Most working women, especially those who are busy moms, prefer a vehicle that's affordable, has plenty of storage, and is fuel efficient. Safety is also an important factor because they may spend a lot of time chauffering their children back and forth from school and extracurricular activities. Of course, women also want something that's fun to drive and that features the amenities that can make their lives more enjoyable. Which vehicles on today's market have all that and more, but without falling into the SUV or minivan class? Here are our top picks:

Ford Focus

Blue Ford Focus
CC-BY CarImages/Flickr

The Ford Focus has a markedly different character than most Ford products sold in the U.S. and Canada. That's because it was developed by Ford of Europe—that's right, this is an honest-to-goodness European car. The tall cabin, upright driving position, roomy interior and trunk, and smile-generating driving experience all come courtesy of the Focus' old-world roots—but the humble Ford badge means that consumers aren't paying for a fancy European name.

Honda Civic

2007 Honda Civic rear view
Photo © Liz Kim

There's a reason why Honda Civics are such popular cars: They're economical, easy to drive, and they run like a Swiss watch. With their blue-chip resale values and impeccable build quality, Civics are good investments for both the short and long term. Innovations like a totally flat passenger floor (no center "tunnel") make the Civic comfortable and practical. Hybrid and natural-gas powered versions are well-priced and environmentally conscious. Without question, this is the compact-class leader and an ideal car for women.

Honda Fit

Honda Fit

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The Honda Fit is just one of a handful of subcompacts now on the U.S. and Canadian markets, but few others can match the Fit's balance of front seat, back seat, and trunk room. The Fit is especially handy in urban areas, where its small size allows it to nip through traffic and squeeze into tiny parking spots. Its fuel-efficient 1.5-liter engine has plenty of get-up-and-go, even with an automatic transmission, and Honda quality means it'll last an eon. It isn't super spacious, though, so it may not work for all moms.

Mazda 3

Mazda 3

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Mazda's compact brings with it a combination of style, space, and driving pleasure not often found in this class. The four-door sedan costs less initially but the five-door version is even better for all-around practicality, not to mention a little elbow room for a growing family.

Mazda MX-5 Miata

2007 Mazda MX-5 Miata front-left view top down
Photo © Aaron Gold

The Mazda Miata is a great set of wheels for a woman who doesn't have a family and an excellent second car for one who does. Few cars deliver the Miata's combination of fun in the sun and raw driving thrills, and even fewer deliver such great fuel economy while doing it. Though trunk room is tight, the Miata offers just enough room for a romantic weekend getaway for two. And on a day-to-day basis, it's a great way to put a little sparkle into your commute.

Mercedes-Benz E-class

Silver 2007 Mercedes-Benz E-Class

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The Mercedes E-class offers more prestige due to its brand, but it is also big enough for the family to ride in comfortably. It's an ideal luxury car for a woman who wants space and practicality, but with extra elegance.

Nissan Sentra

2007 Nissan Sentra

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The Nissan Sentra is one of the most practical compact sedans on the market. It features a continuously variable transmission, which is a type of automatic that delivers better acceleration and fuel economy than a stick-shift. It also has a very generous back seat.

Subaru Forester

2006 Subaru Forester XT

 Wikimedia Commons

Although some might argue that the Subaru Forester is an SUV, we still think it's worthy of being on this list. It offers invigorating handling and performance while on the road, but if you take it off the pavement, it can still keep up with bigger, brawnier SUVs. And when the weather turns foul, the Forester is one of the best vehicles of any size for safely negotiating slick roads. All this plus lots of cargo space and good fuel economy. The downside? Perhaps it looks a little awkward and the back seat is a bit tight. Overall, however, it's an outstanding package.

Toyota Camry

Toyota Carolla

 Wikimedia Commons

Toyota's Camry has been a top-selling car in the U.S. for years. It's roomy, quiet, comfortable, and built like the proverbial brick outhouse. Most buyers will opt for the well-priced and well-equipped Camry LE, but don't overlook the fuel-efficient Camry Hybrid, luxury-oriented Camry XLE, and sporty Camry SE.

Volkswagen Jetta

2007 VW Jetta

 Wikimedia Commons

The "Wallstreet Journal" called the new 2019 Volkswagen Jetta "The return of the great cheap car." Indeed, this compact sedan offers up enough individuality for an independent woman, enough cachet for the up-and-coming executive, and enough room for a woman with children on board.