Pros & Cons of Large Cars Vs. Small Cars

by John Papiewski

Size has a big effect on a car's price, space, economy and styling. Large cars are roomier, better-styled and more expensive. Smaller cars are easier to park, easier on the wallet and less concerned with creature comforts.

Room

Larger cars tend to have more space for people and belongings. Small cars can have comfortable accommodations, but for fewer people.

Price

Since big cars take more raw materials to make, they're more expensive. Automakers' least expensive models are their smallest, with fewer frills.

Styling

Auto designers have more difficulty styling small cars, so they tend to look more utilitarian. Large cars have more sheet metal and more opportunities for shaping and decoration.

Parking

Large and small cars have an equal chance for parking in a large, marked lot. For street parking, the small car's the winner.

Fuel Economy

Small cars have smaller, thriftier engines. They also have less weight to move, so fuel economy is better.

Safety

In a collision between a large car and a small one, the large car impacts the small car more than the other way around. Large cars also have more sheet metal to protect occupants.

About the Author

Chicago native J.T. Barett has a Bachelor of Science in physics from Northeastern Illinois University and has been writing since 1991. He has contributed to "Foresight Update," a nanotechnology newsletter from the Foresight Institute. He also contributed to the book, "Nanotechnology: Molecular Speculations on Global Abundance."