City cars have gone from being crude, uncomfortable machines bought solely for their low prices to being chic, desirable models bought for their style and low running costs.

The Ford Ka may have been on sale in its current form since 2009 – a long time in car terms – but it still holds the title as being one of the 20 bestselling new cars in the UK. With its small size, low prices and cute design, the Ka has proven popular with buyers – however, it is not as popular as its sister model, the Fiat 500.

What sets the Ka apart from the 500 though, is its lower prices, making it a good city car choice for buyers on a tight budget. We’ve rounded up the most appealing Ka models for those after the cheapest, best value and best equipped option.

The smart choice for those on a budget: Ford Ka 1.2 Studio – £8,945

The cheapest Ka of all is the 1.2 Studio, which creeps below the £9,000 mark. Despite its low price it shares the same engine as other versions – a peppy motor which whisks it to 62mph in a reasonable 13.4 seconds and returns relatively economical fuel consumption of 57.7mpg.

CO2 emissions of 115g/km are low enough to put it into the affordable £30 tax band. Standard equipment on this most basic model is sparse, though, with the Ka having body colour bumpers, a trip computer, driver and passenger airbags and an auxiliary audio input – but not much else.

The smart choice for value for money: Ford Ka 1.2 Zetec – £10,695

If you’re after a little more bang for your buck, mid-range Zetec trim includes many more standard features, while still being available for safely less than £11,000. Standard on this model are air conditioning, electric front windows, remote central locking and driver’s seat height adjustment, which should mean that tall or short drivers should be able to get more comfortable behind the wheel.

Other standard kit includes 15-inch alloy wheels, a heated front windscreen, 50:50 split-folding rear seats, front fog lights and tinted rear windows, for a more upmarket look.

The smart choice for technophiles: Ford Ka 1.2 Titanium – £11,195

As a city car, the Ka might not be available with all the high-tech toys that bigger cars get, but opting for Titanium trim still gets you climate control and a premium sound system with six speakers, a subwoofer and am amplifier for better quality sound.

Also standard on Titanium models are sharp 16-inch alloy wheels and chrome trim for the door handles and boot handle, along with a chrome exhaust pipe. Helping to spruce up the interior is white trim for the steering wheel in addition to a white gear knob.

As with the other Kas, this model features an eager but economical 1.2-litre petrol engine, which should be cheap to fuel thanks to its claimed fuel economy of 57.7mpg. Despite its long list of extra equipment over the Zetec model above, Titanium trim carries a small price premium, being available for a reasonable £11,195.

Picture: Ford