The bubbly little Ford Ka hatchback was first released in 1996. With its lethargic 1.3-litre four-pot, it was hardly fast - but the motoring press loved its keen go-kart-like handling characteristics. The looks proved to a be a bit of a sticking point for Ford; some loathed its comic proportions and thought its curvy interior wholly unnecessary, but most applauded it for being just that little bit different from anything we'd seen before. The first generation soldiered on until 2008, spawning excellent sports and convertible versions midway through its life. The current model is based on the Fiat 500, and is available with either a 1.2-litre petrol or 1.3-litre diesel engine. It's bigger than its predecessor, but still handles well, with uncannily light steering that makes threading it through town a doddle.