When automakers develop a new ride they want it to appeal to the masses irregardless of sex. Quite often, though, particular models end up appealing to one sex or the other. They become either a girl car or a guys car. Occasionally, the results are surprising and can evolve. For instance, who would have thought the Chevrolet Tahoe and Ford F150 would have morphed from rugged work-a-day trucks to mom-mobiles or that either would be considered a country girl car?
What exactly makes a car good for a girl? It is almost impossible to say exactly. Some cars seem designed as feminine while others are just favorites with the soccer-mom and country girl sets. What ever gave these rides a girl car vibe, many of them are excellent driving machines and have devoted followings. One thing is certain, though, if you ask a cross section of the people you know, many of the cars on our list will come to mind, especially the first one on the list. So, here are the top girl cars for you or your daughter, in no particular order at all:
1. VW New Beetle
The New Beetle has its roots in the 1932 VW Type I concept car that eventually became the iconic Beetle of the 1970s. Beloved by guys and girls alike, the old style Beetle is a classic mass appeal car.
On the other hand, the New Beetle is clearly designed to attract the feminine among us. The girly car quality of the New Beetle is most evident in the fact that it actually came with a plastic flower when new. Chock full of cuteness, especially the cabriolet, the New Beetle is backed by a slew of fuel efficient engines and received top safety ratings from multiple agencies around the globe.
2. Fiat 500C
Fiat reintroduced the 500 in 2007, adding the Fiat 500C for the 2009 model year. While the basic Fiat 500 could appeal to the metrosexual set as a fuel sipper in an urban setting, the 500C(C for cabriolet) is clearly designed with women in mind. Fiat pushed the feminine appeal of the 500C by producing a majority of the advertising media surrounding the 500C with women behind the wheel. The fixed-profile convertible top and the fun-to-drive aspects of the car help it appeal to ladies of all ages.
3. Fiat Abarth 124 Spider
Let’s digress to a more aggressive Fiat. The Fiat Abarth 124 Spider hit the North American market for the 2017 model year. On top of being a stylish two-seat convertible, it is underpinned by a great suspension that is tuned for fun drives. The Abarth 124 Spider has found a degree of success with the female demographic. Many think it is a girl car because the general impression is that it is under-powered. The MultiAir turbo I4 under the hood is able to produce 168 hp and 180 lb-ft of torque. Not bad, but not muscle.
4. Mitsubishi Eclipse
Mitsubishi built the Eclipse for 22 model years, ending with the 2012 model year. It was built in four generations. The first three were solid cars with decent performance and appealed to both sexes with its sharp styling. The fourth generation debuted for the 2006 model year and quickly became a girl car from just about any point of view. Even the GT lost its appeal to most men. The fourth-gen Eclipse was rounded and softened in every possible way. Even the more powerful engine in the Eclipse GT could not overcome the design of the car. Car for girls or not, a 2009 Mitsubishi Eclipse GT offered up 265 hp and 280 lb-ft of torque. Not shabby by any standards.
5. Ford Mustang Convertible
The Ford Mustang has been a lot of things over the years…affordable sports car, economic fuel sipper, a muscle car(in the Shelby version only), and a classic girl car. Only certain generations of the Mustang are thought of as chick cars, though. First up would be the fourth generation built between 1994 and 2004, then would be the fifth generation convertibles built prior to the 2010 facelift. All of these cars are solid used transportation, but there is just something about them that makes them that women seem to love more than men, maybe just the fact that it’s a convertible.
6. VW Rabbit Cabrio
The first and second generations of the Volkswagen Golf were marketed in North America as the VW Rabbit. They were introduced at a time when North America was begging for smaller, more fuel efficient cars due to an oil embargo. Once on the market, they gained a reputation for reliability and long term durability. When the drop top was introduced for the 1980 model year, they immediately became known as a car for chicks. The image became so ingrained that VW began marketing the cabrio as such early on. All you have to do is look at the picture of a 1990 VW Rabbit Cabrio above to understand why.
7. Mini Cooper Hatch and Mini Cooper Cabrio
The Mini Cooper and the Mini Cooper Cabrio are everything you ever imagined a feminine car would be. They are compact, vividly painted, well designed, and cute as hell. They are also very responsive and fun to handle. When the new Mini hit the market for the 2001 model year, many people thought they could never be durable enough to appeal to a wide market. The opposite is true. With proper care, a Mini Cooper can last for decades of fun.
8. Jeep Liberty
Jeep was searching for a replacement for the Cherokee line at the turn of the century. The intent was to offer a compact SUV that would appeal to moms who were tired of driving minivans. The answer was the Jeep Liberty. The first generation was introduced for the 2002 model year and immediately caught on with “soccer moms”. Despite the definite feminine vibe of the first-gen Liberty, it is roomy enough for a family of four and has cargo space for sports equipment. The top safety ratings of the Liberty make it a great used car option for first time drivers as well. The second generation was introduced for the 2008 model year. The complete redesign of the exterior gave the Liberty a more rugged aspect and it shed its girly reputation in the process. Only time will tell if that was really a positive thing or not.
9. Honda del Sol
The Honda Civic del Sol is a two-seat targa top car built by Honda between 1992 and 1997. It was designed as a sporty alternative to the Honda Civic. The two cars were built on the same platform, used the same engine and transmission combinations, and were marketed side-by-side. The only difference was the exterior design. The result was a car most men were embarrassed to be seen driving. Even when equipped with an aftermarket body kit like the one in the image above, the del Sol oozes cuteness.
10. Dodge Dart
Dodge first built the Dart for the 1959 model year. We are not talking about the original cars, but the remake introduced in 2012 as Dodge’s re-entry into the compact car market. The Dart is generally powered by a 2.0L MultiAir I4 capable of 160 hp and 148 lb-ft of torque. Both are great numbers for everyday driving. The Dart also offers up 35 mpg on the highway. Even when a Dodge Dart is equipped with the SRT package, like the one above, there is something about it that makes it a girl car. Can’t quite put our collective finger on it, though. It may be that just about every Dart we see on the road has a woman behind the wheel.
11. Ford F150
There is nothing feminine about the Ford F150…no rounded corners, no soft design, not even a tiny engine with low output. Not a drop of cuteness to be found. These are full-size, work your ass off trucks that appeal to quite a few women. Some guys will immediately argue that the F150 is not a girl car. They should look around, then. There are just as many women driving an F150 as there are men. For some reason, the Chevy Silverado, Dodge Ram, and GMC Sierra have not caught on as well as chick cars, but they do tend to have their female fans too.
12. Chevy Tahoe
As North American women grew tired of driving minivans with their inherent soccer mom connotations, the Chevrolet Tahoe grew in popularity. It is easy to see why. You get a large truck-based SUV that offers passenger space for up to eight and more than enough cargo room to haul anything imaginable. Then there is the dynamic 5.3L powerplant that is in the current models. If those aren’t enough reasons, there all of the creature comforts. Chevy will equip a Tahoe with any amenity that can be found in any GM offering.