This is one of the most contested and interchangeable categories of the BusinessCar Awards due to the strength, popularity and volume of the competition.

For 2013, the Ford Focus makes a return and muscles fellow regular the Audi A3 off the 2012 top spot. No stranger to praise, the Focus is the kind of car that does everything well. Ever since the original arrived in 1998, it’s always been the drivers’ choice within the non-premium lower medium sector for its sharp handling and tidy ride. Since then, the Focus has become more and more grown up and now has one of the most technologically advanced cabins in the business, sporting features such as Active Park Assist, which parks the car automatically, and Ford’s Sync system that can read out text messages on the move.

There’s no shortage of engine and transmission combos, too. The powerplants worth shouting about for the fleet sector are the new 1.6-litre Econetic diesel, with an emissions low of 88g/km, and the 1.0-litre Ecoboost petrol, which defies its modest size with strong performance along with 58.8mpg and 109g/km. Its only sore point is that the boot could be a little bigger.

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