A Guide to Rental Car Size Categories

The search for a rental car should never be a shot in the dark. You should always do a little digging if you want to land a good deal or at the very least, you need to rely on a price comparing service such as Whizz Go Rent A Car that can help you rent a budget-friendly car in Iceland, for example. But the price is not the only thing to which you should be paying attention when you are looking for a rental vehicle. The size of the ride also matters. Why else would companies bother to divide their fleets into the following categories:

  • Mini
  • Compact
  • Intermediate (Mid-size)
  • Full-size

Which of these vehicles will be a suitable option for your next family holiday or business trip? Read on to find out!


This is the smallest rental car option there is. It has only two seats and just two doors. It also offers room for 2 bags. Good examples of a mini car include Opel Adam, Ford Ka and Toyota Augo. The advantages of this vehicle are that you can easily find parking space for it and that it comes at an affordable price. It is ideal for quick rounds around the city but ultimately it is a one-person vehicle in which there is room for a friend when you want to give someone a lift. However, do not count on the mini for long road trips or if you want to make a good impression on your new business partners.


With 5 seats, 4 doors and enough room for 2 bags and a suitcase, compact rental cars are almost twice as big as the mini. It is the most cost-efficient option if you are planning to have company. It can easily provide comfort during a longer trip for two other passengers. Compact rides deliver an excellent gas mileage and will help you save some money. Notable examples here include Mini Cooper, Opel Astra, Citroen C4 and Volkswagen Golf.


Similar to compact cars, intermediate or mid-size vehicles have 5 seats and 4 doors. However, the size of their trunk is bigger which is why with it you can pack 2 suitcases and 2 smaller bags. This rental car size category will give you extra legroom which makes it more suitable for longer trips. The downsides – its higher price. Peugeot 3008, Mazda 3 and Opel Mokka are all intermediate vehicles.


Full-size cars such as Toyota Camry, Mercedes C-Class, Chevrolet Malibu and BMW 3 Series can fit 5 people without any problem. They have 5 seats, 4 doors and plenty of leg room. Still, their luggage capacity is the same as that of mid-size rides which can be a bit of a bummer. The rental price is also considerately higher compared to other size categories. Most full-size rental options out there tend to be sedans with 4 doors.

Now that you know the difference between a mini and a compact rental vehicle, you will be able to make a more informed choice the next time you are looking to rent a car.