The concept of a family car is has evolved in many ways. The family structure can vary from person to person and as such, each family will have different requirements from their next car. It may be that ample boot space is crucial for transporting sports equipment or large musical instruments on a weekly basis. Alternatively, if you have a young family, an all singing entertainment system may be high on your list of priorities for your next car.
Whatever your circumstances, safety and reliability are likely to be vital. Our selection of the top 10 family cars takes this into account and we’ve given an overview of additional features you’ll most likely find appealing when considering your next purchase.
One of the UK’s best-selling cars in 2016, the Ford Focus is an extremely popular choice. It has built up a fantastic reputation over the years due to its excellent handling, high reliability and low running costs. A great sized boot and cabin are appealing to families, with various engine sizes and specs available to suit different needs and wants.
With what is basically a Volkswagen Golf engine in a sportier shell, the SEAT Leon is an attractive option for the whole family. There’s the striking aesthetic and solid driving that will please parents, while five-door models offer plenty of room for young kids, along with the excitement of riding around in such a cool car. Saloon versions offer additional boot space, and the 1.8 litre Leon FR can do 0-62mph in 7.5 seconds; giving you confidence when travelling long distances on the motorway.
Another great hatchback, the Mazda3 is an interesting choice for families after something a bit different. A unique exterior is more than matched by the brand’s excellence in reliability, with its effortless drive and extremely economical abilities appealing if you need to save money for that family holiday. The 2.0 litre petrol is the best economical option for everyday use and cheaper than diesel alternatives.
For larger family cars, the Volkswagen Passat offers ample room and oozes quality, even though some may see it as a more conservative choice. Professional and featuring the latest technology, kids will love all the gadgets and entertainment options it includes. The estate model increases space, with enough room for pets and to fill up for a week or two’s holiday.
When it comes to buying family cars, reliability is one of the main things to look for. You don’t want to be breaking down every week, especially when taking children to school, football practice, on holidays etc. The Toyota Prius is incredibly economical and reliable, with just a 12% breakdown rate per year, one of the ten lowest in the UK.
One of the more expensive used cars suitable for families, the Audi A3 Sportback offers all the style and performance any car lover expects from such an esteemed brand. Highly sophisticated, it’s great for professional use yet roomy enough and with an extensive entertainment package that’s great for kids.
As with most Japanese cars, the Honda Civic has a great reputation for reliability and an economical engine. The handling may not be as sharp as the Ford Focus, but many of their used cars come at a cheaper price. There’s still plenty of interior space and smart seats that are easy to clean, which is useful for food and drink spillages.
Another of the UK’s top-selling cars, the Vauxhall Astra is packed full of safety features such as its ‘Matrix’ headlights and more. When transporting young children, safety features are an essential for family cars. Plus, the 1.6 litre diesel model boasts 85mpg while the 1.6 litre petrol version can do 0-62 mph in 6.6 seconds.
- Skoda Superb
It may not be the most modest name, but the Skoda Superb does pretty much live up to its title. Incredibly practical thanks to a massive boot and wide-opening tailgate, this makes access easy even for the youngest of passengers. Climate control in the higher specs keeps everyone the right temperature and it’s a comfortable car to drive.
Those with a few children (or more expected) will love the saloon style Ford Mondeo. Packed full of entertainment options with upmarket looks, it ticks pretty much every box for what you need in a family car. Models range from 1.0 litre EcoBoosts, ideal for urban driving, to powerful 2.0 litre diesels.
Hopefully this will help narrow down your choice of used family cars to help make the decision much easier.
Image courtesy of iStock.