Buying a new family car can be stressful, whether you're having your first child or your kids keep getting bigger, and you need a better way to get them around. We're here to help, and these five tips will help you decide what's best for your family.
1. Set your priorities right
The first thing you should do when buying a new family car is to decide what features are most important to you. If comfort is important to you, you should stay away from sporty models. However, performance and how the car handles turns will be more critical if you're a good driver. Is image important? If that's the case, you should buy a new family car from a product that matches your goals.
Modern SUVs can fit into a lot of these groups. Since they sit higher, they can often handle bumpy roads better than regular cars, and many people now think of them as a more prestigious choice. Take, for example, the Jaguar F-Pace. These are fun to drive, comfortable (as long as you don't get the enormous alloy wheels), and have an excellent British badge.
2. Work out your budget and make sure you're getting a good deal.
If you have a family, you already know how expensive life can be. The last thing you want to do is agree to pay for a new car you can barely afford. This is especially true now when energy prices are going up. So look closely at your money and figure out how much you must spend. Once you know, stick to that amount.
Don't let this get you down. If you want to buy on credit, you might be surprised at how much a new car can get for £300 per month, for instance. Would you instead buy outright? Some new and almost new cars are cheap and plentiful for families.
Take the Dacia Duster, a rugged SUV that costs just £13,995 to buy new. There are tools on the Internet that can help you answer important questions like, How much is my car worth? and How much can I spend? to help you figure out what you can afford and your initial budget so you can get the most out of your money.
3. Make sure that you can all fit.
Whether you want a small car for short trips or a family car for longer trips, it's essential that everyone who needs to fit in the car can do so comfortably. Here, things to think about include making sure growing teens have enough head and leg room in the back and making sure you can quickly get your baby into the car.
This might consist of ensuring your baby carrier can fit all around doors and seats that the stroller will fit in the trunk. When it comes to chairs, be honest about how many you need.
Even if you don't have a big family, are your kids' friends going to be riding with you often? If so, you might want to think about a seven-seat SUV like the SEAT Tarraco or Skoda Kodiaq. The back row is comfortable enough for a couple of teenagers, and they can easily fold into the floor to make a lot of space in the trunk when they're not needed.
4. Check to make sure it's safe enough
Family is essential in the world, so safety has to be one of the most important things to look for in a new family car. Features to watch for here include the number and position of airbags, active safety features like automatic emergency braking and blind-spot monitors, and Isofix mounting marks for child seats if you require them.
This can be unclear, so don't forget that you can also look up any car's safety record on the Euro NCAP website. Check the test year, as more initial testing is more challenging and makes newer cars safer. Euro NCAP even keeps track of which family cars are the safest. The new Subaru Outback, which has one of the best collision avoidance systems on the market, is one of the best cars in this area.
5. Cost to run and dependability
Buying a new car is one thing, but you also need to ensure the costs of keeping it running won't ruin you. Diesel isn't as popular as it used to be, but it's still the best fuel for long-distance efficiency, so don't forget about it if you take a lot of long trips. Most of the time, gas is better for short trips, but electric power is becoming easier.
Similarly, it's essential to find out how reliable a new car is before you buy it. You don't want to pay for expensive repairs or be stuck without a vehicle for your family because it's always in the shop getting fixed.
Forums, Facebook groups, and owners' reviews are all great places to find information about how things work in real life. The Honda CR-V and the Toyota C-HR, which both have gasoline-electric hybrid powertrains, are two of our top choices for reliability and cost of ownership.