Tuesday, 30 May 2017

Choosing the safest car for our family

We put a lot of thought into picking out our last car three years ago; we looked at safety ratings and did plenty of research before making our final selection, choosing a Skoda Octavia.  It’s a car that has served us well over that time although it is starting to show signs of wear – largely down to the two boys and all the handprints all over the paintwork!!!  I think they must have had suncream on their hands and its damaged the paintwork, as no amount of cleaning seems to get rid of them!!!

We actually went for a brand new car so we could control the options we wanted from the onset, even though that was by far a more expensive option.  The salesman said we were the first individuals he had dealt with to want the rear airbags installed, so they would not have had any second hand cars available with that as standard at that dealership anyway.  They did look on a countrywide database but even then I think it only came back with one or two options and they weren’t quite what we were after.

Our car is coming up to the end of its finance and we have one of two options to make either a final down payment or wipe our hands of the car and go back to the drawing board and look for something else.  As safety ratings have updated since our last choice as new cars are manufactured I want to see is there might be a safer choice for our family.

I found this interactive guide about car safety from Accident Advice to be an extremely useful resource; they have based it on the scores by Euro NCAP, which is something we looked at the first time round.  The look of the car is secondary to how safe it is, the priority for us is getting our boys from A to B as smoothly and safely as possible, which includes fitting a decent car seat that meets the changes to car seat law.

The Mercedes Benz E-Class looks a fantastic alternative to what we have already but I think that might be beyond our means sadly!  It has a driver safety figure of 95% and 90% for kids.

In an ideal world I would want 100% but unless we were driving a tank with lots of internal airbags and other safety features I don’t think its going to be possible so as close to 100% as we can get is always my aim!  Although of very first family car probably fared a lot worse in terms of safety, it was tiny but we were grateful to have wheels and it was all we could afford.

I had heard the bigger the car the safer it is but that doesn’t always ring true going through the findings of this interactive guide anyway!  Some of the large pick up trucks don’t do so well up against the small family cars, definitely food for thought on my quest for another car, although I know the car above was far too small, we probably wouldn't get the boys in it now they are so much bigger!

Do you look at safety ratings when purchasing cars or do you just go for one that fits your budget and looks nice?


  1. I am a bit of a nerdy geek and spend weeks online looking at the facts and figures when we buy a car. In fact my hubs thinks i am obsessive but getting it right can make a big difference but like you say having to balance wants/needs and budget can be hard

  2. We had to change cars not long before our second baby arrived, and it was amazing how much the car seat safety legislation had changed in the three years since our first had arrived. Went with Iso-Fix this time around - great for peace of mind.

  3. I think it is scary how many have incorrectly fitted carseats.

  4. We're really stuck with cars at the moment as we need to fit 4 children in, but don't want anything huge!!

  5. I always look at the safety ratings and my dream car is top of its class. Sadly it is also out of my price range but I do have a strong and sturdy car which I don't love but I know is safe