Friday, 14 October 2011

Guest Post: A lowdown of the safest cars a mum can go for in 2011

If you’re a mum on the lookout for a new car to ferry your family around in, then you want to know it’s the safest option, without any doubt. It’s a safe assumption that top of your list is economy – both with the car itself and its running costs. A comparison site like Moneysupermarket has car insurance quotes a-plenty and is a great tool to help keep your car insurance costs to an absolutely minimum – something you should always find out the cost of before buying a new car.

So being the lovely people we are, we’ve decided to give you a handy lowdown of which of 2011’s latest cars have been voted the safest in town, and why. Here’s a list of the UK’s five safest cars in 2011, as voted for by to car-safety experts, European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP).

How does Euro NCAP judge safety?
This year’s rigorous testing program began in 2010, and involved crash testing 29 cars of varying makes and models, after which Euro NCAP then awards a safety rating, with five stars being the safest.

Of the 29 vehicles put through Euro NCAP’s rigorous safety trials, 65 per cent were awarded the top honour of five stars compared to 90 per cent a couple of years ago in 2009. This is probably not a fair comparison though, because the testing regulations have actually been tightened up even more since then in order to maintain a year-on-year improvement of car safety standards.

The cars were judged on factors like standard safety features, child safety, adult safety and pedestrian protection, and the winners were… #drumroll please#...

Safest Small Family Car: Alfa Romeo Giulietta

Alfa Romeo Giulietta front 20100731

A fast, stylish hatchback and competitively priced, it’s mostly loved by critics and is seen as somewhat a-la-mode by mummy drivers.  Cons include small back seats, poor rear visibility and the fact your left foot’s left with nowhere to if you go for one with a manual gearbox. £17,570 - £25,140

The Safest Supermini: Honda CR-Z
2011 Honda CR-Z Sport Hybrid Coupe
While this one’s quite pricey, it is, nonetheless, enticingly stylish and an innovative hybrid sports coupe; and the critics love it. A fun car to drive, it’s also fairly fast and economical, too. £17,640 - £22,585

The Safest 4WD: Kia Sportage

Kia Sportage

It’s stylish and has a well-finished, premium-feel interior. The generous seven-year warranty is also a strong selling point – perhaps a bid by the Korean manufacturer to instil a bit of consumer confidence. £17,110 - £26,550

Safest Small MPV: Toyota Verso

New Toyota Verso-S

Practical, economical and reliable, the layout and use of space is clever and allows for the car to be used as a seven-seater. However, it’s been criticised for an impractically small boot size and its lack of flair and finesse when it comes to the interior styling. For a small MPV though, it perhaps can be forgiven for trying to maximise on space and compromising on style. £17,285 - £27,239

Safest Large Family Car: Volkswagen Passat

Volkswagen Passat
Journalists love this car, praising it for elements such as comfort, build quality a highly economical engine. However, if you’re looking for something that boasts cutting-edge styling and is fun to drive, too, then you may want to look elsewhere, because The Passat has been outshone here by worthier counterparts. £19,120 - £26,225

So there you have it – a quick overview of the safest cars of 2011 that you, as a conscientious mum, might like to consider when making your next family car purchase.

Images: 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

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