If you’re starting or expanding your family, chances are you’ll be looking for a bigger car to accommodate your growing brood. Luckily help is at hand to find the best cars for carrying your precious cargo.
Our friends over at Parkers.co.uk have anointed the best family-friendly cars to suit different budgets and needs - helping you transport your children in safety and drive a snazzy car that won’t be a drain on your wallet.
The best family cars of 2018
Parkers has launched its first New Car of the Year Awards and Mother & Baby has teamed up with them on the Best Small Family Car category. The winning cars are choices that’ll laugh off the rigours of family life, swallowing pushchairs and nappy bags with ease, yet they won’t cost the earth to run or buy.
The winner: the Toyoto C-HR
The winner is the Toyota C-HR, a competitor to the ever-popular Nissan Qashqai crossover set. Yet the C-HR is as head-turning as a sports car, bringing a fresh style to the family SUV market. Prices start at £21,065, or around £199 a month on widely available finance packages.
The judges said: ‘The Toyota C-HR is a highly accomplished crossover, boasting a comfortable ride, a well-built cabin and genuinely eye-catching styling.’
The runners-up: The Skoda Fabia Estate and the VW Golf
Two runners-up were also highly commended. The Skoda Fabia Estate is like a Tardis, squeezing a colossal 530-litre boot into a small car footprint and is available with a variety of engines, specs and prices from just £13,175.
The evergreen VW Golf remains a firm family friendly favourite. Judges praised its clinical quality, the interior space available and the wide range of engines and powertrains, including economical petrol and diesel engines, a full electric version and plug-in hybrid. With prices from £17,765, there really is a Golf for most budgets and requirements.
The best large family car
Need more space? In the next category up, the BMW 5 Series Touring won the Best Large Family Car gong, winning praise for its space, practicality and high-tech connectivity on board. Prices start at £38,075. It beat the excellent-value Skoda Superb and Volvo XC60 crossovers.
New mums and dads will be keen to protect their offspring while travelling in the car. So check out the full details of the Parkers Best Car Safety Award, which names the technologies and vehicles that have made the greatest gains in occupant protection.
Euro NCAP, the pan-European crash-testing programme, celebrated its 20th anniversary in 2017 and Parkers hailed it the greatest advance in car safety. The organisation, which awards star ratings on every new model range sold in Europe, claims it has saved 78,000 lives since launch in 1997.
If you’re thinking of buying a car, check out the Parkers New Car of the Year Awards 2018 for more advice. They cover everything from the Best First Car to Best Cars for Sun-Seekers.