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The best family cars should provide good value, space and practicality whatever your budget. So if you are looking to choose from a range of great family cars, you’ve come to the right place. Here, the carwow experts bring together a selection of the best family cars for sale in 2018. To help you narrow down your choice, our experts have also selected some of the best large family cars, the safest family cars and if you are after some fun too, we’ve got the fastest family cars sorted too.
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You want a family car that has the practicality you need, but does it have to be that sensible too? Here, our experts pick out exciting, fast family cars for you to consider.
From a distance the Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio looks like any other smart, four-door saloon but as soon as you see those four-wheel clover decals (quadrifoglio means four leaf clover in Italian) on the side you know it’s something special. Performance is stunning but it’s has decent space in the back and in the boot, too.
The Audi RS 4 Avant is a practical car with ballistic-missile performance and its four-wheel drive means it’s quick in all weathers. It will comfortably take a couple of teenagers in the rear seats and the boot is big enough to pack for a week's camping in the Pyrenees - and you'll have an absolute blast getting there.
The Hyundai i30 N is a great-to-drive, practical yet fast family car. The i30 N is roomy, with space for four tall adults and a boot that’s bigger than average for this size of car. Even when it’s fully loaded, the i30 N is not short on poke and fuel economy is OK, considering the oomph that you have available.
The Mercedes AMG C63 has a superb V8 petrol engine that brings big performance and raucous soundtrack. It's well equipped and reasonably spacious for passengers and luggage - although not quite on the same par as the Alfa Romeo Giulia.
Nothing is as important as keeping your loved ones safe when you drive. According to Euro NCAP, the following are small and large family cars that have scored particularly well in the area of child occupant protection.
The Volvo XC40 is one of the safest family cars you can buy. Not only did it score a full five stars in the most stringent 2018 Euro NCAP crash tests, it scored 87% in the area of child occupant. It’s a small family car with funky styling that’s comfortable to drive.
The latest Ford Focus also scored an impressive five stars in the 2018 Euro NCAP crash tests – another one of the reasons it won our Family Award at the 2018 carwow Car of the Year Awards. Its five-star rating included getting an 87% child occupant score. It's not just a safe car, though: it's pretty much a great all-round family car.
This big 4x4 has the space you need for a large family car, but with a five-star Euro NCAP score (2018 tests) and 86% for child occupancy it’s a very safe family car too. It has a spacious interior and big boot, along with a bang up-to-date infotainment system.
The Nissan Leaf scooped our Innovation Award at the 2018 carwow Car of the Year Awards, but it’s also good to know that it is very safe. It got five stars in tough 2018 Euro NCAP crash tests. And like the Focus, it received a particularly high score for child occupant safety – 86%. Families will love it's whisper quiet electric drivetrain and bill payers will appreciate the low running costs.
The latest Audi A6 is spacious, luxurious and thanks to a five star Euro NCAP rating, it's safe as well. It scored 85% in the child occupancy crash test. It is comfortable and comes with a lot of desirable high-tech kit too. If you are after a safe car with a touch of luxury, it's hard to look past the Audi A6, particularly when it won carwow Car of the Year.
If you’re running out of space in your family hatchback, or just need extra rear legroom to stop the kids kicking the back of your seat, you’re going to need a bigger car. Just because the cars on this list are large doesn’t mean they have to break the bank - all provide great value for money.
The Skoda Kodiaq is a very practical and very large family car. And unlike some family cars, you get a decent sized boot even when all seven seats are being used. It comes packed with useful features such as umbrellas hidden away in the front doors on certain models and above and a removable magnetic torch in the boot.
The Audi A6 Avant is a very practical, very high-tech family car that comes with a futuristic cabin and efficient hybrid engines as standard. There's room for three teenagers in the back seats - and they will be pretty comfortable there too. To top it off, the boot is big enough to pack a week's camping kit.
The Skoda Superb estate is one of those rare cars, where there is very little to criticise. You want space, practicality and excellent value? The Superb gives you all of that, plus a fine drive as well. If you have got a crew of lanky teenagers and their kit to transport there are few cars that can do that job as well as the Superb Estate.
The Audi Q7 is a plush seven-seater family car that’s comfortable, surprisingly good to drive and packed full of tech. While the third row of seats is only really suitable for children, the seats in the middle would do the job in a luxury limo. All three recline individually, as well as sliding forwards and backwards independently.
Other large family cars may be a bit better built or a bit more spacious, but if that all sounds too ‘pipe and slippers’ for you, then the 508’s stylish design and sporty drive make it worthy of a place on your shortlist. Peugeot’s commitment to making a desirable family car is why we awarded the 508 the Style Award at carwow’s 2018 Car of the Year Awards
The best family cars have to be spacious enough to fit you, your other half, the kids and everyone’s luggage. It’s also got to be stylish enough for you to want to buy it and offer a level of technology that fits in with your lifestyle. You’ll want decent performance – without high running costs. Toughest of all – it needs to tick all these boxes, yet still offer great value. Thankfully, you’ll find this list offers a variety of different cars that deliver all of the above.
The Ford Focus is crammed with the latest technology, looks great and is brilliant to drive. It comes with a range of efficient engines and is competitively priced – no wonder it won our Family Award at the 2018 carwow Car of the Year Awards. The interior is the poshest yet for a Focus, it's relatively spacious, and has a decent sized boot too.
The keenly priced Skoda Karoq is the definition of a great all-rounder and, as a result, it won our Value Award at the carwow 2018 Car of the Year Awards. It looks handsome on the outside and is well built on the inside. The spacious interior is heaven for families and is crammed with features that make the car easier to live with every day. Its boot is also a healthy size, but the Karoq’s party piece is that you can remove all the back seats for big jobs. You won’t find holes in the way it drives, either, it is very comfortable and comes with a choice of great engines.
The Mercedes A-Class is a sensible family that’s also an aspirational purchase. Buy it and you get a car with smart styling and a lovely interior that’s packed full of unbelievable technology. It’s for this reason that the A-Class won the Game-changer Award at carwow’s 2018 Car of the Year Awards. It’s not all style and no substance, though, the A-Class is a tidy car to drive that’s available with a decent range of engines.
The Peugeot 3008 is a bold-looking, practical family car with a funky, well-designed denim-clad interior. It doesn’t just look great either – the material quality and tactile switches feel fantastic too. There’s enough room in the back for three teenagers thanks to a flat floor and wide middle seat.
No list of the best family cars is complete without the Volkswagen Golf. For decades it has always been a well-built and spacious family car that’s easy to drive and pleasant to live with. And although the VW Golf isn’t a huge car, its boot is big enough to cope with taking the family’s luggage when you head off on holiday.
The short answer is a family car is one that is ideal for a growing family. But over the years, what constitutes as ‘ideal’ for a family has changed as people’s tastes change, trends move on and as cars develop.
Traditionally a family car was epitomised by the likes of the Ford Mondeo or Volkswagen Passat - big engine in the front, big boot in the back and enough room for four or five in the middle.
While those cars are still popular – though perhaps more popular with fleet buyers rather than families – other types of car are now considered under the banner of ‘family cars’. SUV cars are aimed squarely at families as they are practical, stylish and, well, a bit more modern. Families love the raised driving position and most of them come with the latest tech buyers desire.
And then there are estate cars. From the cheap to the plush, some families just want the car with a big boot to help transport their stuff.