Tips for buying a new family car

When your family is starting to grow, you'll naturally start the search for a bigger vehicle to meet your needs. The things that you'd look for in a car to drive solo aren't necessarily the same features you need from a family car. Here's what to focus on:

Space is likely to be one of your biggest priorities, as you'll need room for the family, luggage, baby carriers and pushchairs, and plenty of other things. A two-seater is going to be out of the question - aim for a model with at least five seats, or opt for a people carrier or estate.

The other big feature to focus on when evaluating a vehicle is safety. Most manufacturers are now building their cars to achieve EuroNCAP's full five-star safety rating, giving you more choices.

However, a model that comes with specific child protection features is likely to be your best bet. Check the equipment list for child-proof rear door locks, ISOFIX attachments and airbag deactivation in the front passenger side.

The family car you pick is going to spend a considerable amount of time on the road - so you'll want one that delivers a good level of fuel economy. It's generally expected that a diesel-powered model will return a better figure for combined consumption than one that runs on petrol. You might also consider one of the new hybrid models to extend the range even further, and you can then top your car up overnight at home.

Finally, a consideration with the purchase of any new vehicle for your family should be the ongoing cost. Not just how much you'll pay to keep your car running, but the cost of repairs and maintenance, and how often you might need to have it cleaned. Leather upholstery is a nice, comfortable option, but there may be other fabric options that are more durable and resilient.

When you're ready to pick out a new car to transport your family, please get in touch with your closest Lookers dealership. We'll support you in finding the best model that meets your requirements.