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Free advice on buying a family car

(Back row, from left to right) Lizzie Bennett, PR and Social Media Executive at Wessex Garages helps Chris George from Clevedon and his sons, (front row, from left to right) five-year-old Theo George and seven-year-old William George, choose a family-friendly car.​​

We’re offering families in Bristol who might be looking to purchase a more family-friendly car some free advice this month (September, 2015).

Our Feeder Road dealership has put together some top tips on getting the task right.

Mark Hayward, our General Manager at the dealership, explained: “When choosing a family car it’s important to know what you’re looking for. We hope our top five tips will really help any families that are currently on the market for a new vehicle.

1.“Safety – one of the most important features you should check up on when getting a new car. Always check the Euro NCAP rating for crash safety and child protection.

2.“Passenger airbag switch off option – also coming under safety features, it is important to check that the car you’re looking at has the option to switch off passenger airbags when using a rear-facing child seat. It is not recommended that child seats be fitted in the passenger seat but if the need arises you should be able to switch off airbags easily.

3.“Hatchback, saloon or SUV? Hatchbacks are perfect for transporting children with larger items such as pushchairs fitting perfectly into a boot. Saloons can look deceptively bigger but often have narrow openings, making loading items a struggle.

“An SUV is ideal for families with three or more children, all with car seats and are transporting them alongside other family members. The all-new Kia Sorento, which on all specs, contains seven seats and has been awarded the maximum five-star crash safety rating by Euro NCAP, is a popular choice.

4.“Wide opening doors – these are a must on a family car. Doors need to open wide enough for parents to install a child seat and get children in and out of the car easily and safely. Sliding doors offer even more convenience.

5.“Child-friendly features – some vehicles come with integrated sun blinds or UV filtering back windows. Dark interiors are a must to help hide any spills or marks, leather in particular is easy to wipe down should there be any spillages.

“The more 12v power sockets in the car the better. These are perfect for plugging in phone chargers and sat-navs but equally handy for handheld games consoles and portable DVD players.”

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