Safety isn’t a subject on which I claim to be an expert, but Co-op Insurance thinks it knows what the safest used car is and has even invented an award for it. I won’t keep you in suspense: it’s the Volvo V40.
The V40 wasn’t plucked out of thin air; it was chosen in collaboration with Thatcham Research. After the V40 with Driver Support Pack, the next two safest cars are Volkswagen’s Golf and the Nissan Qashqai.
Well, that’s a healthy line-up of fairly modern cars, all with five-star Euro NCAP crash test ratings and used prices of around £15,000 – the upper end of the ‘real world’ used car budget. The cars were all rated on crashworthiness, which included ratings for adult, child and pedestrian protection and the availability of Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB). Golly.
So the V40 got the nod because its crash test scores are still the highest ever recorded by the safety assessment institute. So that’s a deserved victory and exactly what the nervous used car buyer wants to hear.
For some of us, though, buying used means trying to lessen the impact of depreciation to the point where the cost is irrelevant. So for a few thousand quid we want a car that is not only reliable but also as safe as it can be – for the money.