Friday 15 November 2019

My mother has restricted mobility. What car would you recommend?

Car-value expert Gillian Keogh teams up with Motoring Editor Eddie Cunningham to help you make the right choice with your next purchase. Gillian is Editor of a monthly guidebook on the values of used cars produced by the Motor Trade Publishers team. The team supplies a car-valuing service to the motor trade, insurance companies and finance houses

Stock image of black Nissan Qashqai
Stock image of black Nissan Qashqai

I care for my elderly mother and have disability driver's scheme. She needs a high car and one with a wider opening door, plus long door for access. She has restricted mobility.

I currently drive a 2016 Ford Kuga 2-litre diesel and put up 12,000km a year. I like the Kuga, but it is big. I don't know whether I should go for petrol as there is so much negative talk about diesel. I'd appreciate your advice.

Gillian: A petrol would suit you fine, so keep it in mind. You didn't mention budget but, coming from a 2016 car, I will assume you are looking to buy new, and I will stick with new-Kuga money at around mid €30k and go with a smaller bodied Nissan Qashqai 1.2 petrol or 1.5dCi if you want to stick with diesel.

It still has the nice height of the Kuga but without the too-big-for-me feel, and there should be plenty of room for your mother to feel comfortable getting in and out.

For a smaller car and budget of under €30k, you could downsize within the Ford range and go for an EcoSport. Not the most popular seller (as Eddie strongly points out ahead), but I think that you would be surprised by it. The Titanium spec is what you should go for. Or how about a Ford C-Max for a small bit more money?

I suggest you go back to your Ford dealer and see what they have to offer against your current car because I am sure they have something in their range to suit.

Also don't forget the popular Toyota C-HR - you could pick up a 1.8 Hybrid. It will be a great car to sell down the line. Starting at €30,400 for the Sport model, the front space and height should suit your mother. The back space is a little low, but if you don't use this often, then it's ideal.

Eddie: I would disagree strongly, as Gillian predicted, on the Ford EcoSport suggestion. I don't like it at all. But the Qashqai makes a lot of sense, especially with the 1.2-litre petrol engine. There are many compact SUVs to look for, but I think I'd keep it to Qashqai and the excellent Peugeot 3008SUV for its wide-opening doors and ease of drive.

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ecunningham@independent.ie

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