UK’s most popular first car revealed as British brands win big

Martin Lewis gives advice on when to renew car insurance

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There are many factors to consider when choosing a first car, whether it’s for a son or daughter or just a purchase after years of leasing. And a new study by car insurance company using their insurance data has found British brands come out on top when it comes to a first vehicle.

Top of the pile was Ford’s Fiesta Zetec, a sporty hatchback with premium features that has been snapped up by a whopping 16,047 first-time buyers.

Only available used, the Fiesta comes with alloy wheels, front fog lights and alloy wheels to add a touch of class to a budget car.

Safety features are good, with emergency brake assist (EBA) and enhanced stability control.

Later models also boast Apple Carplay and Android Auto.

Runner up to the Fiesta was Vauxhall’s Corsa SXi – chosen as a first car by 8,311 first-time drivers.

The car’s tight control, small turning circle, and nifty acceleration make it a great city car, perfect for first-time drivers on the go.

Available for less than £5,000 with fewer than 50,000 miles on the clock, the Corsa also features EBA and premium touches like a leather steering wheel and piano black trim.

It’s not quick however, taking 13.6 seconds to reach 60mph.

Third on the list is the Mini Cooper. With timeless looks and now backed by BMW build quality, the Mini is guaranteed to be consistently popular.

Picked as a first car by 8,022 first time buyers, the Mini is packed with features on newer examples, including Dynamic traction control, LED lights and DAB radio with Bluetooth.

Prices are higher than Vauxhall and Ford, but then there’s a bit more cachet that comes with the Cooper.

The Mini ‘One’ closely followed in fourth place on the list with 7,750 first-time buyers.

Overall, the survey found Vauxhall was overwhelmingly the most popular brand for first-time buyers, with 67,519 cars sold.

The Hampshire-based brand took five out of the top ten spots with their cars.

Elsewhere there were places for the Fiat 500 and another Ford Fiesta model.

The highest-placed European brand was Volkswagen, placing 13th with the Polo S.

When the data was broken up by regions in the UK, the Mini reigned supreme in the South of England.

The Cooper and the One were preferred in the South East and South West of the country.

Most other regions had the Fiesta as the most popular choice however.

Alex Kindred, car insurance expert at said: “Smaller cars are often more popular with first-time drivers because they’re cheaper to insure, while also being much more affordable to fuel.
“They’re also great for shorter commutes, such as getting to and from college or work, and are often similar to the cars you’ll have learnt in which makes them easier to drive.”

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