Top ten most reliable family workhorses

As families slash holiday budgets to stick to home-grown holiday offerings, new analysis claims Toyota's UK-built Corolla is the most dependable family workhorse to get you to your destination - provided you opt for a 2001-2007 model.

But if you own a Renault Espace or Merc R-Class, do get some Home Recovery cover sharpish.

Trouble-free Toyota

Warranty Direct claims that for cars older than three years old, the Corolla, built at Toyota's Burnaston factory in Derby, is most likely to deliver the family to its holiday destination without heaving to a halt. Just 7% break down each year, on average, they claim.

Right behind the Corolla are Honda's Civic and Accord model (see below for the full list). Unfortunately, only one European car maker makes the top ten - Peugeot with its 308 model. Interestingly, no Far Eastern manufacturers feature in the top ten least reliable vehicles.

"Electrical issues and axle and suspension troubles cause the majority of claims, with the latter often a result of a collision with a pothole or other road defect," says Warranty Direct.


The top ten list of shame throws up a couple of surprises from two makes regularly lauded for quality - VW and Skoda. Warranty Direct claims the VW Touran model is prone to axle and suspension issues, as is the (old model) Skoda Superb. Likewise the Renault Espace.

The Mercedes R-Class is plagued with electrical issues, according to Warranty Direct, and the Peugeot 407 model has braking system concerns.

Lists like these however should always be treated with a bit of distance. Warranty Direct's data isn't the most consistent. Last year it claimed the most reliable European car - those between 3-7 years old - was the Peugeot 207, followed by the Fiat Panda.

Ooh La La

However, one model that crops up in both 2012 and 2011 lists is the Renault Espace. Honest John claims the Espace, in particular, is vulnerable to electric parking brake and clutch system problems on four cylinder diesels. ECU issues are fairly common.

Perhaps wisely, Renault doesn't sell the Espace any more in the UK.

Top Ten most reliable cars - Warranty Direct

Top Ten most unreliable cars - Warranty Direct

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