Could you recommend a suitable vehicle with a large boot and easy access for my in-laws?

My in-laws are both in their early 70s and intending to replace their 53-reg Ford Focus 1.8 Zetec. Their budget is £10,000 plus trade-in. They've mentioned an automatic, but I recall that you don't recommend those for ageing first timers, so I have put them off. Is that still the case? They have a Cocker Spaniel, so decent boot space and easy access are required, and given their age ease of getting in and out of the car is an increasing consideration for them. I'd welcome your thoughts on best options, model and specification. My thoughts currently include: Honda Jazz, Ford C-Max, Vauxhall Meriva and Ford Fusion. Have I missed anything obvious?

Asked on 28 May 2010 by BMWE39

Answered by David Ross
Those models you listed all fit the bill perfectly and are certainly well within their budget although the Meriva and Fusion are both old designs so you may want to avoid them. The Meriva has actually just been repalced and the new version is very impressive indeed. You also might want to consider the Nissan Note or Skoda Roomster (very easy to get in and out of). There is also the new Kia Venga which is a very comfortable and easy to drive car. Automatics can be daunting for older drivers if they've never had one before, so it can often be easier to stick with a manual. However, if you're able to spend time with them so they can get used to it, an automatic is a viable option.
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