Most comfortable cars in the UK 2022
Are you sitting comfortably? Then we’ll begin. If you’ve had your fill of potholes, speed humps and craters in the road, you need to find yourself a comfortable car. Your spine will thank you for it.
What should you look for when buying a comfortable car? Start with the suspension, which needs to be soft and springy, rather than firm and harsh. Finding a car with air suspension is the key to unlocking ultimate comfort.
Small SUVs reign supreme in the top 10 most comfortable cars to own in the latest Honest John Satisfaction Index. It's perhaps not surprising as they've been hugely popular in recent years, with drivers choosing them for their driving position, practicality - and comfort.
These are the cars with the highest comfort rating in the Honest John Satisfaction Index. Owners were asked to rate their vehicle for interior and ride comfort, as part of the latest Index, with over 5,000 people taking part. Read on to discover the most comfortable cars you can buy in the UK today.
Most comfortable cars
Comfort rating: 9.60
Volkswagen's Golf-sized small SUV tops this year's Satisfaction Index for comfort. Behind the wheel, the T-Roc is a reassuringly solid and stable car, while also being incredibly quiet with little road or wind noise. The interior is well finished and rear passengers enjoy a decent amount of space, with good headroom. Overall, owners are happy with the T-Roc as it was also the highest-rated small SUV in this year's Index.
Comfort rating: 9.57
The Honda CR-V is one of the best SUVs around and clearly owners consider it one of the most comfortable, with a rating that would have been high enough to give it the top spot in last year's Index. The latest model has a more spacious interior than before thanks to a longer wheelbase and rear passengers benefit from excellent legroom and headroom.
Lexus NX (2014-2021)
Comfort rating: 9.42
Last year's highest-rated car for comfort is still proving popular with owners. The quality of the interior is superb, as you would expect from Toyota’s premium brand. On the road the NX is quiet and refined with hardly any wind or road noise. Body control is very good too, with very little pitch or roll, which means it feels safe and composed through corners.
Comfort rating: 9.39
The Ioniq made it into the top 10 last year, with a comfort rating of 9.00. This year it climbs to fourth. Available as a hybrid, plug-in hybrid or full electric, it's an interesting alternative to the Toyota Prius hybrid or Nissan Leaf EV. Generally, we found the Ioniq hybrid and EV feel very similar to drive, though the EV picks up speed from a standstill more quickly and is quieter. The ride quality over uneven surfaces is noticeably smoother in the EV.
Comfort rating: 9.38
The Toyota C-HR made it into the top 10 for comfort last year. This year, it's the Corolla's turn. The likeable family hatch has very comfortable front seats, with plenty of adjustment, although head and legroom is quite limited for adults in the back. The Corolla is composed on twisty roads, which means it irons out rough surfaces and potholes with ease.
Comfort rating: 9.30
The Kodiaq is something of a stalwart in the comfort category of the Satisfaction Index. Don't be deceived by its chunky dimensions - it's very easy to drive, with a good seating position and nicely weighted controls. On the road it's incredibly quiet with barely any wind, engine or tyre noise entering the cabin.
Comfort rating: 9.25
Like the Hyundai Ioniq, the Mazda CX-5 has risen in the Satisfaction Index for comfort. Mazda hasn’t radically overhauled the interior of the third iteration of the CX-5, opting to simply improve and enhance the previous one. To give the car a premium feel there is plenty of soft-touch materials and the front seats are comfortable and well-bolstered, offering plenty of adjustment.
Skoda Superb Estate
Comfort rating: 9.18
The Superb Estate is another Skoda that frequently features in the Satisfaction Index for comfort. It lives up to its name when it comes to ride quality with the suspension dealing effortlessly with potholes and poor quality roads. Passenger space is excellent, even for those over six-foot, and the boot is one of the largest of any family estate car.
Comfort rating: 9.16
Another hybrid makes it into the top 10 most comfortable cars, with owners appreciating the Kia Niro's quiet cabin. On the road the Niro is very easy to drive with light and accurate steering. Aside from the hybrid system, the Niro is very much like any other crossover. It’s spacious, comfortable and comes with plenty of modern technology.
Kia Sportage (2016-2021)
Comfort rating: 9.03
Like Skoda, Kia can boast two cars in the top 10 listing for comfort in this year's Satisfaction Index. Kia's answer to the Nissan Qashqai is impressively quiet and the raised driving position, light steering and predictable handling make for relaxed driving. The reassuring seven-year, 100,000-mile warranty adds to the Sportage's appeal.
Are smaller wheels better for ride comfort?
Many people choose larger alloy wheels to improve the look of their cars. Enhanced kerb appeal is delivered by wheels that fill the arches – and they could make the car easier to sell. Smaller alloys and steel wheels tend to be associated with lowly trim levels, which is why many people are keen to upgrade. Don’t be in a rush to splash the cash, though, because smaller wheels deliver better ride comfort and improved fuel economy.
Which manufacturer builds the most comfortable small cars?
In the past, French manufacturers prioritised ride comfort over sharp handling to build cars that could cope with France’s notoriously poor rural roads. Cars like the Citroen 2CV and Renault 4 were built with tracks and fields in mind. Today, Citroen is the company most associated with ride comfort, with many of its cars boasting soft-focus suspension and sofa-like seats. Take a look at the C3, C3 Aircross and C5 Aircross for the best examples of this.
Are comfortable cars less enjoyable to drive?
It all depends on how you define ‘enjoyable’. In general, a car with lowered and firmer suspension will be ‘better’ to drive, especially when cornering. The body will lean less and the car will feel more secure through the bends. That said, a car with soft suspension can be hugely satisfying to drive and your passengers will thank you for the more comfortable experience. Comfort can indeed deliver plenty of joy.