Volkswagen – Tiguan Allspace Match

The Tiguan has been an established part of the SUV market for some years, so Volkswagen thought it was high time it was given an update.

It has seven seats and a bigger boot than its predecessor – great for those with families, or just a lot of luggage to carry around. It comes as a five-door vehicle in front-wheel drive, with a manual six-speed gearbox and a 0 62mph time of 9.7 seconds, which isn’t too shabby for a SUV.

The Match also presents an impressive array of features, ranging from touchscreen technology and the ability to sync with your smartphone, through to a rearview camera, pedestrian monitoring, lane assist and park assist.

Park assist is particularly useful, especially if reverse parking in tight spaces isn’t your strongest skill. With this, all you have to control is the speed, while the car does the rest. You push the park assist button, select reverse gear and let go of the steering wheel – the car then gets itself into the best position and automatically steers into the space.

Comfort is also to the fore, with lumbar support in the front seats, and the driver’s seat has been ergonomically designed to have everything within easy reach and minimise distractions for drivers.

Nissan Qashqai

Nissan specifically built the Qashqai to service an emerging need for a practical car with the running costs of a smallish vehicle. This was 10 years ago and although the idea was probably aimed at the family market, it has also become a very popular Motability choice.

Motability don’t currently stock the entry-level Visia model, so even though the basic kit list is pretty impressive, the Acenta Premium model becomes the starting point – and still starting at nil advance payment. That means on top of stuff like electric parking brake, hill hold assist and auto hold – not to mention the Chassis Control System that pulls together elements of engine and braking capability to provide a more comfortable and confident driving experience – you’ll also get dual climate control and a rearview camera and the Smart Vision Pack, including high beam assist, traffic sign recognition, anti-dazzle rear-view mirror, intelligent emergency braking with pedestrian recognition, lane departure warning as well as front and rear parking sensors.

Casting your mind back over that short 10-year period, it seems amazing to look over the technology available in what is a SUV – not a luxury saloon. If that doesn’t impress, perhaps the New NissanConnect navigation and entertainment system with Android Auto, Apple CarPlay, TomTom connected services and shark fin antenna, will.

It’s little wonder that Auto Express recognised the Qashqai as the car which has had the greatest impact on the automotive market over the last 30 years.

Kia Optima

Kia’s Optima is surely one of the best looking saloon cars on Motability – and happily scratching beneath its sublime surface reveals plenty more reasons as to why it should be on your shortlist.

The drive is certainly firm but comfortable and refined, with good body control and steering – another tick in the box marked sporty saloon.

The interior is also very well presented and includes sliding and reclining front seats (the driver’s seat has 2-way power lumbar support), dual automatic air conditioning and steering wheel mounted controls. (The rear seats split and fold in a 60:40 configuration.)

The technology runs through a 7” touchscreen and includes satellite navigation with European mapping, Bluetooth and DAB radio with MP3 compatibility (front and rear USB and front AUX port). And, just for old times’ sake, there’s also a ‘cigar lighter’ and ashtray!

Many of Kia’s models have achieved the full five Star Euro NCAP rating, including the Optima, so you can expect an excellent safety package including: cruise control and speed limiter, ABS with electronic brakeforce distribution and brake assist system, electronic stability control and vehicle stability management.

The ‘3’ version raises this to include: Lane Keep Assist System, driver attention warning and speed limit information function.

Reassurance whilst stationary and at slower speeds is courtesy of an electronic parking brake, reversing camera system, front and rear parking sensors and hill-start assist.