We all know as we age our priorities on what we look for in our vehicles tend to shift. From
speedy sportscars to a reliable and safe vehicle, we begin to look for functional features over sleek car silhouettes. So, we’ve compiled our list of the best cars for seniors in the market that combine safety, comfort and accessibility at a range of different price points:
A staple sedan for many Australian seniors, the iconic Toyota Camry is known for its longevity, reliability and safety features. With a 5-star ANCAP rating, each Camry features 10 airbags, autonomous emergency braking (AEB) and lane keep assist (LKA) with a lane departure warning (LDW) to protect the driver and passengers from hazards. Newer Camry models also feature road sign assist, pre-collision system with pedestrian detection, blind spot monitor, rear cross traffic alert and more.
Ensuring a sound safety system is in place should be a key consideration for seniors looking for their next vehicle. As we age, there is a decline in functional capabilities such as poorer eyesight, reduced agility and hearing which makes it more difficult to identify hazards while driving and increases the risk of older Australians ending up in an accident.
On top of the full suite of safety features offered in the Camry, the sedan also has extremely comfortable cabin seating and a 2.5L four-cylinder petrol engine with good fuel efficiency, making this vehicle a great option for seniors.
Another classic car for seniors is the Subaru Forester. With great visibility, simplified controls, a smooth ride and great safety system, this SUV is a go-to for older Australians. It’s spacious cabin interior and all-wheel drive system really differentiate this SUV from competitors.
The all-wheel drive system (AWD) prevents the Forrester from moving in slippery or wet conditions as the system turns four wheels instead of two, providing added grip and reduced tire slippage. Other standard safety features include autonomous emergency braking, lane keep assist with lane departure warning and blind spot monitor.
A key consideration for choosing the best car for seniors is ease of entry. It’s important to look for vehicles with a higher hip point which refers to the height of the hip from the ground when the driver is sitting in the vehicle. The Subaru Forester has a high hip height as all models sit 8.7 inches above the ground. This is higher than any other mainstream SUV brand, making it a comfortable car for seniors to get in and out of. As a result, in the Forrester older drivers can easily access the driver’s seat without having to bend down or climb up onto the vehicle to get in.
The Forrester features a 2.5-litre four-cylinder petrol engine or a 2-litre engine for hybrid vehicles.
For seniors after a higher-end luxury vehicle to drive around in, the Mercedes-Benz GLC is a sophisticated and stylish SUV option. With a comfortable interior, high-performance trims, great visibility, and a low step-in height for ease of access, the GLC combines form and function. Offering a smooth ride and plenty of manoeuvrability the Mercedes Benz GLC is effortless to drive around the city or the suburbs. Standard safety features also include automatic emergency braking, advanced seat belt reminders and driver attention warning system.
Another function perfect for seniors in this vehicle class is the hydraulic door stays which prevent the car doors from opening wider or closing on a passenger as they enter or exit the vehicle. This is available across some variants and is particularly helpful for senior drivers who may take longer to get in or out of the car, as well as older drivers requiring wheelchair accessibility or assistance from carers.
One of the best mid-size sedans, the BMW 5 series is a great option for seniors searching for a little bit of luxury on their trips around town. With great visibility, smooth ride, a higher hip height, luxury interior furnishings and a variety of safety features, the 5-series offers sophistication and safety all wrapped up in a sleek looking sedan.
One aspect that differentiates this vehicle from others is that the doors open wide for ease of entry and egress. This is a great option for seniors who may need to brace the door handholds or top of the roof as they exit the vehicle and require more space to manoeuvre around. The BMW 5-series also includes one of the largest trunk spaces which is perfect for large grocery shops or seniors who love a road-trip and picking up the grandkids.
The BMW suite of safety options also makes this one of the best cars for seniors. The standard fit-out includes autonomous emergency braking (AEB), lane support systems (LSS), adaptive cruise control (ACC) and intelligent speed assistance (ISA).
Our final car pick for seniors is the Mazda CX-9. Offering a comfortable and clean ride, the CX-9 is quiet and smooth on the roads and is a great option for older drivers. Similar to the 5-series, the doors on this vehicle also open wide for easy access to get in and out of the vehicle. This is great for those requiring wheelchair access or are just after added space for manoeuvrability.
However, the impressive array of safety features that come standard in the CX-9 really make this model stand out from the pack. Safety features include blind spot warnings, advanced seat belt reminders, rear cross-traffic alert, adaptive cruise control, lane keeping assist and automatic emergency braking.
Looking to make the move to a safer model that offers great features for older drivers? If you’re looking to sell your used car, be sure to contact our team of car specialists for a valuation today.