When you’re looking for a new car, you might want to stick with the tried and tested brands, the manufacturers who are renowned for their reliability and quality, so you know you can find the best car for your budget. With that in mind, we look at Britain’s top car brands, found by YouGov, to see what makes them so popular with UK drivers.
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1. Aston Martin
Aston Martin tops the list of most popular car brands, with 71% of people surveyed having a positive impression. Known for their luxury and quintessentially English sports cars, Aston Martin was first founded in 1913. Over the years they’ve built a brand based on high quality and individuality, with an iconic style and exclusive retro-chic feel. Their most well-known vehicles include the Aston Martin DB5, favoured by James Bond, and the Aston Martin V8 Vantage, considered to be Britain’s first supercar.
65% of people viewed Rolls-Royce positively in the survey, making it the second most popular car brand in the UK. Rolls-Royce was initially founded in 1904 as a luxury car manufacturer. In 1998 it became a subsidiary of BMW but has stuck to its roots of lavish English design with its headquarters in Goodwood, West Sussex. One of the appeals of a Rolls-Royce is, of course, prestige, but they also offer a high degree of customisation for buyers to truly create their own bespoke model. The most popular Rolls-Royce models include the Rolls-Royce Ghost and the Rolls-Royce Phantom.
3. Land Rover
Land Rover gets third place in Britain’s top car brands, with 63% of people having a positive opinion of this brand. In 1948, the Rover Company created the name Land Rover for their four-wheel drive off-road vehicle. Distinctly utilitarian at the time, now Land Rover vehicles are primarily luxury sport utility vehicles, loved for their style. status and convenience. The Land Rover brand has been owned by BMW, Ford, and now Jaguar Land Rover. The most well-known Land Rover models include the Land Rover Defender and the Land Rover Range Rover, seen as the pinnacle of SUV luxury.
Ford comes in fourth, with 62% of people having a positive opinion of the car brand. Ford was founded in the USA in 1903, and its headquarters remain in Michigan to this day. It’s the fifth largest car manufacturer in the world, known for its quality vehicles that are affordable to buy and run. Ford is a trusted brand, popular with families for reliable vehicles that can still be fun and stylish, like the Ford Fiesta. The Ford Mustang is also an icon and the first ‘pony’ car class.
Porsche comes in fifth of Britain’s top car brands, with 61% of people having a positive opinion of the brand. It was founded in 1931 in Germany and is renowned for combining elegant style with efficient German engineering. Porsche cars are high-performing and reliable, and whilst aimed at the upper end of the market they don’t come with the same extravagant price tag as many of the other luxury vehicle brands. Iconic Porsche models include the Porsche 911 and the Porsche 996.
Ferrari comes in sixth of Britain’s top car brands. It was founded in Italy in 1939 as the racing division from Alfa Romeo, but the first car with a Ferrari badge wasn’t produced until 1947. Since then, it continues to be involved in motorsport, but also produces road cars, specifically, high-powered luxury sports cars. Ferraris are coveted for their iconic look and high-end performance that promises an exciting drive, every time. Popular Ferrari models include the Ferrari 488 and the Ferrari Portofino.
Coming in seventh in Britain’s top car brands is Mercedes-Benz. This brand was founded in Germany in 1926 but can trace its origins back to 1886 and the first internal combustion engine created by Karl Benz. They now produce luxury vehicles and commercial vehicles loved for their premium quality, high-tech features, and elegant style both inside and out. Mercedes-Benz values comfort and safety and has been a pioneer in automobile safety. Popular Mercedes-Benz models include the Mercedes-AMG GT and the Mercedes-Benz S-Class.
Bentley comes in 8th of Britain’s top car brands. It was first founded in England in 1919 and became well known for its success in motorsports, specifically the 24 Hours of Le Mans during the 1920s. Now, Bentley is a subsidiary of Volkswagen and focusses on luxury cars and SUVs. Noted for being a sportier, performance-orientated feel than a Rolls-Royce, Bentley cars handle well and provide a nipper, more comfortable driving experience than the other luxury brands. Well-known Bentley models include the Bentley Flying Spur and the Bentley Turbo-R.
MINI is ninth on Britain’s top car brands list, with 60% of people having a positive opinion of the brand. It was first devised as a line of small cars made by the British Motor Corporation in 1959. It then became a brand in its own right and was bought by BMW in 2000. MINI cars are still manufactured in England today, and also in the Netherlands. The MINI is a truly iconic brand, with a unique retro style and comfortable but agile driving experience. The classic MINI Cooper 3-door hatch is perhaps what we all think of when we picture a MINI, but the larger MINI Cooper Countryman brings the same character but with more space.
Volkswagen comes in tenth on Britain’s top car brands. It was founded in 1937 in Germany, where the headquarters remains. Volkswagen is the second largest car manufacturer in the world, producing good quality and good value vehicles. German engineering delivers reliable and steadfast cars that are affordable without sacrificing on excellence. They can also be cheap to run, with good fuel efficiency and low maintenance costs. Iconic Volkswagen models include the Volkswagen Type 2 Transporter and the VW Beetle, whereas the more popular models include the Volkswagen Golf and Volkswagen Polo.
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