Looking for an automatic car with light steering, easy controls etc, any advice or experiences on what are the options available

I want to get back to driving but I just cant manage the weight of our present car. It will only be possible if its an automatic. This is what I need, easy to open light doors (keys are difficult) easy seat positioning (I cant manage a bar under the drivers seat) and seat not too low, easy ignition (keys again!) easy access seatbelt, light peddles and easy steering. Im not too worried about the size, I would prefer a 4 door and a boot large enough to put a wheelchair. It would have to be second hand as I cant afford a new one.

17 Replies

  • some renault laguna have what you call, a ignition key card .. im sure other makes will do the same .. basically its just a card you slot into a reader in the car ,, and then press a button to start .. " no keys "... the same card is used for locking and un locking the car ..

    this takes away al the key problems .. but saying all that , id never advise anyone to buy a renault so id look around to see what other makes do this ...

    good luck ..

    andy x

  • Haha, thank you Andy:)

  • You really need to try cars yourself, as any recommendations other people make will suit their bodies, not yours, and things like your height and flexibility will make a big difference. What I'd suggest is to go to a dealer that does motability scheme cars and have a chat with them and even perhaps try out a couple. You could ask them if they have second hand motability cars for sale as well. You could also ask any of your friends if you can try sitting in the drivers seat of their cars too. Once you have tried a few different cars, then you will have a better idea what might suit you.

  • I have a very old Fiat Punto, I know a lot of people diss Fiat but the steering is really light and it has a special button called City which makes it even lighter for parking in tight spaces. I find driving my little car is much easier than other makes. I'm sure Fiat must do an automatic. Mine isn't but I don't have a problem with it other than on the worst Rigor Mortis days. Good luck!

  • I have a Honda Jazz automatic. I resisted automatic cars for years but this car has made me wonder why I made such a fuss. The steering is light. No painful gear changing so I arrive at my destination feeling a whole lot better. Also it is a tardis of a car and is very flexible for storage. The rear seats flip up and create extra room for wheelchairs etc. The only downside is the model I have (54 reg) is started by key but it has auto unlock from the key and I have managed so far. I have been known to use a pair of pliers to grip the key!!

  • I agree the Honda Jazz Automatic is great. I still have a 10 yr old Honda Civic Auto - but will replace it with a second hand 4 door Jazz as soon as it gives up the ghost. I had one as a courtesy car when the Civic was in the garage, and I really didn't want to give it back.

  • I also find that my local Honda garage gives excellent customer service with good value, fixed price service/repairs. I will be buying another Jazz when I'm ready to upgrade.

  • When I had the 4 door Jazz as a courtesy car I left it in my cousin's drive way - I was so used to a 2 door car I left the back door open and my nephews decided I was now really, really OLD!!!

  • I have a Mazda 3. It is an auto saloon fairly big, but easy to get in and out. Remote or key locking but key ignition My hand is clawed in but that is no problem. All controls are push button so no knob turning.. Don't think it would take a wheel chair otherwise great storage, push chairs luggage etc.,

    I needed a saloon as can't lift tail gate on hatch back.

    Good luck on your quest

  • I changed my Golf plus for an automatic Renault clio, its called tiptronic transmission, so can be manual also. To be honest its a tin can, but much lighter on the joints etc. Has made a huge difference to me.

  • I had a citroen C2 automatic for a good few years and have just changed to an Audi A1 auto. Again as people have said I really think you have to try these cars. We looked at a BMW auto and I couldn't move the switch on the auto gearstick to move from park to drive. I also couldn't open the doors so no good for me !!


  • I manage kia soul very light and responsive..chrixx

  • With some Audi,s you only need the key with you, to enter just push a small button on door, and to start engine push another button. The best bit is no handbrake just another button. Seats are all electric including heat for aching days. The cost is the problem but there are some deals out there ours is on rental for 3 years .

  • Thank you all for your experiences, much appreciated. I will take all these bullet points and find a motability shop to see what they can do for me. :-)

  • a nissan micra is a joy to drive and some 54 ish automatics have keyless doors and ignition - just have the key on you. I loved mine! slideable back seats give you bigger boot room - I carried a small scooter in mine with the steering column folded down.

    I also agree with the honda jazz for a slightly bigger car .

    both great [& light] o drive.

  • Audi a6 2005-2011

    I dove that car .. Transmision is one of the best automatics ... Gread build quality.. Stearing is so light .. It has a lot of nice toys and equipment ..like keyless go ...heated seats.. Navigation .. Nice sound quality ... Its also my favourite car since i first time drove it and im buying it now ... The second one very simular feel to a6 in vw touareg1.gen (-2010).

    . Everything nice like in a6 and you have more trunk space and seat positoon is higher ....

    Im telling this for cars that i drive ..im a car mechanic so i dove a lot of cars...

    So to me best driving cars are

    Audi a6 and vw touareg couse they are both automatic and very light stearing feel

  • I have had a few automatic cars at the moment I have a smart car for two cheep to run £20 of petrol gets me all over so £5 a week OK £20 year road tax room far wheelchair and shopping

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