Co-op Insurance revealed that the safety is not on the shopping list for the majority of car buyers across the UK, with only 4% placing it at the top of their criteria.
However, despite this over three quarters (77%) of drivers are calling on the motor industry to be more proactive when it comes to highlighting both new and used vehicle safety features.
The research has revealed that whilst 79% of consumers describe car safety as very important when buying a car, 71% don’t place safety in their top five buying criteria, with price, value for money and car brand taking precedence in the buying process.
When it comes to safety, over half of drivers (54%) did not ask any questions about safety when they were making their car purchase. This despite features like Autonomous Emergency Braking (AEB), Lane Keep Assist and Blind Spot Detection now being widely available on many affordable used cars.
This may be because motorists are left confused by a deluge of jargon, acronyms and a lack of quality information when it comes to understanding car safety according to the new research released by Co-op Insurance and safety experts Thatcham Research.
Over two thirds (68%) have no idea what the safety rating of their own car is, and more than half (54%) didn’t ask about car safety at all when making a purchase.
The confusion is thought to stem from a rise in safety jargon, with a third of consumers calling for a motoring equivalent of the ‘homebuyers report’ but for car safety, and 63% wanting clear safety information included in all car documentation at the point of purchase.
Safest used car to buy is the Volvo V40, ahead of the VW Golf and Nissan Qashqai, according to independent scientists from the car testing centre at Thatcham Research.