What Todays Women Want in a Car

Today, women play a dynamic role in society, taking on more tasks traditionally reserved for men, becoming increasingly financially independent, and holding far greater buying discretion than in the past. However, local and global research indicates that women tend to take a more traditional approach to buying cars than men, who often value performance above practicality and comfort.

The features most sought-after by South African women are matched to those most closely fitting the criteria.

Family Car

Women often own and drive the family car, where general features (comfort, convenience, fuel efficiency), as well as safety and reliability are prized. Related product and value perceptions are critical to women evaluating family car choices. The top three family car models in South Africa that most closely meet these criteria are:

  1. Mazda CX.5 2.0
  2. Peugeot 3008 2/0 HDI Allure
  3. Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace 1.4 Trendline


Today, cars are launched with standard and optional safety features. According to the Women’s Choice Awards, the following safety features are highly ranked by women and would influence a woman’s vehicle purchasing decision:

  • Adaptive headlights adjust a car’s headlights to curves in the road, making driving at night or under low-light conditions safer.
  • Rear cross-traffic detection is a system designed to distinguish vehicles, pedestrians, cyclists or other hazards approaching from a vehicle’s left, right, or rear to help drivers avoid collisions.
  • Forward collision warning systems use radar, laser, or cameras to detect an imminent crash thereby helping prevent or reduce the severity of an accident.
  • A rear-view camera mounted on the rear of a car sends messages to the monitor positioned at the front of a car. These images are used by drivers to alleviate blind spots and to make reversing easier.

According to iWyze Insurance, the following six car models are ranked tops in South Africa in terms of safety.

  1. Volkswagen Polo
  2. Kia Rio
  3. Ford Fiesta
  4. Volvo XC90
  5. Volkswagen Tiguan
  6. Mercedes Benz E Class


Women go out of their way to choose a reliable car to save themselves from trouble, expense, and safety dangers. Consumer reports, warrantees, and prices were the main variables considered in determining vehicle reliability in the Women’s Choice Awards. However, in South Africa, the following criteria are used to rank a car’s reliability:

  • Availability and affordability of spare parts
  • Reliability of a vehicle after the motor plan has ended, with special focus on the number of major engine and gearbox problems a vehicle experiences over time
  • Ability of dealerships to handle large repair jobs
  • Affordability of repairs
  • Affordability of insurance premiums, relative to vehicle price

Business Technology news identifies the five most reliable South African vehicle brands as follows:

  1. Toyota
  2. Honda
  3. Opel
  4. Nissan
  5. Mazda 

General Features

Women’s Choice Awards ranked the following three general features most highly:

  • Comfort: Relative interior space for passengers, cargo, and seating capacity.
  • Convenience and entertainment: Features such as climate control, cruise control, digital connectivity and hands-free car kits.
  • Fuel economy: Both highway and city driving are included in this measurement. In the budget car segment, the following three models are ranked most highly:




Ford Fiesta 1.5 TDCI Trend


3.3 litres

Fiat Tipo Sedan 1.3 Multijet Easy  



Fiat 500 Twin Air Pop



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Disclaimer: This content is for informational purposes only. We do not make any warranties about the completeness, reliability, and accuracy of this information.