The most reliable cars in the UK 2020

  • Most reliable cars announced by Fleet News
  • Honda Civic knocks BMW 3 Series off the top spot
  • But BMW remains most reliable manufacturer 

Which cars are most reliable in the UK? If you're buying a car, reliability is one of the most important considerations – alongside monthly payments, equipment and depreciation. We're here to help you find out which cars you can rely on. 

Parkers’ sister title Fleet News carries out the most comprehensive company car reliability survey in the business, using data from the 50 biggest fleet operations in the UK. It asks fleet managers to rank their cars for breakdowns and warranty claims.

The resultant FN50 survey generates a huge amount of reliability data about the individual cars and carmakers that perform best.

What are the 10 most reliable cars in the UK?

We’ve listed the individual model results for 2018 – the most reliable cars that you can currently buy in the UK. For 2018, the Honda Civic has been awarded top honours, knocking the (outgoing) BMW 3 Series off the top spot after an eight-year reign. BMW retained its title as most reliable manufacturer, however, and no doubt will be aiming to recapture the model listing with the new 3 series. 

1. Honda Civic

Honda Civic - the UK's most reliable car

Honda's totally redesigned Civic edged out the BMWs this year; it's available as a hatchback or saloon, with petrol or diesel engines offering CO2 emissions from just 91g/km. The brand has also leapt up in the best-performing manufacturers' table, up from sixth in 2017 to second. 

Read our full Honda Civic review

2. BMW 3 series

BMW 3 Series - the second most reliable car

Slipping down from first place, an accolade the 3 Series has held for the previous eight years, we can expect an all-new model in March 2019. 

Read our full BMW 3 Series review

3. BMW 5 series

BMW 5 Series - the third most reliable car

The only large executive in the top 10, the 5 Series has jumped two places from last year, following the launch of the all-new version in 2018. The new version is lighter, more powerful and more efficient than its predecessor, and remains focused on BMW’s traditional values of driving pleasure and performance. 

Read our full BMW 5 Series review

Read more: What are the most reliable vans in the UK?

4. VW Golf

VW Golf - the fourth most reliable car

Falling from second to fourth, the Golf is the first of two cars from VW in the top 10. But a new version of the Golf is on its way, due in June 2019, and we expect it to remain top of its class with the latest iteration. 

Read our full Volkswagen Golf review

5. Audi A4

Audi A4 - the fifth most reliable car

After the mid-size saloon's disappointing drop to ninth place, the A4 skips back up the list of the most reliable cars to fifth place for 2018. However, Audi have fallen to seventh, from second, in the list of the most reliable manufacturers overall. 

Read our full Audi A4 review

6. Ford Focus

Ford Focus - the sixth most reliable car in the UK

A new entry for this year, the all-new Ford Focus jumps straight into sixth place, and should place the model in good stead for next year's list of most reliable cars should it continue to offer improved reliability. 

Read our full Ford Focus review

7. VW Passat

VW Passat - the seventh most reliable car in the UK

A slight drop from sixth, but then the Passat seems to yo-yo from sixth to seventh and back again year-on-year. VW's second entry in the list of the most reliable cars remains ever the popular fleet car, now in its eighth incarnation. 

Read our full VW Passat review

8. Kia Ceed

Kia Ceed - the eighth most reliable car in the UK

Another new entry in the list, the Ford Focus's rival is expected to remain popular this coming year with frugal petrol and diesel engines. This eighth place also boosts Kia on the list of the most reliable manufacturers, shooting in at sixth for the first time. 

Read our full Kia Ceed review

9. Toyota Prius

Toyota Prius - the ninth most reliable car in the UK

Ninth place for the Prius has helped Toyota on the list of the most reliable manufacturers, in the list at third, up from a disappointing ninth in the previous year's list. The Japanese model is now available in both hybrid and plug-in hybrid form. Its sister, the smaller Yaris, missed out on the top 10 list but came in at 14th. 

Read our full Toyota Prius review

10. Nissan Qashqai

Nissan Qashqai - the tenth most reliable car in the UK

A fall from eighth in the list of most reliable cars, but the Qashqai continues to be a popular choice with car buyers and fleet managers alike. The crossover is refreshed for 2019, with a new turbocharged petrol engine and a revised diesel, too. 

Read our full Nissan Qashqai review

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