the new Ford MondeoMy dad visited from the States last weekend and while he was driving my uncle and I out to dinner Friday night (in an Avis car of course!), the conversation turned to a critique of the various cars they had both rented (these conversations tend to happen when you put two frequent renters with an employee of Avis!).

It seems that this time, my dad struck gold with his rental. He got the new Ford Mondeo, the car that was declared Car of the Year for 2007 by Auto Express. Meanwhile, my uncle was telling us how pleasantly surprised he was with the SEAT Leon he recently rented (he also lives in California so I’m not sure he really knew what to expect!).

This got me thinking. Unless you book one of our Select Series cars, you never really know what you are going to get. While I’d argue that all of the cars on our fleet are of a high standard, there will always be some cars that you would be particularly excited (and hopeful) about getting. So I’d love to hear about your favourites. Which cars made you rub your hands in glee when the rental agent handed over the keys? Which cars were you pleasantly surprised with having taken it for a spin on the road? This is your chance to give our suppliers any praise they deserve… plus I think it would be a bit of fun!

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15 Responses to “The best cars you ever rented”

  1. Robert Says:

    Let me be the first (for a change… ahah :-) )

    While I like the select series and the fact that you can choose what you are going to drive (I am driving a car from the select series right now) it’s also kind of nice not knowing what to expect…
    If it’s the Avis UK fleet, I think the 2.0 A4 I am driving right now might be the best I have had here.
    In Israel I once hired a BMW 5 series which is probably one of the most expensive cars you can hire there.
    I did it to drive a friend around on his wedding day…

    In Germany a few months ago, I didn’t think twice before they offered to upgrade my Vectra to the new Audi TT, for just 23 Euro!!!

    I loved the Dodge Charger I hired in the states, it’s one of the few American cars I actually like, and the Corvette I hired to drive from San Francisco to LA in was awesome, as they say in that part of the world! :-)

    If we start a thread about the worst cars I have hired, I could write a book about that!!!

    If I think of anymore, I will come back…

  2. mark Says:

    the best car that i have hired must be the 7 seater ford explorer that i hired in arizona an ideal car for route 66 etc, The worst would be the suzuki vitara that i hired in florida!

    Best uk Avis car in my opinion would be the seat leon fr 2.0 petrol,worst(was the chevy lacetti)now its the new picasso c4 auto! oh and the best ever avis car is the vauxhall cavalier 2.5 v6 WOW!

  3. crissy Says:

    The best Avis car on fleet at the moment in my opinion is definatley the new Laguna diesel….what a fantastic car, very roomy for passengers and fully loaded with gadgets for all, it handles the road like a dream and is another great example of renault at its best

  4. Robert Says:

    I would have to disagree with you regarding the Laguna.
    Yes, I know it’s a huge improvement on the quality of the old one.
    I happened to be a fan of the old one and I think it was far nicer looking then the new one (as most of the car press seem to agree on).
    The main problem with the new Laguna is it simply isn’t as good as the best in it’s class, and it’s a really shame.
    Considering Avis have the award winning new Mondeo on the feet, I would hardly say the Laguna could be best….
    I somehow also doubt the Laguna is better then the Merc C / E class, or the Audi A4 /A6 :-)

    Just my two cents…

  5. Helen Says:

    I’ve got to agree with Mark, the new Leon FR’s are by far the best midsize car we’ve ever done and I would recommend one of those in preference to any of the larger cars we currently run (for engine capacity as opposed to space obviously). The Audi’s are getting some fantastic feedback and, although I hate to say it being an avid Merc hater, the new C’s aren’t far behind

  6. Michael Bonte Says:

    I loved my Cadillac BTS ( in states I have driven CTS ) car I picked up at the The Hague Avis station. Powerful and really comfortable. Unfortunately they only have two of them so the chance of getting it again is minimal.

  7. Robert Says:

    Never seen the seat Leon at Avis UK (not at LHR anyway which is where I alwasy pick my cars up from) what group does it fall into?

  8. Isabel Says:

    as a “frequent renter” I book select (absolute favourite: Audi A4)whenever I can; unfortunately it is not possible for corporate bookings. paying a premium is well worth it (for me, I might add) for a number of reasons: 1. not having to “argue” about the car I get every single week, 2. being familiar with the car, it’s driving style and it’s features. Under the corporate bookings, and with an Avis Preferred Profile, Avis could try a bit harder. There must be a wealth of information about my renting preferences by now: knowing which cars I had, and giving me the same models when possible. Wouldn’t this also be a good security measure, as I am probably a better driver with a car I am familiar with.

  9. Rob White - Marketing, Avis UK Says:

    Hi Robert,
    The Leon is in the Medium: Compact group. On it comes up as and Renault Megane or similar. I’m not sure whether there are any at Heathrow but there should be a fair amount of them about. My uncle rented one from Heathrow just a few weeks ago!


  10. Robert Says:

    Cheers Rob,
    I’ll look out for it!


  11. Rob White- Marketing, Avis UK Says:

    Hi Isabel, great feedback. I’ve answered your point about guaranteeing a specific make/model for Preferred members under your other comment in the Help us change the way Avis works blog post (

  12. Rui Da Silva Says:

    Hi Rob
    I’m a regular renter in Portugal, I have driven the 3 series estate manual (don’t like Auto’s) which is very good,
    but the best cars so far were the last two rentals, I was presented with A Merc C220 it was excelente, I’ve already reserved for the next 3 trips to Portugal and I’m hoping for another Merc> fingers crossed.


  13. Stuart Surridge- Amersbury, Avis UK Says:

    Favourite rental vehicles…. Ummmm well if we are going on present day I would choose the following: -
    Small Category – Peugeot 207 1.6 Sport HDI, averaging 55.9 MPG in my one at the moment with good performance also.
    Intermediate category – for Performance Seat Leon FR – my customer’s think FR stands for something else! I also like the VW Golf 2.0 GT Sport Diesel.
    Large Standard (Plus) category – The Mondeo is impressive & outshines the competition in all areas.
    Being a non select station I have yet to try Avis’ latest offerings in this field. If you wanted to know my favourites over the 12 years I’ve been with Avis, totally different story which I’ll save for another time.

  14. chris anderton Says:

    what’s the main difference between standard and standard plus? i’m deffo going to france for 3 weeks and want to hire a car (my local is portsmouth) – i just don’t want to get stuck in a people carrier – i’d prefer a normal car – i guess cruise control would be ideal so hopefully modern cars come with it as standard!

  15. Rob White- Marketing, Avis UK Says:

    Hi Chris, the main difference is engine size. A Standard has 1.8l engine and a Standard Plus has at least a 2.0l engine. Otherwise, they’re your standard saloon car e.g. Ford Mondeo, Volkswagen Passat, etc. As for cruise control, it is a mixed bag – many do have it but some don’t. Unfortunately, there is no to guarantee this for you.

    I hope this helps but let me know if there is anything else I can do to help.


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