French Brands: Renault, Peugeot and Citroen of the past were always different and even quirky at times, yet never dull. As they have become more mainstream, the quality dropped and they are not up to standard in this critical area. I personally wouldn't buy any of them but Renault would be the best of the Gallic trio. Score 4.5/10
Fiat Group (non premium): Italian marques Fiat, Alfa Romeo and Lancia were the opposite to German, that is design winning out over engineering. They were also unreliable, which hurt their reputation badly. They are better made now, while still retaining much of the style too. Lancia does has an odd mix of models and the other two still have room for improvement; still a work in progress but moving forward. Score 4.5/10
VW Group (non premium): VW of Germany is a strong marque, but overpriced. Skoda of the Czech Rep offers value but with an unusual range, which needs settling down. Seat of Spain which is a brand of limited appeal and is struggling to be successful. Collectively an unusual mix brought together with some success only. Score 5.5/10
Euro US Brands: Ford and GM Europe are quality cars which offer reasonable value. Chevrolet Europe source cars from GM Daewoo of lesser quality but offering value. I think Ford is the best of these brands, closely followed by GM Europe. These cars are just about as good as premium marques, but without the snob value. Their score suffers with GM Daewoo's inclusion in this group though. Score 6/10
The bottom line: Ford and GM Europe my pick of this grouping.