Family cars are the ultimate multi-task machines in your life. They need to be large enough for a partner; one, two or more small people; a pet; work items; shopping; suitcases; and leisure items, all without looking like a giant mobile dustbin.
You’d like something economical and comfortable, with five doors and a boot the size of Bournemouth, but with a little bit of pace and enough mod-cons to keep the kids and the other half happy. Before you start looking into the actual models here are ten tips from Which? that could give you extras and items to consider – when weighing up the options below for the new year.
On sale early next year, this seven-seat 4×4 is the most sophisticated version of the car yet, which is now in its third generation. With a high drive position and a spec which can include a four-camera vision system to spot pedestrians while manoeuvring, heated seats and a self-parking system, it should make the average drive an easy one for even the most petite person – passenger or driver. Expect a cost of around £27,000.
This fourth-generation seven-seater will likely share much of the same qualities as some of Ford’s other heavyweights such as the Edge SUV and Mondeo, to include 1.6 and 2.0 litre petrol and 1.5 and 2.0 litre diesel engines. The MPV, which will no doubt be available at Jennings Motor Group, might not look too different from the previous six iterations but will boast a new front-end design – the whole package is likely to cost around £25,000
The early reviews of this 2015 Tiguan upgrade have emphasised good interior quality and cheaper running costs, with a fuel economy in the S 1.4 litre TSI BlueMotion of 42.2mpg. Four models are available with reasonable grunt, and it can drag up to 2,200 pounds – although you’ll most likely use it for the standard shopping. The chunky, hunky little SUV actually shares its chassis with the new Golf and Passat, which will bump up the boot space.
A new version for 2015 which can trace a lineage back to 1988, this 4×4 SUV boasts a 375-litre reconfigurable boot to let you carry anything from a bike to multiple schoolbags and shopping boxes, LED lights, a meaty little front grille, a spunky two-toned roof, and an optional ALLGRIP four-wheel drive.
Mazda describes this little crossover compact SUV as a brand new driving experience, with Sky-Activ Technology – the culmination of an eight-year plan to make a 30% improvement on its 2008 average fuel economy. Few concrete details have been revealed but it’s worth remembering.
Other cars which could make a statement for 2015 include newer versions of family cars, such as the Skoda Superb, Peugeot 308GT, and Honda Civic. And for a real glimpse into the future keep an eye on the Hydrogen fuel cell powered Toyota FCV Mirai, which is the result of 20 years of research and development and only takes five minutes to refill with fuel; take a look at the official Toyota site for more.