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Car group tests

Mazda 6 - Best family cars 2017

Mazda's is a sporty family car that proves there's plenty of life in the saloon car yet

Mazda 6 saloon front cornering

Saloons aren't as popular in the UK as they used to be, but Mazda has returned to a four-door layout for the third generation of its 6 family car. You would think that would compromise practicality, but it doesn't. That's largely down to the car's size – it's bigger than the Ford Mondeo and Honda Accord, so there's plenty of head and legroom, getting in an out of the wide doors is easy, and the boot is a very practical 486 litres.

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And the Mazda's talents don't end there. For starters, the 6 is one of the best looking family cars on the market – its swooping lines and bulging wheel arches make most other family cars look quite plain by comparison.

It's great to drive, too, as well as comfortable and refined. And the 6 offers class-leading fuel economy thanks to Mazda's clever fuel-saving SkyActiv tech. The 148bhp 2.2-litre diesel can return 72.4mpg, while even the 2.0-litre petrol engine manages 51.4mpg.

All the engines in the line-up are smooth and powerful. And the steering, gearshift and brakes are all nicely weighted and responsive.

Best family cars to buy in 2017

  1. 1. Skoda Kodiaq
  2. 2. Skoda Superb
  3. 3. Mazda 6
  4. 4. Toyota Prius
  5. 5. SEAT Ateca
  6. 6. Volkswagen Passat
  7. 7. Jaguar F-Pace
  8. 8. Volvo XC90
  9. 9. Citroen C4 Picasso
  10. 10. Land Rover Discovery Sport
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