Family Car of the Year 2016: Skoda Superb

The Skoda Superb is the 2016 Auto Express Family Car of the Year, with the Mazda 6 and Toyota Prius commended

Few cars are as aptly named as the Skoda Superb. With its compelling blend of space, refinement, composed driving dynamics and low running costs, the Czech machine makes a formidably good family car choice all round.

However, it’s the sharp styling and premium-feeling cabin of the latest third-generation model that’s helped elevate the Superb above its talented and desirable rivals.

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Crisp, defined lines and neat detailing give the Skoda real street presence, while inside, the mix of high-grade materials and robust build is more than a match for more expensive German cars.

However, it’s not the Superb’s flawless finish or its extremely generous list of standard equipment that gives the interior a real sense of luxury – it’s the space.

Climb aboard the Skoda and you’ll find there’s not much this side of a limousine that’s as roomy. Occupants in the back can stretch out with room to spare, while the vast hatchback opens to reveal a 625-litre boot. There are classy touches, too, such as the umbrellas hidden in each front door armrest – the only other car you’ll find that feature in is a Rolls-Royce.

On the move, the big Skoda impresses with its assured handling, supple ride and quiet cruising. There’s also a wide range of petrol and diesel engines to choose from, but the pick of the bunch is the gutsy and refined 2.0-litre diesel that combines a healthy 148bhp output with CO2 emissions of just 108g/km.

Skoda Superb - front

If you want something a little more exciting, then the 276bhp turbocharged 2.0-litre combines a blistering 0-62mph figure of 5.8 seconds with the all-weather confidence of four-wheel drive.

Regardless of which model you go for, you’ll be treated to the same wide array of cutting-edge kit. Look across the range and you’ll find desirable additions such as adaptive dampers and radar cruise control, plus a whole suite of reassuring safety systems.

However, Skoda hasn’t forgotten its value- for-money roots, so the Superb can undercut its major rivals by thousands of pounds. On this evidence, it’s going to take something really special to topple the Skoda in 2017. 

Our choice

Skoda Superb 2.0 TDI 150 SE Business (£22,555)

There’s a huge range of engine and trim variations to choose from, but the 2.0-litre TDI SE Business offers the best blend of value and kit. Aimed at company car drivers, it gets all the essentials, including sat-nav, adaptive cruise and parking sensors, while the muscular diesel engine blends punchy performance with near-60mpg returns at the pumps.

Commended

Mazda 6

Mazda 6 - front

Curvaceous lines, sparkling handling and energetic performance make the Mazda 6 a family car you buy with your heart rather than your head. That’s not to say it’s not a sensible choice – the brand’s diesels are some of the most frugal in the business, while the saloon and estate bodystyles deliver just enough space for most growing families.

Toyota Prius

Toyota Prius - front panning

It has taken four generations, but finally, Toyota has perfected the Prius formula. The ultra-efficient hybrid powertrain has been tweaked to deliver a much-needed dose of refinement, while the chassis offers a fine ride and handling balance. Futuristic looks, a roomy cabin and attractive pricing complete the petrol-electric car’s talents.

 

Auto Express New Car Awards 2016 

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