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Family Car of the Year 2017: Skoda Superb

The Skoda Superb is the 2017 Auto Express Family Car of the Year, with the Toyota Prius and Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport commended

Three is the magic number for the Skoda Superb, which has notched up a hat-trick of victories in our Family Car category.

Despite the challenge from talented new arrivals such as Vauxhall’s Insignia Grand Sport, the spacious Czech machine never looked like loosening its grip on the title it had already secured twice.

At the heart of the Superb’s success story is its vast interior, which swallows everything a growing family can throw at it. Occupants in the back of the Skoda get the sort of legroom that is normally reserved for long-wheelbase limousines, while you could get lost in the hatchback’s cavernous 625-litre boot, such is its capacity.

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Yet there’s more to this car than sheer volume; it’s clever, too. The interior is packed with handy storage spaces, while neat touches such as umbrellas hidden in the front doors, a removable torch in the boot and an ice scraper in the fuel filler flap reveal the thought that’s been put into the car’s design.

A model like this has to be a jack-of-all-trades, serving as a mobile office, a motorway express and even able to turn on the fun on your favourite back road. Happily, the Superb has all these bases covered.

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Underpinning it is the same versatile MQB architecture that’s used on many models from the VW Group. As a result, the Skoda feels remarkably agile and alert for a car of this size. Refinement is top notch, too, while the Superb’s ride is composed and comfortable.

Adding to the car’s appeal is a wide range of petrol and diesel engines that effortlessly balances performance and economy. Buyers also have the option of a DSG automatic transmission, plus a choice of front and four-wheel-drive set-ups depending on their needs.

Skoda Superb - rear

There’s loads of standard kit, with all models getting DAB radio, Bluetooth and the CareConnect emergency call function. But we think fleet-focused SE Tech trim delivers the best value, with its adaptive cruise control, sat-nav and full smartphone connectivity all fitted as standard.

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On the basis of this year’s showing, it’s going to take something very special indeed to stop the Skoda Superb making it four victories in a row this time next year.

Our choice

Skoda Superb 2.0 TDI SE Technology (£23,520) 

Given the Skoda Superb’s mile-munching brief, the punchy and frugal 2.0-litre TDI diesel is a perfect match, while SE Technology trim comes with all the kit you’ll ever need. Highlights include the latest infotainment system, with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto, sat-nav and adaptive cruise control.

Commended 

Toyota Prius

Toyota Prius - front

The hi-tech hybrid Prius came of age when the current fourth-generation model made its debut last year. Like its predecessors, it boasted impressive eco-friendly credentials, but for the first time it bundled a respectable level of driving fun into the mix. It’s also more comfortable and refined than before, while the futuristic interior has space for all the family.

Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport

Vauxhall Insignia Grand Sport - front

All-new underpinnings and a name change have helped transform the big Vauxhall’s fortunes. Closer in size to executive saloons, the newcomer offers plenty of space, while the improvement in quality and kit gives the Insignia a real premium feel. The car is comfortable and good to drive, too, plus buyers will find the prices attractively low.

Auto Express New Car Awards 2017

For complete, in-depth coverage of the 2017 New Car Awards, buy your collector's edition copy of the Auto Express magazine now or click here to subscribe...

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