Estate Car of the Year 2015: Volkswagen Passat Estate

The Volkswagen Passat Estate is the 2015 Auto Express Estate Car of the Year, with the SEAT Leon ST and Skoda Octavia Estate commended

It’s no longer enough for the best estate cars to simply have a bigger boot than their rivals; they also need plenty of user-friendly touches to stand out. Thankfully, the VW Passat Estate has all bases covered, as it boasts a class-leading 650-litre boot that incorporates lots of neat features to make the most of the space available.

Standard kit includes a lightweight boot floor that can easily be positioned low for maximum space or high for a flat floor when you’ve got the back seats folded down. The floor is also hinged for use as a divider, while the load cover rolls back to one of two positions. And if you’re not using the cover, there are handy slots where you can stow it. Levers in the boot fold the back seats completely flat, too, while VW offers the option of hands-free boot opening by sweeping your foot under the back bumper.

But there’s more to the Passat than a practical boot, as it has bags of space for rear passengers and the top-quality cabin provides an executive feel.Air vent trim stretching across the dash adds a bold look, while the analogue clock is a classy touch. The Passat has a range of efficient and refined diesel engines, which offer low running costs for private and business buyers alike; plus, the car is involving to drive on back roads. It also looks good and feels superbly built. So, if you want to win the space race, look no further than this versatile VW.

Our choice

Passat 2.0 TDI SE Business (£26,790) It’s geared towards fleet users, but the SE Business Passat is an equally attractive proposition for private customers. It comes with plenty of equipment, including sat-nav, adaptive cruise control and front and rear parking sensors, while the 148bhp 2.0-litre TDI diesel engine is punchy yet economical.

Commended

SEAT Leon ST

Last year’s category winner is still our favourite compact family estate. What it lacks in outright capacity it makes up for with practical touches, including a two-level boot floor and seat folding levers in the boot. Plus, there’s now more choice than ever, with the flagship X-Perience crossover and Cupra performance models.

Skoda Octavia Estate 2

Skoda Octavia Estate

IF you want maximum space per pound in your load-lugger, then the Skoda Octavia Estate still offers excellent value for money. The 610-litre boot is one of the biggest on offer, so will accommodate just about anything you throw at it, and with prices starting from £17,400, you get an awful lot of car for your money.

Auto Express New Car Awards 2015 

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