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Family cars have transformed over the years. One of the most significant changes was combining the saloon and hatchback to create the SUV-inspired crossover. This offers the running costs and driving ability of a family car with the looks of an SUV.

Saloons are still popular, while estates now boast style and gadgets to go with their generous boots. Full SUVs are practical and spacious with some available as seven seaters, while MPVs offer maximum space, including purpose built seven seaters offering comfort for all the family. Whatever your requirements, there’s a family car to suit every need and budget. Here are a few to look out for in 2017:

Skoda Superb

The Suberb’s sporty lines and sharp nose look especially smart in top-spec trims, while all models have an upmarket interior.

The Superb’s large dimensions also provide a lot of space; there’s more than enough legroom for rear passengers and the huge boot can take 625 litres of luggage. The mid-range SE trim has all the essentials you could want, but it’s the SE L Executive trim that provides a touch of luxury with heated leather seats, electric boot lid, climate controls and xenon headlamps. This is the perfect combination of looks and space, with a decent price tag.

Mazda 6

The Mazda 6 is one of the best-looking family cars you’ll find on the market.

The third generation of the Mazda 6 has gone back to five doors, but there’s no compromise on space – it offers plenty of headroom and legroom, with a good-sized boot. It’s great to drive and a very comfortable ride. The Mazda 6 also offers class-leading fuel economy thanks to Mazda’s fuel saving tech. Expect a smooth and powerful drive with good responsive steering.

Toyota Prius

The Prius may not be the best-looking family car on the market this year, but its smart and futuristic looking interior certainly makes up for the outside.

The Prius’ hybrid technology offers a relaxed drive and is also gentle on the wallet, achieving 70mpg around town. It offers plenty of gadgets including LCD screens instead of traditional dials and gauges. There’s ample space front and back for all the family, and a huge boot too.

Volvo XC90

The XC90 is a practical family car, with a spacious upmarket interior, offering comfort and refinement.

Relaxing to drive, the adjustable and supportive seats are incredibly comfortable. It’s a genuine seven seater too, so ideal for larger families. There’s also generous safety features that come with the entry level Momentum cars. But you may find the Inscription or the sportier R-Design trims rather tempting with their extra features. The D5 diesel is the clear front runner, but the T6 petrol still offers decent poke. Climate control, leather seats, sat nav and LED headlamps all come as standard.

Citroen C4 Picasso

The C4 Picasso is a distinctively looking compact MPV and a great family cruiser.

The interior boasts a high-quality finish and is one of most comfortable cars in its class to drive. The e-HDi 90 is the most economical model, but often sluggish. The e-HDi 115 meanwhile, is much quicker but still claims combined economy of 70.6mpg. There’s easy access to the boot via a clamshell tailgate with built in lights and you can even slide the back seats forwards and backwards to vary the size of the boot space. There are lots of storage spaces within the vehicle, with front and rear under floor bins plus drawers under the front seats – perfect for the kids’ toys or snacks for long road trips.

Whether it’s engine size, leg room or engine efficiency, 2017 has a lot to offer if you’re looking for a new family car. Which one would you choose?

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