BUSINESS car drivers that need something smart and sensible during the working week that can double up as a load carrier at the weekend inevitably turn to estate and that growing category, the SUV.
Manufacturers have been happy to oblige, and here’s our Top 10 estates and SUVs from the Geneva Motor Show.
Dacia Logan MCV
Dacia seems to be bringing out a new model every week these days; at Geneva, it’s the turn of this estate version of the second-generation Logan saloon. The original Logan never made it to the UK and we still won’t see the saloon but British buyers will be able to buy the MCV later this year. One disappointment; there’s no successor to the seven-seat version of the previous car.
Ever since Volkswagen started making estates back in the 1960s, they’ve called them Variants. But not in the UK.
Variant or estate, this new Golf estate promises to combine traditional VW practicality and solidity with the weight savings of the company’s new MQB body architecture and the efficiency of its latest engine range.
This will include a fuel-saving BlueMotion version capable of 85.6mpg and with an eye to company car users, CO2 emissions of 87g/km.
Peugeot enters new market territory with this new small SUV and will be hoping it can build on the good reception accorded to the 208 hatch last year.
Business buyers will like the idea of petrols that start at 99 g/km and diesels emitting as little as 98 g/km.
Renault’s spelling may be a bit iffy when it comes to the the name of its new small crossover, but the smart styling and two-tone colour scheme really hit the mark. One interesting practical point – the Captur has zipped removable seat covers.
Speed and practicality in a compact package – that’s the promise of the Audi RS Q3, the first of the company’s “Q” range of SUVs to be given the full sporty RS treatment.
Its 2.5-litre five cylinder petrol engine pushes out a mighty 310 PS, enough to get it from rest to 62mph in 5.5 seconds and on to an artificially capped 155mph top speed.
Tourneo is the new name in van-based people carriers from Ford, and there’s a whole range of them on the way.
The Tourneo Courier is in the same size bracket as the curvier C-Max and Grand C-Max, so it should have enough space for most business users – but if it doesn’t, there’s always the larger Tourneo Custom based on the new Transit.
Skoda’s Octavia has always been a bit bigger than other Golf-based cars and this new one has grown again – it’s virtually a fully-fledged Mondeo bracket car now.
The latest Octavia also enjoys classy looks and decent equipment levels. The only drawback is that prices have crept up a bit, although they still represent great value for money.
Strictly speaking, this curvaceous Tourer estate version of Honda’s British-built Civic displayed at Geneva is a concept car but the production-ready version is expected to appear at the Frankfurt Motor Show in the autumn.
Honda’s new smooth and economical 1.6 diesel is likely to be the engine choice for business users.
Another British-built, Japanese-badged contender, the Auris Touring Sports is available with a wide range of power-train options but company car drivers will gravitate towards the economical 1.4-litre D-4D diesel or the new 85g/km hybrid option, the only hybrid available in estate form in this size bracket.
Suzuki’s latest SX4 picks up where the old one left off in the small SUV market.
Its curvy shape was previewed with the S-Cross concept first seen at the 2012 Paris Motor Show. Available with petrol or diesel engines, with the business-friendly diesels delivering 110 (2WD) or 115g/km (4WD) – the lowest CO2 emissions in its category.
Geneva Show pix: Headlinauto
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