What Car? Car of the Year awards 2010 - Estate car winner

Article 9 of 32 See all
  • 16 categories of awards
  • All the winning models featured here
  • What Car? Car of the Year 2010 revealed
The winner
Mazda 6 Estate 2.2D 161 TS
List price £19,382
Target price £17,477

Yes it's a double-whammy for the Mazda 6. Our Family Car champion also takes the honours in the Estate category and, if anything, this second victory is even more emphatic.

Why? As brilliant as the hatchback is, the 6 is even better in estate form. Both have clever features to maximise space and make life easier, but they’re more effective in the estate.

The way the back seats fold is a prime example. Not that you’ll have to bother very often – even in five-seat mode, the boot is plenty big enough to cope with family clutter. If you do need more space, just tug on one of two catches (either the one at the top of the backrest or the one in the boot) and the spring-loaded seat tumbles down on its own.

What’s more, the seat base automatically lowers itself as the backrest falls on top, so the extended load floor is low and completely flat. Genius. Estates aren’t all about the cargo, though – passengers are important, too. Thankfully, the 6 is among the class leaders for interior space, so unless your passengers are built like rugby players, they’ll be totally comfortable.

Comfort isn’t a problem on the open road, either. There’s enough compliance in the 6’s suspension to take the edge off most nasty surfaces, and it still manages to give you solid body control. You also get strong grip, snappy steering and punchy performance.

So the 6 is practical, reliable and amazing to drive. What else can it possibly have going for it? That’s the best bit: at £19,382, this model is cheaper than most rivals and, in many cases, comes better equipped. It costs peanuts to run, too, with cracking resale values, good fuel economy and low emissions.

In short, it’s all the estate car you’ll ever need at a price you can easily afford.

What Car? Car of the Year awards 2010 - MPV contenders


Free car valuations