I hadn't driven our Carens for a while and the thing that struck me the most after an absence was the amount of kit that it has.
Ours is in mid-spec 2 trim, which comes with alloy wheels, roof rails, automatic wipers, rear parking sensors, electric folding mirrors and climate control in addition to the seven seats and Bluetooth that all Carens models get. That's a great specification.
We recommend buyers stick with 1 trim, though, because it comes with air-con and Bluetooth, but I'd be tempted to upgrade to 2 if I could, if only to get the electric folding mirrors. I live in town and the car would be parked on a narrow street, so electric folding mirrors mean one less thing to worry about.
The Carens is one of our favourite MPVs and if you shop around you can get some great deals. Our 1.7 CRDi 2 has a list price of £20,795 but a quick look at drivethedeal.com reveals that you can get one for £17,029 if you're willing to sign up to a finance deal or £17,779 if you pay cash. That's a lot of car for less than £18k.
By Matthew Burrow