400 to 499
1) Volkswagen Passat 2.0TDI CR 140 DPF S
List price/Monthly lease: 18,695/430
CO2 (g/km)/tax rating: 146/20%
Monthly tax bill (20/40%): 61/123
Blurring the line between family cars and compact executives, the Passat feels like a much more expensive vehicle. There's a real sense of class to it, while the comfort, space and practicality are up to those of its best rivals.
2) Volvo V70 2.0D SE 5dr
List price/Monthly lease: 24,745/474
CO2 (g/km)/tax rating: 157/22%
Monthly tax bill (20/40%): 90/180
Volvo has long been a byword for estates, and the V70 is a perfect example of its craft. Naturally, it's a spacious car, but it's the little details such as the nets and hooks in the boot that make it a winner.
3) Citroen Grand C4 Picasso 1.6 HDi SX
List price/Monthly lease: 19,195/410
CO2 (g/km)/tax rating: 145/20%
Monthly tax bill (20/40%): 63/126
There's something delightfully different about the Grand C4 Picasso's design. What also distinguishes it is one of the cleverest and most practical interiors in the class, with all manner of seating permutations that are also easy to swap between.
4) Audi TT 2.0 TFSI Coupe
List price/Monthly lease: 25,420/499
CO2 (g/km)/tax rating: 183/24%
Monthly tax bill (20/40%): 100/201
As ever with a coupe, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but in the TT, that beauty is more than skin-deep. This is a fully fledged sports car with plenty of equipment and a cabin that oozes quality and class.
5) BMW 320d 2.0 ES
List price/Monthly lease: 25,385/480
CO2 (g/km)/tax rating: 128/18%
Monthly tax bill (20/40%): 75/151
The 320d is our favourite version of our favourite compact executive. It's as good to drive, well built and refined as any 3 Series model, plus it combines a sub-8.0 second 0-60mph time with the best part of 60mpg average economy.
Also consider: Audi A3, Mercedes C-Class, Toyota Verso