In terms of its engines, this is probably where the Sharan disappoints the most because there is in fact just one petrol available. It’s a tidy 1.4-litre TSI unit that develops 148bhp. That’s a reasonable amount of punch, and a 0-62 time of less than 10.0 seconds seems just fine for a car of this type.
Running costs? The sole petrol engine comes with the brands fuel-saving BlueMotion technology, which includes stop-start. As a result, it can return 43.5mpg on a good day. Emissions, meanwhile, are pegged at 150g/km of CO2. Specifying the DSG automatic transmission barely alters those figures.
Inside, the Sharan isn’t going to win any prizes for imagination, and this is hardly a cabin that’s going to excite you. But it’s comfortable, smooths out most road surfaces and boasts a simply designed dashboard that’s very user-friendly.
It’s well equipped too, with all models getting a digital radio, electric windows, cloth upholstery and climate control.
Is the Volkswagen Sharan practical? Volkswagen really thought about families when they put this car together. As well as having seven seats, head and legroom for all seats is good but if you want to ferry adults around often and can settle for six instead of seven seats, you might want to take a look at the 6-seater Executive model instead.
Storage solutions are literally everywhere and include dashboard storage and a cooled glovebox, while the boot measures 375-litres when all the seats are up. Fold the second and third row, and you can extend it to 2,297-litres.
Ford – £26,445 – £38,395
Volkswagen – £27,900 – £38,130