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Classy Volkswagen Sharan boasts new hidden talents

PUBLISHED: 16:24 20 November 2015 | UPDATED: 16:24 20 November 2015

The latest Volkswagen Sharan may not look very different but a host of changes make it even more family friendly.

The latest Volkswagen Sharan may not look very different but a host of changes make it even more family friendly.

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You’re spoiled for choice with people-carriers but Volkswagen’s Sharan has always been one of the best. Matt Joy tries the 2015 version.

What’s new?

There’s an element of blink-and-you’ll-miss-it with the 2015 Volkswagen Sharan. As far as visual changes go, there’s new rear lights, a greater choice of alloy wheels and some new accessories, but changes elsewhere are more important.

The engine range is updated with improvements in performance and efficiency as well as compliance with the latest Euro 6 regulations, while the infotainment options now include the desirable MirrorLink or Apple CarPlay. There’s also an increased range of safety systems.

Volkswagen Sharan

Price: Volkswagen Sharan SE 2.0 TDI 150, £30,115 (range £26,300 to £36,280)

Engine: 2.0-litre, 150PS, four-cylinder turbo diesel

Transmission: Six-speed manual gearbox driving front wheels

Performance: 0-62mph 10.3 seconds; top speed 124mph

MPG: 56.5 combined

CO2 emissions: 130g/km

Looks and image

Your neighbours might not spot you own a new Sharan without checking the number plate, but the truth is it remains a classy and well-judged piece of design. Multi-purpose vehicles are, in essence, boxes on wheels, so creating one that doesn’t look like a van is no mean feat. It has the same discreet and robust look of a Golf but with a lot more space.

Space and practicality

Without this an MPV is nothing but the Sharan remains as practical as a car of this size can be. The high roof means headroom is plentiful and legroom is good whether you’re up front or in the back. The second and third rows are made up of individual seats too, so you can have varying combinations of people and luggage to suit pretty much any scenario. There’s also a wealth of accessories to suit your lifestyle... you can even have an espresso maker.

Behind the wheel

It’s a complement to the Sharan that it doesn’t really feel like an MPV to drive. Other than the view out, you soon forget you’re driving a relatively large seven-seater. The driving position is good, the steering is accurate and, despite the tall body, there is only a little roll through the corners if you’re hurrying along. More importantly, it rides well and is refined on the move, so you and your passengers can relax in comfort. The 150PS 2.0-litre turbo diesel is engine is relatively quiet and has plenty of torque, giving usefully brisk acceleration. There are also 115 and 184PS 2.0-litre turbo diesels and 150PS 1.4-litre turbo petrol engines.

Value for money

The essentials are all there even if you go for the entry-level model, with seven seats as standard. All models also get the latest display screen too with its updated software. Better still, you get three-zone climate control as standard to feed all three rows of seats, Bluetooth connectivity and Volkswagen’s post-collision braking system.

Who would buy one?

The Sharan’s versatility is its key asset, and that makes it a car that’s suitable for pretty much anyone. It’s pretty much the ideal family wagon but is also a good choice for those with limited mobility as the big doors make getting in and out easy. And if you’re one of those active lifestyle types it’s perfect for filling with mountain bikes.

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Andy Russell

Andy Russell

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EDP motoring editor, journalist who loves wheels and engines but hates cleaning them.

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