Independent Reviews of New and Used Cars

SEAT Ateca (2016 - 2020): WHERE IT'S AT

Privately, SEAT were frustrated by the Volkswagen Group's tardiness in developing many products for the compact Crossover segment. But Wolfsburg's Spanish outpost must also be grateful to its German masters for the thoroughness with which they corrected this oversight. This provided a standard of technology and design that enabled SEAT to create in this Ateca one of the very finest cars of its kind. It set a fresh standard for the way that contenders in the Qashqai-class could drive, at a stroke making most rivals seem dull and lifeless in their dynamics. More perhaps than any other model SEAT made in this period, this one actually delivered on its brand promises of a more interesting and involving drive. Plus it helped enormously that this car was also well priced, good looking and, for the most part, pretty well equipped. In short, there's plenty to like here. It may have had a bit of a siesta before joining the class, but this SEAT proved to be more than worth the wait.

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Mercedes-Benz GLC 300 de 4MATIC: C CHANGE?

Here's another Mercedes plug-in model, the GLC 300 de. Jonathan Crouch takes a look.

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Volvo XC40 - Long Term Test: TRANSFORMING

"A bright light blue small Volvo SUV with white wheels and a white roof designed to replicate the look of a science fiction transformer robot. Really?"

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Jaguar XJ (2015 - 2020): EVEN COOLER BRITANIA

There's no doubt that this MK4 XJ was an outstanding technical achievement. But then the same can be said of many of its rivals from this period. Where this Jaguar is different though, can be summed up in that one simple but very telling word 'character'. Rather than being merely a larger version of an existing model, this is a stand-alone design in its own right. As a result, it feels special in a way that German competitors struggle to match. More importantly, this car's unique selling points aren't only restricted to the way that it looks. Even if you don't agree with Designer Ian Callum's vision of the future of luxury motoring, you'll have to admit that the cabin has a sense of style and opulence that sets it apart from rivals, even if it can't quite match them for space. That interior benefitted most from the range of updates made to the revised model we've been looking at here. In overall terms, the improvements didn't significantly changed the appeal of this car, but they removed some of the reasons why previously, potential buyers might have dismissed it. Only a few issues remained, things like the lack of a few key electronic safety options and a slight restriction on boot space. In summary, we think this car was a fitting flagship for a Jaguar brand that at last by 2015 had fully found itself as a maker of fast, beautiful cars. Bold and ferociously modern, this remains a Luxury saloon you can bond with, a limousine for life.

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Audi S3 (2016 - 2020): S TO THE POWER OF THREE

Wouldn't life be dull if we always just bought what we needed rather than what we wanted? There we'd be, living this Tesco Value range existence, clad head to toe in Primark and driving would be functional, grey and joyless. Fortunately, indulgence is a part of human nature, a facet shamelessly capitalised upon by cars like this one, the automotive equivalent perhaps, of one of those hugely expensive Breitling watches that are waterproof to 100 fathoms and which can withstand a shot from a sniper's bullet. Will you ever need that kind of functionality? Of course not, but it makes you smile to know it's there in reserve just in case you ever fall in the bath or get called upon to do a hostage snatch in Syria. In the same way, no one actually needs an S3 - but then no one actually needs a hot hatch either - so if you can afford to get yourself a shopping rocket, why not buy one that makes you feel the way this car does? The joy of ownership here doesn't necessarily come from clipping apexes at the limit of grip, although the S3 will indulge you in that way if you want. Instead, it comes from owning something jewel-like and exclusive, a very, very quick car that doesn't overly-immerse you in the business of going. well. very, very quickly. The thinking person's superhatch? You're looking at it right here.

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The reviews are available throughout the site in our new car and used car searches and, coupled with the expert knowledge from our product experts, the reviews will ensure that you're better equipped to make the right decision, whether you're buying a new or used car.