When the Ford S-MAX was launched in 2006 it offered the practicality of an MPV combined with the fun-to-drive handling characteristics that Ford has become renowned for in recent years. Even its wedge-like shape adds a certain level of sportiness that is absent from most of the competition, which includes cars such as the Peugeot 5008 and Citroen C4 Picasso.

The S-MAX may not be as big as its sibling, the Ford Galaxy, but it manages to be almost as spacious inside. As you would expect of an MPV, the Ford S-MAX has a flexible seven-seat arrangement that can be tailored to your needs, while maximum load capacity is a colossal 2,000 litres.

Ford offers the S-MAX with a range of diesel engines that give decent economy and performance, while the top-of-the-range petrols are quick, but also more costly to run.

There are just three levels of trim to choose from on the S-MAX – Zetec, Titanium, and Titanium X Sport – but even the most basic Zetec model has a decent amount of standard equipment.