The latest Vauxhall Astra is the best family hatchback the manufacturer has ever produced.
The turbocharged 1.0-litre engine is a great choice for petrol buyers, while the 1.6-litre diesel claims fuel economy of 85mpg.
The Astra is not only comfortable, economical, relaxing to drive and excellent value for money, but it's also good-looking
The Astra may be a good-looking car but the latest Renault Megane is even more striking to look at.
The Megane is more about comfort than outright performance but it's still fun on a twisty road, and makes a great motorway cruiser.
The Skoda Octavia makes a great family car thanks to its spacious interior and huge boot.
The Octavia shares many parts with the Volkswagen Golf and Audi A3 but costs less to buy than both of those cars.
The Octavia may not have the same sense of style inside as the Audi or the Golf but the interior is smart and well built.
The SEAT Leon is fun to drive, good-looking and, like the Octavia, shares mechanicals with the A3 and Golf but costs less.
The Volkswagen Golf is a great all-rounder that is still understandably popular with families.
An updated Golf is on its way for 2017, boasting a redesigned interior and new engines, including a 148bhp 1.5-litre diesel.
The Hyundai i30 is the least expensive car on our list but it's still a very competent family car.
Even the entry-level i30 comes with Bluetooth connectivity and air-conditioning.
The Mazda3 is one of the best cars to drive on this list, striking a great balance between comfort and handling.
The Mazda3 comes with plenty of standard equipment, and is smooth and quiet on the open road.
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