THE market for elegant estate cars used to be dominated by prestige German manufacturers but in recent years other marques have become established in the sector, with the latest Mazda6 Tourer a fine example.
Its beautifully-sculpted lines provide a classy visual presence and the cabin, with leather upholstery, gloss black inserts and chrome detailing creates the feeling you are driving something special.
There is a wide choice of petrol and diesel engines and all models are well-equipped, with prices starting at €28,175 (£24,095). The popular engine choice is the 148 hp 2.2 diesel unit which was in the model I recently tested, along with the optional 7-speed automatic gearbox. In mid-range SE-L Lux Nav+ form it costs €32,848 (£28,093).
Even the entry-level Mazda6 Tourer is generously-kitted with dual-zone climate control, cruise control, sat-nav, front and rear parking sensors, touch-screen infotainment centre, digital radio and Bluetooth all standard. My Lux test model added extra features including leather upholstery, powered and heated front seats and a reversing camera.
Underway, the engine proves to be smooth quiet and refined, with a 0-100 kph time of 10.6 seconds, top speed 204 kph (127 mph) and average fuel economy very good at 19.6 kpl (55.4 mpg). Emissions are 133 g/km. The steering has a light responsive feel for effortless driving though I found the suspension a little over-firm.
The Tourer is spacious front and rear and there are plenty of stowage areas for oddments. The boot is large at 522 litres, expandable to a massive 1,689 litres by folding the rear seats. And the load floor is flat, another plus-point. The two-tone cabin design is very pleasing and with large glass areas and slim pillars, helps give the cabin a light airy ambiance.
Notable rivals in the sector include estate versions of the Ford Mondeo and Skoda Superb but the Mazda6 Tourer in my view outshines them for sheer presence. Mazda says the Tourer makes ‘a stylish statement’. I think the company is being modest. I think it makes a VERY stylish statement.
Model tested is UK-specification and equipment levels and prices may vary in other markets.
Model: Mazda6 SE-L Lux Tourer
Engine: 2.2 litre diesel
Performance: 0-100 kph 10.6 seconds, top speed 204 kph (127 mph)
Economy: 19.6 kpl (55.4 mpg)
Emissions: 133 g/km