The Touran campaigns in the upper sector of the mini-MPV market, unsurprising given its evidently superior fit and finish. Rivals include cars like Renault's Grand Scenic and Citroen's Grand C4 Picasso. Available only in seven seat guise, the Touran's seating system is certainly flexible. The rearmost pair of seats, whilst only really suitable for kiddies, can fold flat into the floor which means that for most of the time you'll have an easily accessible and spacious luggage bay. You can even fold the middle seat of the middle row, making a four seater that can transport long items like skis with supreme ease. All three of the middle seats slide backwards and forwards on separate runners.
Out back, there's inevitably not much luggage space with all seven seats in place - just 137-litres, enough for a couple of carefully positioned small overnight bags. Still, that's the case with any car in this class. Much of the time of course, you're not going to need the two third row chairs. Fold these and you'll raise your boot space up to 917-litres. Or 743-litres up the windowline, which, impressively, is more than you get in a much longer Ford S-MAX. Need more room? Well if the item in question is merely long and thin, like a set of skis, it may suffice merely to flatten the middle second row backrest. If though, you really need to super-size your space, then folding all three rear chairs creates a completely flat cargo area, 1,857-litres in size. That's enough for me.
There are plenty of clever touches too. Most owners will want what Volkswagen calls its 'Family Pack' items - namely side window blinds, electrically-activated rear door child locks and a neat Electronic voice amplification system so that front seat folk can more easily talk to passengers behind. I particularly liked the optional Car-Net 'Cam-Connect' app that can connect into a GoPro camera and transmit images from the back of the vehicle onto the centre dash infotainment screen, so that I could keep an eye on what was happening in the rear two rows without needing to turn round.