YOU just don't get a more practical small estate than the Nissan Note and when it's capable of a real 45mpg in petrol form who needs a diesel?
I used this car mostly around town but with one 80 mile round trip, and while it's not the quickest car in the world it always feels willing and, best of all, it sounds lovely.
The 1.2 three cylinder engine produces just 80bhp and it revs beautifully, but will also accelerate reasonably well in fourthand fifthgears.
The five-speed gearbox has an easy change and the clutch is light, which both help make it a very easy car to drive and to live with.
Road holding is excellent - as a MINI owner discovered when he wondered where I had gone round a series of corners.
And the well-weight electric power steering helps give safe and sure handling.
At slower speeds in town, rough roads give a slightly unsettled ride, but out in the country it smoothes out most surfaces with ease - even on pock-marked back lanes.
It comes with an excellent stop/start system to save fuel when stationary - one that never let me down.
Some others can be slow to restart, or stop too soon when coming to a halt, when you want to accelerate away again immediately.
There's loads of space for four or five inside, with adjustable rear legroom and a good size boot.
But the privacy glass fitted to my test car is far too dark, and makes rearward vision poor at night. I would have to have it removed if I bought one.
The N-Tec model I drove comes from the top of the range, and is very well equipped. This includes sat nav, Bluetooth, USB and aux in for the stereo, climate, alloys, eco drive mode, and steering wheel audio controls.
It also has a blind spot warning system, lane departure warning, moving object detection, and stability control, together with six airbags and a rearview camera.