What’s new? Not much externally – just a grille – but inside are reshaped mouldings, new instruments and a dashtop cubby that you can now actually open. Most important, though, is the improved noise suppression. The body is stiffer, there’s a six-speed ‘box and the chassis’s been polished too. What’s it like? Full of verve – you need the (standard) cruise control to stop it drifting toward 100mph. And much quieter, even if there’s slightly too much tyre roar still. Really impressive are its flat, fuss-free cornering, clean-slicing steering and the tautness of its body and suspension. The ride’s firm, but well-damped - a fair trade for such deft handling. Should I buy one? Yes – its space, quality and value make sense, but verve is its most prominent characteristic, and you’ll enjoy that on every drive. Richard Bremner

Our Verdict

The Mazda 6 is a Ford Mondeo rival with rakish styling and lightweight, low-emissions tech

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