The Skoda Octavia is a car that can carry most things you’ll ever need to carry. It is frugal, classless, comfortable and really a VW in disguise – all for a bargain price.

It’s every car you could ever need, except you’re an Autocar reader, in which case the lack of any excitement or emotional involvement might be a bit of a problem. So you’ll need something low and fast in the garage alongside it; something probably frail and troublesome. But then there’s always the Skoda to rely on.

The Octavia is a no-nonsense, value-for-money car

You probably don’t need to pay the extra for the four-wheel-drive option if you buy the estate, but if you do live in a field on top of a hill or a place where it snows a lot, an Octavia 4x4 would be a fine thing to own.

As a hatchback, the vRS ultimately disappoints, but as an estate it makes far more sense. At this price, nothing can touch it for its combination of space and pace.

Fundamentally, the Octavia is a no-nonsense, value-for-money car. It’s not the most dynamic drive, but we have no hesitation recommending one and you’ll have little cause to regret buying one. For the money, it’s one of the best family hatches you can buy.