Cast an objective eye over the VW Volkswagen Arteon Shooting Brake and it’s difficult to level serious criticism at this flagship Volkswagen.

It is priced sensibly in line with mid-sized saloons and estates but has a capaciousness that is easily a match for competitors in the class above. Topped off with what is an undeniably striking piece of exterior design, the Shooting Brake ticks all of the major boxes it should.

Striking PHEV appears radical but upholds VW’s traditions at heart

This plug-in hybrid version then offers good refinement and the potential for extremely low day-today fuel consumption, although both attributes are dependent on your ability to charge the relatively small drive battery frequently. If you can’t do that, you’re better off with one of the regular models.

Where the Arteon Shooting Brake falls down slightly concerns the more subjective elements. Considering the enticing – and athletic-looking – bodywork, the car offers little dynamically for the keen driver to get his or her teeth into, and given that the eHybrid has two power sources to play with, the performance is also underwhelming.

It’s a comfortable, attractive and useful cruiser, but it’s not at all an exciting one.