It sounds like the dream ticket, doesn’t it? A car that combines the best of Audi (four-wheel drive), Bentley (W12 engine), Skoda (the Superb) and VW, the creators of the Scirocco, my favourite small car from 2010.

But the strange thing is that when you drive the W12 VW Phaeton what first springs to mind is:

“Heaven is where the police are British, the cooks are French, the mechanics are German, the lovers are Italian and it is all organised by the Swiss.

Hell is where the police are German, the cooks are English, the mechanics are French, the lovers are Swiss, and it is all organised by the Italians.”

Because the one thing this big saloon isn’t is a match made in heaven.

Apart from a complete lack of charisma and some very questionable interior styling, the car fidgets in whichever of its eight sub-optimal ride settings ( four damper x two ride height) you choose.