Error parsing XSLT file: \xslt\FacebookOpenGraph.xslt VW Sharan: Test Drive Review
Cookies on Businesscar

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue without changing your settings, we will assume that you are happy to receive all cookies on the Business Car website. However, if you would like to, you can change your cookies at any time

BusinessCar magazine website email Awards mobile

The start point for the best source of fleet information

VW Sharan: Test Drive Review

Date: 27 July 2010   |   Author:

Category: MPV
P11D price: £23,500 (*est.)
Key rival: Ford Galaxy

It's certainly been a long time coming, but at last there's an all-new Volkswagen Sharan to replace the large people carrier that's been on sale, with a couple of significant revisions along the way, since 1995.

The predictable efficiency improvements come along with the new model, as do enhanced interior functionality of the big seven-seater, which for the first time will also be available in a six 'captain's chairs' format aimed squarely at the corporate sector. Engine choices will consist of two 2.0-litre diesel alternatives at 140hp and 170hp, and the 150hp 1.4 and 2.0-litre 200hp petrols. Both the petrol engines are significantly over the 160g/km capital allowance CO2 boundary, whereas the more popular diesels come in at 143g/km and 152g/km respectively.

The biggest change to the new Sharan is that the two rear doors are now of the sliding variety rather than hinged, easing entry in tight spaces and making access to both the rear two rows simpler thanks to the larger opening.

Accessing the third row itself is straightforward thanks to the distance the middle row tips forward, and by sliding that middle row of seats along the 160mm rail they move along it's possible to come up with an arrangement that will keep seven adults happy, if not for lengthy journeys. Headroom for taller adults becomes an issue in row three, but there's still at least as much space as anything else in the sector. The rear seats all fold flat to create a large load space, although it is surprisingly fiddly to raise the third row. A single pull on a tab pops the seat back up, but you then have to reach in and rotate the base before entry.

Up front, cabin quality improves as you'd expect over the old car, and is on a level and similar in appearance to the likes of the Passat. It's all sensibly and logically laid out, without being particularly innovative or exciting.

That theme is carried on with the exterior. The front is very much in the VW Group mould, looking as can be expected like a larger version of the Touran Mini-MPV. The side and rear are more distinctive but still understated and lacking in character.

Spec levels are good, with the most popular model expected to be the mid-spec SE, which includes front and rear parking sensors and Bluetooth.

To drive, the Sharan is unremarkable, which is a positive thing for a vehicle designed to carry passengers or large loads in comfort. The ride quality is good and the 140hp 2.0-litre diesel engine refined and more than adequate for hauling the big vehicle around.

The Ford Galaxy dominates the full-sized MPV segment, but the long-awaited new Sharan will at least give operators that need a full-sized MPV a very competitive option.

VW Sharan 2.0 TDI 140 SE manual
P11D price£25,000*
Model price range£23,000-£30,0008
Fuel consumption52.3mpg
CO2 (tax) 143g/km (%)
BIK 20/40% per month£78/£157
Service intervalvariable mls
Insurance (1-50)group 26*
Boot space (min/max)2430 litres
Engine size/power1968cc/140hp
Top speed/0-62mph121mph/12.0secs
On sale November 2010
VerdictNot particularly exciting but a sensible large MPV
* estimated


Not particularly exciting but a sensible large MPV