"It's a bit of a... minicab, isn't it?" interjected my friend after I spent 20 minutes extolling the virtues of the Skoda Superb.
I suspect this was not a compliment. But, in Superb World, it's surely a ringing endorsement. I mean, what does a cabbie desire of his minicab? Cheap to buy and run, hectares of space, able to do a million miles without complaint. Admirable aims.
The Superb ticks all the taxi-boxes, especially with the new 104bhp Greenline III diesel, the ultra-frugal highlight of this gentle mid-life update. It's parsimonious enough to please even the most miserly minicabbist, officially returning 66mpg. Real-world, you'll get 750 miles on a tank, which, on a miles-per-gallon-per-cubic-metre basis, must make this Superb the greenest car on the planet.
For this thing is vast. Skoda claims class-leading luggage and leg space: there's enough room in the back for a family of elephants and their suitcases.
Even without elephants on board, this Superb is wonderfully, woefully slow. But that's good: it means, like a cabbie on a 4am airport run, you concentrate your attention on carrying every last jot of speed. At this point you'll discover the Superb's brakes are not as strong as you might like. But what cabbie ever uses the brakes unless strictly necessary?
Verdict: It's vast, it barely drinks any fuel, it'll never break and it'll give you change out of 23 grand. Embrace your inner cabbie. You know you want to.
Stats: 1598cc, 4cyl TD, FWD, 104bhp, 184lb ft, 65.7mpg, 113g/km CO2, 0-62mph in 12.3secs, 121mph, 1541kg, £22,760