Parkers overall rating: 3 out of 5 3.0

The sole 102bhp 1.5-litre petrol engine is surprisingly lively and willing. The 0-62mph time of 10.8 seconds isn’t much to shout about, but it’s nippy, agile and as a result is easy to drive around town. It’s not out of its depth on the motorway, either, and convincingly keeps up with the speed of traffic, even if the engine can get a bit noisy and feel strained.

It’s easy to drive and should be powerful enough to cope with the demand of most owners. It’s only really found lacking when it comes to mid-range pull for overtaking on B-roads. All cars have a five-speed gearbox while a four-speed automatic is optional.

On the road, it soon becomes obvious that the Materia is designed for town drivers. The ride is very stiff, which isn’t an issue at lower town speeds, but is firm and uncomfortable on B-roads and the motorway. The steering is light, which makes parking easy, but unfortunately means that it has little feeling at speed. On the plus side it has a tight turning circle, which makes manoeuvres in town a breeze and the Materia corners surprisingly confidently – so despite the tall shape, there’s very little bodyroll.