Parkers overall rating: 4 out of 5 4.0

The engine range consists of two petrol engines with one diesel engine offering two power outputs. The entry level petrol engine is a 1.8-litre TSI producing 158bhp. This is available with a choice of a six-speed manual gearbox or the firm’s seven-speed DSG auto ‘box as an option on the base CC trim. This engine belies its lower power due to the turbocharger. It will complete the benchmark sprint from 0-62mph in 8.5 seconds (with the manual gearbox) and only towards the higher end of the rev range does it start to lose power. The higher-powered petrol engine is a 2.0-litre TSI making 207bhp. This is only available in the top GT specification and with a six-speed manual or six-speed DSG gearbox. Power delivery is very smooth and the manual model will go from zero to 62mph in 7.3 seconds. The diesel choices are expected to be the most popular models, though. The 2.0-litre TDI is available with either 138bhp or 168bhp. It’s the 138bhp version, also producing 350Nm of torque, which is likely to be the best seller in the CC line-up. The six-speed manual model – buyers can also opt for a six-speed DSG – will go from zero to 62mph in 9.8 seconds. It may be more than one second slower than the entry level petrol engine, but it doesn’t feel like this because of the pulling power lower in the rev range. Finally, the 168bhp diesel model will cover the benchmark sprint in a slightly quicker time of 8.6 seconds. This is available with the same gearbox choice as the lower-powered diesel engine.

In 2013 a new 1.4-litre turbo- and super-charged petrol engine was introduced with 158bhp.

There’s not a huge amount to shout about in the handling stakes. There’s very little body roll and the CC grips well. Unfortunately there’s not a huge amount of engagement on offer for the driver and the steering could do with being more direct; it is well weighted, but there isn’t much feel or feedback. The CC is competitive against the likes of the Volvo S60 and Audi A5 Sportback, but those wanting something with a little more excitement may want to consider the BMW 3 Series instead.

The range-topping diesel and petrol engines also get a new differential lock, which should help improve traction. The ride is compliant and deals with even the biggest of potholes and drains fairly well. Higher-spec GT models come with adaptive chassis control. This allows the driver to choose between three different modes of Normal, Comfort and Sport.

Comfort softens the rides for some comfortable cruising while sport stiffens the suspension and weights up the steering.