It is one of the most safety-conscious cars on the market, with six airbags, ABS and disc brakes all round with EBFD – especially useful on muddy back roads when braking at speed.
The 307 also leads the way as a 'green' choice as around 90% of its metal, glass and fluids are recyclable at the end of the car's life. That's an impressive factor that takes into account the End of Life Vehicles Directive, which comes into force in 2007 and makes manufacturers more accountable for their vehicles' disposal.
In Dturbo trim, the 307 is packed with enough sporting goodies to keep any enthusiast happy: part-leather seats, brushed aluminium trim, a five CD autochanger, bright metal gearknob, armrests on both front seats and a large pull-down armrest in the centre of the back seat.
Best of all are the folding door mirrors: every time you start the engine they unfold like little wings. The 2.0 HDi engine is punchy and powerful, too, though I find the Dturbo's sporting suspension rather hard over my local back roads in Cambridgeshire.
Like some other cars in this class, the 307 has several poorly thought out interior details. As a mother, the first I found most annoying. Although the 307 has the facility to turn off the passenger airbag to accommodate a child seat, the belt is not long enough to secure it unless you move the chair right back whereupon it crushes the rear passenger's legs. The second point concerns the rear head restraints: why do manufacturers put in restraints which obscure the rear screen?
I find it difficult to drive safely with them in place and they end up kicking around the footwells or boot. And while I'm on the subject of boot space, the 307's is disappointingly small: once there's a pushchair in the back it will only take four to six carrier bags – hopeless for Christmas shopping!
Company car tax bill 2002 (22% tax-payer): £55.89 per month