Their rationale is simple. If you're going to be stuck in traffic, you might as well be stuck in your own space – and at times like this, the quality of the immediate surroundings assumes maximum importance.
Which brings me to the Skoda Superb. Spanning the premium as well as mainstream D-sectors, this car provides a convivial environment for traffic jams because it provides leg-stretching comfort topped off with climate control as standard.
Whether stationary or on the move, the Superb is full of surprises. The first is that the 2.5 TDI Comfort is so well insulated that it provides a peaceful environment in the hurly-burly of congestion.
Another is the way this saloon behaves when conditions do eventually allow open road progress. Large and powerful, it has the demeanour of class-above transport as it wafts along smoothly, making very little mechanical noise.
But perhaps the biggest surprise of all is delivered on the forecourt, when the Superb proves that is possible to enjoy economy prices while travelling first class. Even though it has a healthy output for nippy acceleration and easy cruising, the car's V6 diesel engine has a meagre appetite for fuel.
Company car tax bill 2002 (22% taxpayer) £74.80 per month