Best 7 Seater Cars

8 minutes Published: 12/03/2020

For many the word '7 seater' brings to mind the image of a miserable parent hopelessly cramming children, luggage, and who knows what else into an extremely boring looking car.

Let's face it, no one really wants a 7 seater. It's not exactly high up the desirability scale, and a 7 seater has never been among the best cars in the world.

However, life happens. Your hair greys and recedes. Your lust for life rapidly diminishes as you sit down with your in-laws for another 'game night'.

In short, practicality takes over from aesthetic pleasure and driving fun. You envisioned a Tesla Model X being your 'adult car'. Not quite.

But don't give up! Even if you need a 7 seater for your large family, you're not doomed to a driving life of utter boredom. In fact, something incredible has happened in the 7 seater market in 2019... the cars are actually nice!

Long gone are the days of the most boring exterior and dashboard you've ever seen. These days, you can buy some genuinely good 7 seaters with great features.

Need a car for the kids? Check out our Best Family Cars, or our Best MPVs and People Carriers! For big and practical cars, check out our Best SUV Cars

1. Volkswagen Touran

RRP: £22,185 - £35,225
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.0
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: MPV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 111 - 197g/km

Pros

  • Use ‘Car-Net Cam-Connect’ (not very catchy VW!) to keep an eye on the back seats

  • Sloping roofline makes the Touran comfortable for adults.

Cons

  • Design is okay but definitely has a taxi driver vibe. The third row of seats is not terribly comfortable.

  • Expensive compared to some competitors.

Long-story short, the VW Touran is a Golf with 7-seats... which is far from a bad thing.

The Golf is an excellent hatchback, so a bigger version of this with extra space for the kids sounds ideal! Unfortunately, the super classy aesthetics of the Golf don’t quite transfer over to the dimensions of the Touran, but it's far from a bad looking car.

While not terribly exciting, it's a great practical seven-seater that doesn't make you look like you run a day-care centre. It has great storage space and also achieved the maximum 5-star rating in the Euro NCAP tests, as well as coming equipped with a wealth of safety features - so you can feel safe knowing that you're driving around the most important people in your life in maximum safety!

2. Citroen C4 Spacetourer

RRP: £20,905 - £31,710
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.0
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: MPV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 100 - 134g/km

Pros

  • Seats are a good size for adults with plenty of headroom and legroom. 

  • Class-leading boot.

Cons

  • The automatic gearbox is a bit slow and not great to drive.

  • Infotainment system is a pain to use.

While the ‘Space Tourer' part isn't quite literal (give it 100 years), it’s definitely got a stand-out design compared to other seven-seaters. The C4 really pulls off this more exciting look.

A big downside of owning a 7 seater is it looks like you're driving a big box with wheels. The C4’s sleek curves and angles makes it nice to look at.

This translates to the interior as well, with some really slick seat trims. The C4 is also extremely practical. It has one of the best boots in class, so it is perfect for a big family.

3. Land Rover Discovery SW

RRP: £43,140 - £68,890
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 4.0
  • Fuel: D, P
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 189 - 397g/km

Pros

  • All seven seats, including the third and middle row, are motorised and easily foldable for minimum stress.

  • Full of great tech, ultra-safe, and a pleasure to live with. Plenty of interior space.

Cons

  • Biggest model yet - a nightmare to park.

  • Even the entry-level model is nearly 50k, so you might need to get all of the kids on the paper run to afford this.

If the Minivan look just isn't for you and you fancy something a little bit posher, the Land Rover Discovery is a great option.

The Discovery might be Land Rover’s most recognisable and well-received SUV, and the newest model hasn’t strayed too far from its roots. Of course, this is an expensive car, and it feels like it. With an incredibly classy body style and interior, you're going to feel a lot cooler in this than in a box-like MPV.

The Land Rover Discovery also drives like a dream, with the V6 Diesel option being a highlight. This thing is a beast off-road, so it's perfect for any family adventures you might be planning.

4. Volkswagen Sharan

RRP: £22,675 - £40,805
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.8
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: MPV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 307g/km

Pros

  • Built quality is excellent.

  • Boot space is huge.

Cons

  • Expensive for what it is.

  • Engine options are lacking - only one petrol option available.

While the Volkswagen Touran is more of a ‘big Golf’, the Sharan lets you know up front that it’s a 7 seater MPV. An all-around huge car, the Sharan oozes practicality, and is so comfortable you could probably live in it for a few days.

That being said, the Sharan is unfortunately a bit dull-looking, but what do you expect?! Volkswagen realises you can’t have it all, and instead attempts to create the most practical 7 seater on the market.

While not as luxurious as a Volvo, or as fun to drive as a Ford, the Sharan is a fantastic, practical 7 seater for big families.

5. Peugeot 5008

RRP: £24,280 - £40,740
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.0
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 101 - 181g/km

Pros

  • Layout of the cabin has been well thought out.

  • A really comfortable experience for all involved.

Cons

  • It's a bit boring to drive.

  • No all-wheel drive options available.

The old 5008 was the stereotypical 7 seater 'Dad Car'. When you look at it long enough, you can actually hear distant echoes of children fighting in the backseat.

Shockingly, the 5008 looks amazing now. Peugeot have ditched the grim-looking MPV body and has instead gone for a super classy SUV style.This is a good move from Peugeot, as the demand for SUVs in the UK has skyrocketed in recent years.

The 5008 deserves its place on our best 7 seater list: it's a great looking car that doesn't sacrifice style and fun for practicality.

6. Volvo Xc90

RRP: £45,550 - £73,775
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 4.4
  • Fuel: P, D, H
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 322g/km

Pros

  • A luxurious experience all round.

  •  Super comfortable to drive.

Cons

  • Petrol engines are not the best.

  • Touch screen is a bit cluttered and hard to use.

The XC90 is the classy 7 seater for those who aren't into the Discovery. In fact, the XC90 might actually be a better looking car. The interior has a great minimalist design, making for a stunning, upmarket experience

Unlike some 7 seaters SUVs, the XC90 has a highly practical boot even when in 7 seat mode. You’ll also be in good hands, as Volvo has included every possible safety feature you can imagine.

Volvo has also recently jumped on the hybrid train, so if you need a 7 seater but also want great fuel economy, the XC90 is a no-brainer.

7. Seat Alhambra

RRP: £22,025 - £38,455
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 1.4 - 2.8
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: MPV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 278g/km

Pros

  • Build quality is excellent.

  • More luxurious than its outward appearance would have you believe.

Cons

  • The exterior is a bit dull.

  • Not as cheap as it used to be.

The SEAT MPV, the Alhambra, keeps it old-school with its appearance, sticking with that oh-so-glamorous box on wheels look. Unlike its SUV competitors, the Alhabamra's extra seats are properly usable, even for those of us towering around and above the 6 foot mark.

The petrol engine is impressive. It's really quiet, even under load, and makes for a smooth driving experience. And while a 'fun to drive MPV' is an oxymoron (SEAT do the best they can), the Alhambra handles really well.

You can tell SEAT is owned by Volkswagen by the interior quality, which is a good thing. Unfortunately, this increase in class has also translated to an increase in price. So while still affordable, the Alhambra isn't quite the steal it once was.

8. Renault Grand Scenic

RRP: £22,930 - £32,390
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 1.2 - 2.0
  • Fuel: P, D, H
  • Body: MPV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 94 - 205g/km

Pros

  • Unique exterior styling.

  • Interior is well designed with great storage potential.

Cons

  • Engine options are underwhelming.

  • The 'unique exterior styling' might not be to your taste.

Ah yes, yet another classic Dad car given a serious makeover. With a futuristic exterior with a slick sweeping roofline, the Grand Scenic is a nice looking car that really stands out amongst other MPVS. To be fair, this style is probably a hit or a miss for most. We think it's a refreshing take on arguably the most boring car body available. With 20 inch (!) wheels, the Grand Scenic is a quirky looking car.

While far from sporty, the Grand Scenic drives pretty well for a people carrier and the diesel engine option is particularly good, delivering a solid fuel economy and some punchy acceleration.

With a huge infotainment screen, there's some great tech on offer here. Renault’s R-Link multimedia system is Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatible, so you can put your ‘Relax’ playlist on to drown out the noise of the kids screaming in the back.

9. Ford Galaxy

RRP: £26,245 - £40,660
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.8
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: MPV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 312g/km

Pros

  • Efficient EcoBoost engine options are great.

  • Practicality is outstanding.

Cons

  • Uninspired design inside and out.

  • No rear USB sockets, which is standard on most competitors.

For many, the Ford Galaxy is the quintessential 7 seater and is a familiar sight on Britain's roads. So, how does it compare with more modern options?

The bigger, more sensible brother of the highly rated S-Max, the Galaxy manages to pair class-leading practicality along with providing Ford's signature driving experience. Unlike the Ford S-Max, the Galaxy allows fully grown adults to sit in the rear seats for more than a few minutes without losing the will to live.

While the Galaxy is rocking the vintage 'box' look, and the interior isn't quite as fancy as competitors, it's still a great car for the price.

10. Skoda Kodiaq

RRP: £21,310 - £43,835 | From £240.10 per month to lease
  • Doors: 5
  • Engine: 2.0
  • Fuel: P, D
  • Body: SUV
  • Drive: M, A
  • CO2: 126 - 170g/km

Pros

  • Great looking car, not at risk of looking like you're a taxi driver in a 7 seater.

  • 1.4-litre engine is surprisingly punchy.

Cons

  • Base models are lacking - standard audio system is poor.

  • Third row seats aren’t great for long journeys.

Skoda's design team needs a raise - the Kodiaq does not look like a £23k car. The Kodiaq sports a really classy interior that can easily compete with far more expensive competitors.

Sporting the ever-popular SUV design, the Kodiaq offers a decent 7 seat experience while still having a boot that's good enough for daily use. Where the Kodiaq shines is its value for money. It's one of the cheapest options on this list, but packs many of the same features as the big boys.

If an MPV isn't for you and you fancy a nice looking SUV 7 seater on a budget, the Kodiaq is the car for you.

Summary

Being bullied into purchasing a 7 seater 'for the kids' no longer has to be a miserable affair. 

Unfortunately for you, 7 seaters tend to be quite expensive to buy up front, as most of us don't have £20-50k sitting around. 

Consider leasing to make it more affordable. For one low payment every month, you can get a 7 seater that you can live with - and who knows, you might actually end up enjoying it.

Need maximum practicality? Check out our Best Family Cars, or our Best MPVs and People Carriers! For a big car that’s a bit more in fashion, check out our Best SUV Cars! You can also take a look at our full list of 7 seater car lease deals.