Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (2024)

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Large-family practicality is the order of the day with these comfortable seven-seater cars

by Charlie Harvey, Tom Gumbrell

8 Mar 2024

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (2)

Seven-seater cars are some of the roomiest on sale, offering the practicality needed to transport large families in comfort. While this was once a market dominated by the multi-purpose vehicle (MPV), the past decade has seen carmakers gravitate towards seven-seater SUVs instead, with chunkier styling and an elevated view of the road.

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Whether you plan on using all seven seats every day, or if you just need a third row for those rare occasions, there is a seven-seater on this list for you. While SUV models tend to be more expensive than their MPV counterparts, we’ve included vehicles on this list at a variety of price points, so there should be a model to suit everyone.

We have discounted some of the most expensive seven-seater SUVs from this list – such as the Range Rover and Bentley Bentayga – as their six-figure price tags place them beyond the reach of most families. If you’re interested in a family car with lashings of luxury, you can read our dedicated list of the best luxury SUVs, many of which have seven seats.

The best seven-seater cars on sale

Read on for our full run-down of the best seven-seater cars on sale today.

Skoda Kodiaq review – more practical and higher quality than before

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (3)

Carbuyer rating

4.3 out of 5

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The Skoda Kodiaq is the company’s largest offering and a greatly impressive all-round package – so much so that it won our 2024 Carbuyer award for the best large family car.

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What marks it out is the fantastic combination of style, practicality, fuel economy and value it offers. It’s also good to drive – comfortable when it needs to be, but still engaging when the going gets twisty. Under the bonnet there’s a familiar range of Volkswagen Group petrol and diesel engines that produce all the punch you could want, without breaking the bank when it comes to fuel economy.

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All Kodiaqs, bar the entry-level SE Drive model, come with seven seats as standard, including the sporty Kodiaq vRS. When fitted, the third seating row isn't really suited to long journeys or spacious enough for adults, but it's perfect for the school run and other short journeys. Also – and unlike some seven-seaters – the Kodiaq has a usable amount of boot space with all seven seats in place: about 270 litres. Meanwhile, if you drop all five rear seats, you get a maximum 2,005 litres of load space – enough for pretty much any eventuality.

Kia EV9 review – a great seven-seater electric SUV

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (4)

Carbuyer rating

4.5 out of 5

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Despite a hefty £65,000 price tag, the Kia EV9 can't be dismissed. It’s something of a milestone for the brand because, as its most expensive model, it's still able to excel in the electric SUV market, even against premium competitors. It’s massive, comfortable and quiet, and makes for a compelling electric alternative to the other seven-seaters on this list.

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At over five metres long, there’s no hiding the EV9’s size on the move. It feels like a big car along our narrow British roads, but the responsive electric powertrain means it never feels short on power. Its large exterior dimensions translate to a vast cabin which features a completely flat floor, providing plenty of space for up to seven passengers. Kia offers a six-seater layout for the EV9, too – complete with two comfortable swivelling captain’s chairs in the middle row – but all variants are roomy enough for families.

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The cabin is dotted with helpful features that make it a pleasant place to spend time, albeit not quite as luxurious as a BMW X7. Technology is strong, though, with a pair of large digital displays up front and plenty of USB ports throughout.

The Hyundai Santa Fe is confidently and unashamedly boxy, with a chunky, squared-off look that stands out amongst most modern SUVs with swoopier styling. However, that bold design pays dividends on the inside, resulting in a vast cabin that can accommodate up to seven adults in comfort.

The cabin isn’t just spacious, it’s well-equipped, too, featuring all the tech you could want and premium materials for all the main touch points and surfaces. There are two large digital displays – one sitting ahead of the driver and another for the infotainment – while we like that Hyundai has retained physical controls for important functions, such as climate control and media volume. Importantly, the third row of seats is big enough for adults to sit comfortably on long journeys – something that many seven-seat SUVs can’t match. Like the Kia EV9, there’s an optional six-seater layout, too, swapping the second row for two swivelling captain’s chairs.

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While the Santa Fe’s blunt design doesn’t look very aerodynamic, a choice of hybrid and plug-in hybrid petrol engines should make it fairly fuel-efficient for its class. Hyundai’s decision to prioritise comfort over speed further bolsters its family-hauling credentials.

Volkswagen Caddy MPV review

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (6)

Carbuyer rating

4 out of 5

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If you are shopping for a seven-seat vehicle but don't want to give up the driving experience and efficiency of a car, then the Volkswagen Caddy MPV is a great option. From behind the wheel, it feels no different to driving a Volkswagen Golf, but packs far more space. Plus, the sliding rear doors are an added advantage for getting people in and out. None of the seven passengers will struggle for headroom, either – the roofline is several inches higher than that of a Golf, bringing even more space.

There is no getting away from the boxy shape of the van that the Caddy MPV is based on, but with some nifty styling tweaks, the MPV model sets itself apart from its commercial cousin. Inside, there are buttons and screens shared with a VW Golf surrounded by hard-wearing plastics that should stand up to the worst that children and dogs can throw at it. Sure, an SUV is trendier, but if practicality is your priority, then the Caddy should be near the top of your list, especially since it represents great value for money at under £30,000.

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The Caddy MPV is also available as a Maxi variant which is useful if you regularly carry seven and need lots of boot space. The standard variant has 191 litres of space with all seven seats up and 1,213 with just five seats; the Maxi takes those numbers to 446 litres and 1,720 litres.

Dacia Jogger review - the best-value seven-seater

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (7)

Carbuyer rating

3.7 out of 5

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If you thought the Volkswagen Caddy seemed like good value, the Dacia Jogger takes things a step further. Starting from just over £18,000 you won’t find a new seven-seater car for less.

The price has marginally crept up since the Jogger first arrived in 2021, but the introduction of a new hybrid model makes the MPV more versatile than ever, combining its great practicality with even lower running costs. Baseline Essential models are only available with the simple, yet capable petrol engine, and for the hybrid you’ll have to step up to mid-range Expression trim, starting around a very reasonable £23,000 at the time of writing. The interior is fairly spartan and it lacks some of the latest safety and assistance tech, but there’s no denying the Jogger’s great value for money.

Boot space is more limited than its larger, and more expensive rivals, with 213 litres available if the third row seats are up and 699 litres with the third row folded down. However, there are storage compartments dotted around the car, adding up to an additional 23 litres, and maximising handy storage for occupants.

Kia Sorento review – a great SUV now made even better

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (8)

Carbuyer rating

4.3 out of 5

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A previous winner of Best Family Car in our 2022 Carbuyer Car of the Year awards, the Kia Sorento continues to prove itself as a great family car that combines space and a lavishly-equipped interior. It even performs admirably as a load-lugger, with 2,011 litres of boot space with all the rear seats folded down.

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In top-spec Edition trim, the Sorento comes equipped with all the kit you could possibly want, from a head-up display to a 360-degree parking camera. For a while, this was the only trim the Kia Sorento was offered in due to Covid-19-related supply shortages, but the cheaper Vision models have since returned. There’s a choice of petrol or diesel engines and all models come with four-wheel drive.

Whichever model you choose, you’ll get a third row of seats. They’re not as big as some MPV rivals, but there’s a surprising amount of head and knee room that will allow smaller adults to fit for shorter trips. Kids should squeeze in without any issue, and all passengers get their own cup holder and USB port for charging devices. A facelifted model is on the way, too, adding the brand’s latest styling touches along with a refreshed interior.

Volkswagen Multivan MPV review

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (9)

Carbuyer rating

4 out of 5

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Until the seven-seater Volkswagen ID.Buzz EV appears, the Volkswagen Multivan is the largest seven-seater that the German marque offers. From the driver’s seat, the Multivan is similar to the Volkswagen Golf, with a digital instrument cluster, large central infotainment screen and plenty of high-quality materials.

Unlike the Golf, the Multivan’s interior is cavernous, with 469 litres behind the third row of seats, masses of headroom and flexible seating to suit any family situation. There are plenty of smart features to keep people happy on long journeys too, such as a sliding centre console that can be used as a table.

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The Multivan is available with diesel, petrol, and plug-in hybrid power, meaning there should be an option to suit whether you are a city driver or do most of your miles on the motorway. All that space does come at a price, however. A starting price of just under £50,000 makes the Multivan some £20,000 more expensive than its slightly smaller Caddy sibling – we think the cheaper of the two will suit most families just fine.

Land Rover Defender review - iconic 4x4 reinvented

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (10)

Carbuyer rating

4.4 out of 5

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If you’re after an off-road capable seven-seater, then the Defender ticks both those boxes. It had a tough job on its hands when it took over from the classic Defender a few years ago, but the latest car is definitely worthy of the nameplate, and is surprisingly versatile.

Defender 110 models can be configured with a number of seating layouts. The standard car gets five seats, but buyers can add an optional middle jumpseat in the front for a six-seater layout, or even choose to add an extra third row for seven seats. There’s even the option of an eight-seater version if you go for the stretched Defender 130. If you’ve got a lot of people to ferry around over rough terrain, you’re well-catered for, but be warned that the third row of seats is rather cramped – it’s best suited for children.

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While the Defender name is synonymous with rough and ready no frills off-roading, the latest Defender is much more luxurious, getting Land Rover’s Pivi Pro infotainment system, sumptuous leather upholstery, and gadgetry such as a digital instrument cluster, depending on which of the various trims you go for. You’ll need at least £67,000 for a seven-seater Defender, though, and be prepared for that price to rise once you’ve ticked a few option boxes.

Citroën Berlingo MPV review

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (11)

Carbuyer rating

3.7 out of 5

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Citroen offers the electric version of its Berlingo MPV, the e-Berlingo, in a seven-seater XL model, offering the low running costs and zero emissions associated with an EV along with extra practicality for a large family. Admittedly, the Citroen e-Berlingo XL doesn’t do much to hide its van-like origins, and most won’t buy it for the way this upright MPV looks. However, when we drove the smaller five-seater model we were surprised by its manners – it won’t feel too alien to drive if you’re coming from a more conventional family car, although the XL’s added length might take some getting used to.

The e-Berlingo XL is best suited to buyers taking short trips around town, given its official electric range of up to 177 miles to a charge, which could be hard to manage if you’re driving around with the car fully occupied. Buyers who regularly need to do longer trips might be best looking elsewhere though, as the petrol and diesel Berlingo is only offered with five seats. A facelifted model is soon to appear, bringing an extra 22 miles of electric range.

Peugeot 5008 review - a capable and frugal 7-seater

Top 10 best 7-seater cars 2024 | Carbuyer (12)

Carbuyer rating

4.1 out of 5

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If you’re after a stylish seven-seater but don’t want to break the bank, the Peugeot 5008 should be on your shortlist. The 5008 has long since abandoned the MPV design of its predecessor, and the latest model takes on the jacked-up SUV proportions that have become commonplace on our roads. Interior space has been slightly compromised during this transition, but there are still seven seats – although the rearmost row is only suitable for children.

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Just like the exterior, the cabin of the 5008 feels refreshingly different from many SUVs on sale today, with a quirky design and Peugeot’s i-co*ckpit dashboard layout. Legroom is excellent in the front two rows, but avoid the sunroof if you’ll be carrying passengers six-foot and over – it eats into headroom. The third row of seats are cramped, limiting their use to children or small adults at a pinch. If you only need them for the occasional short journey, the Peugeot 5008 still appeals as a good all-round family car, but look elsewhere on this list for a more spacious seven-seater.

Seven-seater buying guide: MPV or SUV?

Vehicles in the seven-seater class have changed greatly since the first few entered the market in the eighties. The MPV (Multi-Purpose Vehicle), also known as the people-carrier, became popular when the Renault Espace, and later, the Ford Galaxy, entered the market and offered car-like dynamics with vast space.

The market for seven-seaters has expanded to not only include MPVs, but SUVs in all shapes and sizes. The expansion means that seven-seaters are no longer simply aimed at families wanting the most value for their money, but instead range from the humble Dacia Jogger at over £18,000 to over £100,000 for a range-topping Land Rover Defender or Mercedes GLS.

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But which is right for you? Like any car purchase, it depends on your priorities. If you’re strictly after something with seven seats, and you plan on using all of those seats regularly, then an MPV is probably your best bet. They tend to offer more interior space – particularly headroom – over an SUV, while the rear-most seats are usually roomier and more comfortable.

Van-based MPVs, such as the Volkswagen Caddy and Citroen Berlingo, are the most comfortable for seven, as they feature individual rear seats for each passenger. The trade off is usually styling – van-like interior space means van-like looks. This may not be a big deal for most families, but if you want something stylish, the latest SUVs will tick that box.

The extra row of seats found in the back of a seven-seater SUV tends to be smaller. This makes them fine for children or small adults on short journeys, but taller adults may find them uncomfortable over long distances. Handy at a pinch, but best to look at an MPV if you plan on using them regularly. This isn’t a hard-and-fast rule, so it’s always worth bringing the whole family along for a test drive.

One thing all seven-seaters share, though, is versatility. More important than the sheer amount of interior space on offer is how cleverly it's used. Some MPVs and SUVs are full of clever storage compartments and practical features that become indispensable in family life. And, in many cases, these virtues come without sacrificing a pleasant driving experience.

Check out our guideto the best large family cars...

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  • EV9
  • 5008
  • Berlingo
  • Santa Fe
  • Defender
  • 7-seater cars
  • Multivan
  • Sorento
  • Family cars
  • Jogger
  • Cars
  • Caddy
  • Kodiaq

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Charlie Harvey

Charlie writes and edits news, review and advice articles for Carbuyer, as well as publishing content to its social media platforms.Hehas also been a regular contributor to its sister titles Auto Express, DrivingElectricandevo. As well as being consumed by everything automotive, Charlie is a speaker of five languages and once lived in Chile, Siberia and the Czech Republic, returning to the UK to write about his life-long passion: cars.

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