Whether you’re a young family on a budget or have a home-made football team to taxi around, you’ll find the best buys here.
Have a look at the following families – and see which one matches your automotive requirements the best…
Young family of three
Small urban car required
Space for clutter is vital
Taxi for two teenagers
Large six- or seven-seater
Three young children
...but no MPVs please
Three young childrenThe Stevensons Names
Alice (3)Annual mileage
‘We need space for three child seats
, but we can’t stand the look of MPVs’
Budget available: 17kNissan Qashqai +2 1.6 VisiaList price
£16,695 Target price
The seven-seat Qashqai is ideal for families with three kids in child seats. This new entry-level 1.6 petrol model makes sound financial sense, too, with an economical engine and low carbon dioxide emissions. Chunky crossover styling avoids any hint of an MPV look – there’ll be no mistaking this family car for a bus with windows.
Budget available: £17-£20kPeugeot 308 SW 1.6 HDi 110 Sport 7stList price
£20,555 Target price
Child 81% Adult 82%
MPV practicality in the body of an estate. It’s not cheap, though, because only top-end Sport and SE models can be had with seven seats, a £510 option. The extra seats are wide enough for most child seats, but headroom for older kids is tight. Third-row legroom can be improved by sliding the middle row forward, and the boot is huge.
Budget available: £20k-£25kKia Sorento 2.2 CRDi 1 2WDList price
£22,495 Target price
Child 84% Adult 87%
Based on the Hyundai Santa Fe
, the Sorento is just as practical but has a dash more style. There’s plenty of headroom in the rearmost seats, so even adults will be comfortable on short trips. This front-wheel-drive model won’t cost a fortune to run, either – it manages 43mpg. Like all Kias, the Sorento has a seven-year warranty.
Budget available: £25k-£30kVolvo XC90 2.4 D5 ActiveList price
£30,995 Target price
Child: not tested Adult 5 stars
If you’re spending this kind of cash and need space for three child seats, the XC90 is your best bet. It has been around a while, but it’s still classy and comfortable. Huge discounts are available, which makes it even more tempting. We’d stick with entry-level Active trim. Otherwise, the price creeps into Land Rover Discovery territory.
Budget available: £30k-£35kLand Rover Discovery 3.0 TDV6 GSList price
£35,295 Target price
Child 4 stars Adult 4 stars
One of the greatest all-rounders ever. Many Discovery buyers will spend extra on XS trim – which adds leather seats and sat-nav – but this GS model is just as practical and £6000 cheaper. The Disco will take three child seats with ease, but it’s just as adept at playing swanky executive transport when you’re not in family mode.
Used bargainsFrom £11,495 Chevrolet Captiva
2.0 VCDi LTX,
’07/57, 15,000 miles
This 4x4 has a roomy and comfortable cabin, and seven-seat models will take three child seats with ease. Used models are rare, but worth finding.From £25,250 Audi Q7
quattro SE, ’07/07, 31,000 miles
This classy 4x4 is good to drive and well equipped. It comes with seven seats as standard, plus leather trim, climate control, electrically adjustable seats and air suspension.