Best 7-seat cars 2023
Whether you're looking for a part-time seven-seater or a car to carry that many people on a regular basis, check out which ones to go for – and which to avoid...
If you need a car with seven seats, an MPV might seem like the only choice. But plenty of SUVs are also worth considering.
Before deciding which model is best for you, it's important to consider whether you'll be carrying seven people on a daily basis, whether you need a large boot on occasions when all seven seats are in use, and whether you'd prefer the raised driving position of an SUV or something more saloon-like.
There's an awful lot to factor in, so here we count down the top 10 seven-seaters – and reveal the ones that are best avoided.
Like all Dacias, the Jogger is very temptingly priced, but don't think that means you have to put up with big compromises.
It's a well-thought-out people mover with genuine seven-seat usability, decent driving dynamics and plenty of standard equipment. Indeed, even entry-level versions come with cruise control, electric front windows and air conditioning.
You can only have the Jogger with a 109bhp 1.0-litre petrol engine at the moment. That’s punchy enough for most situations, but more powerful versions are on the way, including a frugal hybrid that should help to lower your running costs.
- Extremely well priced
- Genuine seven-seat usability
- Easy to drive
- Needs more power when fully loaded
- Poor safety rating
- Middle row seats don’t slide back and forth
Land Rover Defender 130
The new Defender is a rugged SUV that fuses fantastic off-road ability (especially if you add the optional locking rear differential) with good on-road manners.
If you go for the stretched 130 version, it also offers rearmost seats that are genuinely usable for adults, and which actually have more leg room for third-row passengers than you’d find in plenty of luxury SUVs.
Even with all seats in use, there’s still enough space in the Defender for your weekly shop, even though there’s no underfloor storage like there is in the shorter Defender 90.
With a combination of off-road and passenger-carrying ability, then, the Defender 130 is effectively in a class of one.
- Excellent off road
- Up to seven seats
- Slow depreciation
- Higher trim levels are very pricey
- Fuel economy and CO2 emissions are poor
- Tiny boot in 90 models
Land Rover Discovery
Much like its predecessor, the latest Land Rover Discovery is a whopping great seven-seater that feels equally at home both on road and off it.
However, today's Discovery is much classier inside and better to drive than the models that came before it. Indeed, the touchscreen infotainment system you get as standard looks sharp and is responsive, while most of the areas you touch regularly feel pleasantly plush.
The Discovery even undercuts many of its seven-seat rivals on price, and considering how much kit you get for your money, it represents pretty good value. Add in slow depreciation and it’s easy to recommend.
- Brilliant off road
- Roomy third row seats
- Attractive PCP deals
- Rivals are quieter
- Wallowy handling
- Terrible reliability
If the cars so far on this list have looked a little too expensive for you, the Skoda Kodiaq could be right up your street. Like most Skodas, it represents great value for money, especially if you stick with the lower engines and trims.
Indeed, our favourite 1.5-litre petrol option is among the cheapest in the range yet provides all the pep you could reasonably want – even if you plan on filling every seat.
Speaking of seats, front and second-row passengers get plenty of space, and while third-row passengers will be better off in the rival Peugeot 5008, most people will be fine back there for shorter trips.
- Classy interior
- Relatively spacious with a decent boot
- Good value if you stick to the cheaper trims
- Top-of-the-range versions are pricey
- Peugeot 5008 is even more practical
- Unsettled low-speed ride
Just because you're wearing your sensible trousers when buying a new MPV rather than a fashionable SUV, it doesn’t mean you have to slum it.
Opt for a Volkswagen Touran and you’ll find the same level of plushness that you’d get in a Volkswagen Golf family car, but with far greater practicality.
All five of its rear seats feature Isofix child seat mounting points, so it’s useful for growing families, and there’s enough space for adults.
As a bonus, the Touran drives better than the rival Citroën Grand C4 SpaceTourer. And although there’s no hybrid or plug-in hybrid option, the sole petrol engine on offer should be reasonable economical.
- Superb space and practicality
- Tempting PCP finance deals and big discounts
- Great to drive by MPV standards
- Rivals offer more economical diesel or hybrid engines
- Ford Galaxy has more third row space
- Automatic gearbox can be hesitant
In our favoured hybrid form, the Kia Sorento combines good real-world fuel economy with comparatively low CO2 emissions, despite this being a hugely spacious seven-seater.
Indeed, there’s more room for third-row passengers to stretch out than there is in most rivals, and the two third-row seats both come with Isofix mounting points for child seats.
You get a forgiving ride and accurate steering, too, while the warranty lasts for seven years. It’s good news on the kit front, too, because you get everything you’re likely to want as standard, including adaptive cruise control, heated front seats and parking aids.
- Seven seats fit for adults
- A massive boot
- Well equipped
- Cheaper trims no longer available
- Hybrid engine isn't as fuel efficient as a Honda CR-V's
- Interior quality not as good as similarly priced premium rivals
The Peugeot 5008 combines MPV-like versatility with chunky SUV looks. It handles tidily, with light steering helping to make manoeuvring easy in the city, plus the ride is comfortable and the interior is seriously plush.
You might think that our recommended 129bhp 1.2-litre petrol engine might struggle to haul around a big and heavy car like this, but that's not the case. In fact, this engine pulls surprisingly well even with seven people on board.
There are diesel-engined alternatives if you’ll be covering enough miles to justify one, but no hybrid or plug-in hybrid options.
- Loads of interior space for the money
- Stylish and plush-feeling interior
- Competitive fuel economy
- Poor rear head room with the optional sunroof fitted
- Rivals have more diverse engine lineups
- Slow-witted infotainment system
The Audi Q7 is an incredible all-rounder, combining a comfy ride with spacious seating for seven and exceptional interior quality.
Indeed, no matter which surface your hands touch or your eyes look at, you’ll be impressed both with the quality of materials on offer and how well screwed together it all is.
The Q7’s strongest suit of all, however, is comfort. It soaks up impacts from speed bumps and other road imperfections with aplomb and demolishes long journeys like a private jet.
The 55 TFSI petrol is our favoured choice among the engine options, and has a punchy V6 engine with 335bhp.
- Smooth and powerful engines
- Pillowy ride in Sport and S line trims
- Superb interior quality
- Touchscreen infotainment system
- Third-row space is better in the BMW X7
- Entry-level Sport trim misses some important kit
The only thing bigger than the BMW X7’s gigantic front grille is the car itself, so if you’ve got a big budget and a big family, it should definitely be on your shortlist.
As a bonus, the interior is as flashy as it is sturdy, and features one of the best infotainment systems you’ll find in any new car. Plus, refinement is so impressive that someone in the third row can have a conversation with those up front without raising their voice.
Engine options range from the powerful to mega-powerful, but our preferred choice is the 347bhp xDrive40d.
- Super quiet and comfortable
- Incredibly spacious and practical
- Great infotainment system
- There are cheaper alternatives
- Feels its size and weight on the road
- Looks won’t be to all tastes
Hyundai Santa Fe
As good as the other seven-seaters on this list are, the best of all is the Hyundai Santa Fe.
This car combines everything a a seven-seater buyer is looking for – namely, lots of space, comfort and kit, along with the potential for low running costs.
There are both regular and plug-in hybrid options on offer, with the latter making especially good sense for company car drivers, thanks to its competitive electric range of up to 36 miles, which helps to keep tax bills low.
Sealing the Santa Fe’s top spot here is the fact that our recommended Premium trim comes with everything you could want yet isn't too expensive.
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- Seven seats fit for adults
- Loads of standard kit
- Long warranty
- So-so performance
- Some wind noise
- Ultimate trim is pricey
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