Best 7-seat SUVs and 4x4s 2020

Whether you're planning to carry seven people on a regular basis or just need an occasional third row of seats, there’s plenty of choice. But which SUVs are best - and which are best avoided?...


Author Avatar
by
What Car? team

Best seven-seat SUVs

Gone are the days when anyone in the market for a seven-seater had to choose a boxy MPV. Now there are plenty of SUVs and 4x4s that give you the same sort of practicality but a lot more style. And they often have the added bonus of being able to tow a caravan or boat, or traverse a muddy field.

True, these are big cars, so you need to choose the right engine to avoid frightening fuel bills. But third-row passengers don’t have to feel second-class and there’s certainly no need to put up with an uncomfortable ride or spartan interior.

Here, then, we count down the top 10 seven-seat SUVs, and reveal the one to avoid. To read more about a particular car or secure a discount without any haggling, just click on the appropriate link.

10

Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace

What Car? Target Price from

£30,104

RRP from £32,195 to £46,360

See new car deals Save up to £2,958 with What Car?

Take the regular Volkswagen Tiguan, add some more space and two occasional seats, and hey presto, you've got the Tiguan Allspace. The best-selling 148bhp 2.0-litre diesel-engined model offers plenty of pace, while even entry-level versions get tri-zone climate control, 17in alloy wheels and a front and rear parking sensors.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Good to drive
  • High-quality interior
  • Flexible seating layout

Cons

  • Expensive next to seven-seat rivals
  • Third-row seats are only a last resort
  • CO2 emissions could be lower
9

Hyundai Santa Fe

What Car? Target Price from

£36,984

RRP from £39,420 to £44,465

See new car deals Save up to £2,728 with What Car?

There's enough room for tall(ish) adults in the Santa Fe's third row, plus the boot is big and the warranty long. You also get lots of equipment, even if you stick with relatively lowly SE trim, which is just as well, because the Santa Fe is quite pricey.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Huge boot
  • Easy-to-configure seating
  • Long warranty

Cons

  • Uncompetitive PCP deals
  • Interior materials aren’t plush
8

Volvo XC90

What Car? Target Price from

£50,737

RRP from £54,400 to £73,970

See new car deals Save up to £5,122 with What Car?

The latest version of Volvo's XC90 is enjoyable to drive and much smarter than its predecessor inside, yet it remains every bit as practical, with flexible seating and a huge boot. Only average refinement and a slightly unsettled ride stop it finishing higher.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Classy interior
  • Seven seats come as standard
  • Plug-in hybrid options

Cons

  • Unsettled ride
  • Road and suspension noise
  • Fiddly infotainment system
7

Land Rover Discovery

What Car? Target Price from

£45,133

RRP from £48,015 to £71,120

See new car deals Save up to £4,306 with What Car?

Now in its fifth generation, the Discovery is hugely spacious, impressively classy and just as capable off the road as on it. Go for one of the diesel engines and SE trim to keep the price down. And make sure you extend the warranty if you plan to keep it for more than three years, because Land Rover doesn't have a good reliability record.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Brilliant off road
  • Roomy third row space
  • Attractive PCP deals

Cons

  • Audi Q7 is classier inside
  • Average to drive on road
  • Fuel economy and CO2 emissions
6

BMW X5

What Car? Target Price from

£55,578

RRP from £59,785 to £77,410

See new car deals Save up to £5,992 with What Car?

BMW's original X5 was one of the first road-focused 4x4s, and this latest model sticks closely to that car's winning formula, with sharper handling than most rivals. On the inside, there’s plenty of space five and a commanding driving position. Some rivals offer more space in the third row, though.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Fantastic plug-in hybrid version
  • Great to drive
  • Classy, well-designed interior

Cons

  • Expensive to buy
  • Third row of seats costs extra
  • Relatively small boot
5

Skoda Kodiaq

What Car? Target Price from

£24,820

RRP from £26,485 to £42,120

See new car deals Save up to £2,797 with What Car?

The Kodiaq is the largest SUV Skoda makes, and a comfortable choice with a smart and practical interior. Just bear in mind that you have to be careful when speccing it because it's easy to push the price well north of £30k if you start adding options, at which point it makes less sense.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Classy interior
  • Relatively spacious with a decent boot
  • Good value if you stick to the cheaper trims

Cons

  • Top-of-the-range versions are pricey
  • Peugeot 5008 is even more practical
  • Unsettled low-speed ride
4

BMW X7

What Car? Target Price from

£71,892

RRP from £76,305 to £114,975

See new car deals Save up to £6,653 with What Car?

Big, bold, comfortable, and with a luxurious interior – the X7 is a very impressive recent addition to BMW’s line-up and the luxury SUV class. It's also one of the most practical seven-seaters of all; even six-footers will have plenty of space in the third row, while the boot is enormous when those seats are folded away.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Super quiet and comfortable
  • Incredibly spacious and practical
  • Outstanding infotainment system

Cons

  • There are cheaper alternatives
  • Feels its size and weight on the road
  • Looks won’t be to all tastes
3

Land Rover Discovery Sport

What Car? Target Price from

£31,915

RRP from £31,915 to £51,620

See new car deals Save up to £3,352 with What Car?

A former Large SUV of the Year, the Discovery Sport sits below the full-size Discovery in the Land Rover range. However, it's still available with seven seats, has a smart and user-friendly interior and holds its value well. It's even well priced by class standards and was recently updated to make it more efficient.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Lots of passenger space
  • Flexible seven-seat capability
  • Lengthy equipment list

Cons

  • Terrible reliability
  • Compromised ride comfort on larger wheels
  • So-so performance
  • Poor fuel economy and CO2 emissions
2

Peugeot 5008

What Car? Target Price from

£29,299

RRP from £29,585 to £40,580

See new car deals Save up to £396 with What Car?

The Peugeot 5008 combines MPV-esque versatility with SUV looks, plus it handles tidily, the ride is comfortable, and it's very well priced. Add in a seriously plush interior and you've got a sensational all-rounder.

Read new car review

Pros

  • Loads of interior space for the money
  • Stylish and plush-feeling interior
  • Competitive fuel economy and CO2 emissions

Cons

  • Terrible rear head room with panoramic roof fitted
  • Not as well equipped as some rivals
  • Slow-witted infotainment system
1

Audi Q7

What Car? Target Price from

£52,129

RRP from £56,935 to £96,880

See new car deals Save up to £7,627 with What Car?

Like the XC90 and X5, the Q7 has four-wheel drive as standard but is geared towards surefooted on-road use, rather than traversing muddy fields. It’s also an extremely practical car, thanks to a generously proportioned interior and a huge boot. But what really sets the Q7 apart is its stunning interior, sensational refinement and pillowy ride.

For all the latest reviews, advice and new car deals, sign up to the What Car? newsletter here

Read new car review

Pros

  • Smooth and powerful engines
  • Pillowy ride in Sport and S line trims
  • Stunning interior quality

Cons

  • Rivals have better infotainment systems
  • Third-row space is better in the BMW X7
  • Plug-in hybrid model is average to drive

And the 7-seat SUV to avoid...

Mitsubishi Shogun Sport
Mitsubishi Shogun Sport

Few SUVs can match the Shogun Sport off road. Unfortunately, back on Tarmac it's let down by its agricultural engine, numb steering and bumpy ride. The interior feels cheap, too. Read our review

Spinner