New or used: 7-seat SUVs

If you're looking for a seven-seat SUV, the Peugeot 5008 is one of the best new buys. But what could you have for the same money if you bought a used car?...

New and used SUVs

For years, the MPV was the go-to vehicle for anyone prioritising space, especially if they needed to seat seven people. However, the last few years have seen a huge growth in the popularity of the SUV, whose more rugged looks and raised-up driving positions have won the hearts of the buying public, and many of which can also seat seven.

Once you've established what sort of car you want, though, there is another question to answer: whether to buy new or used. Buying new might get you a long warranty and all the latest tech, but buying used unlocks a world of possibilities because it gives you the option to purchase a larger and more refined car for the same money. 

Here, we're pitching one of our favourite new SUVs, the Peugeot 5008, against a trio of used rivals, to see if that's an option worth pursuing.  

Buying new

Peugeot 5008 front cornering

Peugeot 5008
Our pick
1.2 Puretech 130 Active Premium+
List price £36,595 Target Price £34,196 

We love the Peugeot 5008. Its chunky good looks cover a spacious and versatile interior that's delightfully plush too. It's good to drive, with light steering and tidy handling, and it's got more than enough oomph to haul the seven-seat 5008 around, even with our favourite engine option, the relatively small 1.2-litre, three-cylinder, under its bonnet. It's also impressively refined. Only a rather slow-to-respond infotainment system counts against it in our book.

Read our full Peugeot 5008 review or see Peugeot 5008 deals

Buying used

Audi Q7

Audi Q7
On sale
We found 2019 Audi Q7 3.0 TDI V6 S line, 38,000 miles, £33,500

For about the same price as the 5008, you could put a four-year-old Audi Q7 on your driveway. You'd definitely be moving up a notch here: the Q7 is more spacious, more refined and incredibly classy. According to our latest What Car? Reliability Survey it's also reliable, scoring 95% in the luxury SUV class. On top of that, it's a terrific all-rounder, combining a comfy ride with spacious seating for seven and exceptional interior quality. However, its trump card is comfort: it soaks up impacts from speed bumps and other road imperfections with aplomb and demolishes long journeys.

Read our full used Audi Q7 buying guide or buy a used Audi Q7

Hyundai Santa Fe 2021 front

Hyundai Santa Fe
On sale
We found 2021 Hyundai Santa Fe 2.2 CRDi Premium SE, 25,000 miles, £34,479

The newest car on our list here is the handsome, seven-seat Santa Fe. It's more spacious than the 5008 and better equipped too. Our money would buy you a two-year-old one with three years of the splendid five-year-from-new Hyundai warranty left. in fact, this car combines everything a large SUV buyer is looking for – namely, lots of space, comfort and kit, along with the potential for low running costs. Spend a little more than our budget here and you can even get a plug-in hybrid option with a competitive electric range of up to 36 miles.

Volvo XC90 front cornering

Volvo XC90
On sale
We found 2019 Volvo XC90 T8 R-Design, 80,000 miles, £34,995

The Volvo XC90 has long been one of our favourite seven-seat SUVs, whether bought new or used. It combines a high-quality, spacious and versatile interior with plenty of kit and top-notch safety credentials. Used prices are really tempting now, with the first models starting from just £20,000. You can also get a plug-in hybrid version that can travel up to 36 miles on electric power alone, so if it fits into your lifestyle it could even be cheap to run. But it's the interior that remains its star turn, because it's so exceptionally classy.

Read our full used Volvo XC90 buying guide or Buy a used Volvo XC90

Our verdict

Audi Q7

You won't lose out here whichever car you choose. The 5008 is a top-notch seven-seater and a great everyday car. The Santa Fe is larger and feels even more special than the 5008, though, while the XC90 exudes class and style and in plug-in hybrid form could even be cheap to use on the school run. However, for our money, we'd take the used Audi Q7. It does everything the others can do and then adds an additional layer of refinement as well as unparalleled comfort.

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Read more: Best and worst new seven-seat cars >>