Used Car of the Year Awards 2023: 7-seaters

With living costs on the rise, getting a good deal on your next car is more important than ever. That's where our Used Car Awards come in. These are our favourite seven-seaters...

Used 7-seater of the Year

Peugeot 5008

What Car? Used Car of the Year Awards 2023 logo

Prices from £18,000

Few companies have reinvented themselves as thoroughly – and as often – as Peugeot has in its history, with the brand specialising in saws, coffee grinders and bicycles (among other things) before it built its first car. So, it’s perhaps not surprising that it was prepared to rip up the template set by the original Peugeot 5008 when it introduced the second-generation version in 2017.

Out went the functional but frumpy MPV styling of the original, and in its place we got a far more desirable SUV body. But, crucially, while the 5008 became a hell of a lot more stylish, practicality wasn’t sacrificed; it can seat seven, and third-row passengers get far more room than they do in the rival Seat Tarraco and Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace.

The Skoda Kodiaq is a closer match in terms of space, but it still isn’t as comfortable for three people sitting side by side in the second row, due to its inferior shoulder room. What’s more, the 5008’s interior feels plusher, with an eclectic mix of materials that work harmoniously to give it the sort of upmarket feel you usually find only in pricey, premium-badged models.

Peugeot 5008 dashboard

Refinement is another strength, with wind and road noise well contained at motorway speeds and engine noise generally muted. That said, we’d recommend seeking out a 1.2 Puretech model; not only is this 129bhp petrol the smoothest engine of the lot, but it’s also cheap to run, packs enough punch for most people’s needs and sells in big enough numbers to give you plenty of used ones to choose from.

Push hard and the Tarraco, Kodiaq and Tiguan Allspace ultimately offer more grip and resist body lean better through corners. However, the 5008 never feels anything less than surefooted and is easy to drive. Plus, its supple yet well-controlled ride makes it as adept at taking the sting out of urban potholes as it is playing the relaxing long-distance cruiser.

Used examples are now really good value, too, especially when compared with rivals of a similar age, while the 5008 proved to be one of the most dependable models Peugeot makes, with a solid 90.9% score in the 2022 What Car? Reliability Survey.

Also consider...

Best MPV

Citroën Grand C4 SpaceTourer (2018-2022)

Citroën Grand C4 Spacetourer 1.2 Puretech 130 Touch Edition

Prices from £13,000 Our pick 1.6 Blue HDi Feel

Want the space and seating flexibility of the Peugeot 5008 for a lower price? Then as long as you’re prepared to live without SUV styling, the Citroën Grand C4 Spacetourer is a great option.

Not only do you get five individual rear seats that are easier to fold flat than those of the Ford S-Max and Vauxhall Zafira Tourer, but the Spacetourer also has more storage areas inside, and visibility is superb.

The fact that the steering is super-light also helps with low-speed manoeuvres. And while there’s a significant amount of body lean in bends, the pay-off is a supple ride that’s great at soaking up bumps.

Examples with our preferred 1.6-litre diesel engine that have covered sensible miles are available for around £13,000. Or if you want to spend even less, the older Grand C4 Picasso (which is virtually identical) can be bought for as little as £5k.

Read our full used Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer review >>

Find a used Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer for sale >>

Best for towing

Hyundai Santa Fe (2013-2018)

Used Hyundai Santa Fe 13-present

Prices from £9000 Our pick 2.2 CRDi Premium

Big SUVs tend to make the best tow cars, particularly when fitted with punchy diesel engines. The trouble is, such models tend to have big, punchy prices, too. However, the previous- generation Hyundai Santa Fe is an exception.

Older examples can be bought for as little as £9000, but even 2018 cars that are still covered by the five-year, unlimited-mileage manufacturer warranty start at around £16,000.

For that, you’ll be getting a car that can pull up to 2500kg with ease; it feels stable and secure right up to motorway speeds. And although the suspension is set up to favour a comfy ride over crisp handling, the Santa Fe copes with an emergency lane change surprisingly well, even
with a caravan on the back.

When new, most examples were specified with the optional automatic gearbox, which suits the car better than the manual.

Read our full used Hyundai Santa Fe review >>

Find a used Hyundai Santa Fe for sale >>

Best high-end choice

Audi Q7 (2015-present)

Audi Q7

Prices from £23,000 Our pick 3.0 TDI quattro S line

If you’ve got a big budget, look no further than the current Audi Q7 – an SUV that can seat seven people in luxury and comfort, and which combines strong performance with surprisingly agile handling.

Used prices start at around £23,000, but for that you’ll get an early example with a high mileage. Instead, we’d suggest spending around £30,000 to get a less-travelled 2018 car.

That’s the sweet spot, because a 2019 facelift saw the user-friendly physical controls for the infotainment system and climate control ditched in favour of more distracting touchscreens. Plus, the 3.0 TDI diesel engine in the pre-facelift Q7 is smoother than the more powerful 50 TDI unit of the latest car.

You might also be tempted by a used Volvo XC90 – not least because versions of the same vintage are available for less money. However, the Q7 is quieter and offers a far more cosseting ride.

Read our full used Audi Q7 review >>

Find a used Audi Q7 for sale >>

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