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If you’ve got a large family, or just a requirement to regularly carry more than five people, you’ll want to consider a seven-seater car. Once the preserve of boxy MPVs (also known as people-carriers, today you can get a seven-seater car in various different forms. Buying used rather than new will almost definitely save you a large chunk of cash, as the main drop in value has been swallowed up by someone else.
By their nature 7-seater cars tend to be larger in order to fit in an extra row of seats – usually two seats, often that fold down, mounted behind the second row. Some of our favourite large seater cars include big, luxurious SUVs like the Volvo XC90, the Audi Q7 and the Land Rover Defender, but there are also more affordable options, such as the Dacia Jogger, the Peugeot 5008 and the Skoda Kodiaq.
There’s one overriding reason for buying a used seven-seater car – you need more than five seats. Buyers of this type of car do so for practicality reasons, but that doesn’t mean you need to sacrifice style. Today, even the boxiest of MPVs have good looks applied to them, and some of the big 7-seater SUVs are very smart.
Most will have flexible seating arrangements, meaning you can fold the rearmost row of seats flat when you’re not using them, to create extra boot space. Some will even let you remove the back seats entirely to give yourself van-like load capacity. Many will also include three or even four Isofix child-seat mounting points.
There’s a wide range of options for those looking at 7-seater cars for sale, and which make and model is best for you depends on your priorities. For maximum practicality, look at an MPV. Cars like the Volkswagen Touran, the Ford S-Max and the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer are all great choices, or you could check out a van-based MPV like the Peugeot Rifter, the Ford Tourneo Connect and the Volkswagen Multivan
After something electric? Great used electric seven-seater SUVs include the Kia EV9, the Mercedes-Benz EQS SUV and the Tesla Model X, while there are also a plethora of electric seven-seater MPVs, such as the Citroen e-Berlingo, the Mercedes-Benz EQV and the Volkswagen ID.Buzz.
Some models, especially SUVs, will be available with four-wheel drive, which could be useful if you need to drive off-road or live somewhere with regular inhospitable weather.
If practicality is at the top of your list of priorities in a used seven-seater car, look at how well the model you’re considering will fit your life.
Is there enough space? Some third-row seats can be quite tight, so if you’ve got five lanky teenagers to carry around you’ll need to ensure there’s room for them. Other seven-seaters install the third-row seats at the expense of boot space, so check that you’ll be able to carry the stuff you need as well as passengers.
Other aspects to consider include access – some MPVs have sliding side doors which are very useful when loading and unloading passengers, but some have large boot lids that require lots of space behind to open. Make sure too that there’s enough room for child seats – some seven-seater cars have mounting points for three, but not all do.
When it comes to engines, think about how you’ll use the car. If you drive mostly short journeys around town, consider an electric car or a plug-in hybrid – if you have somewhere to charge it. Otherwise, petrol is often a good bed, but if you do a lot of longer journeys then diesel may be a better fit.
If you're not sure if a used SUV car is quite right for you, we've got 1000s of used cars for sale to suit all budgets and needs.
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