Seven best seven-seaters for the school run

Date Posted 3rd September 2021
Read Time 8 min read

September heralds three words likely to strike fear (or joy?) into child and adult alike: ‘back to school’. With that in mind, making the school run as comfortable and stress-free as possible might be top of your wish list in autumn.

best seven-seaters

With the rise of seven-seater SUVs and a steady selection of traditional MPVs, there’s never been a better time to be in the market. With adaptability and space the major draw, the row behind the driver can carry up to three people while the third row is traditionally pulled up from the boot floor to seat two children.

Here’s seven of the best seven-seaters for you to tackle the school run in:

Peugeot 5008

  • Fuel economy: 49-69mpg
  • Insurance group: 11-23
  • Isofix points: 3

Since its initial release over a decade ago, the Peugeot 5008 has grown in capability to become one of the best-selling SUVs. 

Like its smaller sister car (the 3008), the 5008’s striking looks are undeniable, reflecting the sophisticated high-quality interior. 

Peugeot has nailed the upmarket feel and solid build quality usually recognised only with premium badges, making this an affordable yet high-end feel option.

Aside from aesthetics, the Peugeot isn’t as sharp to drive as a Skoda Kodiaq, but it does deliver an unquestionably comfortable drive. It’s also quiet at high speeds. 

The entry-level 128bhp 1.2-litre engine is surprisingly lively and keen to rev. It’s available with a choice of a manual or automatic gearbox (both six-speed). The more powerful 163bhp, 1.6-litre petrol has a six-speed automatic gearbox only. 

Diesel engine options are a 1.6-litre has 99bhp of 118bhp, and the 2.0-litre engine in 148bhp or 178bhp.

Our first contender, the 5008 is stylish, practical and great to drive. It’s one of the very best seven-seaters on the market. 

Volkswagen Touran

  • Fuel economy: 49mpg
  • Insurance group: 10-24
  • Isofix points: 3

Although the Touran may look van-like, it feels more like a spacious hatchback with a couple of handy extra seats. 

The VW MPV holds the driving capabilities of a Golf – on which it’s based – meaning it’s easy to maneuver around town and into parking spaces.

The Touran has been designed with family life in mind. It comes with seven seats as standard and thanks to its latest update, it offers even more space inside over previous versions and is one of the best seven-seaters for boot space. 

The second row, third row and front passenger backrest can also be flattened, allowing you to easily create a long load-through space. 

Even with five seats in place, you’re rewarded with a whopping 917 litres of boot space. If practicality is your priority, you can’t get much more practical than the Touran.

You have five engine options to choose from – all of which have four cylinders, turbochargers and stop/start technology. 

Petrol engines are available in 1.2 or 1.4-litre, while the diesel options are 1.6 or 2.0 litre.

We give the Touran ticks a lot of boxes – roomy, practical, extremely well built and good to drive – making it one of the best seven-seaters available.

Skoda Kodiaq

  • Fuel economy: 52.3mpg
  • Insurance group: 12-20
  • Isofix points: 3

Skoda’s first seven-seater SUV has proven to be an incredibly practical family car since launch, making it a solid choice for the school run. In fact, it can even brag it has tackled the most extreme school run in the UK:

Despite its sizeable road presence, the Kodiaq isn’t the biggest vehicle in the Skoda range (that distinction sits with the Superb) and yet it manages to fit seven people in actual comfort. Even better, with all seven seats in use the boot space remains highly practical (270 litres) which isn’t always the case in this segment.

With the middle row offering three ISOFIX points and the ability to slide and recline for additional comfort of those sat in the rearmost seats, on top of Skoda’s famed ‘simply clever’ features such as door-edge protectors and an emergency umbrella in the driver-door, it’s the most useful seven-seater on our list.

Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer

  • Fuel economy: 71mpg
  • Insurance group: 17-29
  • Isofix points: 3

The Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer (formerly known as the Grand C4 Picasso) challenges the idea of MPVs looking like a van with windows, adding a certain French flair to the segment.

If you’re looking for something to use around town, shopping trips and school runs, the 1.2-litre petrol is the best option for you. In fact, it’s the only petrol engine available – a 128bhp, 1.2-litre turbo. 

But one thing’s for sure, whichever specification you choose, the SpaceTourer will provide a refined and comfortable drive.

The added bonus of the SpaceTourer: it’s hugely practical. It’s a firm favourite among larger families, with enough room to comfortably accommodate seven adults. 

Its folding seat arrangement is one of the best we’ve seen, while the room in the second row with three full-sized seats provides optimum comfort.

The C4 SpaceTourer is a great option for those looking for an all-around MPV that provides a good drive, great practicality and sharp aesthetics.

Tesla Model X

  • Range: 340 miles
  • 0-62mph: 2.9 seconds
  • Isofix points: 3

If you have an eye on the future, seven-seat EVs are few and far between at the moment meaning the Model X is your best option. And while it will come at the top end of anyone’s budget, there’s enough practicality and drivability to make it a strong contender.

With zero emissions and silent running, you get sports car acceleration from a four-wheel-drive seven-seater.

You can choose from a five, six or seven-seat arrangement in your Model X. The three-row layout is likely to be your chosen option for the practicality it brings. And both the front and middle row are made of individually mounted seats that can be adjusted electrically.

Even better, with the EV performing themed light shows and offering a variety of games to play on the dashboard (not to mention a whoopee cushion mode for pranking passengers), there’s enough to entertain kids and adults alike.

Audi Q7

  • Fuel economy: 47.9mpg
  • Insurance group: 35-48
  • Isofix points: 3

If your key requirements are practicality and luxury, you should definitely consider the Audi Q7.

This seven-seater has copious amounts of space, making it a perfect family car. The new generation Q7 also has a beautifully built tech-filled interior, better efficiency and a slash in weight, resulting in a better drive than the model it replaces.

You have four engine choices for the Q7, two TDI diesels of either 215bhp or 268bhp, along with the plug-in hybrid Q7 e-tron and high-performance SQ7 with 429bhp. 

Despite being slightly narrower and shorter than the old Q7, the interior still has room for seven people and a load of luggage. Even those over six-foot will find the Q7 roomy. 

In five-seat mode, with the middle row of seats slid as far back as possible, the boot is still big enough to easily fit a couple of buggies or large suitcases.

And of course, because it’s an Audi, you just know it’s going to be great behind the wheel, reliable and everything you could need from a car. 

Land Rover Defender

  • Fuel economy: 30 mpg
  • Insurance group: 33-43
  • Isofix points: 3

If your school run makes the Skoda Kodiaq’s look like a stroll in the park, Land Rover is the king of four-wheel-drive and the Defender is the car that’s helped it cement that legacy.

The new Defender improves on the spartan comfort of previous models to offer an interior on par with the best Range Rover.

The cabin is spacious too with loads of storage space, perfect for families. The boot with seven seats in place is capable of holding 2,233 litres, more than enough for all your school bags and buggies.

There are also options for a roof rack and side gear carrier if you need the extra space, making it the best seven-seater for the ultimate off-road family adventure.


If you are looking to lease one of the best seven-seaters, or you’re looking to find out more about the application and approval process, then why not apply online now? There’s no impact to your credit score and you get a decision in minutes.

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