Not only does a cheap used 7-seater need to offer that all-important practicality, but it also needs to bring low running costs and a good level of reliability. Used seven-seaters have often had a busy life, so as always, we’d advise doing plenty of checks on any car you’re looking at, while a background check can help flag up any nasty, hidden features before you sign on the dotted line.


The Cheapest Used 7-Seater Cars

Finding a cheap 7-seater car doesn’t have to be tricky. In fact, thanks to the variety of 7-seaters which is currently available via there’s plenty of choice to go for with all appealing to different drivers and budgets. However, they all bring that practicality that we’re after alongside good driving characteristics and low running costs.

Most of the cars on this list have plenty of in-car features, too, so they’ll be ideal for longer trips with the family in tow. Let’s take a look at them.

1. Nissan X-Trail (2014-2022)

The Nissan X-Trail is a cheap used 7-seater which doesn’t immediately look like a car with space for seven people. That’s likely down to the fact that it was offered in both five and seven-seater configurations, but it’s obviously the latter that we’re interested in here.

The X-Trail has the chunky looks of an old-school off-roader, but inside it’s got a well-made and comfortable interior with plenty of features. A soft suspension setup means the X-Trail is geared towards a comfortable ride which makes it great for longer journeys, while most X-Trails will come with a 1.6-litre diesel which provides more than enough performance while also being quite refined.

The seating configuration is nicely flexible, too, and when you’re not using those rearmost seats they can easily be folded away flat to increase boot space.

Best Features

  • Chunky design means that the X-Trail stands out on the road
  • There’s a good variety of engines to choose from with the 1.6-litre diesel likely to be the most useful and efficient for drivers
  • All versions get features such as air conditioning

Things to consider

  • The X-Trail was updated in 2017, bringing more standard equipment and a larger screen inside
  • The CVT automatic gearbox can be quite noisy under heavy acceleration.
  • Some models came with a panoramic sunroof, but this does eat into overall headroom quite a bit

2. Seat Alhambra (2011-2020)

If you want a cheap used 7-seater which really majors on space, then the Seat Alhambra should be firmly on your list. It’s a classic Multi-Purpose Vehicle – or MPV – which means that it’s got an upright, boxy design which allows it to offer loads of space to everyone sitting inside.

The Alhambra’s sliding doors make getting in and out a breeze and also mean you don’t have to worry about parking close to other vehicles in the car park. The great thing about the Alhambra’s design is that even with all seats in place it’s able to offer a large boot, while folding them all down reveals a van-like loading area. The backs of the front seats also have fold-out picnic tables fitted to them – ideal for meals on the road.

Best Features

  • Everyone in the Alhambra gets plenty of space – there are no ‘bad seats’
  • The Alhambra got a full five stars in Euro NCAP tests, meaning it’s a very safe option
  • All versions have parking sensors, climate control and Bluetooth connectivity as standard

Things to consider

  • The Alhambra is a very long car, so it takes a bit of time to get used to its dimensions
  • Used Alhambras need to be checked for usual car park dings and bumper grazes
  • The Alhambra is popular with taxi companies – so be careful when looking at used examples with sky-high mileage

3. Volkswagen Sharan (2010-2022)

If you’d like a very similar alternative to the Seat Alhambra, then we’ve got the ideal choice – the Volkswagen Sharan. It’s built on the same platform as the Alhambra and is largely the same inside, so it means that if you haven’t been able to find quite the right specification of Seat to meet your requirements, then you could opt for the Volkswagen instead.

The Sharan is a great showcase for why the MPV layout is ideal for families. It’s big and spacious, while plenty of headroom throughout means that even taller adults and children will be able to get comfy, regardless of which row they’re in. The range of engines available with the Sharan is smooth and efficient, too, with the 2.0-litre diesel being the pick of the bunch thanks to its low emissions and good efficiency.

Best Features

  • Spacious and flexible interior is great for those for value space above all else
  • All versions get plenty of equipment included such as electric windows, automatic wipers and tri-zone climate control
  • Low levels of wind and tyre noise make the Sharan very comfortable and relaxing on the motorway

Things to consider

  • Though the diesel engines are efficient, they can feel a little unrefined and gravelly – particularly when cold
  • Check any potential Sharan model out for car park dings and interior scuffs from heavy use
  • Some versions get adaptive chassis control which allows you to make the ride harder or softer – a great option for drivers after the best possible ride quality

4. Volvo XC90 (2002-2015)

The XC90 was the first model in a whole new wave of Volvo cars, branching out from the ‘traditional’ estates that we’d become used to from the Swedish brand. It was also one of the first true seven-seater SUVs, combining the higher riding position of a proper off-roader with the versatility of an MPV. As a result, it’s a great choice for lots of different drivers.

Even with all rows of seats in place, there’s a well-sized boot on offer in the XC90, but it’s worth mentioning that the third row is really only suited to kids. Adults are going to find it a bit of a squeeze back there. However, the middle row is more than spacious enough for most people and all the seats slide individually so you can give yourself a little extra legroom if you don’t need the boot to be at maximum capacity.

Best Features

  • The XC90 has a confidence-inspiring driving position with a great view of the road ahead
  • The build quality is typically rock-solid as you’d expect from Volvo, so even earlier models still look and feel great today
  • The ride is focused on comfort so longer journeys are a breeze

Things to consider

  • Given that the XC90 is a true four-wheel drive, check underneath for any damage caused by taking the XC90 off-road
  • The XC90 was quite expensive when new, so make sure it’s been well maintained to avoid any big repair bills in the future
  • The XC90 has had a number of recalls, so make sure any car you’re looking at has had these sorted

5. Skoda Kodiaq (2016-2021)

We absolutely love the Skoda Kodiaq. It’s a big, comfortable seven-seater which feels like it has been designed specifically for families. It’s got a cleverly made interior with loads of very handy features, while Skoda’s range of ‘Simply Clever’ touches – such as a rubber gaiter around the windscreen washer filler to stop spillages – make everyday life with the Kodiaq a breeze.

It’s got a comfortable ride setup, too, while the folding mechanism for the seats is intuitive and simple – you only need to use a few levers to get the chairs to fold away and leave a really large boot. We like the variety of storage options, with cubbies and boxes dotted throughout the Kodiaq’s interior which help to keep it as clutter-free as possible.

Best Features

  • Interior of the Kodiaq is well-made with plenty of hard-wearing materials
  • All rows of the Kodiaq have plenty of space to offer and there’s a good amount of boot room with all rows in place
  • The DSG automatic on certain Kodiaq models is really smooth and makes driving a breeze

Things to consider

  • Since the Kodiaq is quite a large car, we’d be checking out any used example for bumper scrapes or dings
  • Make sure that if there’s an electric tailgate it works as it should
  • Though the diesel engines on the Kodiaq are the most efficient, they can feel a bit rough – particularly when cold

6. Citroen Grand C4 Picasso (2014-2018)

Citroen is known for making large, comfortable cars and the Grand C4 Picasso is no different. Like the Alhambra and the Sharan, it’s a proper MPV designed to carry seven people around in true comfort while offering loads of space. All versions are very well equipped, too, while with all seven seats in place there’s still a well-sized boot to use up.

As you might expect from a true French vehicle, the steering is light and the ride is comfortable, but this makes the C4 Picasso just as useful around town as out on the motorway. It’s also great at soaking up lumps and bumps, so even the bigger potholes that you find on the UK’s roads don’t upset the Picasso.

Best Features

  • The Grand C4 Picasso is really efficient so shouldn’t prove to be too expensive to run
  • All versions get air-conditioning, electric windows and a small touchscreen as standard
  • This second-generation Picasso was far more enjoyable to drive than the popular original

Things to consider

  • In 2018, the Picasso was revised and became the Grand C4 SpaceTourer
  • Busy families love the C4 Picasso, so check any model you’re looking at for scratched interior plastics and ripped seats
  • Some cars come with an optional automatic gearbox, but it can be a little jerky at times

7. Land Rover Discovery (2004-2017)

If rugged good looks and go-anywhere capability is what you’re after, then the Land Rover Discovery could be a go-to. Handily for this list it’s also a seven-seater and this model – built between 2004 and 2017 – has dropped in price recently to become quite an affordable option. Of course, as with any big, expensive off-roader, you do need to bear running costs in mind, but get a well-looked-after example and there’s no reason why the Discovery can’t give you years of trouble-free motoring.

Inside it’s big and spacious with plenty of headroom throughout while the quality is easy to see and feel. The 2.7-litre diesel you’ll find in most Discoverys of this age provides ample performance, though expect quite high CO2 emissions. Avoid the V8 versions if you want cheaper motoring – they are very expensive to run due to poor fuel economy.

Best Features

  • The Discovery has a full four-wheel drive system. W when equipped with the right tyres, it will be able to go pretty much anywhere
  • All rows of seats have a good amount of space, though the rearmost row is best suited for children
  • The Discovery has aged well and these days still looks fresh and modern against the latest metal

Things to consider

  • Discoverys aren’t known for their reliability, so make sure any model you’re looking at has been well maintained to avoid any future issues
  • The rearmost row is a bit fiddly to operate, so give it a go to make sure you’re happy with it
  • High CO2 emissions mean the Discovery will be expensive to tax, even if it’s cheap to buy

8. Volkswagen Touran (2005-2022)

The Volkswagen Touran is a car with very few drawbacks. It’s got that classic MPV shape which makes it spacious inside, but it’s also good to drive and comfortable to live with. If you liked the look of the Sharan but don’t fancy something quite so large, then the Touran could be absolutely spot-on.

This second-generation looks and feels a little sharper than the original, but it can still be obtained for some budget-friendly prices.

Refinement is a key part of the Touran’s appeal; it’s comfortable and easy to drive over long distances while its range of engines feels particularly well-suited to those big journeys. Its comfort-focused suspension helps to make things really soft and fluid when you’re on the move, too.

Best Features

  • Interior is solidly made so it should be able to deal with everyday family use
  • Range of efficient engines means there’s something to fit most drivers and uses
  • Second row can take three individual child seats with their own Isofix points – a big plus point for families

Thing to consider

  • Entry-level ‘S’ models did without alloy wheels – go for a higher-spec if you’d like alloys
  • As a popular family car, make sure any Touran you’re looking at has been well cared for and not damaged inside or out
  • Try the rearmost seats and make sure that they operate smoothly and easily – they can sometimes jam

9. Ford Grand C-Max (2011-2019)

The Grand C-Max follows a similar formula to the Touran. It’s a car-based MPV which has been designed to be both spacious and easy to drive; well-specified inside yet cheap to run and own.

Over the standard five-seater C-Max, the Grand version adds a pair of seats which fold out of the boot area, expanding this car’s versatility levels while still retaining the C-Max’s easy-to-live-with dimensions.

Because it’s based on the Focus platform, the C-Max remains great to drive while its engine choices are economical yet more than powerful enough. The driving position is more car-like than others on this list, too, so it could be a good option for drivers who don’t want to tower above the road in front of them.

Best Features

  • The C-Max is quite car-like, so it’s easy to drive and lower down which makes it easier to access than SUV seven-seaters
  • All versions get plenty of equipment including Ford’s excellent QuickClear windscreen which can de-ice in a matter of minutes
  • The Grand is a little softer-riding than the standard C-Max, which only helps to make it more comfortable

Things to consider

  • Some of the plastics inside the C-Max are a bit scratchy, so make sure they’ve not been marked over time
  • Like other vehicles on this article, the Grand C-Max is a popular taxi, so watch out for high-mileage examples
  • The infotainment system can feel a bit complicated – make sure you’re happy with it before buying

10. Ford S-Max (2006-2015)

The Ford S-Max completely smashed pre-conceived ideas about what an MPV could do. Here was a car which offered all the space and practicality that a family could want while delivering a driving experience that could keep whoever was behind the wheel entertained on their favourite roads. Needless to say, it proved quite the sales hit.

As a result, the first-generation S-Max is plentiful on the used market and available for some budget-busting prices. All five seats in the S-Max can be folded flat into the floor to open up some van-like loading space, yet when they’re back in place there’s a good amount of room for occupants. The rearmost row is best suited to kids only, though, as taller adults might find it a bit too tight.

Best Features

  • The S-Max offers few drawbacks; it’s spacious and practical but still really good to drive
  • The S-Max was great value when it was first launched, making it a superb cheap used 7-seater option today
  • Diesel versions will be particularly cheap to run if you do long miles

Things to consider

  • Fixtures and fittings inside the S-Max have been known to come loose – give everything a good prod to make sure it’s on properly
  • There have been a few recalls for the S-Max – make sure they’ve been completed
  • As family transport, look out for bumper and kerbing damage on the inside and wear-and-tear inside

7-Seat SUV vs 7-Seat MPV: Which is the best?

Whether or not you want a 7-seater SUV or MPV depends entirely on how you like to drive. Do you like to sit up high with a commanding view of the road ahead? An SUV is probably the better choice. Or perhaps you’d prefer a more car-like driving experience with a lower centre of gravity? The MPV could be the car for you.

However, of the two, the MPV is primarily designed to offer the best possible space and headroom, so if there are two key factors for you then it’s worth heading in this direction.

That said, SUVs, with their higher ride height, are a little better off-road – though you’ll still need to fit proper tyres to make sure they can tackle poor conditions and bad surfaces. You might find running costs to be higher with an SUV, however, so do your sums beforehand.


What should you consider before buying a cheap 7-seater car?

There are a number of things to consider before buying a cheap 7-seater.


For one, do you really need space for seven? If you could get by with a five-seater, then you’ll probably find them easier to live with due to their smaller size and easier-to-park nature. Seven-seaters do take a little getting used to, so it’s a good idea to make sure you test-drive one thoroughly to ensure you’re happy with its dimensions.


You’ll find that most seven-seaters have either been used by families or as taxis. What that means is that most cars in this bracket will have been subjected to a tough life, so it’s even more important to check them over for any damage both inside and out. Look for worn-out seat bolsters and scratched seatbacks from the feet of kids sitting in the middle row.

Running costs

Running costs vary wildly between the cars we’ve selected for this list. The Land Rover Discovery, for example, will prove expensive to tax and fuel whereas something like the Ford S-Max will be far more affordable. It’s worth tallying up how much you’re willing to spend on running costs before diving into ownership – it could prove a bit of a shock further down the line otherwise.


Tips for finding and buying a cheap 7-seater

There’s plenty of information out there to help guide you towards the right 7-seater. As with all cars, it’s worth doing a full background check on any vehicle you’re interested in and, as we’ve touched upon, it’s a good idea to see if any recalls have been issued to make sure that they’ve been sorted too. While you’re there, make sure you do a full car history check to make sure there’s no outstanding finance or undisclosed crashes.

We’ve got plenty of extra information to help, too, with a variety of reviews – both written and on video – to help show you the pluses and minuses of some of the best 7-seaters on sale.

You might also want to think about how you’d like to pay for your new car. You could be going down the traditional route of cash, or using finance as a way to spread the payments of a purchase. Either way, it’s a good idea to do your research before you make a decision – it’s best to have all of the information to hand prior to signing on the dotted line.

Frequently asked questions