Buyers after a seven-seater are spoiled for choice when it comes to MPVs and off-roaders. However, what do you buy if you’re after a spacious car with room for six, but you don’t want something as bland as a typical people carrier or as big as a full-blown off-roader?

Shop around and you can find several six seaters – both with two rows of three seats and three rows of two seats – letting you choose between having more seats in a smaller car or more space for passengers in the middle row than with a typical people carrier.

We’ve rounded up four affordable used models that offer up six seats, giving you extra room over five-seat rivals.

Honda FR-V: Sturdy and reliable six-seater

With two rows of three seats and an enviable reliability record, the FR-V is a very sensible option for those looking for that elusive sixth seat. Less than £9,000 is enough to get you a low-mileage eight-year-old diesel model, which returns around 45mpg and can sprint to 62mph in a nippy enough 10.1 seconds.

As with the Fiat Multipla below, which also features two rows of three seats, it is a little wider than normal, so if you have to park on a particularly narrow driveway, you might want to try the FR-V out before you buy.

Mercedes R-Class: Luxurious six-seater express

If comfort is top of your list and you’re happy to have a slightly larger machine, the R-Class could be just the ticket. Often used by upmarket taxi firms as an airport shuttle, the R should waft you in absolute comfort up and down motorways.

As an premium machine, you’ll need to stump up around £20,000 upwards for an eight-year old R-Class, but you’ll get yourself a car that can whizz to 62mph in around eight seconds in diesel form, though fuel consumption is high at less than 35mpg.

Fiat Multipla: Distinctive six-seat family car

The Fiat Multipla has to be one of the most striking people carriers available. Whether ‘striking’ in this case means endearingly quirky or horrifically ugly to you is up for debate, but the benefit of the Multipla’s width is that you get an extra seat in the front row.

Despite being on sale until five years ago, just £4,000 is enough to bag a relatively low mileage diesel model which returns 44.1mpg and accelerates to 62mpg in a reasonable 12.2 seconds. Younger models also feature updated styling, which is much less controversial than earlier models, so if you’re not a fan of the original version, keep an eye out for later cars.

Toyota Picnic: Affordable three-row six-seater

The Toyota Picnic may be an older model, first going on sale before the turn of the millennium, but with Toyota’s legendary reliability on hand, opting for a Picnic isn’t likely to give you too many headaches compared to most used cars.

The Picnic shares the R-Class’s format of three rows of two seats, though it is much more bland to look at than the boldly styled German car. Thanks to its age, Picnics can easily be picked up for less than £1,000, though it may take you a little time to find one on sale in the first place.

Picture: Manufacturer