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Need a seven-seater and change from €20k? Here are 5 you should see

Extra space doesn’t have to mean extra spend.

RIGHT NOW, THE market has a greater choice of seven-seaters than ever before, in a variety of shapes, sizes and functions.

Some have changeable layouts to accommodate an extra passenger or two every once in a while, while others are entirely dedicated multi-purpose vehicles. Here’s a rundown of the best seven-seaters on the market for €20,000 or less.

1. SEAT Alhambra (2010 onwards)

Source: DoneDeal

Spanish car maker SEAT has been churning out its evergreen Alhambra in its current guise since 2010. This popular MPV consistently scores well in customer satisfaction surveys, and it’s easy to see why. Its sliding rear doors allow for easy access, and the third-row seating is spacious enough to seat two adults comfortably.

Newer models are also available with built-in booster seats for the middle row’s two outer seats. Up front the Alhambra has a roomy cockpit and drives well with comfortable suspension and car-like manoeuvrability.

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2. Volvo XC90 (2002-2015)

Source: DoneDeal

When it comes to transporting families, Volvo has one of the best reputations for safety and interior space. This first-generation XC90 launched near the start of the SUV boom and proved popular thanks to its elevated driver position and smart layout, which includes an extra two rear seats in the back which can be folded flat if required.

The D5 diesel engine models most commonly come to market, and are a solid bet delivering lots of trouble-free miles – as long as they’re regularly serviced. The all-wheel drive transmission in particular requires check-ins, as it can switch to two-wheel drive without any warning, leading to costly repairs if it’s not caught in time.

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3. Kia Carens (2013 onwards)

Source: DoneDeal

This stylish MPV is one of the more underrated seven-seaters in the used car market, often overshadowed by its SUV-based siblings. The Carens fits seven seats into what is still a relatively compact shape, and while boot space is limited, seats can be folded to boost cargo capacity. Throughout the cabin, there are lots of little storage areas, too.

Engine choice is limited to a 1.7-litre diesel but for everyday commuting its still sufficient power. Another plus for the Kia is the company’s seven year/100,000km warranty, and if you find a low-mileage example, you should still be able to have the added peace of mind that the warranty brings.

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4. Renault Grand Scenic (2009-2016)

Source: DoneDeal

While the larger Renault Grand Scenic might not have a great reputation for fun driving, its roomy cabin does provide plenty of space – although the final two rear seats are best left for the kids.

The middle row is made up of three individual seats, each of which can be moved independently. Renault’s Grand Scenic Dynamique models come with a higher-standard specification, and in the engine department there is little performance difference between the 1.5- and 1.6-litre DCi diesel engines.

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5. Citroën Grand C4 Picasso (2014 onwards)

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Citroën’s Grand C4 Picasso has long been a popular choice among families, in particular the most recent model, launched in 2014. The stylish exterior is backed up inside with a futuristic dashboard featuring two large colour screens and a minimal amount of buttons.

The Citroën’s large windscreen and split A-pillars provide excellent visibility, and the cabin leaves plenty of room for all passengers. It does lose out on boot space when all seats are in use, but with each seat being able to move individually, the layout can be configured to suit.

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More: How to buy a serious prestige car on a €12k budget – and 3 to check out first>

More: €25k to spend? Here are the best SUVs for your money>

About the author:

Dave Humphreys

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