Best cars with three full back seats

Tired of rear passengers complaining about having too little space? Check out these spacious and affordable cars with three full back seats

James Wilson
Oct 12, 2021

Cars with three full back seats should offer passengers greater comfort than those with a bench seat and mean smoother journeys for the driver, with few complaints from those in the back. Whether you have several rapidly growing teenagers to transport or want to carry tall friends, full-size rear seats can help to make journeys more comfortable for passengers.

As you might expect, it is bigger cars that tend to have large rear seats. These days, though, there are more practical options than ever before. Sizable SUVs like the Land Rover Discovery and Volvo XC90 tick the ‘three full back seats’ brief, as do practical hatchback and estate models like the Skoda Superb and Ford Mondeo. Let’s not forget super-spacious people carriers like the Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer, as these can have incredibly spacious rear seats.

Regardless of what type of car with three full rear seats you go for, having plenty of room for passengers normally leads to a few other perks. One is that the rear seats can often be slid forward or backward individually. This is especially helpful when trying to squeeze as much luggage into the boot as possible or helping make access to the third row of seats easy in seven-seater models.

Below, we have shortlisted eight of the best cars with three full back seats. They include numerous body styles and suit a range of budgets. Some have been in production for longer than others so can be bought for surprisingly little if you're happy to get a used car. Apart from the more expensive Land Rover Discovery, all cars below can be scooped up for around £10,000 to £35,000, or potentially £175* to £500* per month if you opt for PCP finance.

Best cars with three full back seats

1. Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer

Our pick Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer Flair
Used deals from £19,190
Monthly finance from £317*

French car manufacturers have a long history of making excellent comfort-centric people carriers and the Citroen Grand C4 SpaceTourer is one of the best. It is stylish, comfortable to drive - and for those in the rear seats - plus its cabin is very practical. Part of this comes down to the rear seats. In the middle row, the three seats are independent of one another and can be slid forward and back to suit your needs - whether you're after maximum passenger space, the greatest boot room or a combination of the two.

The outer seats also flip up to create easier access to the two extra seats in the boot. With all seats up, there is 165 litres of boot space available - about the same as a Fiat 500. Fold the rearmost seats down, however, and the cargo space shoots up to a substantial 632 litres - this is enough for all sorts of combinations of suitcases, flat-pack furniture or a couple of dogs.

Slide the middle seats as far forward as they will go and this increases further to 793 litres - that's about the difference between the boot of a Mercedes GLE SUV and the boot of a much larger Audi Q7. On top of being practical, the large Citroen is also relatively affordable and thanks to a range of efficient engines fuel bills should be low, too.

CITROEN GRAND C4 SPACETOURER BUYERS' GUIDE

2. Land Rover Discovery

Our pick Land Rover Discovery HSE Luxury
Used deals from £38,891
Monthly finance from £538*

The Discovery may be a superbly capable off-roader, but it's also a very practical family car. This isn’t just because of its spacious rear seats which will easily cater for three adults, but because of things such as its excellent four-wheel-drive system - which should be able to deal with the very worst rain, mud, snow and ice of a British winter - the plush feel of the cabin, the powerful engines and automatic gearboxes which make driving very easy.

There are some drawbacks worth being aware of, too. Having four-wheel-drive increases fuel consumption as it takes more fuel to haul around all those heavy off-road components, so if you aren’t ever going to go off-road and don't live somewhere with bad winter weather, it is probably overkill. Likewise, the Discovery is expensive, but then again, you get an awful lot of car for your money. Testament to this is the driving experience, which is very refined, so if you are making use of all seven seats, everyone should be comfortable on longer journeys.

LAND ROVER DISCOVERY BUYERS' GUIDE

3. Vauxhall Combo Life

Our pick Vauxhall Combo Life Energy
Used deals from £15,995
Monthly finance from £247*

There is no hiding the fact that the Vauxhall Combo Life is based on a van - one look at its shape confirms as much. This has huge implications for cabin space, though, with there being acres of room for three full-size rear seats. Getting into those seats is a breeze, too, thanks to large sliding rear doors. If you are transporting kids this also helps avoid accidental car park dings and makes loading child seats much easier.

There are five- and seven-seater versions available as well as the choice between standard and XL length versions. XL models are almost 4.8 metres long (the Volkswagen Golf is 4.4 metres long in comparison), so offer up a decent amount of extra interior space. To help deal with the extra size, equipment such as parking sensors and a reversing camera are available on some trims, so there is technology to help you if you want the largest Combo Life available.

VAUXHALL COMBO LIFE BUYERS' GUIDE

4. Skoda Superb

Our pick Skoda Superb SE Technology
Used deals from £14,720
Monthly finance from £259*

Although the Skoda Superb doesn't offer seven seats, it is so big at the back that even the tallest of basketball players should have enough room to stretch out - and there's sufficient space for three adults to travel in comfort alongside each other. Opt for a model with an automatic gearbox and the car offers a supremely relaxing driving experience. Thanks to a large boot, passengers can bring their luggage, too. Meanwhile, if you need to carry large square objects like a coffee table or big boxes, estate models are also available, which have a huge cube-like boot.

As Skoda is part of the same company as VW and Audi, it has access to the same impressive engines found in the likes of the VW Golf and Audi A3. For the Superb, this means at one end of the spectrum there are incredibly frugal diesel engines, which suit those who do lots of motorway driving (as that is where diesels are typically most economical) and at the opposite end are some surprisingly powerful petrol engines. One of the most low-key fast cars available is the Skoda Superb with a 280hp 2.0-litre petrol engine. If you want something large, fast and discreet, it's a great option.

SKODA SUPERB BUYERS' GUIDE

5. Seat Tarraco

Our pick Seat Tarraco SE Technology
Used deals from £23,395
Monthly finance from £383*

The Tarraco is stylish, enjoyable to drive and very spacious. Unlike many smaller seven-seater SUVs, the rearmost seats are perfectly comfortable for adults, provided they're not particularly tall. The middle seats, though, are perfectly suited to adults of all sizes. Another benefit to driving a Tarraco is that standard equipment is plentiful, with rear parking sensors, cruise control and three-zone climate control all included. None of these are especially cutting edge but the fact they are standard is better than a number of rival models.

If you like the sound of the Tarraco but aren’t so sure about the looks, then you might want to consider a Skoda Kodiaq. Both cars are made using many of the same components - as Seat and Skoda are both part of the VW Group - although there are subtle differences between the two. For example, the Seat is slightly lower and better to drive while the Skoda is ever so slightly more practical (its maximum boot capacity with the third row of seats folded is 20 litres more). You could even consider the Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace, though this is a little smaller and majors on offering a more high-quality feel.

SEAT TARRACO BUYERS' GUIDE

6. Ford Mondeo

Our pick Ford Mondeo Titanium
Used deals from £10,998
Monthly finance from £248*

The Ford Mondeo used to be one of the country's best-selling cars, though now it sells in much smaller numbers. While this means that those after a used model have less choice, it doesn’t change the fact that it is incredibly practical and helps to make it a second-hand bargain compared to SUVs of the same size. There are hatchback and estate body styles to choose from along with petrol, diesel and hybrid engines.

For the majority of drivers, a diesel model will be the best option - as these offer a good mix of performance and economy - but those living in cities may want to check that there aren’t any additional costs expected to be levied on diesel drivers in their area, as a number of urban low emission zones are being introduced across the country.

Compared to the BMW 3 Series and Mercedes C-Class the Mondeo doesn't feel as plush, but it is still a stylish car and offers far more interior and boot space. The interior may not be as flash, but it is feels solid, decently upmarket and built to last.

FORD MONDEO BUYERS' GUIDE

7. Renault Grand Scenic

Our pick Renault Grand Scenic Signature Nav
Used deals from £11,500
Monthly finance from £260*
MPVs or multi-purpose vehicles (also known as people carriers) have become less popular since an increasing number of stylish - but often less practical - SUVs have become available. Renault, decided that instead of making this version of the Grand Scenic people carrier sensible but bland, that it would create one of the most stylish people carriers around with SUV-infused looks.

Its good looks are complemented by great practicality. There is plenty of space up front and the windows are large enough to give the driver good visibility of their surroundings. It also has three full seats for the middle row. Meanwhile, the rearmost row is most suited to children due to space restrictions. If your budget allows we’d recommend scooping up a top-spec Signature Nav model as these come with a panoramic roof, head-up display and a Bose sound system, making it a desirable choice.

RENAULT GRAND SCENIC BUYERS' GUIDE

8. Peugeot 5008

Our pick Peugeot 5008 Allure
Used deals from £13,598
Monthly finance from £250*

The Peugeot 5008 is notably larger than the Renault Grand Scenic above, but it shares a chunky, SUV-like look, which makes it stand out. Its interior is a major talking point, with its blend of funky design and high-quality materials making it one of the best large affordable SUV cabins around. One thing to bear in mind when considering whether the 5008 is right for you, is Peugeot’s ‘i-Cockpit’, which features a tiny steering wheel and dials that you look at over the wheel. Some drivers love this layout, while others hate it.

The equipment level is generally plentiful across the range, with features such as Apple CarPlay and Android Auto available. Peugeot has an excellent range of engines, so don’t be too alarmed when you see models with a tiny 1.2-litre petrol engine, as although the 5008 is a big car, the turbocharged 1.2-litre unit is punchy enough to cope in the majority of situations. Even so, if you plan on transporting six passengers and lots of luggage regularly, we would recommend going for either the 1.6-litre petrol or one of the diesel engines for the extra power.

PEUGEOT 5008 BUYERS' GUIDE

*Representative PCP finance - Ford Fiesta:

48 monthly payments of £192
Deposit: £0
Mileage limit: 8,000 per year
Optional final payment to buy car: £2,923
Total amount payable to buy car: £11,926
Total cost of credit: £2,426
Amount borrowed: £9,500
APR: 9.9%

BuyaCar is a credit broker, not a lender. Our rates start from 6.9% APR. The rate you are offered will depend on your individual circumstances.

 

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