Most comfortable cars 2023
Driving pleasure can be ruined by back pain, so which cars offer the most comfortable seats?
Finding out lots of information about your next car online is easy, with plentiful stats about engine power, fuel economy and luggage space for every model on sale. But, it's not as easy to find out which cars have comfortable seats, and that's where we can offer some advice.
Our experts have driven each of the cars below, so we can vouch for their seats being comfortable and offering plenty of adjustment to help alleviate back pain, helping you to get comfortable behind the wheel.
It’s not just our verdicts that we rely on for this list of cars, as some of the models below are available with seats certified by the Campaign for Healthier Backs (Aktion Gesunder Rücken, AGR).
AGR is a German organisation promoting seats that prevent back pain - some manufacturers have a wide range of models with seats approved by this organisation, such as Mercedes.
You can read our article on the best cars for those with bad backs for more information about cars with those seats. Here we’ve brought together a list of cars with comfortable seats covering a broader range of manufacturers and car types, so you should be able to find a comfy car that suits your needs.
Whether you’re after a practical family car, a comfy motorway cruiser or just something to take the dog out for a walk in, read on below for our top picks of cars with particularly comfortable seats.
Cars with comfortable seats
Best car with comfortable seats for value
The Vauxhall Astra is easily overlooked, especially in a muted colour like silver. This means that this family car is a hidden gem - which helps to make it excellent value as there aren't a long line of drivers fighting to buy one. It is a fantastic car with lots of positives, it’s also available with AGR-approved seats that are good for bad backs.
No matter which model you pick, though, it has comfortable seats and a good driving position. Even low-specification models with cloth seats are comfy as they’re nice and soft, and the driving position is comfortable for long trips.
The Astra has lots going for it elsewhere too, as there’s plenty of room for passengers, it’s good to drive and has lots of equipment. Its image as a dull car is simply unwarranted too, because it’s one of the more enjoyable cars to drive of its type - and that means it really is fantastic value for money.
Best car with comfortable seats for luxury
Our pick Mercedes S350d AMG Line
Used deals Limited stock
The Mercedes-Benz S-Class is a luxury saloon that’s packed with tech, but big depreciation - where a car loses value quickly - means it’s really affordable second-hand. Not only is it available with AGR-approved seats, it’s also one of the most comfortable cars ever built.
The S-Class drives over the bumpiest roads with only the smallest hint in the cabin of what’s going on below - it is totally smooth and soft no matter where you are. It’s even better on the motorway, where it’s quiet inside and you can enjoy the ultra-comfortable seats.
It’s not just those in the front that can enjoy first-class comfort, as the rear seats are possibly even more comfortable, especially in long-wheelbase versions with armchair-like seats back there. The S-Class isn’t exciting to look at, with styling that's designed to blend in, but it’s one of the most relaxing ways to travel there is.
Best car with comfortable seats for big families
The Peugeot 5008 is a medium-sized SUV with seven seats, so it’s perfect for those with a big family or people who need to carry a number of passengers often. The car is also available with AGR-approved seats, so it satisfies the need for comfortable chairs.
The 5008 also happens to have a fantastic interior that makes the car feel much more expensive than it really is. The small steering wheel takes some getting used to - as you look at the dials over the wheel, rather than through it - but this doesn’t affect seat comfort.
There’s also the smaller Peugeot 3008 if you don’t need seven seats - it’s the slightly more compact five-seater version with a very similar design. You can fold down the rearmost seats in the 5008 or even remove them entirely, so it’s the more versatile model of the two upmarket Peugeot SUVs.
Best car with comfortable seats for electric motoring
Our pick Volkswagen ID.3 150kW 1st Edition
Used deals Limited stock
The Volkswagen ID.3 is a recently launched electric car that the manufacturer says is as important for the company as the original Beetle and Golf that came decades before it. Those models sold in huge numbers for decades, so the ID.3 is also expected to be a hit.
Luckily the ID.3 is already available with AGR-approved seats, and while it’s not great value just yet (as you’ll be buying a nearly-new car instead of one a few years old), the ID.3 is still worth a look for many comfort-focused drivers, especially as you’ll be saving plenty of money on fuel.
The ID.3 has a range of 260 miles on a single charge, which is plenty for most commuters. It also has good charging capability, so can be topped up quickly at public chargers or at home overnight. It’s as spacious as a Golf and good to drive, too.
Best car with comfortable seats for a relaxing SUV drive
Our pick Volvo XC90 D5 AWD R-Design
Used deals Limited stock
The Volvo XC90 is a large SUV with a fantastic interior, complete with luxurious seats that are very comfortable. Nearly all Volvos have comfy seats but the XC90 is the top model in the range, so it has the best seats of all.
Not only that, but the SUV body style means it has a more upright driving position than the S90 saloon and V90 estate models, which helps those with bad backs. It’s more of a job climbing up into the driver’s seat, but depending on your back ache, this may be more comfortable than dropping down into the low-slung S90 and V90.
The XC90 is smooth over rough roads and full of modern technology. It’s also a seven-seater, so it's great for big families, and the boot is huge; with the seats folded it’s easy to get a few bicycles inside. Go for one that’s a few years old as the XC90 is expensive new, but much better value once it passes the initial sting of depreciation.
Best car with comfortable seats for motorway commuting
The Mazda 6 is an often-forgotten gem of a large saloon and estate. Drivers overlook it because it’s stuck between the upmarket German models like the BMW 3 Series and the cheaper Skoda Superb and alternatives like the Ford Mondeo.
However, the Mazda 6 has more comfortable seats than any of those examples, and it’s also great to drive and really smooth on the motorway. The 6’s petrol engines can feel a bit underpowered but they’re economical and smooth - and while the automatic gearbox may be good for those with bad backs, if you like changing gear yourself then the manual gearbox is one of the best around.
The 6 is also very practical, with loads of room in the back for passengers, and the seats in the rear are comfy, too. There’s also an estate version if you need even more practicality, which has a big boot and a hatchback with larger opening for ease of access.
Best car with comfortable seats for SUV style
There are lots of options for medium-sized SUV buyers. The Mercedes GLC is available with AGR-approved seats, so that could be a good choice. However, we reckon the X3 is a better overall package.
It does have comfortable seats, which are supportive enough and not too firm. However, crucially it also drives smoothly over lumps and bumps in the road, so you’re not thrown around in your seat when driving on country roads.
The X3 is also quiet inside and full of useful technology including an excellent sat-nav that’s easy to read on the move. The latest, 2017-on model is the one to go for as it’s the best for comfort. Lower specification models are the most comfortable but M Sport is more plentiful on the used market and still very smooth, despite its more racy look and larger alloy wheels.
Best car with comfortable seats for reliability
Our pick Lexus RX 450h 3.5 Luxury
Used deals Limited stock
The Lexus RX is a great choice if you want a luxury car, but you're worried about the potential for expensive mechanical failures in other upmarket cars. The RX has a proven reputation for being reliable, and the dealer network is highly rated by customers as well.
It fulfils the brief here, too, as its seats are very comfortable. The upright driving position will help those with a bad back, as will the lightweight controls. It’s also really comfortable out on the road, and bumps and potholes won’t be an issue.
The hybrid petrol-electric engine setup isn’t as efficient as it ought to be, because the car is so big and heavy, though this is a criticism of many SUVs. The RX is still just as efficient as an equivalent diesel SUV but with fewer concerns over tailpipe emissions. Meanwhile, the electric motor can drive the car for short distances, so it’s great for smooth progress in traffic jams.
*Representative PCP finance - Ford Fiesta Titanium:
Monthly payments over 48 months: £192
Mileage allowance: 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
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