The Volkswagen Tiguan

Best mid-sized family cars to buy in 2023

The core of the car market

If you’re in need of the best family car to cope with the challenges of daily life, then there are plenty of options available to you.

Whether it’s a traditional hatchback or estate, an SUV or even an MPV, here we list 11 of our favourite medium-sized family cars.

Audi Q3

From £31,280

If you’re after a premium SUV with space for family life, but which doesn’t skimp on technology, the Q3 is a safe bet. You can choose from regular or Sportback body styles, while a range of efficient engines seal the deal.

BMW 2 Series Active Tourer

From £33,525

The Active Tourer stands out from other BMWs thanks to its MPV body. Under the skin it has the same front-wheel-drive layout as the 1 Series, so you get fine handling to go along with a versatile interior. There’s an efficient plug-in hybrid available, too.

Ford Puma

From £24,660

Compact dimensions belie the Puma’s versatile interior. There’s enough space for five inside, while the boot can swallow far more than you might expect thanks to the versatile ‘Megabox’ under the boot floor. It’s a great-handling car to drive, too.

Hyundai Tucson

From £30,140

Time has seen the Tucson evolve from a good-value compact SUV to a tech-filled family car, and the current model is a front runner in the class. User-friendly infotainment and a range of efficient hybrid engines mean it’s a car with multiple talents.

Mazda CX-5

From £29,435

Here’s proof that you don’t need to sacrifice fun when driving your family. Mazda has managed to distil some of the fun of the MX-5 into the CX-5, yet this SUV has plenty of space for family life.

Mini Countryman

From £28,815

If there’s one thing that appeals with a Mini, it’s the retro-inspired styling. The Countryman takes these design cues and super-sizes them to create funky family transport. The plug-in hybrid model offers super-low running costs, too.

Peugeot 3008

From £31,570

The second generation 3008 has thoroughly modern SUV styling, while the car’s upmarket interior matches Audi for a premium feel. It’s one family SUV that delivers a surprising amount of luxury.

Seat Ateca

From £26,395

Another compact SUV with a sporty edge is the Ateca, which was Seat’s first SUV. It looks sharp, while the range of engines spans from efficient to powerful. Check out the Cupra Ateca for a real family thrill ride.

Skoda Octavia

From £22,795

If space is your primary requirement, then you can’t go wrong with the Octavia. The current version maximises space like no other hatchback, including the VW Golf with which it shares its platform. 

Toyota Corolla

From £30,210

Toyota has refined its hybrid technology with years of development, and the set-up in the Corolla is the most accomplished yet. Available in two guises, and in hatch or Touring Sports estate body styles, the Corolla is a great all-round family car with efficiency a particular highlight. Though it’s not best for interior space.

Volkswagen Tiguan

From £30,030

It’s the number-one best seller for VW worldwide, and the Tiguan excels as dependable and practical family transport. It won’t excite or wow with its tech, but if you need a car that can take all the punishment a family can dish out, it’s well worth a look.

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