MPV Leasing Deals

Practical, spacious and well equipped, these are the best MPVs you can buy right now.

In the mid-1980s, families increasingly started to choose multi-purpose vehicles (MPVs) instead of the saloon cars and estates that had traditionally dominated sales. It wasn’t an overnight shift, but as large manufacturers like Renault and Ford began selling MPVs, more prospective owners headed to showrooms.

The advantages for passengers were clear to see, with a raised roofline, higher seating, huge windows and plenty of interior space adding comfort and practicality. Getting in and out was easy and there was a light and airy atmosphere inside. The open space made it easier for parents to keep an eye on children in the back, while a big windscreen was ideal for holiday games of I-Spy to help journeys pass more quickly.

MPV sales picked up pace in the 1990s as mainstream manufacturers launched their models; MPVs like the Ford Galaxy and Vauxhall Zafira. The latter was hugely influential, creating the mould for compact seven-seat people carriers with clever seating arrangements. Its Flex7 seating allowed the third row to fold neatly into the boot floor when not needed – a selling point that saved space and is now shared with a multitude of MPVs and SUVs.

The Vauxhall Zafira lacked the style of modern MPVs like the Renault Scenic with its 20-inch alloy wheels, but it pioneered many of the design features of the best people carriers available today. It shared its chassis and engines with the Vauxhall Astra, so it drove like a smaller vehicle and had similar performance and running costs to a hatchback.

MPVs continue to come in different sizes, with plenty offering five seats, three ISOFIX points and more space than a similarly sized hatchback, while others offer seven seats. The very largest even offer eight or more seats. Many customers are moving towards SUVs instead of MPVs, but MPVs are still usually more versatile. Check out our guide to the best large SUVs if you’re happy to sacrifice a little practicality for some extra style.

Practical, spacious and well equipped, these are the best MPVs you can buy right now.