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MB Defectors to Other Marques Forum Had a Mercedes and changed it for another Marque? Bought another non-Mercedes car? Discuss here!

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Old 09-04-2008, 02:20 PM   #1
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What compact 7-seater?

Thinking of replacing our old Audi A4 estate with a 7-seater.
  • 99% of the time it would be seating 5 or less, and no need for luggage space when all 7 seats in use. So not looking at 'full size' MPVs or big estates
  • Would like something that handles decently and is reasonably nippy
  • Auto would be nice but seems rare in this segment (ditto cruise control)
  • Alloys, CD, aircon, central locking - all essential
  • Budget around 7k
So far the list is:

Peugeot 307 SW (probably 1st choice, many only have 5 seats though)
VW Touran (relatively rare, most seem to be 1.6 petrol).
Toyota Corolla Verso (not really keen)
Old shape Vauxhall Zafira (problem is I'd only have the hot GSi version, which is a bit pricey)

Any feedback on these? Anything else I should be considering?

TIA
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:36 PM   #2
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Not sure about price/age but may I recommend the E-Class estate. Many of them have the optional bench seats in the rear. Not really up to adult size but fine for kids. It was my choice after the Toyota Corolla Verso which I decided against after I got some attitude at the dealers for asking awkward questions.
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:47 PM   #3
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You do realise that insurance for 7 seaters is considerably more than for an equivalent 5 seater dont you? As I found out when I nearly bought a 7 seater Espace.

If you dont REALLY need a 7 seater, then its wasted money. Phone your insurance company for confirmation.
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:47 PM   #4
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E Class estate is too bulky I'm afraid (ditto Volvo 9 series). We want a more compact 'shopping' car that can occasionally seat 7 (when we're with the in-laws).
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:48 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by verytalldave View Post
You do realise that insurance for 7 seaters is considerably more than for an equivalent 5 seater dont you? As I found out when I nearly bought a 7 seater Espace.

If you dont REALLY need a 7 seater, then its wasted money. Phone your insurance company for confirmation.
Well that could be partly why my insurance trippled when I bought the E320!
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by verytalldave View Post
You do realise that insurance for 7 seaters is considerably more than for an equivalent 5 seater dont you? As I found out when I nearly bought a 7 seater Espace.

If you dont REALLY need a 7 seater, then its wasted money. Phone your insurance company for confirmation.
I had a 7-seat VW Sharan until September and wasn't aware that the insurance carried any kind of weighting?

AFAIK all Zafiras have 7 seats as standard ... are they expensive to insure? You see them everywhere.
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:54 PM   #7
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All I know is when I enquired about insurance for 5/7 seater Espace, the 7 seater version was quite a bit more than the 5 seater.
I ended up buying the new Scenic..........

Things may have changed since then. I am quoting about 10 years ago when the Scenic first came out.
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Old 09-04-2008, 02:57 PM   #8
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OK thanks I will bear that in mind.
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Old 09-04-2008, 03:43 PM   #9
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Not sure if 7k stretches to this, but we test drove a Honda FRV recently and were very impressed with the layout/space/comfort. Obviously I know it's only 6 seats but we found that access to the rearmost seats in the mid-size MPV's to be limited at best.
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Old 09-04-2008, 04:09 PM   #10
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We've had a seven seater 2.0 Diesel Touran for the past two years or so. Extremely flexible, very cheap to run and service, but deadly boring to look at. Not a bad drive though. So far, servicing has been under 300 for 36k miles from a VW main dealer, including brake fluid change. Has returned us an average of 42mpg over that period.
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Old 09-04-2008, 04:15 PM   #11
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We have a Mazda 5 - 4 seats, then 2 more fold up from the boot and a 7th 'occasional seat' in between the rear 2 , and 2 sliding doors. We have found it to be good, although the dealer less so... Might be worth a look! There is a 55 plate with 25000 miles at cargiant for 8000...
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Old 09-04-2008, 04:21 PM   #12
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Thanks for the comments guys.

The FRV is out as we already have a 6-seater (the Vito, which has the same 3x3 layout with a much bigger boot ).

The Touran is definitely on the list but they seem pricey compared to the others (so looking at higher mileage, or older, or lower spec./engine). And they seem to vary between 5 / 6 / 7 seats?
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Old 09-04-2008, 04:22 PM   #13
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Zaffy GSi - great engine.
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Old 09-04-2008, 04:22 PM   #14
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I hired a 1.8 Zafira (old shape) for a lads' weekend to Newcastle a couple of years ago. It hauled 6 blokes plus luggage no problem at all. It was much better than I thought it would be, to be honest, quite nippy. Your budget will get a good example on an 05 plate with reasonable mileage, and that's what I would go for. The only downside are Vauxhall dealers, who, in my experience, are rubbish.
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Old 09-04-2008, 04:30 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edthedead View Post
We have a Mazda 5 - 4 seats, then 2 more fold up from the boot and a 7th 'occasional seat' in between the rear 2 , and 2 sliding doors. We have found it to be good, although the dealer less so... Might be worth a look! There is a 55 plate with 25000 miles at cargiant for 8000...
Thanks. We have 3 kids, so would prefer a more conventional 5 plus 2 in the boot layout really. I do like sliding doors though!
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