The Vauxhall Zafira is a seven-seat MPV priced at just £11,000 for a short period of time at Perrys Motors.
But what is the Vauxhall Zafira and why should families looking for the best seven-seat cars consider buying it over its rivals?
For a start, there’s price. The Vauxhall Zafira is now the cheapest seven-seat car on sale thanks to drastic price cuts.
The Vauxhall Zafira also comes with the brand’s industry-leading warranty, which can potentially last for a lifetime because it has no time limit on – as long as the car has clocked up less than 100,000 miles the warranty is available. It can also be transferred to a second driver if possible.
The cheapest seven-seat car on sale?
The Vauxhall Zafira is a practical people carrier with three rows of seats. The second row is a bench of three seats and the third includes two, smaller seats for extra capacity if needed.
It comes with over 1,800-litres of space in the back with the seats folded and a huge amount of head and leg room with the seats up due to the car’s boxy shape.
The flexibility of the seats is Vauxhall’s unique selling point. Named Flex7, the seating arrangements allow the second and third rows to be manipulated into a large number of variations.
The folding three-seat bench and optional extra row of seats mean the Zafira is ideal for a family of up to seven people or a family of five with a need to store equipment.
If storage is the main concern, there are plenty of cubby holes and that vast boot which is ideal for sports equipment, luggage and buggies. The Zafira is also available on the Motability scheme with Perrys Motors and can be modified for wheelchair or other uses.
Big people carriers often do not offer an engaging driving experience. Too often there is body roll around corners and unresponsive handling.
However, Vauxhall has worked hard to prevent this in the Zafira and tweaks to suspension, helped along by Electronic Stability Control (ESC) and anti-lock braking mean the Zafira offers a much more car-like drive than many of its rivals.[YouTube:GjcYfzcHxZI]
Under the bonnet, the UK’s cheapest seven-seat car comes with a selection of petrol and diesel engines including a 1.6-litre petrol and 1.7-litre diesel, the greenest option in the range.
The diesel, in Vauxhall’s signature ‘EcoFlex’ variation, delivers CO2 emissions of just 134g/km – a similar level to many saloons and large family cars currently on sale in the UK.
However, the car’s main selling point will be the reduction in price at Perrys Motors dealerships by around £7,000.
New Vauxhall Zafira prices now start from a little under £12,000 for the seven-seat car, putting it amongst the cheapest seven-seaters in the UK.
You can see the new Vauxhall Zafira deal here.
However, the Zafira does have some competition:
Launched in 2010, the Seat Alhambra seven-seat MPV has collected a plethora of industry awards including the Best MPV award from What Car? magazine in 2010 and 2011.
The Alhambra took the titles because of its stylish design incorporating a low roofline, sporty front end including daytime running lights and a premium-feeling interior.
This includes climate control, cruise control (as an option), rear parking sensor and a wide range of safety equipment as standard including ESC and driver, front side and passenger air bags.
Like the Zafira, the Alhambra handles like a much smaller car without compromising ride comfort, while Volkswagen engines ensure the Seat is reliable and frugal.
Seat Alhambra prices start from £30,000 for one of the more premium seven-seat cars on the market.
The Chevrolet Orlando is probably the closest in price to the Vauxhall Zafira. Orlando prices start from a little under £17,000 for an entry-level version and all cars come with a five-year warranty.
Often seen as the budget option in the seven-seat car segment, the Chevrolet Orlando is a big, bulky MPV with a major focus on practicality.
Entry-level versions come with seven seats in three rows, air conditioning, a radio/CD player with MP3 compatibility and, in the words of the GM-owned brand, ‘multiple storage options’.
For young families, the Orlando comes with a host of options including child and baby seats, bike carriers, ski racks and roof boxes to extend its practicality.
It won’t cost the earth either – the Zafira comes with a 1.8-litre petrol engine or a 2.0-litre diesel and a choice of manual or automatic transmission to match driving costs to your financial restraints.
The Chevrolet Orlando is available now from Perrys Chevrolet dealerships from £17,000.
Most lists across a number of segments feature a Ford car and this is no different. The Ford Grand C-Max offers seven seats but is slightly more compact than the vast Ford Galaxy, one of the older but more practical cars in Ford’s range.
Ford Galaxy prices start from £25,000 and Ford has labelled it the ‘luxury’ choice in the MPV market. While it is not the cheapest seven-seat car on the market, it is a favourite with leading parents’ website Mumsnet after a three-week test drive saw it praised by the temporary reviewers.
For the price, you get leather highlights to the steering wheel, individually-folding seats, front and rear parking sensors and an infotainment system with MP3 compatibility.
The Ford Galaxy also comes with a panoramic roof as an option for an extra £1,000, or as standard on the top-level Titanium X trim.
An EcoBoost petrol engine delivers close to 40mpg while a range of diesel options, including 2.0-litre and 2.2-litre units, push that figure up above 50mpg in the case of the 160bhp Duratorq unit.
Ford Galaxy prices start from £25,000 at Perrys Ford dealerships.