These are the 7-seater cars Malaysians are definitely excited for
CY Foong · Dec 27, 2020 01:00 PM
Think of a 7-seater and chances are you’re thinking of a family-friendly MPV or a crossover SUV. They might be boring to some but trust us, there are a few gems in this category that were launched in 2020.
These 7-seater cars can be very practical and comfortable for the family but at the same time, some definitely surprise us the moment we get behind the wheel. Some might even bring a smile to the petrolhead parent.
Without wasting any longer, let’s jump right into the 7-seater SUVs and MPVs that were launched in 2020 which wowed us.
2020 Mitsubishi Xpander
Whether you want to call it an MPV or an SUV, one thing that makes the Mitsubishi Xpander impressive is how practical it really is. In fact, it’s the largest among its competitors and thus it offers a very spacious third-row.
Step inside the 7-seater SUV, and you’re greeted with a very simple, no-frills interior. It comes with Apple CarPlay and Android Auto which keeps it looking modern, a 360-degree camera which helps with manoeuvring around tight spaces and 18 cupholders to keep you and your family hydrated enough during those long journeys.
But the biggest surprise probably comes when you get the SUV moving. The steering feels light and the ride is certainly supple which is comfortable for those long journeys. For a 7-seater SUV, the Xpander surely ticks the right boxes for those wanting practicality on a budget. Shame it only comes with 2 airbags.
2020 Volkswagen Tiguan Allspace
Volkswagen pulled off a triple threat back in August when it unveiled the Passat R-Line, the Arteon, and the Tiguan Allspace in a day. However, the Tiguan Allspace is far from an extended Tiguan with 2 extra seats in the back.
This is definitely true if you decided to opt for the 2.0-litre R-Line over the 1.4-litre Highline. Granted, the Highline variant is only around RM 2,000 more than the regular 5-seater Tiguan but if you wanted extra space, you can’t certainly go wrong with that.
The 2.0-litre R-Line on the other hand transforms the Tiguan Allspace from a family hauler to a spicy SUV. Powered by the same 2.0-litre turbocharged engine (220 PS/350 Nm) as the Golf GTI and mated to a 7-speed DCT gearbox that powers all wheels, this is the 7-seater SUV specially made for parents with petrol pumping in their veins.
2020 Mercedes-Benz GLB
When the Mercedes-Benz GLB was launched in Malaysia, we quickly suggested buyers to opt for it over the outgoing GLA and for a few good reasons too. The outgoing GLA was pretty outdated considering the price you have to pay.
Even with the all-new GLA launched a few weeks ago, we might still suggest going for the 7-seater GLB anyway. Provided you’re looking for slightly more practicality thanks to the pair of seats in the third-row or some performance.
That’s right. Unlike the GLA, Mercedes-Benz Malaysia also offers the Mercedes-AMG GLB 35. Powered by a turbocharged 2.0-litre M 260 engine (306 PS/400 Nm) paired to an AMG Speedshift 8G DCT, the GLB 35 does the century sprint from rest in 5.2 seconds. School runs are definitely more entertaining.
2020 Mazda CX-9
Moving on from performance 7-seaters, we go to style and substance and for that, you can’t go wrong with a Mazda. The 2020 Mazda CX-9 retained its sleek Kodo design and even the powertrains are maintained. We might say that it's the prettiest 7-seater SUV on sale in Malaysia.
So, what changed? Well, in this case, it’s mainly the features. The updated CX-9 gains a bigger 9-inch infotainment system that now supports Apple CarPlay and Android Auto. Besides, third-row occupants now don’t need to fight for the USB ports as each would get their own.
Also available on the updated CX-9 is a new feature called Off-Road Traction Assist which is a more advanced traction control system, replacing the traction control button. The revamped CX-9 also comes with GVC Plus, which gives the 7-seater SUV just the right balance of handling prowess.
2020 Honda BR-V
The Honda BR-V might be a perennial family favourite for those seeking to upgrade their ride from a hatchback or a sedan for a 7-seater crossover SUV. Built on a passenger car platform, the BR-V gives families the familiarity of a passenger car on a crossover SUV.
The facelift enhances the SUV looks but not much else. It is still powered by the same tried and tested 1.5-litre SOHC i-VTEC engine paired to a CVT automatic gearbox.
Just like the pre-facelift BR-V, it still boasts a car-like driving experience and the low height offers ease of loading and unloading. Even though it is smaller than the Xpander, the BR-V is still quite a practical 7-seater SUV to be in with plenty of cubby holes all over.
2020 Kia Grand Carnival
We save the biggest for last. Well, it has the most seats out of the six we have here but the 11-seater Kia Grand Carnival might be one of the most surprising out of all and it’s not because of its sheer size.
No, it’s more on how easy to drive this minibus of an MPV. Though it is a huge family car, it’s surprisingly simple to manoeuvre even in crowded city roads and the steering feels very light. Thanks to the 2.2-litre turbodiesel TCI engine, power is also more than adequate.
Even with the extra seats, the 11-seater Grand Carnival is actually priced cheaper than the previous 8-seater variant (RM 179,888, from RM 189,888). Now, that sounds like a good bargain to us. Whoever takes over the distributorship rights for Kia is still uncertain, but Kia dealers are still operating as normal.
Those are the 7-seaters that definitely caught Malaysians' attention in 2020. You can even vote for them in WapCar’s inaugural Car of the Year (COTY) awards. That’s right, one of these 7-seaters could win our 7-seater Family Car of the Year category and you can decide the winner right here!