Style conscious parents still want a nice car even with a big brood, and rightly so.
Just because their passengers may have a tendency to drool, spit up and leave smelly footy shoes between the seats, that doesn’t mean they can’t drive them around in style.
"A quilty seven seater car will combine elegance with safety, affordability, heaps of room and all-round family functionality," said Juliet Potter, the brains behind Auto Chic -- An Australian automotive site skewed toward women.
According to Potter, these babies tick every box -- and even create a few new ones.
Fiat Freemont Crossroad
"This beautiful beast can help you tackle all terrains, even with a stack of screaming kids in the back. Pack your family and friends -- with the option of three rows of seating (we suggest the kids in the third row), and hit the road," said Potter.
You can also alter the configuration to allow for more cargo and fewer passengers if you want to ditch the kids for a romantic getaway, or the other way around for a family adventure (in which case you can also or other optionals like cargo carriers/roof boxes, bike racks, and ski and snowboard carriers.
"And, you can be sure your loved ones are safe as houses, thanks to a comprehensive system of airbags, anti-lock brakes, Electronic Stability Control, hill holder and Trailer Sway Control."
Holden Captiva 7
When the kids' noise gets a bit much, simply slide the sunroof on this baby right back, and let the fresh air clear your thoughts.
"While it appears compact, but oh-so-chic from the outside, inside the Captiva 7 you’ve got three rows of easily adjustable seating, which can comfortably seat seven people and a cabin full of gear," said Potter.
"There’s also Rear Park Assist to help you get into the trickiest of parking spots, as well as high tech entertainment system so the kids will never get bored on the road."
Ford Territory MKI Titanium
"Hidden beneath this beauty’s sleek exterior are a host of safety features to keep you well assured your family is in good hands. We’re talking things like five airbags, traction control, emergency brake assist and a reverse camera," said Potter.
"Inside, you’ll find enough space to sit seven little dwarves, a fancy leather steering wheel you’ll love to check your manicure against, and Wi-Fi feature so the little ones can entertain themselves on their individual iPad, with no arguing over whether to watch The Wiggles or In The Night Garden."
Mercedes-Benz GL Class
"This luxury SUV sets new standards when it comes to safety, and at the same time will ensure you and your family, arrive at your destination thoroughly relaxed, thanks to an awesome combination of ample space and driving performance," said Potter.
"Don’t be fooled by this baby; the smaller exterior belies its spacious interior," said Potter. "In fact, the third row of seats is just as comfortable as the first, with electrically folded and raised backrests, so you can almost lay the kids flat when they konk out."
There are several different seat configuration options, which means you can create the number of seats and amount of luggage space you need at any given moment, whether you’re going on a family vacay or loading the kids up for soccer training.
Leather upholstery means any food spills can be easily wiped up, while automatic, four-zone air-conditioning will quell any squabbles about cabin temps.
If you’re a typical chauffeur, ahem, Mum, you’re going to love this car.
"Think: Increased space, a truly luxe vibe, raised seating position and easy-to-vary seating -- so you can adjust the interior space according to how many items of precious human cargo you’ve got on board," said Potter.
The massive boot capacity will make your life a dream, too. Oh, and there are rear comfort seats and an additional third row of seats both available as options.
Land Rover Discovery
Active family? This premium, capable and versatile SUV is for you.
"All passengers get unspoiled views, and a range of infotainment and technologies will keep everyone entertained, relaxed and comfortable. You’ll never hear, 'are we there yet?' again," said Potter.
Hyundai Santa Fe
This is a sophisticated and contemporary family car that comes with a reassuring maximum 5-Star ANCAP safety rating. In layman’s terms -- you’re combining exceptional comfort and versatility with a safe and assured open road performance.
"Its flexible interior seats seven passengers (of any age) in total comfort, and there’s enough storage space to make you think you’d entered the Tardis," said Potter.
The twin-panel panorama glass roof floods the cabin with light, while providing shade and insulation from the wind.
Mitsubishi Outlander LS
"Combining elegance, luxury, safety, strength, power and versatility this beauty sure makes a statement on the road, and it will get your family where it needs to be with as little drama as possible," said Potter.
With the option of five or seven seat models, you get more space, comfort and versatility.
Nissan X-Trail ST-L
Sleek and stylish, this is designed to make every day driving a joy -- even when you’ve got three sports’ carnivals to attend.
"Full of practical features -- it’s family proof, stylish and sturdy. It can fit the entire family, plus all your essentials and it is packed with technologically advanced features so the little ones will have plenty to amuse them no matter how long the drive," said Potter.
"Ticking all the right boxes -- comfort, performance, safety and style, this baby is the perfect mum-mobile," said Potter.
A seven-inch satellite navigation with rear View Camera makes life easy, and you’ve also got the option of four or six bottle holders to prevent red cordial splashing all over the car and front seat back pockets for children’s books and iPads.
Lexus LX 570
Expect all the comforts of home with this new model. Up to eight adults or children can travel in style, surrounded by intelligent technologies, which will keep the kids amused for hours.
Volvo XC 90
"What do you get if you cross leading-edge technology, unimaginable style, luxurious pampering, seven-seater practicality and plenty of room and technology for the kids to travel peacefully? The Volvo XC 90, that’s what," said Potter.
Functionality and design marry seamlessly in this luxury SUV, both inside and out. Perfect for the modern family, it features all you need to keep everyone comfortable and sane on any length of drive.