Best cars with sliding rear seats

Let these cars slide into your ‘potential next car’ list with their handy adjustable rear seats which can slide back and forth

James Wilson
Nov 30, 2021

Cars with sliding rear seats can prove a god send when you have awkward combinations of passengers and/or luggage to carry. Not only can they help increase the size of the boot for transporting extra large items such as dishwashers or fridge freezers, but they also allow rear passengers to adjust their level of legroom, depending on the loads or people who need to fit behind them. Meanwhile, sliding rear seats all the way back can make it easier to install child seats in the back, too.

Some sliding seats offer more functionality than others, though, so we've picked out the most practical models. A prime example of this is that some cars have rear seats that are individually slidable. This enables you to slide the outer and middle seats independently of one another, giving maximum flexibility when deciding the ratio of passenger legroom to cargo space. Some models have rear seats which are joined, often in a 60:40 split, but even with a reduced functionality, these sliding rear seats are still incredibly useful.

As the main benefits of sliding rear seats are associated with practicality and usability, it's generally only the most practicality-centric models that are available with adjustable seats in the back. As such, people carriers, SUVs, crossovers and hatchbacks are more likely to have sliding rear seats than performance cars, coupes and convertibles, which tend to have more fixed seating options.

The best cars with sliding rear seats offer a wide range of functionality. They start at tiny city cars like the Suzuki Ignis and move all the way up to large, upmarket models like the Land Rover Discovery Sport. The eight cars shortlisted below can be found second-hand from around £5,000 to £35,000. Meanwhile, if you plan to pay for your car with PCP finance, you can expect monthly payments to come in at around £115* per month to £550* per month.

Best cars with sliding rear seats

1. Skoda Kodiaq

Used deals from £16,793
Monthly finance from £253*

Skoda has become known for producing some of the most practical cars available and of those, the Kodiaq is its most practical SUV. In addition to excellent usability, the Kodiaq is also good value and is comfortable to drive. Its sliding seats, meanwhile, enable seven adults to get comfortable, by enabling passengers to meter out the level of legroom shared between middle and rearmost seats. 

As Skoda is part of the same company as Volkswagen and Audi, its cars often feature equipment used in more expensive models from its sister brands. For example, the media displays in the centre of the dashboard are normally found in cars such as the Volkswagen Golf and as a result the Kodiaq feels like a more expensive car than it is.

What is quite surprising about the Kodiaq, is that it handles well around corners. A lot of larger and heavier cars can wallow when cornering, which can make passengers feel ill on longer journeys, especially if they are looking at screens or reading a book. However, the Kodiaq is comfortable for those in all three rows of seats.

SKODA KODIAQ BUYERS' GUIDE

2. Nissan Note

Used deals from £6,990
Monthly finance from £195*

Compared to rival small cars such as the Ford Fiesta and Renault Clio, the Nissan Note isn’t quite as fashionable, being a bit more boxy in shape, but if you are more interested in practicality and features such as sliding rear seats, then the Nissan Note blows its competition out of the water. All apart from the Honda Jazz, that is, as it's a similar kind of car.

Nissan only offered the Note with a small range of engines but all perform well when it comes to fuel economy. We’d recommend a petrol version for anyone who is expecting to do mostly town driving and a diesel for those who expect to do more motorway driving.

This is due to the fact that diesel engines are more fuel-efficient than petrol engines but more so at motorway speeds than when driving in town. Plus, certain cities such as London are making it more expensive to drive older diesel cars in the city centre to try to reduce air pollution. If you want help working out if a diesel car is right for you, read more about the future of diesel cars.

2013-2017 NISSAN NOTE BUYERS' GUIDE

3. Land Rover Discovery Sport

Used deals from £17,750
Monthly finance from £191*

If you want a car that has sliding rear seats and space for seven, plus a four-wheel-drive system that will easily take off-road adventures in its stride, then the Discovery Sport is one of the best options. A vast majority of Discovery Sports include four-wheel-drive as standard, making them very capable off-roaders, though there are front-wheel-drive versions available too, which do without this mechanical gear for improved fuel economy at the expensive of reduced all terrain ability, so make sure you pick the right one for your needs.

In the cabin, the rearmost seats are best suited to kids as adults will struggle for space, but having middle seats which can be slid forwards and back does cater for passengers of different sizes. The interior provides a good impression of sturdiness, which is good news for a family car. In 2019 Land Rover overhauled the Discovery Sport and the updated models come with better equipment levels including Apple CarPlay and Android Auto compatibility. So, if you are set on having the latest tech, these newer models are the ones to have.

LAND ROVER DISCOVERY SPORT BUYERS' GUIDE

4. Suzuki Ignis

Used deals from £7,790
Monthly finance from £115*

The Suzuki Ignis is small, practical and impressively tough for a small car. Suzuki even makes four-wheel-drive versions (these are referred to as ‘AllGrip’ models) and they are surprisingly capable off-road thanks to being so light. If you live somewhere that gets particularly affected by snow in winter but don’t want to drive a large and fuel-hungry off-roader then the Ignis is a great option - especially if you consider fitting winter tyres, as these provide improved grip in low temperatures and on snow.

Considering how inexpensive the Ignis is, it can come with an awful lot of standard equipment and overall the little Suzuki offers excellent value for money. Also, featuring sliding rear seats - standard on higher-spec models such as SZ-T - is quite rare in a car this size and helps boost the Suzuki’s practicality credentials. In SZ T models the maximum boot capacity is 260 litres, which puts it just ahead of practical city car rivals like the Skoda Citigo, though room does drop to 204 litres if you opt for an AllGrip model.

SUZUKI IGNIS BUYERS' GUIDE

5. Citroen Berlingo

Used deals from £16,400
Monthly finance from £302*

The Citroen Berlingo is part of a trio of cars that share components such as engines, brakes and suspension but are differentiated by their styling. As such, if you don’t like the funky exterior of the Berlingo then it is worth taking a look at the closely-related Vauxhall Combo Life or Peugeot Rifter. All three cars are relatively affordable and promise to be some of the most practical vehicles on the road. This is largely made possible thanks to their van-like shape.

The Berlingo is available in M and XL lengths. The latter is the longer of the two and comes with the option of seven seats. What is rare about these models is the two rearmost seats can slide, so you can still adjust the ratio of boot to passenger space when all seven seats are being used. The middle row of seats is also large enough for three adults to travel in comfort, plus the rear sliding doors make access very easy - even if you are putting a child seat in and out of the car.

CITROEN BERLINGO BUYERS' GUIDE

6. Volkswagen Sharan

Used deals from £16,000
Monthly finance from £393*

The VW Sharan is classed as a people carrier, which, as the name suggests, means it is designed to carry people. To do this well, sliding rear seats are included but there is much more to the VW than that. Some models have features such as pop-out booster seats in the back, fold-out lunch tables, reclining rear seats and even electrically sliding rear doors. Not all of these features are standard, though, so be sure to double-check that the features you're after are included in the models you're considering.

Volkswagen launched the latest version of the Sharan in 2010 but gave it a refresh in terms of styling and equipment in 2015. One of the biggest criticisms of new Sharans is that they can be quite expensive compared to other upmarket people carriers like the BMW 2 Series Active Tourer. However, second-hand models lose value quickly enough to make used models far better value. Of the second-hand Sharans, there are diesel and petrol models available. Diesel versions are far more common, as they are more economical and sold better when new.

VOLKSWAGEN SHARAN BUYERS' GUIDE

7. Vauxhall Crossland X

Used deals from £9,350
Monthly finance from £144*

If you're confused by the names, fear not; the Crossland X and Crossland are the same car. The difference is that Vauxhall updated the Crossland X in 2021 and in the process dropped the ‘X’ from the name. In terms of size, this Vauxhall is similar to models like the Nissan Juke and Renault Captur. As a result, it is a great option for those wanting a stylish crossover that is affordable to run and small enough to make town driving relatively easy.

The Crossland is a practical car, too, and versions with the ‘Versatility Pack’ come with sliding rear seats. These are split 60:40, so two of the rear seats slide together and one is independent. This means that the arrangement isn't quite as practical as some other cars on this list but still useful. Models to aim for are SRi Nav and Ultimate Nav versions as they include the Versatility Pack as standard. Other features included in the pack are a central folding armrest in the rear and an underfloor cargo area in the boot.

VAUXHALL CROSSLAND X BUYERS' GUIDE

8. Mercedes B-Class

Used deals from £13,299
Monthly finance from £271*

Produced from 2011 to 2018 the previous-generation Mercedes B-Class was one of the first properly upmarket people carriers. It is perfectly suited to those who value practicality, usability and build quality above powerful engines, sporty handling and racy styling. In 2015 Mercedes updated the previous-generation B-Class and it is the newer models we are focusing on here.

All models made after the updates came with sliding rear seats, although these are split 60:40 rather than having three individual seats. The cabin in general is one of the biggest strengths of the B-Class and while it is a little dated compared to new cars leaving the factory now - such as the latest Mercedes B-Class - it still includes plenty of desirable features such as a reasonably slick media system mounted on the centre of the dashboard.

2011-2018 MERCEDES B-CLASS BUYERS' GUIDE

*Representative PCP finance - Ford Fiesta:

48 monthly payments of £192
Deposit: £0
Mileage limit: 8,000 per year
Optional final payment to buy car: £2,923
Total amount payable to buy car: £11,926
Total cost of credit: £2,426
Amount borrowed: £9,500
APR: 9.9%

BuyaCar is a credit broker, not a lender. Our rates start from 6.9% APR. The rate you are offered will depend on your individual circumstances.

 

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