Most Spacious and Practical Family-Friendly SUVs

By Alexi Falson
Updated on 20 Nov 2023 First published 18 Mar 2022
image for Most Spacious and Practical Family-Friendly SUVs SUVs have become the go-to option for Australians looking for a spacious, practical and versatile car that can handle a family’s ever-growing list of demands.

With manufacturers well aware of their popularity, more family-friendly SUVs have flooded the market, which is a great thing when it comes to choice, but also means it’s easy to be overwhelmed with your best options.

Join us as we take a closer look at the most spacious and practical family-friendly SUVs to help you out on your search for your next family mover.

Hyundai Palisade

2023 hyundaialisade highlander

While the Palisade’s smaller sibling, the Hyundai Santa Fe is a super strong performer under the family test, it can’t hold a candle compared to the sheer amount of space and premium touches that have made the Palisade a hit with buyers.

With seating for up to eight people while retaining a healthy 311L of boot space with all the rows standing, the Palisade can be loaded up to the brim and still be comfortable for those seated inside, making it a great option for Aussie families.

  • Engine: 2.2-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel & 3.8-litre V6 

  • Fuel Economy: 7.3 - 10.7L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 311 - 704L  

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Five-year/unlimited-kilometre 

Mazda CX-90

2023 mazda cx-90 gt

Mazda’s latest generation CX-90 SUV has received a long list of technical upgrades headlined by a range of more fuel-efficient engines and a revamped interior that is a game-changer for large families.

As Mazda’s flagship large SUV, you can expect to find a super attractive interior layout filled with practical touches for large families, with seating for six- or seven-people, depending on your needs, and the added bonus of a plug-in hybrid range-topper arriving in 2024.

  • Engine: 3.3-litre inline six-cylinder petrol & diesel, PHEV incoming 

  • Fuel Economy: 5.4 - 8.2L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 608L  

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Five-year/unlimited-kilometre

Kia Sorento

2023 kia sorento

Kia’s largest SUV in the pack, the Sorento, has become one of the go-to options for Aussie buyers looking for a spacious and practical package that comes packed with features and receives long warranty coverage.

Better still, the latest generation Kia Sorento has been updated with hybrid and plug-in hybrid engines atop the lineup, giving family buyers some more variety and added economy bonuses while shopping around for a large, family-friendly SUV.

  • Engine: Four engines available 

  • Fuel Economy: 1.6 - 9.7L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 187 - 616L  

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Seven-year/unlimited-kilometre

Ford Everest

2023 ford everest

Ford’s updated Everest SUV is a super practical package for Australian families looking for a comfortable commuter with impressive off-road abilities.

Inside, the Everest can be optioned with two rows for five people, or a three-row cabin for families of seven, both of which offer a tonne of headroom for tall rear passengers, space to stretch their legs and a decent amount of boot space.

  • Engine: 2.2-litre twin-turbo four-cylinder & 3.0-litre V6 diesels 

  • Fuel Economy: 7.1 - 8.5L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 259 - 898L  

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Five-year/unlimited-kilometre

Volvo XC90

2023 volvo xc90

Volvo’s largest SUV in the lineup, the XC90 is a fabulous family car, offering a sleek and stylish cabin with a generous amount of space for growing families and the added bonus of a plug-in hybrid (PHEV) range-topper.

Inside, the XC90’s minimalist cabin keeps things clean and tidy while offering a range of practical touches for families, and more than enough space in the three-row cabin for a family of seven.

  • Engine: Three engines available, including plug-in hybrid 

  • Fuel Economy: 1.8 - 8.2L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 709L 

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Five-year/unlimited-kilometre

Skoda Kodiaq

2023 skoda kodiaq

For more price-conscious buyers still looking for some European refinement, the Skoda Kodiaq range offers a heap of space inside the cabin and practical touches that make it a hit with large families.

With three rows standing, there’s a handy 270L of boot space on offer in the Kodiaq, expanding to 630L with the third row folded, and the added bonus of an exciting RS variant for those looking for some speed from their practical SUV.

  • Engine: 2.0-litre turbocharged four-cylinder petrol 

  • Fuel Economy: 7.5 - 8.2L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 270 - 630L   

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Five-year/unlimited-kilometre

Isuzu MU-X

2023 isuzu mu-x

Looking for a large and super practical family SUV that isn’t afraid to get its toes dirty? Look no further than the Isuzu MU-X range, which combines a very family-friendly cabin layout with immense off-road potential.

Underneath, the MU-X is actually based on the D-Max ute, which means there’s almost nothing capable of stopping it off-road or with a heavy load in tow, while the large platform lends itself perfectly to the duties of a family SUV, with enough space for a family of seven.

  • Engine: 3.0-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel 

  • Fuel Economy: 7.8 - 8.3L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 311 - 1119L 

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Six-year/150,000km

Nissan Pathfinder

2023 nissan pathfinder

Nissan’s recent overhaul for the Pathfinder range has resulted in a much more modern, sleek, fuel-efficient and practical SUV that has more than enough space inside the cabin for up to eight people.

Power comes supplied by a beefy V6, with the option of 4x4 systems higher up in the range for added stability, all of which come with a redesigned cabin that offers a tonne of head and legroom for those in the rear and decent boot space figures.

  • Engine: 3.5-litre V6 petrol 

  • Fuel Economy: 10 - 10.5L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 205 - 554L  

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Five-year/unlimited-kilometre

Land Rover Range Rover

2023 land rover range rover

If you fancy a slice of opulence with your family-friendly SUV, the almighty Range Rover offers acres of interior space and seemingly endless practical touches inside the luxurious cabin.

With the choice of five- and seven-seat layouts, the Range Rover is one of the best ways to transport a large family in comfort and style, with the added bonus of exceptional off-road performance.

  • Engine: Four engines available 

  • Fuel Economy: 7.2- 11.8L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 818L  

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Unrated 

  • Warranty: Five-year/unlimited-kilometre

Toyota Kluger

2023 toyota kluger

Toyota has added a number of hybrid engine options to the latest Kluger range, giving its seven-seat SUV platform some impressive fuel efficiency figures.

Inside, the Kluger offers a tonne of space for families of seven, with clever storage areas and cubby holes to swallow up loose items bolstered by a heap of headroom to keep the family happy.

  • Engine: 2.4-litre four-cylinder & 2.5-litre four-cylinder hybrid 

  • Fuel Economy: 5.6 - 8.7L/100km  

  • Boot Space: 311 - 1119L 

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Five-year/unlimited-kilometre

Mitsubishi Pajero Sport

2023 mitsubishi pajero sport impulse blue

While the Pajero Sport is getting a little bit long in the tooth, it remains a heavy-hitter when it comes to family-friendly space, practicality and exceptional 4x4 versatility that is a perfect match for adventurous Aussie families.

Underneath, the Pajero Sport borrows its chassis, suspension and engine from the Triton ute, with the large platform proving a happy home for families of seven looking for a commuter and capable weekend adventurer.

  • Engine: 2.4-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel 

  • Fuel Economy: 8.0L/100km 

  • Boot Space: 131 - 502L 

  • ANCAP Safety Rating: Five-star

  • Warranty: Five-year/150,000km extends to ten-year/200,000

Request a Quote

If you’re shopping around for a large, practical and family-friendly SUV, be sure to reach out to one of our car-buying specialists who can help find you the best price.


Alexi Falson

Alexi is an automotive journalist and road tester hailing from Byron Bay. He has an affection for both cars and motorbikes, a great admiration for the simplicity of old-school engineering, and a fascination of new technology making its way to modern cars. When he's not road testing, you'll find him surfing, hiking or helping people find their dream cars.

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