Saloons with big boots

Choosing a four-door car needn’t mean sacrificing practicality, as our selection of saloons with big boots proves

Gavin Braithwaite-Smith
Apr 30, 2021

Going for a saloon car needn't mean you have to compromise on practicality. As our roundup of saloons with big boots proves, there’s no need to pack light. Many drivers like the security of having an enclosed boot at the back of the car and the sense that in many cases a saloon car is nicer to drive than a hatchback or SUV - with potentially greater refinement than a car where the boot is open to the cabin.

While it’s fair to say that a saloon isn’t the best choice if you have a dog or intend to carry a chest of drawers home from an antiques fair, the cars we’ve selected will handle a family holiday or a supermarket sweep with ease. Stick to lots of small items and they should prove very practical.

When choosing a saloon car it’s important to look at things like the size of the boot opening, the height of the boot lip and whether or not the car features underfloor storage. Check to see if the rear seats can be folded down to carry longer loads. If not, even a ski hatch opening would improve the car’s practicality, allowing you to transport long bits of skirting board or pipes for instance - or skis, of course - which would otherwise not be possible.

All of the cars on our list of saloons with big boots are just a few clicks on BuyaCar and as little as five days away from being delivered to your door. Keep reading to find the right car for you.

Saloon cars with the biggest boots

1. Volkswagen Passat

Used deals from £7,700
Monthly finance from £168*
Boot space 586 litres

The Volkswagen Passat sits somewhere between mainstream saloons from Ford and Vauxhall and upmarket rivals such as the BMW 3 Series and Audi A4. It’s also hugely practical, thanks to a wide opening and a good shape boot.

However, the Passat’s practical trump card is the sheer size of the boot. At 586 litres, the luggage capacity is just about as good as it gets, short of buying the even more cavernous Passat Estate. You also have the option of folding the 60/40 rear seats to create a load area of 1,152 litres.

Some versions come with an electric tailgate, which is handy if you’re carrying heavy shopping bags and trying to open the boot, while all models feature tie-down points, storage compartments and bag hooks in the boot. As a bonus, the huge boot doesn’t come at the expense of interior space - the Passat is large enough for five adults.

VOLKSWAGEN PASSAT BUYERS' GUIDE

2. Mercedes E-Class

Used deals from £11,965
Monthly finance from £221*
Boot space 540 litres

Although the Mercedes E-Class can’t rival the Passat in terms of boot space, it feels a league above the Volkswagen in terms of quality. Inside, the E-Class is almost as opulent as the S-Class luxury saloon, with a sense of occasion that’s unrivalled in this type of car.

At 540 litres, the luggage capacity is only 100 litres short of the E-Class Estate, which has an enormous load space, although the estate version trumps the saloon once the rear seats are folded down. That said, you can fold the rear seats in some versions of the saloon - some split 60/40, while others split 40/20/40 to provide more flexibility.

Even an entry-level E-Class diesel is smoother and more comfortable than many upmarket alternatives, although the petrol versions offer more eagerness. The E 300 plug-in hybrid offers up to 34 miles of electric range from a full battery, while at the opposite end of the spectrum, the high-performance Mercedes-AMG E 53 and E 63 S models offer the speed of a supercar with an extra dose of practicality.

MERCEDES E-CLASS BUYERS' GUIDE

3. Jaguar XF

Used deals from £12,999
Monthly finance from £211*
Boot space 540 litres

The luggage capacity in the Jaguar XF is identical to the Mercedes-Benz E-Class, so you might be wondering which upmarket saloon to choose. As a guide, the XF is the sportier of the pair, while the E-Class is more comfortable.

It’s important to check the specifications when getting a used Jaguar XF, because not all versions come with 40/20/40 split-folding rear seats as standard. Without this feature, you’re limited to the 540-litre boot, albeit with enough space for three big suitcases, a set of golf clubs or a children’s buggy.

An electric tailgate is optional, although quite frankly you don’t need it. There’s also an electric gesture boot lid, which means you can open the boot by waving your foot below the rear bumper. It’s a win-win situation: a hands-free boot and an opportunity to do a little dance behind your Jaguar.

JAGUAR XF BUYERS' GUIDE

4. BMW 5 Series

Used deals from £11,950
Monthly finance from £201*
Boot space 530 litres

The latest BMW 5 Series arrived in 2017, bringing with it the technology and luxury of the 7 Series in a smaller and more affordable package. The good news is that prices have dropped to a level that means a used 5 Series is now a realistic alternative to a new Ford Fiesta.

You’ll have to sacrifice 10 litres of luggage space when choosing a 5 Series over an E-Class or XF, but in reality that means leaving a packet of doughnuts at the supermarket checkout. Your waistline will thank you for it.

It’s not all good news. The 40/20/40 split-folding rear seats are an option, so make sure any 5 Series models you're looking at have this feature if you're getting a used one. It’s also worth noting that the rear wheelarches intrude into the load area, which might be a pain when you’re loading large and awkwardly shaped items. That said, with the rear seats folded down, the boot is large enough for a television or a mountain bike.

BMW 5 SERIES BUYERS' GUIDE

5. Audi A6

Used deals from £12,548
Monthly finance from £211*
Boot space 530 litres

The A6 is arguably the best saloon in the Audi range, as it combines the style and affordability of the A4 with the space and luxury of the Audi A8. It offers a quality feel throughout, with a super-slick interior and the very latest driver assistance and connectivity technology.

There’s 530 litres of luggage capacity in the boot, while the A6 gets a gold star for having 60/40 split-folding rear seats as standard. A wide opening makes it easier to load large and awkward items, and there’s enough room in there for four suitcases. Just bear in mind that the boot capacity shrinks to 360 litres in the plug-in hybrid version, which might be a problem on a family holiday.

Many buyers opt for S Line trim for its sportier styling and extra kit. Highlights include 19-inch alloy wheels, sporty suspension, suede-like Alcantara seats and an S Line body kit. Choose an A6 with a diesel engine and you can expect to see around 50mpg - impressive for a car of this size.

AUDI A6 BUYERS' GUIDE

6. Toyota Camry

Used deals from £23,490
Monthly finance from £325*
Boot space 524 litres

The Toyota Camry is hugely popular in the United States, but the saloon is almost unheard of in the UK. Don’t let that put you off, because the Camry is an economical, spacious and feature-packed four-door saloon that’s backed by a comprehensive five-year warranty.

There are just two trim levels, with even the entry-level Design model featuring the kind of kit that would be optional on rival saloons. Highlights include a suite of driver assistance systems, dual-zone air-conditioning, LED headlights and leather upholstery. Android Auto and Apple CarPlay will be added to the range in 2021.

Boot space is a respectable 524 litres, which is impressive given the Camry’s hybrid petrol-electric format - as often the addition of an electric motor cuts into boot space. You also get 60/40 split-folding rear seats as standard. You can expect to achieve around 50mpg from this petrol-electric model, which is a figure you’d normally associate with a diesel engine.

7. Honda Civic

Used deals Limited stock
Boot space 519 litres

Although the Honda Civic saloon sold in relatively few numbers in the UK, there’s a good reason why it makes our list of saloons with big boots. Thanks to 519 litres of luggage capacity, the boot is actually larger than in the Civic Hatchback, which musters 478 litres of space.

You also get 60/40 split-folding rear seats, which is handy if you need to carry something long, such as flat-pack furniture or a bicycle. Granted, the hatchback offers more flexibility with its bigger boot opening, but there’s no reason to rule out the saloon.

The important thing to remember is that the Honda Civic is from a class below the other cars on this list. This means you’re getting a boot large enough to rival a big upmarket saloon for a price you’d associate with a family hatchback.

HONDA CIVIC BUYERS' GUIDE

8. Toyota Avensis

Used deals Limited stock
Boot space 509 litres

We make no apology for featuring a second Toyota on this list of saloons with big boots. Although the Avensis is smaller than rivals like the Ford Mondeo and Vauxhall Insignia, the boot capacity is a respectable 509 litres.

The wide opening makes it easier to load large and heavy items, although the Avensis loses marks for an awkward-shaped boot, which might limit what you can carry home from the Swedish furniture store.

The Avensis was discontinued in 2018, but a five-year warranty means that some used models should still come with the remainder of Toyota’s guarantee. Opt for one of the BMW-sourced diesel engines and you’ll benefit from fuel economy of up to 67.3mpg, which makes this an incredibly cheap car to run. You’ll also benefit from Toyota’s reputation for reliability.

TOYOTA AVENSIS 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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