Last updated August 11, 2022
Multi-purpose vehicles (MPVs), more commonly known as ‘people carriers’, are a type of car favoured for their versatility and dependability. Used for both personal and commercial services, these vehicles are ideal for transporting passenger groups of over five people and for moving larger loads of cargo than can generally fit in the boot of a standard saloon.
The features of multi-purpose vehicles vary dependent on their individual make and model but generally include:
Range of seating options - The smallest MPVs are five-seater models, while larger models may include seating for up to nine people. There’s an MPV to suit a variety of seating requirements.
More room all round - With large capacity boots and the ability to expand storage into the seating area if needed, MPVs are perfect for drivers who regularly find themselves transporting large loads.
Greater storage space - Fixed monthly repayments allow you to budget for other expenses month-to-month and manage your finances
Ideal for families - All of the above features, as well as an increased focus on safety in many MPVs, make these vehicles ideal for family life.
Utilitarian look - A majority of MPVs are somewhat bulky and utilitarian in appearance and do not share the sleek, streamlined look of smaller vehicles.
Less fuel efficient - Due to their large size and heavy weight, MPVs are generally less fuel efficient than sedans and saloons.
Difficult to handle - The weight and size of multi-purpose vehicles may make some models more difficult for drivers to handle, specifically when steering and parking.
If you think that a multi-purpose vehicle could be the right type of car for you, it’s worth shopping around for your perfect make and model of MPV. Here are some tips for matching yourself to the right multi-purpose vehicle for you.
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An SUV (sport utility vehicle) is designed for off-road use, while an MPV is designed for everyday use. SUVs are also generally taller and have a more rugged look, while MPVs are shorter and have a more streamlined look.
A MUV (multi-utility vehicle) is typically a two-seater vehicle that is designed for urban use, while an MPV can seat up to seven passengers and is more suitable for longer trips. MUVs, such as transit vans, are generally preferred for commercial use, while MPVs are more suited to everyday driving.
Hatchbacks are not generally categorised as MPVs, instead falling into the category of ‘passenger cars’.