These mini-MPVs, also known as compact MPVs, are great for those that want something nearly as small as a supermini, but way more practical in comparison.
Mini-MPVs feature clever design solutions to allow themselves to store lots of items without sacrificing much seating space.
Cars in the mini-MPV category can not only surprise you with just how roomy they are, they also tend to drive better than the larger, van-like MPVs. They also tend to be more fuel efficient and emit less CO2, saving you money on running costs in the long term.
So which are the best mini-MPVs? In this guide, we highlight five of the best family cars in this particular category. These particular cars make it on to our mini-MPV list for being smartly designed, practical, comfortable, easy-going and decent to drive.
The B-MAX is Ford’s compact family car entry into the mini-MPV segment and caught plenty of attention immediately from launch thanks to some distinct design choices.
Particularly notable about the design of the Ford B-MAX is the use of rear sliding doors and the absence of a traditional, central B-pillar. This design choice makes it really easy to get inside either the front or rear compartments of this car. The set-up is perfect for families with kids that constantly need to adjust the seats and other details.
Engines for the Ford B-MAX include the multi-award-winning 1.0-litre EcoBoost petrol unit that feels really potent. It's available with outputs of up to 123bhp, and CO2 emissions start at just 99g/km.
The B-MAX is a great option for younger families, and is affordable to maintain. This car also boasts a five-star Euro NCAP rating for safety.
Ford’s B-MAX is one of the most intriguing mini-MPVs in the current new car market and performs strongly in every crucial area a family motorist is likely to prioritise.
Based on the similarly named i20 supermini, the Hyundai ix20 is a mini-MPV entry with a distinctly curvaceous design, which contrasts with the boxy look of many other cars in this category.
While it is based on the Kia Venga and shares the same engines, the Hyundai ix20 has its own distinct look which some car buyers may find more to their taste.
The Hyundai ix20 will favour those who want a mini-MPV that is practical, easy to drive, well-equipped and will stand the test of time. This Hyundai has a versatile interior that offers great visibility while you are inside.
Considering how easy it feels to park this car, you may not expect the ix20 interior to be that big but you’d be surprised.
It is also affordable to run, with a low emitting 1.6-litre diesel option that emits just 117g/km of CO2 and returns around 64mpg.
Also enticing is that the ix20, like other Hyundais, comes with various incentives such as a five-year warranty plus a breakdown and servicing deal.
The Kia Venga shows family car motorists that you can pay a relatively low sum for a mini-MPV and still get a versatile, comfortable and practical motor that feels value for money.
Maximising cabin space was Kia’s priority with the Venga and that shows in the interior design. Able to seat two adults and three children with ease, the Venga offers plenty of seating configurations along with plenty of room for storage.
For a small MPV, the Kia Venga has an impressively roomy and stylish interior. The cabin is comfy, and every single Kia Venga is installed with stability control, front, rear, side and curtain airbags, and has a five-star Euro NCAP rating.
Another plus point worth a mention is Kia's brilliant seven-year/100,000 mile warranty, which comes with the Venga mini-MPV.
The Vauxhall Meriva is all about innovation and distinct design choices. That’s reflected in details such as the rear-hinged doors, which are both memorable and a handy feature for rear passenger access.
Vauxhall’s Meriva also incorporates what’s called a Flex5 seating arrangement which means each seat can be adjusted in a huge number of ways. The driver can slide them forwards, backwards or side-to-side if necessary, so each passenger should feel very comfortable with their set-up.
Other plus points of the Vauxhall Meriva include the upmarket feel to the cabin, with soft touch materials and the perky 1.4-litre petrol engine.
In its standard trim, the Vauxhall Meriva also comes with luxuries such as air conditioning, cruise control and Bluetooth connectivity. Higher trims add the likes of alloy wheels, Bluetooth, cruise control and a panoramic sunroof.
Citroën C3 Picasso
The Citroën C3 Picasso like other mini-MPVs has its own distinctive, memorable look that allows it to stand out. The Citroën’s chunky and boxy look allows it to offer loads of cabin room even though its dimensions are not particularly long, like a true mini-MPV.
Engine options for the Citroën C3 Picasso include a 1.2-litre three-cylinder petrol with 109bhp that packs a punch and feels particularly at home while motorway cruising.
There’s also an impressive diesel engine selection, featuring a 1.6-litre HDi unit with 88bhp or 113bhp. With either output, the diesel-run C3 Picasso delivers attractive running costs and a playful amount of torque to use.
What’s even better about this Citroën mini-MPV is just how versatile the interior is. The cabin is a quiet, relaxing place to be and headroom all-round is staggering while equipment levels are also pleasing.