Driving a car with family is a passion shared by many, especially when driving long tours or to weekend getaways. Compact, entry level sedans are a favourite choice because of their budget friendly prices, but larger 7 seaters are also becoming popular as more drivers are looking for SUVs or at least bigger cars with high ground clearance. But many are left wondering as to which is the best family car in India in 2022.
Taking the car out with friends and family is an exciting adventure and the Indian automotive market is brimming with new models to fulfil these expectations. There is a wide variety of family cars available right now and the buyer is spoilt for choice.
Which is the best family car in India?
In India, family comes first, and it is very common for families to travel together wherever they go. Manufacturers in India are always looking for the sweet spot between space, style, price and convenience to satisfy the buyer.
Drivers are always looking for the best family car in India, and this list is sure to help them out. It is always important to follow the intended budget when buying a family car. This way you can pick the vehicle that suits all your needs.
Best family cars under 5 lakhs
Maruti Suzuki Alto 800
The list of best family cars under 5 lakhs will not be complete unless you add the very popular Alto 800. The car is available with CNG and petrol engines having a power output of 40 bhp and torque of 60 Nm. The strong points of the Alto 800 are its budget friendly price and excellent mileage. It is a family car 5-seater. Also, the maintenance on this car is inexpensive, while the car remains reliable and has a robust engine.
The smart car with a likeable design and price tag, the Tata Tiago is a city hatchback that is well suited for a small family. Engines come in both petrol and CNG versions as a 1.2 litre unit. The petrol version comes with a manual or AMT gearbox while the CNG version is offered only with a manual.
Space and comfort are great in this small car and interiors have an upmarket feel. The Tata Tiago is a family car 5-seater. The driver will like the light steering and suspension is firm giving good ride quality.
Maruti Suzuki Celerio
The Celerio carries on from its predecessor models with tall but cute styling and large wheels. It comes with a K10 1.0 litre petrol engine that is said to be the most fuel-efficient engine in India. It gets a 5-speed manual transmission and an AMT gearbox as well.
It is a mid-range hatchback that is ideal for a family with its budget pricing and low running / maintenance costs. It has a spacious interior with a large boot for luggage space. The car has ample space for 5 people making it a family car 5-seater. The Celerio gets and easy driving experience with a smooth engine and light controls. The Celerio is a great city driving car especially in stop and go traffic. The car is also brilliant for long drives on the highways.
The Renault Triber is not a large car, in fact it is sub 4 metres in length, but it has 3 rows of seats making it a family car 7-seater. The Triber comes with a petrol engine mated to a 5-speed transmission, and there is an AMT option as well. It is a sort of cross between an MPV and an SUV in a compact hatchback like design.
It has plenty of space on the inside, with good luggage space. Interior cabin quality is good at this price point. Ride comfort is excellent for the Triber and it absorbs bumps really well at low and high speeds. It is a well-designed all-rounder.
Technically, the Datsun Go+ is a seven-seater but there is very little space in the third row and passengers will find it hard to move around. The car is more like a stretched-out hatch back than a proper MPV. The engine is a petrol unit that gets a manual or CVT transmission.
The rear seats are more suited to be folded up to make space for luggage. Ride and handling are good for city driving. Steering and control are light and the engine is refined for smooth drives. It is not as good out on the highway because it doesn’t handle high speeds very well.
Best family cars under 6 lakh
If you are looking for the best family car under 6 lakhs, you will have to make a choice between the Maruti Suzuki Swift, Hyundai Elite i20, Maruti Suzuki Baleno, Tata Punch, Nissan Magnite and the Hyundai Grand i10 Nios.
Maruti Suzuki Swift
The car on the best seller list for Maruti, and has been so for decades since it is now in its third generation. The Swift gets automatic transmission options which has increased its popularity. It is available in petrol engine options with a manual transmission and AMT gearbox. The engine has a maximum power output of 90 bhp.
The design of the Swift is quite sporty in nature and interior space is adequate for a family 5-seater. Cabin quality is premium and comfortable for passengers. The Swift is a frugal car due to its updated petrol engine which is both refined and has good performance. The AMT gearbox is perfect for city use. Ride and handling are good although not as good as the previous generations of the Swift.
Hyundai Elite i20
Another premium hatchback that punches way above its segment is the Hyundai Elite i20. It has features that are found in cars in the next higher segment, which makes the i20 excellent value for money. It comes with three engine options – a 1.2 litre petrol, a 1.0 litre turbo petrol and a 1.5 litre diesel all mated to a variety of transmission options. The i20 is a family car 5-seater with loads of space, comfort and sublime driving manners.
The Hyundai i20 is a no compromise premium hatchback that is loved by all, not just for its equipment list, but also for its style and design. It is definitely a fun car to drive and enjoyable for the family to be seated in.
Maruti Suzuki Baleno
Now in its second generation, the Maruti Suzuki Baleno is a huge seller and for good reason. It is a proper family 5-seater with a refined engine and comfortable interiors. Engine option include a 1.2 litre petrol mated to either a manual gearbox or AMT transmission. The CVT gearbox has been shelved for this generation.
For space and practicality, the Baleno is a winner and it gets a host of safety options this year with a 360-degree camera and six airbags. The engine, although smooth and reliable, requires a little more punch in terms of performance. Ride and handling is satisfactory and the Baleno is a great family car all round.
The latest sub compact SUV from the Tata stable that falls in just below the 4 m length mark. It is a proper SUV in a compact package that makes this kind of design very desirable in the Indian market.
It gets a 1.2 litre petrol engine that is shared between the Tata Tiago and the Tata Altroz. The Punch is a proper family 5-seater, with a tall seating position just like a larger SUV thanks to its high ground clearance. Driving dynamics are superb and the car comes well equipped. All in all the Tata Punch packs quite the punch.
The Magnite is Nissan’s offering in the compact SUV space which is a much loved segment in India at the moment. The most attractive part of the Nissan Magnite is its affordable price tag which undercuts most of its rivals in the segment.
In terms of design, the Magnite is a good looker. It has loads of interior space and comes equipped with a host of features. The Magnite is true family 5-seater, and has plenty of space for cargo and luggage. Engine and transmission options cover a wide range of price points and offer something for all types of buyers.
Family cars under 8 lakhs
Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza
One of the most successful cars of our times, the Vitara Brezza is an absolute winner in terms of design, price, ride quality, interior space and features. This year it gets a refreshed look and now only the 1.5 litre petrol engine is available which comes mated to a manual transmission or a torque converter automatic gearbox.
Interior space is excellent and it does well as a family 5-seater. Seating position is high and the car offers a lot of ground clearance. It has a large boot which makes it practical for the family on long journeys.
A compact SUV from Tata, the Nexon scores high on design and looks. It has a wide variety of petrol and diesel engine options mated to manual or automatic transmissions. Overall, it is a very comfortable car due to its spacious interiors and awesome ride quality. Although it is not the most premium of interiors, the feature list is lengthy which makes the car both practical and convenient.
Engines for the Tata Nexon are refined and weighty clutches give a good fell for the transmission. Suspension is above par, and absorbs bumps quite well at low and high speeds. The Tata Nexon is a comfortable family 5 seater that is a good choice in this price range.
The Kia Sonet is another sub compact SUV in this hotly contested segment and goes up against its rivals like the Maruti Suzuki Vitara Brezza, and its sibling the Hyundai Venue. It gets 3 engine options mated to manual and automatic transmissions giving potential buyers a wide choice to choose from depending on their budget.
Where the Kia wins is its excellent features that are found in segments much above where it stands. These features include a touchscreen infotainment system, Bose sound system, ventilated seats, ambient lighting and connected car options.
Family cars under 15 lakhs
Mahindra XUV 700
The XUV700 comes in an all-new platform that is built to be lightweight and rigid. But this is no small SUV weighing in at 2000 kg. It comes in front wheel drive and all wheel drive options and there are a host of petrol and diesel engines to consider. It is a family 7-seater, with large and generous 3 row seating. There is ample space for passengers and luggage in the XUV 700, while the ride and handling for such a big car is quite impressive.
Tata’s premium SUV offering as a family 5-seater is built on a Land Rover platform. It is a front wheel drive based on a monocoque chassis and engine options are only a diesel mated to a manual or automatic transmission. Rivals to the Tata Harrier include the Hyundai Creta, MG Hector and Jeep Compass. The Tata Harrier makes for a very desirable family car.
The people mover with a futuristic design, the Kia Carens is a practical and comfortable family 7-seater. It comes with a very plush and pleasant cabin and one would think that they were seated in a much more expensive car. It features ambient lighting and fit, finish and craftsmanship is top notch. The engine is smooth and has good performance while the clutch and transmission work very well. Although the third row is not as spacious as expected, the car can seat 7 with ease and is a real advantage when the whole family wants to take a ride out of town.
Car manufacturers in India need to focus on space, seating, comfort and ride and quality if they want to produce a family car that is loved by all and sells in high numbers. It is not uncommon for families to travel on long trips out of the city so a good, powerful engine and refined gearbox is also something car makers must look into.
Extended families are a norm in India, so it only makes sense to have an extended car that can seat 7 passengers in comfort and luxury. Thankfully there are many choices to select from, and car manufacturers have found the sweet spot between price and offerings.
Hopefully this list of family cars has made your choice easier and would help you narrow down the right car for your family.