Shopping for a family vehicle isn’t all about comparing safety features and number of seats. Another factor that you must look into is the boot capacity.
In reality, however, no one really looks into the rear compartment during the shopping stage. The smallness of a boot only hits you when you realize there’s not enough room for your shopping bags, much less for everyone’s luggage when you’re on a long trip.
The best small family cars with the biggest boot capacities come from the likes of Kia, Hyundai, Suzuki, Nissan, and Honda. Volkswagen, Peugeot, and Skoda also have family car models with impressive boot capacities.
In most cases, these vehicles allow for back seats that can split and fold to expand the boot space even further to fit more items.
In this article, we’re going to explore the differences between the car boot and car trunk. Then, we’ll dive right into the top 10 small family cars with the biggest boots to help you in your search for the ideal family car.
Let’s get started.
Car Boot or Trunk: What's the Difference?
The terms car boot and car trunk refer to the same thing, and many people often use these terms interchangeably. Boot and trunk are names for a vehicle’s rear storage area for anything from bags to boxes.
The boot or trunk is only accessible from the outside of the vehicle, so you’ll need to stop and walk over to it. So for practicality, you should only use it for keeping items that you don’t need while the car is mobile.
If Boot and Trunk are the Same Thing, What’s the Difference?
There’s no difference, it’s just that boot and trunk are among those words that are caught in the great American English vs British English divide, so to speak. Americans use ‘trunk’ while British, Australians, and most everyone else use boot.
What’s interesting, though, is the history of how the terms came about, which emphasizes the difference between the two cultures.
In the early days of the American automobile, they literally mounted a trunk on a car's rear to serve as storage for items. The name stuck, so until now, that’s what Americans call that space in the modern car.
At about the same period, the British used a boot locker on the back of their carriages and early automobiles. The locker contained boots that the driver would put on to get in the mud and perform simple repairs on the vehicle. ‘Boot locker’ was eventually shortened to ‘boot’, which found its way to wherever the Queen’s English was spoken and up to this day.
With such charming histories for both words, why would you even imagine changing the terms now? Trunk or boot, they both deserve such enduring, endearing names.
So, who is this third guy Frunk?
What Is a Frunk?
Another variation that we should all be aware of is the ‘frunk’, or ‘front trunk’. No, he’s not the new boss in town.
Frunks have been around for decades. The first one must have been used on the VW Beetle in the 1930s, although I’m not sure whether it was already called ‘frunk’ at the time. Considering that storage compartments in European cars were more likely called boot, the Beetle most probably had a ‘froot’ (front boot).
Seriously, though, frunks were always a common feature in vehicles with a rear-placed engine, where the only storage space available was at the front. And don’t brush the term aside just yet because you’ll hear more and more of it in the future.
The term ‘frunk’ will become increasingly popular for yet another reason – electric cars. Simply put, EVs don't have a large engine to occupy what would traditionally be the engine bay on ICE-vehicles. Still, that extra space must remain a part of the vehicle's design to serve as a crumple zone (the part that absorbs impact in a collision).
So, without the typical engine to occupy the space, there’s plenty of room for storage at the front, and that’s the frunk.
So let’s leave the three musketeers – boot, trunk, and frunk – there, and move on to which small cars offer the most substantial storage space.
Which Small Family Cars Have the Biggest Boot?
Suppose you’re in the market for a family car with plenty of boot space, then the first thing you must know is that boot capacity is typically measured in litres and sometimes cubic centimetres.
Knowing this will make it easy for you to compare boot space between car brands and models and choose the best for you and your family.
To help you with your search, we’ve shortlisted ten makes and models.
Top 10 Small Family Cars with the Biggest Boot
1. Kia Picanto
The first car on our list is the Kia Picanto. Despite the car’s size, it boasts an impressive 255-litre boot in the back.
Much like the other cars on this list, you’ll see that the Kia Picanto has an option to split and fold the backseat to increase the boot space. Of course, this would only be possible if you didn’t have anyone occupying the rear seats.
In the case of the Picanto, you can split and fold the rear seats 60:40 to increase boot space to 1,010 litres.
2. Hyundai i10
Korean carmaker Hyundai has a spot on this list with the Hyundai i10. The car has many high-tech features, but what we’re interested in is the boot space. This car has a 252-litre boot, slightly smaller compared to the previous model. In addition, the back seats can fold to increase that space to 1,050 litres.
3. Suzuki Celerio
Suzuki’s Celerio comes with a 254-litre boot. Like the Kia Picanto earlier, the back seats can be split and folded 60:40, bringing boot space up to 726 litres for more cargo space.
4. Nissan Note
Nissan discontinued the Nissan Note back in 2017, but it’s still an excellent family vehicle that you can find on the used car market. The standard boot space on this car is 381 litres, beating all the three models mentioned above.
That space is even more impressive with the rear seat folded, increasing it up to a whopping 1,465 litres.
5. Honda Jazz
Everybody knows and loves the Honda Jazz for a handful of different reasons. Here’s one more reason to add to that list – it has a standard boot space of 354 litres.
Honda has its Magic Seat feature, which allows for several different rear-seat configurations beyond the typical 60:40 split. With Magic Seat, the Honda Jazz can enjoy a maximum of 1,314 litres of boot space.
6. Volkswagen Golf
Another familiar name is the Volkswagen Golf. The standard boot space on this car is 380 litres, though the estate version offers plenty more at 605 litres of space for car boot tool storage or anything else.
7. Renault Megane
Renault Megane, designed for families in mind, comes with an above-average 434 litres of boot space. This car is well-known for the boot’s square design, making it easier to organise your cargo, with or without a car boot organiser.
8. Honda Civic
As we go down this list, you may have noticed that the standard boot spaces keep getting bigger, but that’s primarily because our list started with micro and supermini cars (e.g. Picanto, Jazz) and slowly moved to small cars (e.g. Megane, Golf). Another step up from the previous model is the Honda Civic with its 492-litre boot, expandable up to 1,210 litres by folding the rear seats.
9. Peugeot 308
French automaker Peugeot’s 308 boasts of a 501-litre boot, the second-largest boot capacity on this list. It will accommodate your luggage to take the family on road trips with this car. Or, if the rear seats are empty, you can fold them to enjoy 1,309 litres of trunk space instead.
10. Skoda Octavia
Last but certainly not least, if you’re looking for the most boot space possible in a small family car, you’ll want the Skoda Octavia. The standard boot space is a mind-blowing 590 litres, and more so at 1,580 litres with the back seat folded.
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By Ray Hasbollah