Since the traditional definition of a sports car is a small and lightweight 2-door car with a 2-seat (or occasionally a 2+2 seat) layout, the title "10 sports cars that seat 5" is a bit of an oxymoron, but nonetheless, we’ve come up with some vehicles that fit the bill. Whether you regularly carry a full load or just need five seats for occasional use, the cars on our list range from subcompact to full-size. And while most have four doors, they’re all still fun to drive and feature above-average handling characteristics. Don’t assume that your ride has to be boring just because you need to be able to carry a full complement of passengers.
10 Top Sports Cars that Seat 5
Photo Credit: Dodge
10) Dodge Challenger T/A 392
While the uber-powerful Hellcat variant is also available, the Challenger T/A 392’s 485-horsepower 6.4-liter Hemi V8 already has more than enough power for sports car duty (you can also get a lesser T/A with the smaller 375-horsepower Hemi). Both a 6-speed manual and an 8-speed automatic are offered, and the T/A also includes 6-piston Brembo brakes, a hood with integrated cold air intake, and ‘70s TransAm Series-inspired styling (including retro T/A graphics). The Challenger’s large size means that the rear seats can hold three adults in relative comfort, and while the ride quality is quite good, that bulk means that handling is secure but not up to racetrack standards. Still, if you want a sports car that seats five, the Challenger does it with only two doors.
Photo Credit: Mercedes-Benz
9) Mercedes-Benz AMG CLA 45 Coupe
While it might have the word "coupe" in its name, the Mercedes-Benz AMG CLA 45 Coupe actually has four doors and seating for five. However, its sloping roof means that space is quite tight in the rear, especially for taller passengers. The CLA 45 has a stiff ride, and while handling is good, it isn’t quite up to sports car standards, likely as a result of the front-wheel drive based platform. Sports car cred comes from the AMG-tuned suspension and the turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder engine that develops an impressive 375 horsepower. That twist is sent to all four wheels by a 7-speed dual-clutch transmission, and the result is a sprint to 60 miles per hour that takes just over four seconds. We just wish that a rear-wheel drive version was available.
Photo Credit: Subaru
8) Subaru WRX STI
While the Subaru WRX STI doesn’t seem quite as powerful as it once was (at least compared to its competition on our list of 10 sports cars that seat 5), it remains a fun option, especially if you regularly drive on gravel roads or in rough weather where the STI’s rally heritage shines. Power comes from a turbocharged 2.5-liter flat-4 that pumps out 305 horsepower, backed by a 6-speed manual transmission that sends power to all four wheels. The cabin materials are a bit downmarket, but it is fairly roomy inside and the ride quality is decent. What the STI doesn’t have in finesse compared to a true sports car, it makes up for with its ability to make the most of whatever grip is available.
Photo Credit: Audi
7) Audi S3
The Audi S3 is a compact 4-door all-wheel drive sports sedan with seating for 5 (and a respectable amount of rear seat room for a car of its size). Power comes from a turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder that produces 292 horsepower, backed by a 6-speed dual-clutch transmission. The quattro all-wheel drive system now sends more power to the rear wheels in order to help make the S3 a bit more neutral handling, but even with the changes to the all-wheel drive system, the S3 still suffers from moments of understeer when driven hard. The sprint to 60 miles per hour takes around four and a half seconds. Overall, the S3 is quite enjoyable to drive, although the ride can get a bit rough if the pavement isn’t smooth.
Photo Credit: Cadillac
6) Cadillac ATS-V Sedan
The 4-door Cadillac ATS-V sedan is one of the more powerful cars on our list of 10 sports cars with 5 seats, and it features great handling and aggressive looks to match. The turbocharged 3.6-liter V6 generates 464 horsepower, sent to the rear wheels via either a 6-speed manual or an 8-speed automatic gearbox. At around four seconds, the run to 60 miles per hour is quick (with the automatic just edging the manual), and the magnetorheological suspension lets you choose between sports car handling and the Cadillac ride of yore. The rear seats are a bit small, but there are three belts (versus only two in the Coupe) and rear seat passengers will have other things on their mind once you mash the throttle.
Photo Credit: Ford
5) Ford Fiesta ST
The subcompact Ford Fiesta ST is a 5-door hatchback that packs a 197-horsepower turbocharged 1.6-liter 4-cylinder engine and a 6-speed manual transmission. Combined with the ST’s small size and relatively light curb weight, the result is the ability to chuck the Fiesta into a corner like a true sports car, with handling and performance that should satisfy just about any driver. There is seating for 5, though the rear seat is cramped and best used only by children (especially when filled to capacity) and the cargo area is quite small. The Focus ST and the super-quick Focus RS are faster options, but the Fiesta ST is probably more fun more of the time. A new version should be arriving shortly, and we only hope that it’s as good as the current model.
Photo Credit: Volkswagen
4) Volkswagen Golf GTI
The Volkswagen Golf GTI is a compact 5-door hatchback that is a step up from the already excellent and practical Golf. The turbocharged 2.0-liter 4-cylinder generates 210 horsepower (or 220 horsepower with the Performance Package) that are sent to the front wheels via either a 6-speed manual or 6-speed dual-clutch automatic transmission. The run to 60 miles per hour takes around six seconds and handling is fun and predictable, yet the interior is as spacious as a normal Golf and the ride is comfortable. If you need a sports car that can seat 5 (or if you just want to fly under the radar) the Golf GTI is one of the best rides around, but if you want even more, there’s always the Golf R, with its 292 horsepower and all-wheel drive.
Photo Credit: Jaguar
3) Jaguar XE S
The Jaguar XE S is a compact 4-door sedan powered by a 3.0-liter supercharged V6 that produces 380 horsepower. An 8-speed automatic transmission is the only unit offered, but both rear-wheel and all-wheel drive models are available, and no matter which configuration you choose, you’ll hit 60 miles per hour in less than five seconds. This is also one of the best handling Jaguars in the pride, without too much of a sacrifice to comfort. There isn’t much luggage or storage space, and while there is seating for 5, the rear seats are small and somewhat difficult to access for adults. On the other hand, if you want a sports car and only occasionally carry three children in the rear, then the XE S is an attractive option.
Photo Credit: BMW
2) BMW M3
While the BMW M4 Coupe is closer to a true sports car with its 2+2 design, you’ll need to stick with the mid-size 4-door M3 Sedan if you want a car that can seat 5. A turbocharged 3.0-liter inline-6 sends 425 horsepower (or 444 horsepower when equipped with the Competition Package) through a good old-fashioned 6-speed manual transmission (or optionally a 7-speed double-clutch transmission) to the rear wheels. The run to 60 mph is over in under four seconds, and while the M3 rides a bit harsher than other models in the 3 Series lineup, that’s the tradeoff you have to make when you want a sedan that handles like a sports car (and you won’t be sacrificing much in the way of performance by choosing the M3 over the M4).
Photo Credit: Alfa Romeo
1) Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio
The Alfa Romeo Giulia Quadrifoglio is a compact 4-door sedan powered by a 2.9-liter turbocharged V6 engine that generates an impressive 505 horsepower, which is enough to get the Quadrifoglio to 60 miles per hour in just a tick over three and a half seconds (and on to a top speed of 191 mph). The cabin is a bit cramped in the rear and the beautiful interior has a few ergonomic issues, but those issues are easy to overlook once you get behind the wheel and experience the power and sound of the engine, the impressive handling, and the comfortable ride. It might not be the most practical entry on our list of 10 sports cars that seat 5, but it sure is a compelling option.