The boot of your car is a highly used and important feature, yet it is often overlooked when considering how a specific vehicle will suit our needs and lifestyle. As we lead increasingly busy and demanding lifestyles, thinking about how much boot space you really need is essential for finding your perfect motoring fit.

You might be a regular traveller, or transporter of kids with all their gear, so may need bigger boot space. On the other hand, compact efficiency may be more of a priority, meaning that a more economical car boot may suit your needs better.

Why does boot space matter?

Everyone and every family have different needs, according to their size, lifestyle and specific requirements. There may be a need to regularly move specific equipment around, such as a pram, wheelchair, or sporting equipment like bikes or surfboards. Most people also have a general requirement to transport groceries and luggage.

If you don’t think about your car boot size ahead of time, it may not be until your next camping trip that you realise your new car doesn’t fit all of your gear and the dog too. Luckily, in a reasonably competitive market like New Zealand’s, buyers are spoilt for choice. You can afford to be picky down to the centimetre when it comes to your car boot needs.

What to look out for

There are two key aspects to factor into your decision making when it comes to the boot size of your new car.

1. Space

The language and measurements used to describe the space of a car boot can vary between manufacturers, potentially making it difficult to get an accurate picture of the available space. For example, some use cubic metres, while others use litres. However, it’s important to make comparisons between the different models you are considering and reference these against any specific gear you need to transport.

2. Shape

While knowing the total capacity of a car boot can be helpful, don’t forget that not all boots are built to the same specifications. The shape of car boots varies greatly depending on the model and style of a car. While you may be willing to play Tetris with your travel luggage to get it to fit, some boot shapes may not suit your specific needs. So, it is important to look at things like the slopes in the car boot’s interior, the placement of the spare tyre, the way the boot opens and even the size of the door to help you decide if these features might become a problem in the future.

Top tip

Testing a car is the most important thing you can do when buying a car and an often-overlooked check is car boot space. Don’t be afraid to bring along your specific equipment, such as a pram, golf clubs, suitcase, or mobility equipment – for the test drive so that you can test the space and dimensions will suit your needs long-term.