Wednesday, November 3, 2010

A Car For a Family of Four (and a dog)

My kids are going to be here within the next 8-10 weeks and I am no closer to picking out a car than I was four months ago. Right now I drive an S40. It's cute, I love it, but it's SMALL. I can't even fit our DSNG in the trunk with anything else. It's not functional, so it's time to upgrade in size.

Here's what we're looking at, and I'd love some feedback - if you're a parent, a parent of multiples, a driver - hell, if you're reading this, just tell me what you think.

And to answer the question before it comes up, yes, we're buying new. I'm out of time to look for a "gently used" car that meets all of my expectations and whatever I get I'll have until the wheels fall off. So for the first time ever we're buying new. All three cars are priced relatively the same, so take your pick.

We started off looking at the Chrysler Town and Country Touring Plus. Of all the minivans I liked this one the best. It is small and it has a lot of bells and whistles for the price.

Pros: power everything, the rear DVD system, sunroof, lots of storage, seating for 8, seats fold flat

Cons: it's a Chrysler and I've heard that they're not reliable, no way to get to the back without climbing over the center console or stopping the car, front wheel drive only (we live in Upstate NY), it's a minivan.

Then we looked at the new Honda Odyssey EX-L. Joe already has a Pilot. The new Odyssey drives exactly like the Pilot, which is nice. However when they redid the body style for 2011 they got rid of some stuff that was good about the old body style. Annoying.

Pros: It's a Honda, sunroof, power everything, third row folds flat, middle row is reconfigurable, seating for 8

Cons: you can get to the back by removing the center console, but then you lose the majority of your front seat storage, very little room for negotiation as this model just came out and it's a brand new body style, front wheel drive only (we live in Upstate NY), it's a minivan.

The car we started off looking at when I first planned to trade in my tiny S40 was the Volvo XC70. I really love this wagon, but it clearly doesn't have the convenience features of a van.

Pros: power lift gate, sunroof, all wheel drive, we get a $1000 credit for being repeat buyers, it's not a minivan.

Cons: Seating for us and the kids only, if we had a third kid we'd probably have to get a van eventually, it's a wagon - so when I load kids into the car they need to be behind me in a stroller which means I can't see all kids at all times, we'd probably still have to take Joe's car for long road trips.

So there you have it. I'm sure there are other pros/cons I can't think of right now, so please opinionate (yes, I made up that word for the purposes of this post) on this for me. I need to take care of this car situation by the middle of the month. 

Thanks for your help.

Related Posts with Thumbnails

Back to TOP  

Pin It button on image hover