Author Topic: Car Buying Time  (Read 4618 times)

ginklord

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Car Buying Time
« on: June 29, 2014, 02:08:15 PM »
Hi everyone,

Thanks in advance for any help. Here's my dilemma:

My wife and I have two kids, 2 and 6 months. We're working in a third, but that will probably be the max.

We need to buy a car that can comfortably fit all of us, and get great MPG. That said, my wife is freaking out about space and wants to buy some huge Grand Caravan or equivalent for trips around town and errands. We looked at the Mazda5 (which I love) and the cargo area in the back is TINY - we won't even be able to fit our double stroller in there, let along diaper bags or toys.

Does anyone out there cart around a big family in a fuel efficient car? How?

- Matthew

Exflyboy

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2014, 02:16:47 PM »
We just bought a Chevvy Cruze (2012 model) from Hertz auto sales.. its pretty roomy in the back for a compact ish car and claims to get 38mpg (if your careful).

Hertz incidently will not negotiate on price and have a large range of ex rental cars to choose from so you can compare lots of different models.

They are pretty well taken care of too.

Frank

PindyStache

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #2 on: June 29, 2014, 10:58:39 PM »
Is something wrong with your arms? If you feel a need to have/use a double-wide stroller then you should probably get a large vehicle. If you are really posting on the right forums, MMM has a good list of hatchbacks and many other threads post lists. Matrix and Elantra wagon have my personal recommendations. I know I can get my bike in either without taking a wheel off. We haven't used a stroller at all for a long time, our kid is 2.

ginklord

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #3 on: June 30, 2014, 06:58:09 AM »
Is something wrong with your arms? If you feel a need to have/use a double-wide stroller then you should probably get a large vehicle. If you are really posting on the right forums, MMM has a good list of hatchbacks and many other threads post lists. Matrix and Elantra wagon have my personal recommendations. I know I can get my bike in either without taking a wheel off. We haven't used a stroller at all for a long time, our kid is 2.

Nothing wrong with our arms, but my wife worries about really long walks with both kids. She can't push the stroller and carry Max too if he poops out. Then again, superlong walks that tire him that much will likely be pretty rare, especially considering that we're together most of the time when we're out. You have me thinking that basing a car decision on this rare event may not be a good idea.

Thanks!

- Matthew

boarder42

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #4 on: June 30, 2014, 07:33:57 AM »
Ford escape hybrid 40-45,mpgs

neo von retorch

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #5 on: June 30, 2014, 07:53:05 AM »
I think the answer depends on what you'd like to spend.

$7000-10000 Honda Fit, Mazda5, Scion xA
$10000-15000 Honda CR-V, Toyota RAV-4/Highlander, Honda Odyssey
$15000-20000 Mazda CX-5 (FWD models only for higher MPG)

I'm sure there are quite a few more suggestions for each price point...

MayDay

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #6 on: June 30, 2014, 07:59:56 AM »
We have two kids and nothing is wrong with my arms, but hell yes I used the crap out of my double stroller! Both alone and if the hubs was with us. 

So a car that fit both the kids and the stroller was a necessity. Since we only have two kids, a civic worked fine for that.

Anyway. With three kids, if you truly want comfort you are looking at a minivan. How many long drives do you take a year? If you mostly stay in town, I would probably get a wagon or hatchback that can comfortably fit three across. So not a Honda fit! Because while you may be able to squeeze three across with a certain combo of carseats, it will be hell to do on a regular basis.


CarDude

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #7 on: June 30, 2014, 08:21:13 AM »
I'd suggest either a midsized-or larger sedan or a minivan if you've got 3 kids. You're not going to get "great" mpg unless you buy a hybrid, but you can get "good" mpg with hypermiling and a sedan like an Accord. I'd stay away from anything smaller than a midsized class vehicle, which means I'd definitely skip over Civics, Priuses, Fits, Corollas, and whatnot.

ginklord

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #8 on: June 30, 2014, 10:51:12 AM »
Thanks everyone! Fitting all three across would be idea - minivans are just so damn inefficient for tooling around town. We don't take many big trips out of state, so we may just rent a minivan for those rare occasions.

We'll do some research to find a sedan that can fit three across comfortably. Thanks again!

Scandium

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #9 on: June 30, 2014, 11:02:30 AM »
This is where a wagon would be great, except they're an endangered species in the US. My subaru outback is extremely roomy for the size, practical, not very expensive, reliable. The milage is crap though due to 4WD (~26 avg). I don't know many other cars like this anymore unfortunately.
Of course the audi avants and volvo v70 are great cars in this field, but way-way too expensive!

MayDay

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #10 on: June 30, 2014, 12:42:00 PM »
Thanks everyone! Fitting all three across would be idea - minivans are just so damn inefficient for tooling around town. We don't take many big trips out of state, so we may just rent a minivan for those rare occasions.

We'll do some research to find a sedan that can fit three across comfortably. Thanks again!

Before you assume you will be able to rent a minivan, call around (or try to book online).  When we tried to rent one for a camping trip, there were zero available in our city.  We could have rented a ginormous SUV, but not a minivan.  And it would have cost a fortune, plus gas.  You might still come out ahead of owning one, but don't assume that without checking local availability. 

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #11 on: June 30, 2014, 05:36:31 PM »
What kind of car do you have now? Chances are, if it can fit two, it can fit three - though you may have to replace car seats to fit them all.

Unless you have a need for new wheels RIGHT NOW, wait until number three is conceived. You've still got nine whole months after that for CL scouring and depreciation to occur in your favor.

Also, knowing how many miles you drive each year can really help you decide what's worth having in fuel economy. I have a van, but I rarely drive it. Even if I suddenly double mpg, the savings is something silly like $250 a year.

ginklord

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Re: Car Buying Time
« Reply #12 on: July 01, 2014, 10:39:33 AM »
Good point - we've been slowly reducing our driven miles as we grow our mustaches.

We do have to get new wheels though - we made the poor decision to lease a vehicle three years ago, and it's going back in October.