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    Thread: Does having a kid automatically mean crossover/minivan/wagon?

    1. Senior Member Mazda 3s's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 02:37 PM #1
      Just wondering. Does having a kid pretty much pigeonhole you into a vehicle like a wagon, minvan, or a crossover?

      It seems as though having something with a large cargo area would definitely be ideal, but do any of you folks out there make do with something like a midsize sedan (Camry, Accord, Malibu, etc.)?

      If so, how does your trunk fare on trips with two adults + a small infant/child?

      "Of course that's just my opinion; I could be wrong."

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      Have you ever popped the hood on a powerstroke E350?
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      05-01-2010 02:41 PM #2
      I grew up in VWs as a kid so small cars a do able. My parents currently have a Malibu with 2 kids and have no problems. I think people over react and think bigger is better or safer. But most do not NEED an SUV, crossover, minivan, wagon. It comes down to what they want to see themselves in and how they want to been seen by their peers.

    3. 05-01-2010 02:47 PM #3
      Time to congratulate you & the Mrs, Brandon?

    4. Member JMTombstone's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 02:47 PM #4
      If you have a few kids then I could see the need for something like a minivan, but 1 kid does not mean you need to buy one. There is more then enough space in a sedan if you have a kid. When I was little my parents had an A6 (and before that a late 80s accord) and both were fine for both my parents, my brother, and I when we went on camping trips and other driving adventures. I really think people overreact when they have a kid and think they NEED all the extra space.
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      Look...we know what Chris Harris thinks of the FR-S, and now we know what Jay Leno thinks, but what do 20 year old euro humping TCL'ers driving 10 year old golfs and who jerk it to TDIs think?! I don't think we've heard from them yet...

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      05-01-2010 02:50 PM #5
      Yes.

      If you do not immediately buy a crossover/minivan/wagon (with DVD entertainment center) for your one child, then you are a terrible parent.

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    6. Member Sir UNBANNED_GERBIL M.B.'s Avatar
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      05-01-2010 02:50 PM #6
      When I grew up we we're a family of 5. We had a 85 NA Jetta Diesel, 84 Audi 5000, 79 seville, 67 acadian wagon, amongst that were all relatively small.
      Some previous rides:
      B7 Avant 3.2 6MT(Dolphin Grey, Sline, Titanium, Every option) Missed
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    7. 05-01-2010 02:52 PM #7
      yes....yes it does


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      05-01-2010 02:53 PM #8
      For half of my childhood my parents drove my brother and I around in a Civic...
      Unf*ckwithable

    9. Senior Member Mazda 3s's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 02:55 PM #9
      Quote, originally posted by JMTombstone »
      If you have a few kids then I could see the need for something like a minivan, but 1 kid does not mean you need to buy one. There is more then enough space in a sedan if you have a kid. When I was little my parents had an A6 (and before that a late 80s accord) and both were fine for both my parents, my brother, and I when we went on camping trips and other driving adventures. I really think people overreact when they have a kid and think they NEED all the extra space.

      See, that's what I was thinking. My parents had midsize sedans when I was a kid. It wasn't until I was in high school that my dad bought a Ford Explorer.

      I've been looking into getting a wagon, but there are SOOOO many options out there in the midsize sedan market.

      I've always thought that minivans were a bit overkill, especially for families with just one kid, but hey what do I know? Friends of ours just bought a Toyota Sienna, and their first kid is due in 4 weeks. Just seems like a lot of vehicle for just one kid

      "Of course that's just my opinion; I could be wrong."

      Quote Originally Posted by The Igneous Faction
      Have you ever popped the hood on a powerstroke E350?
      Quote Originally Posted by WhistlerYOW
      No, I got good grades in school

    10. Senior Member Mazda 3s's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 02:57 PM #10
      Quote, originally posted by mAdD INDIAN »
      Time to congratulate you & the Mrs, Brandon?

      Haha, we plan on "trying" for a kid around this time next year. But my car will be paid for this November and I'm thinking of new cars to replace my 3s. Since I plan on keeping the car for at least five years, I want something that'll be able to haul me, the wife, and a kid

      "Of course that's just my opinion; I could be wrong."

      Quote Originally Posted by The Igneous Faction
      Have you ever popped the hood on a powerstroke E350?
      Quote Originally Posted by WhistlerYOW
      No, I got good grades in school

    11. 05-01-2010 02:59 PM #11
      Quote, originally posted by IHateSpeedBumps »
      It comes down to what they want to see themselves in and how they want to been seen by their peers.

      your family's pretty insecure to consider what others think of you over whats good for you.

      Judging by th OP's photo, its a great inconvenience to "search" for anything when you're traveling like a packrat, esp when you have infants who don't know the concept of "waiting." I want room for a stroller, buggy, blankets, diapers, food, etc w/o having to move anything to get at it. With a car, you can mount the seat on one of 2 or 3 places in the back seat & you can carry only 2 kids @ a time ( can't travel with another couple with a kid. With 3 row of seats, 2 familes with infants can travel together, not to mention the luggage that wouldn't fit in a car with 2 kids & 2 adults & 2 strollers. Regarding safety, I rarely see vans or SUV's after an accident where the intrusion went into the middle seat areas of the 2nd or 3rd row seats. I see many impacts to sedans & wagons in the rear door/ quarter panel areas with severe intrusions into the rear seat areas.

      It really was a no brainer for me to get a minivan: lower floor & more usable space & car like handling versus an SUV. Twice the seats & cargo space with very similar handlling and efficiency of a midsize sedan with similar power.

      for commuting w/o the infant, we have a MINI (gets 40mpgs on the fwy).


      To the OP: our trunk looked like that even when we had an X3. With the minivan, no need to worry about what to take, how to cram everything in. For longer trips, reclining middle seats (mommy can sleep next to the baby on the trip so daddy can sleep @ the destination!!) Once again, the best thing is: you can travel with another couple & infant. Another thing, the Ody gets better hwy mileage than the X3.

      Modified by snb3 at 12:01 PM 5-1-2010


      Modified by snb3 at 12:35 PM 5-1-2010


    12. Geriatric Member BRealistic's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 03:01 PM #12
      Quote, originally posted by UNBANNED_GERBIL »
      When I grew up we we're a family of 5. We had a 85 NA Jetta Diesel, 84 Audi 5000, 79 seville, 67 acadian wagon, amongst that were all relatively small.

      Our family of four had (list until I was 18):

      -A mid 60s two door white Pontiac Tempest.
      -A white and then later a yellow Pinto.
      -A yellow/orange Mercury Comet sedan.
      -A brown 73 Mercury Montego sedan.
      -A tan with brown top 79 Chrysler Lebaron sedan.
      -A tan 78 Oldsmobile 98 sedan.
      -A tan 82 Mazda GLC sedan (tight fit for family of four with 3 tall males).

      I think the Pintos and the GLC were the only manuals.

      The old fullsize domestic sedans had PLENTY of room for five or six in a pinch due to the wide front/rear bench seats. Kids today are sooooo spoiled.

      I remember one of the biggest issues when travelling was trying to figure out what I could take in my small luggage (to fit everything in trunk- as the OP mentions). Having a limited amount of cargo space just means everybody has to make choices on what they bring. You can't just bring everything.


      Modified by BRealistic at 3:06 PM 5/1/2010

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    13. Member TooFitToQuit's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 03:05 PM #13
      Only child, but we had a Tempo, and I survived. It's all just keeping up with the neighbors for l33t status.


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      05-01-2010 03:30 PM #14
      From '85 to the early '00s my parents' vehicles consisted of:

      1979 Olds Starfire ('79 to '90)
      1982 Dodge Aries wagon ('85 to '92)
      1981 Cadillac Coupe DeVille ('90-'94)
      1989 Nissan Stanza ('92 to '02)
      1989 Mazda 323 ('94-'03-ish)

      One wagon and one huge full-size, but for the majority of the '90s (92-on) the Stanza was the main family car, and from '94 to 2002 or so, the two small Japanese sedans were the only cars in the fleet, and they were more than enough for a family of 4, imo.


      Modified by tehAndy at 2:36 PM 5-1-2010


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      05-01-2010 03:31 PM #15
      Quote, originally posted by snb3 »

      your family's pretty insecure to consider what others think of you over whats good for you.

      Not my family, just an observation of the people around here and what they drive. Its all about image now.


    16. 05-01-2010 03:36 PM #16
      Quote, originally posted by IHateSpeedBumps »

      Not my family, just an observation of the people around here and what they drive. Its all about image now.

      true , i guess.


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      05-01-2010 03:38 PM #17
      Quote, originally posted by IHateSpeedBumps »

      Not my family, just an observation of the people around here and what they drive. Its all about image now.

      Yep.

      There was a time when minivans were very trendy (early/mid 90s).
      But they were also very practical.
      Then we had the SUV craze (replacing minivans as family haulers).

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      05-01-2010 03:40 PM #18
      One kid, NO.

      Two kids? Yeah, I went with a wagon. But his car has always been a Golf or equivalent. And the wagon is hopped up, so it might not actually count.

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      05-01-2010 03:42 PM #19
      It depends. We did fine with the Passat sedan for 10 years. Stick a roof box on it, and we could travel for weeks around the country with 2 small kids plus an 18-pound dog. You just have to think about what junk you're going to bring along, and map out how you pack.

      However, now that we're in the camp/carpool/practice rotation, we routinely carry around 4 extra people, so an Odyssey it is.

      Our friends, who have 2 tweens, get by fine with a 4-door sedan. Even when they go camping or on vacation, everything magically fits. Again, just think about what you're going to bring.


    20. 05-01-2010 03:55 PM #20
      Not necessarily. The younger they are though, the more crap you have to carry around. That said, we rented a Kia Spectra two Christmases ago when my son was 2 months old, and fit all our crap (including a stroller, pack-and-play and presents) into the thing.

      We've now got a 2010 Subaru Forester, but we could easily get by with a sedan and a roof cargo box for trips longer than a week. Heck, with a roof rack, we could road-trip in the 911 at this point:


    21. Member atomicalex's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 04:06 PM #21
      The stroller thing.....

      We got one of those Graco all-in-one deals at first. About two months in, we gave it to our son's nana (private day care lady). That thing was sooooooo HUGE and did so little... We "upgraded" to a Combi SavvyZ (the eurotrash stroller of 1998) which took up about 1/10th the room and did everything we needed. It did not directly mount up the basket seat, but that kind of sat in the stroller just fine. Once we got rid of Paul Bunyan's stroller and went for the small one, we could get two kids, two parents, and a week's worth of crap into a 5dr Golf! That included the pack'n'play.

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      05-01-2010 04:15 PM #22
      It depends how many overnights you'll be doing to visit friends/grandparents. This is when I have trouble fitting the baby junk in my 3 or the wife's xB.

      Also my parents had three kids and tiny cars. I remember being very uncomfortable.


    23. Senior Member Mazda 3s's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 04:16 PM #23
      Quote, originally posted by VAB5 »
      It depends. We did fine with the Passat sedan for 10 years. Stick a roof box on it, and we could travel for weeks around the country with 2 small kids plus an 18-pound dog. You just have to think about what junk you're going to bring along, and map out how you pack.

      However, now that we're in the camp/carpool/practice rotation, we routinely carry around 4 extra people, so an Odyssey it is.

      Our friends, who have 2 tweens, get by fine with a 4-door sedan. Even when they go camping or on vacation, everything magically fits. Again, just think about what you're going to bring.


      Hmmm, I'm liking this sedan + roofbox idea for long trips/vacations
      "Of course that's just my opinion; I could be wrong."

      Quote Originally Posted by The Igneous Faction
      Have you ever popped the hood on a powerstroke E350?
      Quote Originally Posted by WhistlerYOW
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    24. Moderator Oliver@triplezoom's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 04:21 PM #24
      When I was a kid, my parents had a Mazda GLC sedan. We drove that all over the place with my two brothers. It was tight but not bad.

      Now my girlfriend and I have a wagon and hatch, but no kids (just a dog). Seems like overkill in comparison.


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      05-01-2010 04:22 PM #25
      Quote, originally posted by Mazda 3s »

      Hmmm, I'm liking this sedan + roofbox idea for long trips/vacations


      But you need a vehicle with roof supports... and then access to the roof top unit is.. difficult.

      What about just getting a small trailer when you need extra cargo room?

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    26. 05-01-2010 04:37 PM #26
      Nowadays people wiht 1 child think they need this

    27. Senior Member Mazda 3s's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 04:39 PM #27
      Quote, originally posted by Impeccable »
      Nowadays people wiht 1 child think they need this

      No Child Left Behind

      "Of course that's just my opinion; I could be wrong."

      Quote Originally Posted by The Igneous Faction
      Have you ever popped the hood on a powerstroke E350?
      Quote Originally Posted by WhistlerYOW
      No, I got good grades in school

    28. Member GDJ's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 05:30 PM #28
      We've got a MK4 Jetta wagon and at times it can get a little tight. I'm 6'2 and when I drive, my 18mo old son can already kick the crap out of my back. I definitely see the appeal of something huge like a SUV or Mini Van but I think a bigger wagon like a XC70 or Passat Wagon would work great for when the second one gets here. Only way we'd have a van is if we had 4+ kids.

      Kids come with a lot of stuff!


    29. 05-01-2010 05:34 PM #29
      Two kids for me. I've had my Golf as long as I've had the kids. Our biggest car has been a B5.5 Passat. Then we traded the Passat in for a Mini Cooper S. A minivan/suv/wagon is not essential for parenting.

    30. Member bluesbrothers's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 05:40 PM #30
      Quote, originally posted by mycarsux »
      A minivan/suv/wagon is not essential for parenting.

      as a parent of two, and my girlfriend has two, a suv/ mini van is not essential but makes everything so much easier when hauling kids and their stuff around. I just went on a weekend trip with just two kids in my jetta, and i cant wait to sell that car and get a suv or wagon with more room for me and my kids.


      Modified by bluesbrothers at 4:42 PM 5-1-2010

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    31. Member QUIRKiT's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 05:45 PM #31
      I grew up taking trips across the US in the back of a 1990 Buick LeSabre with my younger brother and parents.

      Then it was a 1999 Buick Regal GS.

      Honestly, we had no problems. We would pack the middle seat in the back with pillows and blankets(great for separating us so we wouldn't fight) and the rest of the luggage in the trunk.

      Honestly, when my fiance and I have kids, I will be sticking with smaller than a mid-size sedan.

      I hate when family's buy ridiculous SUVs for their kids. Our realtor just bought an '09 Yukon Denali 'cause his only son is "getting bigger." He had a Subaru Forester before. :/

      Quote Originally Posted by Capt.Dreadz View Post
      This place is going to hell on a Thule roof rack.

    32. 05-01-2010 05:48 PM #32
      Brother has an 09 FX35 and a CC 4motion. He finds having a wagon/suv kind of necessary even with one. Would have a bigger rig if he had more than one kid. Being that he's smart, stopped at one.

    33. Member Art Vandelay's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 05:59 PM #33
      Quote, originally posted by KamelReds »
      I grew up taking trips across the US in the back of a 1990 Buick LeSabre with my younger brother and parents.

      I did it in Fox body Mustangs with 2 older sisters. My dad installed a 3rd seatbelt in the middle for me, because we were hauling 5 people in a 4 passenger car. It was obviously tight, but we had no real problems. It's not as easy these days, but can still be done with a large compact.

      JSW TDI, Mustang SVO, et al.

    34. 05-01-2010 06:01 PM #34
      I hope not... these CUVs and minivans are all pushing 40k these days. A dark alley and a coat hanger runs you about 40 cents.

    35. Senior Member 16vracer's Avatar
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      05-01-2010 06:20 PM #35
      While they are not a necessity they sure do make life much easier. It just depends what level of inconvenience you are willing to accept.

      We have a 7month old and our vehicles include a 08 Audi A4 and a 05 Volvo XC70.

      Life in the Audi is cramped to say the least. Our stroller, a Phil and Ted's Sport, barely fits in the trunk....you need to remove the car seat adaptor just to jam it in there. For that reason we frequently just use the Baby Bjorn if we are in the Audi.

      Life in the Volvo is better but you still wouldn't be able to do things like a run to Costco if the stroller is in the car.

      We just completed a 2800 mile roadtrip lastweek. Vehicle of choice? Alamo was kind enough to rent us a 2010 Dodge Grand Caravan
      We fell in love with minivans. Not a Dodge though. We are seriously planning to get rid of the Audi and get either a Toyota Sienna or Honda Odyssey.
      It was just so much easier to do everything in it.

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