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  • Hot wheels? - Spilling the Beans - Magic Beans

Hot wheels?

My husband has cheerfully driven a minivan for years, while I have gratefully managed to stay in a small crossover SUV that seats 5 passengers. But now, faced with the prospect of trying to fit three car seats across my back seat, I’m realizing that our expanding family may require me to reevaluate my wheels. So I took to the internet to research other options. I was frustrated that the car shopping comparison sites don’t offer the stats that are relevant for a mom. Finding out the number of LATCH connectors in a car, for instance, is virtually impossible without digging deep into each car manufacturer’s website.

But then I found a fabulous site, motherproof.com. If you’re in the market for a car, this is a great resource. They review many family-friendly car models, road testing them with kids in tow, and offering all the vital stats that every mom wants to know, including a count of LATCH connectors and even a fun factor rating, which deep down is all I really care about.

5 comments

  1. Hi! I am very curious on your car findings! I tried the motherproof website. We have a 3 yr old (27 lbs), a 16 month old and a 6 week old. Our minivan is fine, but our old 4Runner doesn’t work (it needs to be replaced anyway). I have heard the radian car seat is skinny, so I was thinking of getting 2, then going and trying to fit 2 Radians and a Marathon in the cars we try. I don’t think my 3 yr old will be ready for a booster anytime soon. We are going to look at the Volvo XC70 and Toyota Highlander. Keep us posted on what you find. Thanks! Sarah

  2. I test-drove the Toyota Highlander this week and I really liked it. I wish they had put LATCH in the 3rd row, and I wish that the 3rd row could fold down in a 50/50 split instead of all one piece, but those were the only big downsides. I loved the removable center console, because it means I can install the car seats on the two outer seats in the 2nd row, and still be able to access the 3rd row for my oldest, who is usually able to fasten her own straps. Should I look at the Volvo too??

  3. We have an Odyssey, would never drive an SUV (for variety of reasons) and I’ve never even used the 3rd row for anything except boosters. The bigger ones always sit back there for carpools, outings, etc.

  4. i drive a pilot and it easily fits 6 car seats. supposidly the new pilot 2009 will have latch available in both rows- huge plus. It rides great. The motherproof website seems very confusing to me. let us know what you decide.

  5. I almost signed the dotted line on a pilot – but then I saw the GMC Acadia/Saturn Outlook (same car… different label) – LOVE IT. I ended up with the saturn. It only has latch on the center row… but remember… Latch is NOT safer… it’s just supposed to be easier (and people still screw it up all the time). It does have 4 tether spots – which is the much more important thing to have. I can fit 8 full size adults in this car… so many of the third rows were so scrunched up! And some of them were down right scary! I can fit 3 full size carseats (Regent, marathon, boulevard) across the bench row or I can do them 2 in the back and one up front… to give everyone a bit more room. It also comes with a captains chair version. Both rows are 40/60 seats… so you can fold down part of the seat or all of it. And I still have some cargo space in the back to fit a stroller (for instance… my uppababy fits there just fine). I get 26mpg highway! 🙂 check them out!

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